Native Launchpad Fellowship Award

Native Launchpad provides US-based Indigenous artists with the tools and resources needed to further their careers and introduce them to the world of arts presenting and management. It is a development program for professional Indigenous performing artists who are interested in touring yet have little experience working with presenters and need guidance to break into the touring market. 

2019 Native Launchpad Artist Delbert Anderson, Courtesy of Corporate Close-ups

The Native Launchpad is a response to a demonstrated need among US-based Indigenous performing artists for support and visibility and is open to those who self-identify as such. In Advancing Indigenous Performance (AIP) documents and forms, the term Indigenous (or Native) refers to member or descendant of a Native American, Alaska Native or Native Hawaiian nation or community, including US-based Native/First Peoples of Canada, Mexico, and US Territories of American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands. This includes individuals without official tribal status who are members of Native communities, and tribal members or descendants not living in their homeland or home community. 

The total estimated value of each Native Launchpad award is $40,000 over the three-year cycle of the cohort including a $17,000 cash award, membership in the Western Arts Alliance and Association of Performing Arts Professionals (APAP), Travel Assistance and Touring Funds, career development and mentoring. Recipients will be eligible to seek additional funding through WAA's AIP travel and touring funds during the three years of the award. 

In the 2020 round, five (5) Native Launchpad Artist awards will be made. In addition, a cohort of up to ten (10) AIP Fellows will be selected to attend the WAA Conference (August 29- September 3, 2020; San Diego CA and Tijuana, Mexico) and receive access to AIP professional development webinars and networking opportunities. 

Learn about our Native Launchpad Artists

2020 Native Launchpad award cycle: 

  • Call for Submissions:  Applications open – February 3, 2020; Application deadline – Friday, March 27, 2020, 5:00 pm PST
  • Notification:  May 1, 2020
  • Western Arts Alliance Conference (location changes every year):  August 29- September 3 2020
  • Association of Performing Arts Professionals Conference (New York City):  January 8-12, 2021
  • Questions? Read our Native Launchpad FAQs 

Applications will require:

  • At least one video work sample (preferably of live, staged work)
  • An artist’s statement
  • A statement of Native identity
  • A statement of touring goals and objectives
  • A letter of recommendation from an individual or organization that has presented or produced your work in the last three years
  • A standard application form

Application Guidelines 



For more information about this program, please contact Ed Bourgeois