John Feeney Charitable Trust

Feeney Commissions:


Commissions guidelines


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Feeney Commissions guidelines

Complementing our other grants, our commissions programme aims to support the creation of new and original art works by granting funds to commissioning bodies that will allow artists the creative freedom to create new work for today’s audiences.

What we will support

  • We will support new works created for public performance, exhibition or publication in Birmingham by an individual or a group, either amateur or professional.

  • The commissioned work may be of any art-form:
    eg music of any genre, (including music composed for a new choreographic or theatre context) a collection of poetry or fiction for publication or drama for live performance, podcast or broadcast; visual arts for exhibition or publication; and multi-media and combined art forms.
  • The committee will look to support both established artists and those who can demonstrate exceptional potential to create original new work of outstanding quality.

Who can apply

  • The applicant will usually be the producer/commissioner who will be responsible for ensuring its successful development and completion to reach a public audience. They should be based in Birmingham or have significant links to the city.

  • The work must be commissioned from a third party – ie an individual cannot apply for a grant to commission herself/himself.

Additional criteria and other things to be aware of

  • The commissioned work will usually receive its World or UK launch or premiere in Birmingham – the committee will look favourably on applications that can demonstrate that the work will receive subsequent additional performances, exhibitions and distribution.

  • The Feeney Trust has a rich history of supporting the commissioning of works of classical music by established or up-and-coming composers, performed by well-known Birmingham ensembles. Whilst continuing to support this important area of its work, the Trust is keen to broaden its remit to include non-classical music genres and original new works in other art forms.

  • The committee will consider partnership funding/co-commissioning.

Funding available

  • The total of commission grants awarded in 2016 will be up to £10,000. Thereafter approximately £30,000 is usually available.

  • A limited number of commission fees will be supported; the amount of grant awarded is usually c£2,000-£10,000.

  • Commission grants will normally only be awarded towards the commission fee, and not for workshop or production costs.

How to apply


  • The Commissions Committee will review applications, and may wish to contact and/or meet with applicants.

  • Recommendations from the Commissions Committee will  be considered by the Trustees at their Annual Meeting in May, and applicants will normally be informed within six weeks of that meeting.


  • Successful applicants will be expected to submit a short evaluation report after the commission has been completed.

  • Public acknowledgment of Feeney Trust support will be agreed with each of the successful recipients.

  • The Feeney Trust will receive a permanent record of the new work – for example in the case of a music composition, a copy of the score signed by the composer, or a signed good quality photograph of an artefact - to be permanently accessible to the public in its archives.

  • Trustees will be invited to be present at the premiere/unveiling of the new work.

See also:


CBSO Orchestra
CBSO Orchestra
Photo credit CBSO/ Adrian Burrows


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