2020 Chicago Jazz Festival Citywide Funding Program

Chicago Jazz Festival  >  Citywide Funding Program


Application Deadline Extended: Friday, April 3, 2020

As part of the 42nd Annual Chicago Jazz Festival and the 2020 Year of Chicago Music, DCASE will continue to support local venues and Jazz-presenting organizations that offer free, public programs to encourage collaboration within the Jazz community, to build excitement for the festival and to promote Chicago as a destination for Jazz.

The Chicago Jazz Festival promotes all forms of jazz through free, high-quality live music programming, showcasing Chicago's local talent alongside national and international artists to raise awareness and appreciation for one of the city’s most beloved art forms.

In support of Chicago’s thriving music industry, Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot and DCASE have designated 2020 as the “Year of Chicago Music” with an investment of $3.5 million to highlight its legacy, expand its audience and strengthen its creative and cultural landscape with a focus on the south and west sides of the City.

In conjunction with INVEST South/West, the application evaluation criteria include the potential of the program to reach traditionally underrepresented areas of the city, including those located on the Chicago’s South and West sides. INVEST South/West is an unprecedented community improvement initiative from Mayor Lightfoot to marshal the resources of multiple City departments, community organizations and corporate partners toward 10 neighborhoods on Chicago’s South and West sides.


Application Guidelines

Award Amount

Applicants may request up to $3,000 to support free, public programs within the City of Chicago during the festival dates, August 28–September 2, 2020. Support may be applied to artist’s fees and up to $500 of production related expenses, but may not be applied to staffing costs, venue or facility maintenance or capital expenses, food, beverages or hospitality-related functions, fundraising activities or donor events.


Applicant Eligibility

  • Music venues and/ or nonprofits with at least a 2-year history of presenting jazz programming
  • Venues and organizations must be located and/or incorporated within the City of Chicago
  • Individuals are not eligible
  • Multiple applications are not permitted; only one application per venue/organization can be submitted.


Program Eligibility

  • All programs must take place between August 28–September 2, 2020.
  • All programs must be free, and open to the public
  • All programs must occur within the City of Chicago


How to Apply

Applications are accepted through CyberGrants until Friday, April 3



Applicants must are asked for the following information:

Name of Venue or Organization(s)

Primary Contact Information (Name, phone, email)

Program Proposal

  1. Description of your proposed program (500 word maximum)
  2. Names of proposed artists/ musicians that will perform
  3. Date, location and time of performance

Presenting History

  1. A representative list of programs presented by your venue and/ or organization over the last two years. The list does not have to be comprehensive, but should demonstrate a commitment to the presentation of jazz music.


  1. An itemized budget of program costs including artist fees, marketing/promotion, supplies and materials, publications, distribution, access accommodations such as sign language interpretation, travel, shipping, venue rental, and equipment.

Requested Amount

  1. Award Request Amount $___________________________


Evaluation Criteria

Applications will be reviewed by the Chicago Jazz Festival Committee and evaluated on the following criteria:

  • Artistic merit of the proposed program
  • Potential of the program to reach traditionally underrepresented areas of the city
  • Applicant’s prior success as an event producer


Disbursement of Funds

Selected partners will be required to complete an agreement with DCASE detailing the terms and conditions of support.

Upon receipt of the agreement and necessary forms, DCASE will disburse funding. The time and date will be specified in the agreement.


Credits and Media Availability
Selected venues/ organizations will be required to recognize the Chicago Jazz Festival, DCASE and the Year of Chicago Music branding materials by including name or logo in all advertisements, programs, and websites and other promotional information. DCASE will also include selected programs in Chicago Jazz Festival promotions and collateral.


Final Report
Partners will be required to submit a brief final report to prove that the event was completed within the terms and conditions of the support.


Final Reports must include:

  • An event summary including attendance numbers
  • Copies of signed performance contracts or copies of signed receipts for all performers
    paid by DCASE support
  • Photographs or video of event, showing the audience and performers

Partners who do not submit a final report by the deadline will not be eligible to apply for future programs.  



Deadline to submit an application: Friday, April 3, 2020

Notification of support will be sent by email by April 17, 2020

All programming information must be submitted and finalized by Friday June 5, 2020

Disbursement of funds by August 2020

All programs must take place between August 28 and September 2, 2020

Final reports will be accepted no later than Monday November 23, 2020

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