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National Music Centre logo wth the Studio Bell logo above it


The National Music Centre (NMC) is pleased to announce OHSOTO’KINO, a new Indigenous programming initiative that will launch at Studio Bell in 2022 and focus on three elements: creation of new music in NMC’s recording studios, artist development through a music incubator program, and exhibitions via the annually updated Speak Up! gallery. A call for applications is now open for the OHSOTO’KINO Recording Bursary and musicians from Indigenous communities across Canada are encouraged to apply.

The OHSOTO’KINO Recording Bursary program is open to First Nations, Métis, and Inuit artists. There are two bursaries available— one for traditional Indigenous music and one for contemporary genres.

Interested applicants can apply at studiobell.ca/ohsotokino by February 23, 2022 at 11:59 pm MT.

With support from TD, and building on the groundwork already laid in previous years, NMC is creating more opportunities for Indigenous artists to produce new music and develop their skills, and continuing to amplify the stories of Indigenous musicians and their contributions to Canadian culture. OHSOTO’KINO is a Blackfoot phrase, which means ‘to recognize a voice of.’ This title acknowledges the Blackfoot people and the territory on which National Music Centre resides. NMC’s National Indigenous Programming Advisory Committee will lead the direction of the initiative designed to forge stronger bridges of understanding between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities.

The three-part initiative will launch with the OHSOTO’KINO Recording Bursary. With support from TD, NMC will provide access to its world-class recording studios and living collection of musical instruments, which spans 450 years of technical innovation — Indigenous artists will have the opportunity to use history to make history. Two submissions (one for contemporary music, the other for traditional) will be selected by NMC’s Indigenous Programming Advisory Committee and awarded a one-week recording session at Studio Bell to produce a commercial release.

In addition to the OHSOTO’KINO Recording Bursary, NMC will launch a call for applications for the OHSOTO’KINO Indigenous Music Incubator later this year. The week-long intensive for emerging Indigenous artists in Canada will offer career guidance and mentorship designed by Indigenous music leaders.

As part of the initiative, TD will continue to invest in the Speak Up! exhibition at Studio Bell, which highlights Indigenous artists making social and political impacts in Canada. Having already highlighted 15 groundbreaking musicians—Buffy Sainte-Marie, Willie Dunn, and Tanya Tagaq, to name a few—a new round of Indigenous trailblazers will be announced in the lead up to National Indigenous Peoples Day on June 21, 2022.

About National Music Centre | Centre National de Musique

The National Music Centre (NMC) has a mission to amplify the love, sharing, and understanding of music and is preserving and celebrating Canada’s music story inside its home at Studio Bell in the heart of the East Village in Mohkinstsis (Calgary) on Treaty 7 territory. A registered charity with programs that include exhibitions, artist development, performance, and education, NMC is inspiring a new generation of music lovers. For more information about NMC’s onsite activities, please visit studiobell.ca. To check out the NMC experience online, including video-on-demand performances, made-in-Canada stories, and highly entertaining educational content, visit amplify.nmc.ca.

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