CBC/Radio-Canada And Canada Council For The Arts Announce “Digital Originals” Funding Initiative To Support Canadian Arts Community

CBC/Radio-Canada and the Canada Council for the Arts today announced the creation of Digital Originals, a new time-limited funding initiative to help artists, groups and arts organizations pivot their work to online audiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. The funding will directly benefit creators of original digital content.

The Canada Council will provide a total of $1 million in funding to successful applicants to develop, create and share original or adapted works with Canadian audiences online. CBC/Radio-Canada will showcase and amplify the discoverability of select projects on one or more of its platforms.

The Digital Originals initiative will allow artists, creators and makers to apply for a maximum of $5000 in funding per project. The Canada Council will fund approximately 200 projects. CBC/Radio-Canada will curate and feature select projects in a digital showcase; these showcased projects will receive a $1000 grant supplement. Artists can apply with a brand-new work or adapt their work for online sharing. For more information, please visit the Canada Council for the Arts website.

Also launching today is CBC’s Art Uncontained, a rich collection from CBC Arts offering inspiration for audiences and support to the Canadian artistic community in these unprecedented times. New original content includes:

  • CBC Podcasts’ PlayME: The Show Must Go On, featuring adaptations from Canadian playwrights whose projects have been disrupted by the pandemic;
  • COVID Residencies, video diaries from artists sharing how isolation has affected their art;
  • Showcasing provocative original theatre from the National Theatre School of Canada’s Art Apart program, which supports young and emerging Canadian theatre artists;
  • Scenes From An Exhibition, offering exclusive virtual tours of Canada’s finest galleries and museums;
  • CBC Books’ Transmission, featuring Canadian writers reflecting on these uncertain times;
  • CBC Music’s Quarantunes, highlighting Canadian music created in isolation;
  • COVID-19 resource list for artists and freelancers; and weekly virtual arts listings to help people explore culture from home.

Radio-Canada also continues to add new cultural offerings to its digital platforms:

  • La commande culturelle is asking Canadians to submit their ideas for special cultural commissions—songs, readings, poetry, dance, comedy acts, or visual art to help them get through these trying times. These “command performances” will be published on Radio-Canada.ca and on its Facebook page.
  • On the Radio-Canada OHdio app, Théâtre à la carte gives listeners the chance to revisit original theatre productions that were recently on stage or on the radio, adding to the app’s robust cultural offering of comedy shows, audio books and music playlists that showcase Canadian talent.
  • ICI ARTV, Canada’s only French-language specialty channel focused on culture, continues to promote local artists and their works through its programming, on its social media and on ICI.ARTV.CA.