“Presenting is a funny field. I would bet if we took a survey, many presenters didn’t go to “Presenting School.” It’s very much a learn-on-the-job experience.  I commend South Arts for astutely recognizing this, and creating the Launchpad program to address the learning needs of new presenters.” ~ Comments from 2016 Launchpad Participant

Becoming a presenter for the first time can be daunting. Where can I find the best artists for my community? How do I apply my marketing and management skills to a new position? How do I negotiate contracts to be fair to my organization and the artist? Who can I call for advice?

Launchpad is designed to provide a year-long support system to professionals who are new to the performing arts presenting field in our nine-state region. This South Arts program offers professional development, mentorship, and a travel subsidy for participation at the 2018 Performing Arts Exchange in Orlando, FL. In addition, there is an opportunity to receive funding to join your statewide presenters’ network and to support artist fees for presenting one of our 2018 juried showcase artists. Up to ten presenters will be selected in the third cohort.

The goals of this program are:

  • Provide professional development for new presenting professionals
  • Share resources for identifying high-quality artists
  • Support learning through a peer network group and individual mentoring

Selected applicants will receive:

Applicants are encouraged to contact Nikki Estes, Program Director, at 404-874-7244 ext. 16 to discuss eligibility prior to submitting an application.

Eligibility, Guidelines, and Policies

  • Only nonprofit and governmental presenting organizations in South Arts’ nine-state region are eligible to apply. South Arts’ nine-state region includes Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
  • Presenting organizations must have not-for-profit, tax-exempt status or be an official unit of local, county or state government. For nonprofit presenters,
    Juried showcase artist M5 Mexican Brass - photograph by Bruce France

    Juried showcase artist M5 Mexican Brass – photograph by Bruce France

    tax-exempt status will be verified by a third party entity. Governmental presenters must provide proof of government status. South Arts does not accept applications from fiscal agents in this program.
  • All applicants must have a DUNS number. Applications will not be accepted from organizations that do not have a DUNS number. More about DUNS numbers and how to get one >>
  • Applicant organizations must have a current presenting season.
  • Only NEW presenter participants are eligible to apply. Only Executive Directors, Associate Directors, or Programming Directors (i.e., individuals responsible for curating/programming season) that have been in their presenting role for less than two years prior to the Performing Arts Exchange start date (as evidenced by résumé). Previous PAE attendees are not eligible to apply.
  • Presenters are limited to one application.
  • Applicants who have failed to submit final reports for any previous South Arts grant by the application deadline for this program will not be considered for funding in this grant cycle.
  • Applicants are required to attend the full conference, Monday, October 1, 2018 through Thursday, October 4, 2018. Applicants are required to attend the Presenting 101 Pre-Conference (12:00-4:30pm) and New Colleagues Session (4:45-6:00pm) on Monday, October 1, 2018.
  • Applicants are required to participate in conference calls/webinars before and after PAE (a minimum of two calls/webinars will be scheduled).
  • Travel subsidies require at least a 1:2 match (for example, a $1,000 grant requires a match of $500). The match can include in-kind expenses such as your salary/time for attending the conference. The minimum travel subsidy request is $250; the maximum travel subsidy is $1,000 (up to $500 for conference registration and up to $500 for travel expenses). Grant funds are disbursed on a reimbursement basis only; grant recipients are required to submit receipts to document expenses. Grant funds are processed after the conference, pending receipt of the required documentation. Grantees are required to complete a program report after the conference and webinars.
  • Presenting grants for artist fee support require at least a 1:1 cash match. The grant (up to $2,500) must be used to book a 2018 PAE juried showcase artist for the 2019-2020 season. The artist/company must reside outside of the presenter’s state, and must provide a public performance and an educational component. Applicants must agree to the contract terms and Assurance of Compliance. Grants are subject to approval of an application. Grantees are required to complete a final report after the engagement.
  • Grant recipients are required to provide accessibility for constituents with disabilities at grant-funded events. For the purpose of these guidelines,
    Professional development at PAE - photograph by Bruce France

    Professional development at PAE – photograph by Bruce France

    accessibility relates to your overall facility and project being accessible to all. The National Endowment for the Arts has resources to assist arts organizations in making accommodations. Please visit the NEA’s website for more information.
  • Annual dues/membership fees (up to $200) for statewide networks will be supported only for NEW membership or organizations that do not have budgeted funds for dues/fees.
  • Grants are NOT transferable to other individuals. All changes must be discussed with South Arts before the conference. Awards may be revised or revoked in light of such changes.
  • Grant awards are subject to funding availability.

Are You Ready to Submit Your Application?

Complete your application and upload the required materials as detailed below. Applicants are encouraged to contact Nikki Estes, Program Director, at 404-874-7244 ext. 16 to discuss eligibility prior to submitting an application.

Applications must be submitted by 5:00pm (Eastern Time) on Friday, June 1, 2018. Applicants will be notified of funding decisions by email by June 29, 2018. South Arts strictly adheres to deadlines and will NOT accept applications that are late or incomplete. Deadlines are not extended due to inclement weather.

Applicants are required to submit online the following:

  • Application form
  • Résumé
  • A copy of your most recent season brochure
  • Proof of government status (if applicable)