Participate in the Festival

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Money for Art

We get it – making ground-breaking, innovative and brilliant work ain’t free. And after the strain of the last year (we shall not speak its name), we know that pulling together the pennies you need may still be a challenge. That’s why at Melbourne Fringe, we are committed to helping you find money for your art. Whether its commissioning opportunities, cold hard cash or help with rego fees, we do what we can to ease the financial pressure and keep artists’ pockets full.

Our Money for Art program works to reduce barriers to access for people facing structural disadvantage, including First Nations peoples, Deaf and disabled people and people who identify as culturally and linguistically diverse.

Below is a list of grants, bursaries and opportunities. In 2021 we’ve tried to make the process as simple as possible (as independent artists, you have enough to do!) so most Money for Art opportunities can be applied for through one simple form.

If you want to put on an event but the registration fee is getting in the way, but you missed on the deadlines for any of these opportunities, please get in touch with Danny and Anna in the Artist Services team at


Prefer to listen to the info on this page? Click play on the audio player below.


Jewel Box Grants

We’re partnering up once again with Jewel Box Performances to provide a tailored program of support for artists who identify as Indigenous, Black and people of colour by commissioning original works to be presented at the 2021 Melbourne Fringe Festival.

There are three opportunities for artists or artist groups with the following support:

  • Registration fees covered (valued up to $430)
  • A $2,000 commissioning fee -to put towards creating something new for the Festival.
  • Supplemental support, such as additional mentoring opportunities, event marketing photography and promotion, depending on the needs of the individual show.

If you’re an artist that identifies as Indigenous, Black or a person of colour, apply for a Jewel Box Grant and see your new work realised.

Applications are now closed.



ShowSupport is our match-making service for art. We pair independent artists (that’s you!) up with our amazing private donors who are interested in commissioning original work to premiere in the 2021 Festival.

You tell us your idea and if the donor loves the sound of it, you’ve got yourself a match and the grant is yours. Simple as that!

  • You get $2,500 towards making your show
  • It must be an original work
  • You must present your work at the 2021 Melbourne Fringe Festival
  • We’ll match potential projects with amazing patrons – they get to choose who they support.
  • You get to work with a patron, learning how to negotiate a relationship with a private commissioner
  • You’ll get to chat to one of Melbourne Fringe’s Producers to help you along the way

Applications are now closed.


Cash For Creatives 

Melbourne Fringe’s no-strings-attached* artist fund is back for 2021. We are offering seed funding support in $500, $1,000, $1,500 and $2,000 morsels to help get a whole suite of new event ideas moving ahead.

Funded works will be selected based on innovation of form and ideas, and with an eye to represent the breadth of diversity within the Festival – encompassing diversity of voice and culture, alongside diversity of artform and the artist’s level of experience.

*The only string is you need to present the work in the 2021 Melbourne Fringe Festival. Obviously.

Applications are now closed.



Digital Discovery Commissions

Calling all digital artists! Commission grants of $5,000 are on offer for new ideas that really have the power to challenge how we think about digital art and performance, with successful applications demonstrating work that engenders discovery, innovation and experimentation within digital space.

This commission is open for emerging, mid-career or established independent artists working in any event category / genre – so long as it’s digital! And by digital, we mean anything that’s not happening only IRL, and could include: interactive livestreams, Zoom events, one-on-one events, online durational shows, sound walks, VR and AR events, digital exhibitions and home delivered digital art, or, best yet: something new we’ve never heard of.

Applications are now closed.



Festivals Moreland Development Program

Our incredible friends at Moreland City Council have developed a brand new commission for one lucky artist or team. The commission, including up to $5,000, will go towards artist fees for a development of a compelling new participatory or live art work at the 2021 Melbourne Fringe Festival. Festivals Moreland will also provide support with locating suitable space for development/rehearsal, audience development support, support with accessibility and advice about technical logistics. 

We want to hear from independent artists or producers who either live, work, or will present their Fringe project within the municipality of Moreland with preference to those who live or work in Moreland. Applications are also strongly encouraged from First Nations, migrant and refugee, people with disability, women, and LGBTQIA+ artists.  

Applications are now closed.



Monash Microgrants

Current Monash students are eligible for a Festival registration fee waiver as part of our partnership with Monash University’s Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music and Performance. Valued at $430 for a season of work in 2021, it covers inclusion in the Festival program, support from our artist services and accessibility teams, and artist development opportunities throughout the year.

There are ten microgrants available, and it is a non-competitive microgrants program, meaning they will be allocated on a first-applied basis rather than assessed against set criteria.

Submit an EOI



A huge thank you to our Money for Art major donors – Michael Agar and Caroline Farmer, Jewel Box Performances, Rosemary Forbes and Ian Hocking, Dr Jenepher Martin, Rosemary Walls and Pinky Watson – and all that contribute to our grants program.