Open call: Perform Europe is looking for performing arts companies, artists, venues and festivals ready to rethink touring

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Perform Europe, the pilot scheme funded by the European Commission, has announced the guidelines of its open call dedicated to cross-border touring and digital distribution of the performing arts in all Creative Europe countries and the UK. This first step will be open from 15 June to 9 July 2021.

The European performing arts touring and distribution landscape is not geographically balanced, nor is it inclusive for minority groups, emerging artists, and rural areas. This prevents the diversity of the European touring landscape from flourishing. The urge in the sector to adopt sustainable distribution practices, in regard to economic, ecological, artistic, social and human values, is at odds with the current trends in the European cross-border touring system. 

Perform Europe aims to support experiments to tackle those various gaps in the most innovative ways and make touring and distribution of performing arts works in Creative Europe countries and the UK more sustainable, balanced and inclusive. The project is an 18-month journey, which includes a research phase, design of a digital platform, testing a grant-giving programme, and providing policy recommendations.

The open call for the grant-giving programme will be divided into two phases:

  • In the first step, all interested producers (artists, collectives, companies and presenters that have produced an artistic work) and presenters (festivals, venues, and other organisations offering a presenting context) are invited to apply to be part of Perform Europe’s process of collective learning and networking organised by Perform Europe and supported by its digital platform. This call will be open for applications on 15 June 2021. Applicants, selected in this step, will be invited to join two events, providing space for mentorship, pitching ideas, and sharing best practices of more sustainable and inclusive touring practices.
  • In the second step, while and after participating in the learning and networking process, applicants will shape partnerships among each other, co-create touring and distribution proposals and apply for Perform Europe grants. The second call will be published at the end of July only for those selected in the first step.

The total budget available is € 1,5 million; grant amounts will range from €10,000 to €100,000. This is a call for performing arts producers and presenters motivated to shape cross-border partnerships meant to explore and test alternative ways of bringing artistic work(s) to people and places. 

In this first step, Perform Europe is eager to discover organisations and artists with bold and courageous visions and ideas on how to innovate cross-border touring and distribution in a truly fair, inclusive, ecological, and human-centred way. These new ways should try to address the unsustainable trends in the cross-border landscape of showing artistic work and bring change to the performing arts ecosystem. 

Find all guidelines on:

The results of the research phase will be made available soon on