Last week, the province of British Columbia and Creative BC announced the new $300,000 Innovation Program as part of the BC Music Fund. The new program will support cross-sector collaboration between technology and music, the launch of businesses to fill gaps in the industry, and foster diversity and cultural engagement within the music industry.
“British Columbia is home to an abundant wealth of musical talent. This funding from the BC Music Fund will provide assistance to companies that think outside the box, allowing them to further develop innovative ideas. I look forward to seeing the unique projects that come from this new program,” said Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Responsible for Labour.
“The Innovation Program encourages new collaborations, creative courage and fresh thinking. Through the BC Music Fund, innovators across the province can intersect with the music industry,” added Prem Gill, chief executive officer of Creative BC.
British Columbia is the third largest centre for sound recording in Canada and the music industry contributes over $400 million in revenue to the provincial economy every year. According to Creative BC, the province’s music industry includes 80 independent record labels, 123 sound recording studios, and hundreds of music industry professionals such as publishers, managers, talent agencies, and other businesses that support the development and delivery of music.
Premier Christy Clark announced the creation of the $15-million BC Music Fund in February 2016, following the recommendations of Music Canada’s report BC’s Music Sector: From Adversity to Opportunity. The fund is administered by Creative BC and is designed to support the growth of BC’s music industry through direct investment, job creation, music tourism, increased regional activity, and the export of BC music.
The new Innovation Program will support music related projects, including “cross-sector and multimedia projects related to music, experimental or experiential projects that increase visibility, access, or awareness for British Columbian music, projects that develop new technology, software, or programs, and projects or initiatives related to British Columbia’s music industry that are innovative or experimental in nature.”
Applications for the Innovation Program will be accepted beginning May 1, 2017.