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Creative Strategies Incubator 2014: Preparing Your Letter of Interest. October 2013. Metcalf Foundation Program Staff. Michael Jones Program Director, Performing Arts Heather Dunford Grants Manager. Agenda. Background Introduction to Creative Strategies Incubator Supported Initiatives

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metcalf foundation program staff
Metcalf Foundation Program Staff

Michael Jones

Program Director, Performing Arts

Heather Dunford

Grants Manager

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

agenda
Agenda

Background

  • Introduction to Creative Strategies Incubator
    • Supported Initiatives
    • Learning Network
    • Focus Issue
  • How to Approach the Focus Issue

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

agenda1
Agenda

Making an Application

  • Program Eligibility
  • Letters of Interest
    • Content
    • What is the Foundation looking for?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

agenda2
Agenda

Learnings from 2013

  • Based on last year’s applications, what is the Foundation looking for?

Q & A

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

creative strategies incubator
Creative Strategies Incubator

“…the Metcalf Foundation believes in supporting a diversity of responses to address complex challenges. We believe that this work will be more successful if people and organizations share what they learn and build on each other’s solutions. We also believe it is important to engage at an overarching, policy level in order to address systemic issues that go beyond the efforts of an individual company.”

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

creative strategies incubator1
Creative Strategies Incubator
  • non-profit performing arts sector facing complex sectoral challenges

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

creative strategies incubator2
Creative Strategies Incubator
  • non-profit performing arts sector facing complex sectoral challenges
  • complex challenges require different responses from a variety of organizations

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

creative strategies incubator3
Creative Strategies Incubator
  • non-profit performing arts sector facing complex sectoral challenges
  • complex challenges require different responses from a variety of organizations
  • this work is strengthened if these different organizations have opportunities to share learning

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

creative strategies incubator4
Creative Strategies Incubator
  • non-profit performing arts sector facing complex sectoral challenges
  • complex challenges require different responses from a variety of organizations
  • this work is strengthened if these different organizations have opportunities to share learning
  • some policy-level challenges are beyond capabilities of any individual organization

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

components
Components
  • Supported Initiatives
  • Learning Network
  • Focus Issue

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

supported initiatives
Supported Initiatives

“What’s the best new, creative way for my company to approach this particular challenge?”

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

supported initiatives1
Supported Initiatives

“What’s the best new, creative way for my company to approach this particular challenge?”

  • looking to build Learning Network of most innovative responses to Focus Issue
  • has to be new approach/activity – this is not funding for ongoing operations
  • must be innovative for your company – should be innovative for sector

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

supported initiatives2
Supported Initiatives
  • Metcalf will support the cost of implementing your Supported Initiative
  • funding parameters (2014)
    • up to $75,000/year for 3 years
    • can be a different amount in each year
    • can request funding for only 1 or 2 years
    • “cost of implementing Supported Initiative” can include salaries, but this is not operating funding
    • amount of request important – will address that issue in Letter of Interest requirements

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learning network
Learning Network
  • comprised of representatives from all companies working on Supported Initiatives

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learning network1
Learning Network
  • comprised of representatives from all companies working on Supported Initiatives
    • asked to identify these people in letter of interest
    • as much as possible, should be more than one person from each participating organization
    • should be organization personnel with ongoing knowledge and experience of the Supported Initiative
    • these people should be prepared to make an active commitment, attending all network meetings
    • should include artistic staff as well as administrative staff

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learning network2
Learning Network
  • comprised of representatives from all companies working on Supported Initiatives
  • will participate in up to four day-long meetings each year

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learning network3
Learning Network
  • comprised of representatives from all companies working on Supported Initiatives
  • will participate in up to four day-long meetings each year
  • will be expected to share learning with other organizations across performing arts sector

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learning network4
Learning Network
  • comprised of representatives from all companies working on Supported Initiatives
  • will participate in up to four day-long meetings each year
  • will be expected to share learning with other organizations across performing arts sector
  • “shepherded” by a committee formed by Metcalf, that will assume responsibility for some sector-wide policy issues

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

focus issue
Focus Issue

2014

  • “…engaging audiences and/or building communities around your work”

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

focus issue1
Focus Issue

2014

  • “…engaging audiences and/or building communities around your work”

2015

  • “…will likely return to new or alternative sources of revenue…”

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

focus issue2
Focus Issue

2014

  • “…engaging audiences and/or building communities around your work”

2015

  • “…will likely return to new or alternative sources of revenue…”
    • Metcalf is interested in continuing our work in this area, keep flexibility in case pressing sectoral issue arises

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

focus issue3
Focus Issue
  • strongest applications come from real knowledge and interest in Focus Issue

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

focus issue4
Focus Issue
  • strongest applications come from real knowledge and interest in Focus Issue
    • What are the important writings on audience engagement and building community?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

focus issue5
Focus Issue
  • strongest applications come from real knowledge and interest in Focus Issue
    • What are the important writings on audience engagement and building community?
    • What are other companies trying, in or outside of Canada, that is particularly exciting or innovative?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

focus issue6
Focus Issue
  • strongest applications come from real knowledge and interest in Focus Issue
  • most successful applications start from this place of inquiry and then determine what their proposed Supported Initiative will be

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

focus issue7
Focus Issue

Important Considerations

  • the more creative, the better the likelihood of funding…
  • the more grounded in learning around this Focus Issue, the better the likelihood of funding…
  • really not looking for “We just want to hire audience development staff… marketer… etc…”

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

program eligibility
Program Eligibility

“In addition to being a registered charity, applicants … must be professional theatre, dance, music, or opera companies, located in the City of Toronto, who have been in operation for at least three years.”

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

program eligibility1
Program Eligibility

“In addition to being a registered charity, applicants … must be professional theatre, dance, music, or opera companies…”

  • legal requirement for Metcalf funding
  • will consider collaborative applications including non-charities, but lead applicant must be registered and must be responsible for activities of partnership (not simply a conduit for funds)

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

program eligibility2
Program Eligibility

“In addition to being a registered charity, applicants … must be professional theatre, dance, music, or opera companies…”

  • are artists/performers paid for their work?
  • is your organization funded by one of the arts councils? (recognized by peer jury)

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

program eligibility3
Program Eligibility

“...must be professional theatre, dance, music, or opera companies, located in the City of Toronto…”

  • will consider collaborative applications, including companies outside of this description, but lead applicant must be a performing arts company
  • will consider applications from ASOs with focus solely on performing arts
  • excludes media arts (film, radio, television)and visual arts (including museums, galleries)

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

program eligibility4
Program Eligibility

“…theatre, dance, music, or opera companies, located in the City of Toronto, who have been in operation for at least three years.”

  • primary office/studio address in “M” postal code
  • performances/season/work in “M” postal code
  • eligible for Toronto Arts Council funding
  • may consider companies based in GTA with strong annual presence in Toronto

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

program eligibility5
Program Eligibility

“…theatre, dance, music, or opera companies, located in the City of Toronto, who have been in operation for at least three years.”

  • typically, three years of production history
  • company need not have been a registered charity for three years

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

program eligibility6
Program Eligibility

Other Considerations

  • appreciate collaborative applications
  • will not consider applications from companies currently receiving Creative Strategies Incubator or Strategic Initiatives funding
  • contact Program Director with specific questions

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

letters of interest
Letters of Interest
  • brief background to company

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

letters of interest1
Letters of Interest
  • brief background to company
    • least important section – brief
    • if collaborative application, should introduce all partners

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

letters of interest2
Letters of Interest
  • brief background to company
  • outline your proposed initiative

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

letters of interest3
Letters of Interest
  • brief background to company
  • outline your proposed initiative
    • most important section
    • Is your proposed initiative focused, clearly articulated, well thought out, achievable?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

letters of interest4
Letters of Interest
  • brief background to company
  • outline your proposed initiative
  • names/titles of people who will participate in Learning Network

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

letters of interest5
Letters of Interest
  • brief background to company
  • outline your proposed initiative
  • names/titles of people who will participate in Learning Network
    • in full application stage, each of these people will need to provide a statement regarding what they hope to gain from the Learning Network (ascertain their willingness before you put their names down…)
    • not so many people that it will become unwieldy for Learning Network (or application process)

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

letters of interest6
Letters of Interest
  • brief background to company
  • outline your proposed initiative
  • names/titles of people who will participate in Learning Network
  • experience working in collaborative learning environments

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

letters of interest7
Letters of Interest
  • brief background to company
  • outline your proposed initiative
  • names/titles of people who will participate in Learning Network
  • experience working in collaborative learning environments
    • could be company or individual experience

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

letters of interest8
Letters of Interest

Important Considerations

  • NEW FOR 2014 – electronic copy only, pdf format; no paper copy at letter of interest stage
  • need Metcalf cover sheet
  • three page maximum (honest three pages…)
  • description of proposed initiative most important section for letter of interest
  • application deadline firm – all materials must be received by 5:00 pm on Monday, December 9

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Is the applicant eligible?
    • registered charity
    • professional performing arts organization
    • based in Toronto
    • three years’ production history
    • addresses Focus Issue
    • not an operating request
    • applicant is not currently receiving Strategic Initiatives or Creative Strategies Incubator funding

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for1
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Is the proposed initiative compelling?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for2
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Is the proposed initiative compelling?
    • Is it new for this company? Is it innovative for the sector?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for3
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Is the proposed initiative compelling?
    • Is it new for this company? Is it innovative for the sector?
    • Is it focused? Was the company thoughtful and rigorous in the development of this plan?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for4
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Is the proposed initiative compelling?
    • Is it new for this company? Is it innovative for the sector?
    • Is it focused? Was the company thoughtful and rigorous in the development of this plan?
    • Is it achievable? Is it achievable on the proposed budget?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for5
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Is the proposed initiative compelling?
    • Is it new for this company? Is it innovative for the sector?
    • Is it focused? Was the company thoughtful and rigorous in the development of this plan?
    • Is it achievable? Is it achievable on the proposed budget?
    • Is the proposal clearly written?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for6
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Does the amount of funding requested feel appropriate for the proposed initiative?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for7
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Does the amount of funding requested feel appropriate for the proposed initiative?
    • Is it within the program parameters?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for8
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Does the amount of funding requested feel appropriate for the proposed initiative?
    • Is it within the program parameters?
    • Is it too much money? Does it feel “padded”? Does it feel like a “disguised” request for operating support?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for9
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Does the amount of funding requested feel appropriate for the proposed initiative?
    • Is it within the program parameters?
    • Is it too much money? Does it feel “padded”? Does it feel like a “disguised” request for operating support?
    • Is it too little money? Is the proposed activity really possible for this amount of money?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for10
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • Does the amount of funding requested feel appropriate for the proposed initiative?
    • Is it within the program parameters?
    • Is it too much money? Does it feel “padded”? Does it feel like a “disguised” request for operating support?
    • Is it too little money? Is the proposed activity really possible for this amount of money?
    • Do you really need the same amount of money for every year of the proposed activity?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for11
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • How would this company and this proposal contribute to the Learning Network?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for12
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • How would this company and this proposal contribute to the Learning Network?
    • Is this a new, creative way to approach the Focus Issue?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for13
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • How would this company and this proposal contribute to the Learning Network?
    • Is this a new, creative way to approach the Focus Issue?
    • Would this company/these people bring diversity to the Learning Network? (discipline, company size, art form)

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for14
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • How would this company and this proposal contribute to the Learning Network?
    • Is this a new, creative way to approach the Focus Issue?
    • Would this company/these people bring diversity to the Learning Network? (discipline, company size, art form)
    • Would this company bring participation from both artistic and administrative leadership?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

what is metcalf looking for15
What is Metcalf looking for?
  • How would this company and this proposal contribute to the Learning Network?
    • Is this a new, creative way to approach the Focus Issue?
    • Would this company/these people bring diversity to the Learning Network? (discipline, company size, art form)
    • Would this company bring participation from both artistic and administrative leadership?
    • Is this a company with a strong history of leadership in the sector, particularly at the local level?

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learnings from 2013
Learnings from 2013
  • incredibly competitive program

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learnings from 20131
Learnings from 2013
  • incredibly competitive program
  • planning must be complete and rigorous

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learnings from 20132
Learnings from 2013
  • incredibly competitive program
  • planning must be complete and rigorous
  • strongest applications are based in real knowledge and interest in Focus Issue

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learnings from 20133
Learnings from 2013
  • incredibly competitive program
  • planning must be complete and rigorous
  • strongest applications are based in real knowledge and interest in Focus Issue
  • importance of innovation in strong applications

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learnings from 20134
Learnings from 2013
  • incredibly competitive program
  • planning must be complete and rigorous
  • strongest applications are based in real knowledge and interest in Focus Issue
  • importance of innovation in strong applications
  • “rational” funding request is likely to be favoured

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learnings from 20135
Learnings from 2013
  • incredibly competitive program
  • planning must be complete and rigorous
  • strongest applications are based in real knowledge and interest in Focus Issue
  • importance of innovation in strong applications
  • “rational” funding request is likely to be favoured
  • consider the number of Learning Network participants

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

learnings from 20136
Learnings from 2013
  • incredibly competitive program
  • planning must be complete and rigorous
  • strongest applications are based in real knowledge and interest in Focus Issue
  • importance of innovation in strong applications
  • “rational” funding request is likely to be favoured
  • consider the number of Learning Network participants
  • importance of a clearly written proposal

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

slide67
Q & A

Michael Jones

Program Director, Performing Arts

Heather Dunford

Grants Manager

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

upcoming metcalf event
Upcoming Metcalf Event

Choreographing Our Future:

Strategies for Supporting Next Generation Arts Practice

Thursday, November 7, 2013; 4:30 pm

Winchester Street Theatre

  • free event to launch Shannon Litzenberger’s Innovation Fellowship paper
  • presentation of concepts and panel discussion with opportunity for questions
  • details and registration link on Metcalf Foundation website

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

slide69

Thank you for participating in today’s webinar.

Michael Jones

Program Director, Performing Arts

416-926-0366 x 225

[email protected]

Creative Strategies Incubator 2014:

Preparing Your Letter of Interest

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