'Alberta Spotlight' Program Launched to Pay Province's Musicians for Recorded Online Performances

The Alberta provincial government, in partnership with The Alberta Music Industry Association (Alberta Music), National Music Centre (NMC), CKUA Radio Network, and Stagehand, has launched a new program designed to showcase Alberta’s diverse talent and provide support for artists. The Alberta Spotlight online series is meant to connect Albertans across the province with music during these times of physical distancing while paying musicians for their online performances.

The Government of Alberta has pledged $125,000 to support an initiative that will pay musicians to perform online. Selected artists will receive a $1,000 grant to create a three-song, pre-recorded, high-quality video to be shared as part of the Alberta Spotlight online series.

Alberta Spotlight is intended to support professional and semi-professional Albertan artists across the province through an online concert series to select artists who will participate in a series of recording three-song performances that will be pre-recorded and shared virtually (via partner websites and social media channels). The performance will form part of a broader program that includes performances from artists from across the province.


To participate in ALBERTA SPOTLIGHT, artists must meet the following requirements:
I. Music Genre: All music genres may apply for ALBERTA SPOTLIGHT.
II. Age limit: Applicants of all ages may apply. Should an artist under the age of 18 be selected, a parent or legal guardian is required to sign the accompanying artist agreement.
III. Original Artists: Preference shall be given to Artists who perform their own songs or songs co-written with other Alberta-based songwriters. No cover songs shall be accepted in assessing
eligibility to the program.
IV. Residency: Artist must be an Alberta resident. Proof of residency may be requested. Failure to provide proof by deadline provided may result in disqualification. Majority of band must be
Alberta Residents; i.e. 3 out of 4 members.
V. Qualifying Artist:

A. Artists applying to ALBERTA SPOTLIGHT should have some track record in the music industry. As a Professional or Semi Professional artist you have released an album within the last 18 months or have an upcoming release in the next 6 months. A 12-month tour history may be requested.
B. Artists may apply as an individual, duo, or band (majority of band must reside in
C. Artists must have the ability to produce and submit a new performance video to be streamed for the first time as part of the ALBERTA SPOTLIGHT online series.

VI. Initial Artist Selection: Applications will be filed online through Stagehand. Inclusion of pictures, biographies, demos and live performance videos will be mandatory. Selection of the ALBERTA SPOTLIGHT artists will be by recommendation of independent juries administered by Alberta Music with final selection at the determination of the ALBERTA SPOTLIGHT committee.

For more information, including an FAQ about the program, go to

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Michael Raine is the Editor-in-Chief at Canadian Musician and Canadian Music Trade magazines. He also hosts the Canadian Musician Podcast.
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