Both Sides Now International Commission – closed

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Both Sides Now International Commission – closed

We’re delighted to announce a new international commission for two female music creators – one from the North of England and one from Europe – in partnership with Library Live, Manchester.

If selected, you’ll collaborate to create new music that will be premiered at Manchester’s iconic Central Library in March 2019, and go on to be featured at a European festival in summer 2019.

As part of the process you will each receive mentoring from guest artists, and a flexible budget of £3,000 (to cover your fee and the fees of any additional musicians).

Who can apply

To apply for this opportunity you should:

  • Be over 18
  • Identify as female (we use an inclusive definition of ‘women’ and ‘female’, welcoming participants who may identify as non-binary, cis-gendered, or trans)
  • Be based in the North of England or Europe
  • Be able to demonstrate at least three years of semi-professional music making

Music makers of any genre/style are welcome to apply.

We are looking for applicants with ambition, drive, excellent communication skills and a willingness to collaborate with others. We are particularly interested in hearing from artists who would benefit from this international opportunity and platform.

The brief

How do you see yourself in the world? What does it mean to be part of a local, national and international community in 2019?

Together we want you to create a set of original music (20-30 mins) based on the themes of unity, community and connectedness.

The debut performance of this commission will take place in Manchester’s Central Library; a space where communities come together to learn, share and connect. The piece will then go on to be featured at a European festival in summer 2019. We’re interested in hearing how you will approach creating music for these unique and distinct cultural spaces.

Please note: We will bring the two successful artists together to write the music in Manchester at a time that is mutually convenient in February 2019. Travel and accommodation costs will be covered by Brighter Sound, and are in addition to the flexible budget.

How to apply

Please apply online* via the link below. We recommend downloading a sample application form (for reference only) before you begin your online application.


Deadline: Wednesday 16 January 2019, 10am (GMT)

*We are committed to supporting and meeting the needs of people with learning difficulties or disabilities. If you require the application in a different format or have difficulty completing your application online, please call us to discuss alternative options on 0161 830 3899. Please note we are closed over the Christmas period and will reopen on Wednesday 2 January.

Successful applicants will be notified on Monday 21 January 2019.

If you have any questions about this opportunity, please contact Lucy Scott on or call us on 0161 830 3899.

About Both Sides Now

This commission is part of Brighter Sound’s pioneering Both Sides Now programme, which is supporting, showcasing and inspiring women in music across the North of England. Supported using public funding by Arts Council England, the programme is creating change around the roles, representation and recognition of women in music – from the classroom, the boardroom to the stage. Both Sides Now is changing the music landscape for women in the North of England by offering creative residencies, artistic commissions, training and development opportunities, apprenticeships and traineeships, national and international showcasing opportunities, digital education resources for schools and a public campaign to bring about permanent change.

About Library Live, Manchester

Manchester Libraries pioneer models of collaboration between the civic, community and cultural – valuing artistic excellence, whilst influencing how arts and culture are experienced and made. Our libraries are democratic spaces of cultural opportunity and possibility; places where a diversity of people meet, make and share. Library Live is Manchester Central Library’s cultural programme of events. From film nights and gigs to author readings and talks, Library Live features a real assortments of events, blending the traditional with the unconventional. With big open doors, lots of free events and many different spaces to explore, Library Live is for everyone.