Education New Voices

Soundstreams’ Mentorship Program for Aspiring Artistic Leaders in New Music

Applications for the 2024/2025 Season are now closed

What is New Voices?

New Voices is a mentorship program designed for the artistic leaders of tomorrow. The program aims to provide a steppingstone for emerging artists and arts professionals who are interested in larger-scale curation to gain experience in curating, producing, and presenting new music within a mid-size performing arts company. 

One candidate will be selected to work with Artistic Director Lawrence Cherney and the Soundstreams team over 8 months to develop a concert program for premiere in our series in March 2025, and participate in a suite of professional development activities. The New Voices mentorship program will be tailored specifically to the selected candidate. At the first meeting, the Soundstreams team will work with the candidate to identify key learning goals and areas of interest. From there, we will develop a series of activities that explore these topics in depth and introduce additional perspectives from colleagues in Soundstreams’ vast global network.  

The successful candidate will: 

  • Gain experience curating and producing a concert within a larger presentation context 
  • Connect with a wide network of artistic leaders 
  • Critically examine programming implications as they relate to budgeting, fundraising, marketing, audience engagement, and production logistics 
  • Consider new artistic perspectives and approaches that resonate with our time and place 
  • Expand skills and capacities to lead self and others in times of complex change.

The successful applicant will receive a $3,500 fee for their role as curator-in-residence, and access to a project budget to produce a concert in Toronto. Soundstreams will also provide access to our offices, and ample support from our administrative and production team. 

Application Guidelines 

To apply, please complete your online application here. Applications must include: 

  1. Cover letter  
    Tell us about your work, your career goals, and key areas of interest that you are looking to build. Why are you interested in New Voices and working with Soundstreams at this stage in your career, and what are you hoping to gain from the experience?  
  1. CV & 2 professional references (names & contact info) 
  1. 1-2 examples of past work in programming, curating, and/or project development  
    This can include audio/video links (max. 3 minutes – indicate time code), images, house programs, program notes, promotional materials, etc. Briefly describe why you have selected these samples. 
  1. 1-page project pitch (PDF format) 
    Pitch us your concert idea. It can be highly detailed or preliminary, but it should be thoughtful and have a clear theme that you are interested in exploring or developing. Consider Soundstreams’ programming and mandate, and how your proposed idea relates (or intentionally doesn’t relate) to Soundstreams’ work.  
    This is your opportunity to share insight into your process, and your intentions around the kind of work you would like to complete with us. Some aspects you might consider include: 
    • Underlying theme/concept
    • Genre(s) and repertoire 
    • Instrumentation and performers
    • Audience experience 
    • Any special technical aspects 
    • Links to brief audio/video clips that may help to illustrate your ideas (max. 3 minutes) 
    • Images that may help to illustrate your ideas (photos, drawings, stage plots, etc.) 
    • Potential budget, scope, and performance feasibility. 

If selected, you will continue to develop your project pitch, working collaboratively with Soundstreams. 

Soundstreams is especially interested in proposals that: 

  • Have a high degree of Canadian content in the choice of composers and suggested performers 
  • Feature music written in the 20th or 21st centuries 
  • Prioritize diverse perspectives 
  • Have a strong and unifying theme or concept 
  • Have social/cultural resonance for audiences that will vary greatly in their previous exposure to new music  

Soundstreams’ work is grounded in new classical music, but we also regularly program work across a wide spectrum of genres including (but not limited to) jazz, neo-soul, world, and improvisation. We welcome proposals from applicants of all musical backgrounds. 

Please note we are not looking for composer portraits; if an applicant proposes to program their own work, it must be part of a bigger context with other works represented as well. 

If you have not yet already, we encourage you to explore past Soundstreams programs, and previous New Voices guest-curated productions: 

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Demonstrable experience in programming, curating, and/or project development (this can include your own work as a performer or creator) 
  • Knowledgeable in contemporary music, trends, and issues 
  • Canadian citizen or permanent resident 
  • Applicant must be available to meet regularly either in person or via teleconferencing 
  • Applicant must be available to attend all rehearsals and final presentation in Toronto in March 2025 (1-2 weeks) 

About Soundstreams:

Established in 1982, Soundstreams is a non-profit organization dedicated to strengthening public engagement in Canada and elsewhere with new Canadian music through commissioning, developing, producing, and disseminating those works. Our stages are home to diverse identities and perspectives, and we’re committed to innovative programming that explores significant themes that resonate across our communities. Our aim is to inspire, foster, and enable excellence in Canadian music to the highest international standards. By offering fresh opportunities to an ever-greater diversity of artists both established and emerging, we embrace these new and diverse creative voices.   

Anti-Racism, Access, and Equity at Soundstreams

At Soundstreams we recognize that barriers to services exist for members of diverse communities, particularly for equity seeking groups, and we are committed to acting as a positive force in eliminating these barriers. To achieve this, Soundstreams will: 

  • ensure that diverse communities have equitable access to its services, resources and decision making
  • be non-discriminatory and promote the goals of antiracism, access, and equity; and 
  • take reasonable steps to ensure its services, programs and decision making reflect the community it serves. 

Soundstreams is committed to maintaining an environment where all individuals are treated with dignity and respect and are free from all forms of discriminatory treatment, behaviour or practice. 

The New Voices program is supported by

Azrieli Foundation logo