All Together Now – Maestro Fund Micro-Grants

The Alexandria Symphony Orchestra is proud to announce a call for micro-grant proposals to help address the particular challenges facing our home community of Alexandria in these extraordinary times.  The ASO invites its artistic partners (ASO musicians, Homegrown filmmakers, and previous/present collaborators of any ilk) to submit proposals for the following:

Under the banner of “All Together Now,” the ASO aims to fund projects that….

  1. ….Use music to address any one of the following pressing issues:
    A) Confronting Systemic Racism in classical music
    B) Connecting vitally to ALL parts of our city and community
    C) Promoting unsung/unheard artistic voices
    D) Improving the lives of children isolated at home
  2. …Involve at least two collaborative partners (2 artists, or 1 artist + an institution/entity).
  3. …Can be achieved with the help of micro-grant support of $350 to $750 per project and with modest production/artistic support from the ASO Music Director and staff.
  4. …Are Covid-safe.

From Music Director James Ross:

“As we approach the six-month mark of grappling with COVID-19 in our personal and artistic lives, I find myself wondering what needs or opportunities may have occurred to you from the unique vantage point of this time period.  Beyond the simple sharing of ideas and anecdotes, I realize I wanted the chance to animate and harvest your quarantine-inspired creative thinking, and invite you to invent, present, and realize projects that are singularly apt for this strange “concert-quiet” year we are facing – the sorts of projects that might never come to the fore in the course of our (previously) normal way of being. 

One of the features of my job at the ASO is the stewardship of the Maestro Fund which was initiated in the 75th Anniversary season to offer the Music Director the opportunity to support creative activity of any kind that (s)he deems fit and that falls outside the regular operating budget.   I am committing up to $5,000 of that fund this year to promote a grass roots, organization-wide effort to answer some of the vital questions surrounding the relevance of classical music for us here in Alexandria with action. 

As I asked in my letter to you in early August, “Can this enforced re-thinking of all our activity become an opportunity to ask the big question of what role or contribution music has to play in this time of tremendous turmoil and fear in our country…what forms can that take?  How can we continue to be “opening doors to adventurous music-making” as our ASO strategic plan states?”

 I can’t wait to see and support what ideas you might have that could build a better, stronger future for our organization, for classical music, and that promote a new, flexible definition of what an orchestra “is” – a collection of energetic thinkers and performers who can identify and respond both quickly and creatively to the needs of the moment.”

Proposals should:

  1. Explain how your project addresses a perceived need.
  2. Include a clear proposed timetable, and an outline of budgeted expenses and fees
  3. Be no more than two pages in length.
  4. Be submitted by Thursday, September 10, 2020 by email to:

Click here to download the proposal form.

Recipients of All Together Micro-Grants will be notified by Friday, Sept. 25.