Planning a music tour but unsure how to fund it? Apply to Concerts SA’s Music Mobility Fund which will select new projects to support in October.

This tour funding mechanism offers opportunities for professional South African musicians to undertake live music tours in South Africa as well as other Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries. The fund provides support to live music performances, collaborations and performance-based workshops.

Following the success of the five previous rounds of funding, applications are now open for the second iteration of Music Mobility Fund disbursements this year. The deadline for submissions is Sunday 2nd October 2016, and tours should take place between late October 2016 and 15th April 2017.

Since it was initiated in 2013, the Music Mobility Fund has supported almost 100 tours and has featured artists like Ihashi Elimhlophe, Carlo Mombelli, Tlokwe Sehume, Nibs van der Spuy, Morayks, and Thandi Ntuli.

In addition to South Africa, these performances and projects have spread to Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Tanzania and Zimbabwe, spanning genres from jazz to indigenous music, from folk to hip-hop and kwaito.

The Fund is administered by Concerts SA, a joint South African/Norwegian project housed within The SAMRO Foundation. Working with musicians, promoters, venue owners and music sector stakeholders, the project aims to build a vibrant and viable live music circuit in southern Africa. It also seeks to develop an interest in and appreciation of live music by showcasing music performances and conducting workshops at schools.

Jazz vocalist Titi Luzipo reflects on how the Music Mobility Fund has impacted her latest tour: “It is a great initiative designed to promote artists in South Africa. My project Songs my Mother Taught Me has received nationwide recognition through the Mobility Fund. With Concerts SA (CSA) help, I have toured 4 cities and have had 10 successful shows. The funds made it easier for me and some of my band members to travel and pay for our accommodation. The support I got from audiences was overwhelmingly great with most of them having heard about this on the radio, newspapers and TV: this was all through the help of the CSA team. As an independent artist, it was so easy for me to focus on the music while being assisted in publicity and media releases. Overall, the Mobility Fund is undoubtedly one of the greatest platforms to kick-start your music on a wider scale. I urge all artists to apply for this amazing initiative.”

Designed to help musicians, music industry professionals and organisations build on already established domestic success and develop connections, markets and audiences for their work, the fund provides support towards travel and transportation, as well as per diems, material costs (hiring of backline and sound equipment), accommodation, artwork design, travel insurance and visas.

Reflecting on the assistance that he has received from Music Mobility Fund, Durban folk artist Rowan Stuart says: “It has been a genuine help to my career this year. Firstly, the grant removed a lot of the uncertainty and risk that usually come with booking a tour, allowing me to plan and execute a successful winter tour across South Africa with confidence. The fact that most of your touring costs are taken care of means that your profit margin on the road becomes much bigger. The fund also allowed me the freedom to book a performance at a bigger venue and on a larger scale than usual, which led to a successful headlining performance at the Barnyard Theatre in Durban. Having extra funds to put into marketing can really help spread the word and grow your brand. The people at Concerts SA have been very helpful, assisting me with refining my press releases and tour branding, as well as marketing my shows through their own channels. Finally, having the Concerts SA logo and association with your tour carries weight and legitimacy to your band or artist brand.”

Among the projects that may be financed are tours and concerts, including regional, national or provincial tours, as well as performances at festivals and showcases. The Music Mobility Fund also funds artistic collaborations with merit among musicians based in different provinces of South Africa or SADC countries. Each project must be between four days and six months in duration.

National Projects

Artists from all provinces are invited to apply for national projects taking place in any South African province(s). The bulk of the activities must take place outside the province where the artist is based. The tour schedule must include one activity in either Gauteng, the Western Cape or KwaZulu-Natal. Applicants may request up to R30,000.

Regional Projects

Regional projects must take place in one or more of the following SADC countries: Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Activities in South Africa may be included as part of regional projects. Applicants will need to conduct their own research and have identified and communicated with a potential partner or host. The partner may be an individual or organisation and must be an established musician or music professional, and must be based in the SADC country (or countries) where the project will take place. Applicants may request up to R45,000.

Application process

Applicants should complete the application form in English, and submit it by Sunday 2nd October 2016, including the following mandatory documents: legal documentation of the applicant (ID/passport copy for individuals and organisation representatives; company registration documents); track record (media coverage, website links, evidence of recognition awards, public appearances or residencies, CV, biography, etc); budget of the project (including projected income and expenditure); and a calendar of activities with tour schedule. SADC regional projects must include a letter from the local host confirming their support and involvement.

Enquiries and applications should be submitted by email to, by fax to 086 500 7028 or by post to Concerts SA, c/o TheSAMRO Foundation, 20 De Korte Street, 4th Floor SAMRO Place, Braamfontein, Johannesburg, 2001.