Applications for Composer-Curator 2021 are now closed.

Are you a composer or music-creator based in or with a meaningful connection to Hull or Sunderland or the surrounding regions?

Composer-Curator supports outstanding projects across the UK that are curated and produced by composers, music-creators and collectives from any background. Whether you are trained in music or self-taught, have many years of experience or consider yourself ‘emerging’ - we want to hear from you! 

The type of project you might produce could take any form - from outdoor performances to DIY gigs, orchestral concerts to club nights, gallery installations to live streams, and even panel discussions and workshops. Projects can be presented in any genre including jazz, electronic, grime, folk, non-western music, contemporary classical, in fact just about any form of experimental new sound and music. 

We are particularly interested in projects that place audiences and communities at the heart of the work and that engage them in new and exciting ways. For example by exploring different sites, spaces and methods of presentation - whether that be online, live (when possible) or a hybrid of both.

How does it work?

Following the challenges and learnings from Composer-Curator 2020, for 2021, we want to build on our commitment to bringing new music to more people, who may not normally have access, in more places locally.

To do this, we have developed this year’s programme in partnership with Back to Ours and Sunderland Culture to support composers, music-creators and collectives who have a meaningful connection to Hull, Sunderland or surrounding regions, to produce new musical projects for their communities. You can read more about our partners here.

You don't necessarily need to live or be based in these cities, although that would be brilliant. We are looking to support people who have some connections to these places and surrounding regions; people who understand these cities, their current scenes and their audiences.

We believe this is essential to this programme’s success.

What Composer-Curator offers:

  • A contribution to project costs (up to £4000 depending on project needs)
  • Skills development sessions, workshops and mentoring from leading professionals that will be shaped around your interests
  • Practical support and guidance on fundraising, marketing, budgeting, audience engagement, data collection, reporting and evaluation, venue sourcing and event production led by Sound and Music
  • Focussed regional and expert support including local audience and media insight, networking and contact building from Back to Ours and Sunderland Culture.
  • Expert mentoring sessions provided by Lisa Meyer, Artistic Director at Supersonic Festival.
  • Opportunities to have your work featured on Sound and Music, Back to Ours and Sunderland Culture’s social media channels, e-communications and platforms including the British Music Collection and The Sampler

Selected participants will spend an initial period refining their projects with the support of the Sound and Music team, before moving on to a production phase, culminating in two or more public events.

How do I apply?

Applications for Composer-Curator 2021 closed on Sunday 11th April at 11:59pm.

We are able to fund three projects in each city (six projects in total). Before applying for Composer-Curator 2021, we recommend you read:

Once you have all the information you need, you will need to complete our application form.

In the application form you will be asked to provide:

  1. An outline of the proposed project (up to 800 words or a 4 minute video).
  2. An applicant statement (up to 500 words or a 3 minute video).
  3. A brief overview of the audiences the project is aimed at, how many people you hope to reach and how you will reach them.
  4. A project budget (a template is provided for this section with advice as to what costs to consider).

When you have completed your application, please submit it via the application portal.


To be eligible for the Composer-Curator 2021 programme you must:

  • Be over 18 years old
  • Be based in the UK 
  • Not be in full-time, undergraduate education
  • Not have been selected for Composer-Curator previously or currently be on another Sound and Music programme
  • Have a clear and relevant connection to either Hull or Sunderland

You can find out more about current and previous Composer-Curators participants and their projects below.

Want to get in touch?

Have a question about this programme or a project that's not in our FAQ's? Wondering if this programme is right for you? Unsure about how it works?

If you have any questions, please contact Heather Blair, Creative Project Leader, at:


Graeme Hopper, Ruth Hughes, David De La Haye, Nigel Taylor, Sally Currie and Stewart Baxter.

Meet the 2021 Composer-Curators


Steven Ives (Farmer Glitch), Rufus Isabel Elliot, QUEEF, Marco Sebastiano Alessi (Naviar Records) and First Light Records.

Meet the 2020 Composer-Curators


TOR Festival, Rebecca Lee & Nastassja Simensky, Lucie Treacher, Delia Stevens & Joe Snape, James McIlwrath and Dafydd Roberts.

Meet the 2019 Composer-Curators

Our partners for 2021

Supersonic Festival

Back to Ours, Hull

Sunderland Culture

Sound and Music gratefully acknowledges support from PRS Foundation as a Talent Development Partner:

PRS TDP logo

Featured composer


Drake Music
Youth Music
University of Huddersfield