Johannesburg – The Southern African Music Rights Organisation (SAMRO) on Monday announced that it was awarding R2.5 million to deserving members for the creation of new music works.
“SAMRO is once again dedicating resources to its Music Creation Support Fund (MCSF) in order to help its members to reignite their creativity and create new musical works that will enable them to earn an income,” the music rights body said.
This year marks the third installment for MSCF.
SAMRO revealed it was making R2.5 million available for the MCSF for 100 qualifying members to receive a micro-grant of R25 000 each.
“Inclusive of this year’s contribution, the MCSF would have distributed over R7 million to more than 300 qualifying SAMRO members since its inception in 2021,” SAMRO said.
The MSCF was established in 2021 as a relief fund for SAMRO Members to enable them to maintain momentum in the music industry during the lockdown period.
Since its inception, this initiative has proven to be tremendously successful, with recipients representing various musical genres in South Africa being supported to continue creating new works.
It thus has become an annual Music Support Creation Fund initiative for SAMRO.
In 2022, SAMRO received 586 applications, more than doubling those of 2021.
The MSCF intends to contribute towards creating new original musical works that have not been published nor publicly performed or broadcast and includes new original compositions or for the completion of unpublished musical works such as an EP, album, video, or score.
The MCSF offers an opportunity to help SAMRO Members who are authors and composers regain their presence in the ever-changing landscape of the music industry by continuously creating new musical works.
SAMRO said it also recognises the significant gender disparity in the music industry and is dedicated to creating a more equitable environment for all its members.
As part of this commitment, the organisation encourages more women composers to apply for the MCSF.
Although SAMRO saw a record number of applications in 2022, only 62 applications from women met all the criteria and went through the adjudication process in comparison to 308 from men from the 586 applications received.
The organisation said it believes that providing equal opportunities for female composers is essential for promoting diversity and inclusivity in the industry.
SAMRO said it was dedicated to supporting and uplifting all its members, especially women who face unique challenges in the music industry.
Full and Associate SAMRO Members can now apply for the 2023 MCSF grants.
Full and Associate Members are earning members who are eligible to attend and vote at the AGM and have member benefits such as the SAMRO Retirement Annuity Fund and the Funeral Benefit.
Unlike Associate Members, only Full Members can be voted to sit on the SAMRO Board.
Applications will be assessed on merit by a committee of music industry professionals based on several criteria, including whether the work is a new and original concept, how likely the final product is to succeed and how realistic and implementable the work plan is.
The adjudication committee’s decisions will be considered final.
The application deadline is Friday, 12 May 2023, at 17H00 (5 pm) – Late proposals will not be accepted.
Previous recipients of the fund said:
“I would like to thank SAMRO for this opportunity and the funding, as this is the best push an artist can get when working on an album – Siyabonga,” Zakwe said.
“I have made an amazing album.
“Through this funding, I managed to get the features I wanted; I used a proper studio and production.”
Another past beneficiary of the MSCF is songwriter and musician Nontsikelelo Mazwai who appreciates the support she received from SAMRO, saying that the business side of music can be tough to navigate.
Her advice to aspiring musicians: “Be realistic about your budget. The release of a musical artwork has many facets and people that need to be paid for”.