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AIP Travel Assistance Grants, Round 3

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Advancing Indigenous Performance: Performing Artists Travel Assistance Fund

As a component of WAA’s Advancing Indigenous Performance (AIP) program, the Artists Travel Assistance Fund is a travel subsidy award program to assist U.S.-based Indigenous* performing artists in building partnerships and networks with presenters or other artists, which may include showcases, conferences, or other related professional development activities expected to lead to future presenting and touring opportunities. While travel assistance funds are not to be used by artists to research and develop new work, they may be used to promote work to a potential presenter that is recently completed or will be tour ready within 12 months. Please note: these awards are not intended for touring expenses.

* In AIP forms and documents, the term Indigenous refers to U.S.-based Native American, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian, as well as Native/First Peoples of Canada, Mexico, and U.S. Territories of American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Funding Eligibility

The AIP Artists Travel Assistance Fund will only consider individual or ensemble artists who meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • U.S. citizen or permanent resident. Awardees will be asked to complete a W-9 (request for taxpayer identification number and certification).
  • 18 years of age at the time of application
  • Member or descendant of a Native American, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian nation or community, including Native/First Peoples of Canada, Mexico, and U.S. Territories of American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. This includes individuals without official tribal status who are members of Native communities, and tribal members or descendants not living in their homelands or home community.
  • Three-year performance history that includes performances outside the artist’s community of residence

Award travel subsidies are not available for:

  • Travel for research and development of new work
  • Presenters, managers, agents, or producers
  • Student applicants
  • Staff, board, or contractors of Western Arts Alliance
  • Members of WAA’s Advancing Indigenous Performance Committee
  • Artists who have received an AIP Travel grant within the within the previous 12 months
  • Expenses related to touring

AIP will not consider incomplete applications.

Funding Criteria

Applicants should describe with as much detail as possible the purpose of their travel in conjunction with aspirations to expand opportunities to present and tour their work. An Indigenous review panel will consider applications using the following criteria:

1. History & Readiness for Touring

Based on the artist's statement, resume/CV, touring history, and work samples (video)

2. Opportunity

Based on the event or program website and the statement of purpose.

The AIP Travel Assistance Fund places a priority on:

  • Invited participation in regional, national, or international conferences that include a focus on the work of Indigenous artists and will provide an opportunity for artists to showcase or otherwise market their work.
  • Travel to regional, national, or international conferences which offer education, networking, or promotional opportunities within the performing arts presenting and touring industry.
  • Targeted opportunities to build relationships, engagement activities, and logistics with presenters around a proposed regional or national tour of work that is or will be tour ready within twelve months.

3. Feasibility

Based on the venue, destination, budget, schedule, and traveling party.

4. Career Advancement

Based on the artist's goal statement and the application as a whole, to what degree the activity will advance the career of the artist and/or expand their network with other artists or organizations.

Application Requirements

  • Submission of a complete application by the funding cycle deadline
  • Statement of Indigenous Identity as a member or descendant of a Native American, Alaska Native or Native Hawaiian nation or community, including Native/First Peoples of Canada, Mexico, and U.S. Territories of American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • Artist’s Statement
  • Three-year performance history
  • Video that shows your work in live performance (up to ten minutes), submitted by embedded link (YouTube, Vimeo, etc.).
  • Letter of invitation, letter of acceptance, or completed registration form to a conference, program or event.
  • Proposed travel itinerary and budget
  • Statements providing specific information about individuals and activities, goals and anticipated outcomes of the travel

Funding Awards and Amounts

There are four formal cycles of funding for the AIP Artists Travel Assistance awards between November 15, 2018, and June 30, 2020. Announced award amounts represent maximum reimbursable expenses, based on estimates of projected airfare, accommodations, ground transportation and per diem rates for the specified travel location(s) at the time of application submission.

AIP reimburses actual travel expenses incurred by the artist(s), with the submission of receipts, not to exceed the announced award amount. The Travel fund does not pay unspent balances to the artist(s). Per diem requests must not exceed the allowable rates listed for destination city listed at GSA.gov. Travel days will receive 75% of the permitted per diem per day.

Artist Travel Assistance Funds are awarded as follows:

  • For individual artists: the maximum amount award per artist is $1,500 ($2,500 for international travel beyond North America and Hawai'i)
  • For group/ensemble travel (may include 1-3 artists or artist plus company representative): the maximum amount awarded for travel costs and per diem is $4,000

Travel subsidy award funds will be issued within ten days of WAA’s receipt of a Travel Summary Report and completed Travel Reimbursement form following the approved trip. The Travel Reimbursement form must include a copy of the primary transportation carrier receipt (airline, train, or other), hotel or lodging receipt, and per diem calculation to document the trip.

Travel Summary Report: The Travel Summary Report will briefly outline key activities that took place and document current and anticipated outcomes related to goals that you identified in the application. WAA will provide the Travel Summary Report form.


The Advancing Indigenous Performance Program (AIP) and the Artists Travel Assistance Fund are made possible by generous support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, with additional support from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).