Musicians Foundation is the country’s oldest independent nonprofit organization dedicated to providing financial assistance to musicians and their families in times of need, crisis or transition.
All professional musicians, regardless of their genre or instrument, can apply for themselves or a family member if they meet the qualifications listed below. Applications may also (but not additionally) be submitted by a friend or family member on behalf of a musician in need.
Musicians Foundation gives grants for medical and dental bills, living expenses, and other essentials in cases of emergency. This is not a COVID-19 assistance or unemployment grant. To qualify, you must be applying for reasons other than lost or cancelled work.
- Make sure you are eligible. All applicants must meet the following qualifications:
1. Must be a musician in a time of serious need, due to personal, medical, dental, or family crisis, natural disaster, or other emergency situation.
2. Have worked as a professional musician for five (5) or more years in the United States. We define “professional musician” as someone whose primary source of income was or is derived from work as a performer, composer/arranger, or music educator.
3. Have tax documents (1040 listing occupation as any type of musician or music educator OR Schedule C listing any type of musician or music educator status) to prove professional experience as a musician or music educator.
You must be applying due to an unexpected hardship (NOT only due to unemployment or loss of work). For example, if you request a grant to help pay rent because you have an expensive medical bill, that would be a qualifying situation. OR, If you request a grant to help pay for dental surgery that forced you to stop playing or cancel musical work, that would be a qualifying situation. If you are applying solely due to loss of work caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, you are not eligible for a grant.
- Next, complete the Pre-Application HERE or use the button below*. Signing up and creating an account is easy.
- After completing the Pre-Application, you will receive updates from Musicians Foundation regarding your application status. If you are fully eligible and qualified, the final part of the application for aid will be sent to you within a few days.
*If you cannot use a computer to complete the Pre-Application, please call Musicians Foundation at (212) 239-9138.
- All grants are sent as vendorized checks in order to provide immediate assistance. For example, if you receive an aid grant to pay for a medical bill, you will receive a check made out to the medical professional or institution directly from Musicians Foundation. You will be responsible for delivering the check to the biller. Musicians Foundation does not write checks directly to musicians.
- Musicians Foundation aid grants typically range in amount from approximately $500-$3000.
- We do not give grants for scholarships, loans, or private unemployment benefits. We do not pay credit card bills.
- If necessary, applications may be filled out by friends or family of the musician in need. We also aid musicians who need assistance supporting their family members in times of emergency.
- If you have received a Musicians Foundation grant (not including the COVID-19 relief grant) two years in a row, you must wait two years before reapplying. Due to the high demand for our grants, we are only able to provide grants to eligible musicians in two-consecutive-year periods.
For further questions regarding the application process or eligibility, please email email@example.com or call (212) 239-9138.