The Austerity Project Micro Commissions

The Austerity Project Micro Commissions Open Call


The Austerity Project is a community performance project in Glastonbury dreamed up and delivered by Mean Feet Dance. The project explores themes raised in conversations with the community about austerity including the effects of cuts to benefits/services and the impact of growing inequality as well as affirming the strength of our community and the power of protest. We have run a series of free short courses led by local artists in dance, singing, poetry, acting and script writing to generate content for a public sharing of work created on 8th June at Glastonbury Assembly Rooms.

Mean Feet Dance are a community dance organisation with over 16 years experience of working with artists and communities under the leadership of Artistic Director, Viv Gordon.

The Micro Commissions

These micro commissions are aimed at emerging artists aged 19+ with a strong connection to Glastonbury who will benefit from gaining experience in a relaxed professional environment. Please see our definitions below for clarity.

The commission brief is as follows:

  • To develop a short piece (2-5 minutes) of new high quality work for live performance reflecting on project themes - applications are invited from musicians, actors, dancers and other performing artists.
  • To make work suitable for an audience aged 12+ - i.e. avoiding very strong language and graphic sexual or violent content.
  • To perform at The Austerity Project event on 8th June at The Assembly Rooms, Glastonbury
  • To attend rehearsals from 1pm on 8th June and work positively with our team and community participants.
  • To communicate with Mean Feet dance prior to the event and provide us with a video/audio file of your piece by 3rd June. This can be low quality/on your phone and is just so we can get a feel for your piece.
  • To complete simple project paperwork (help available if needed) and engage with marketing/social media for the event
  • To conduct yourself professionally which includes being punctual, polite and sober.

3 micro commissions are available in this open call. A fee of £150 is offered per commission. This is the total amount to be offered and will include all expenses. We want this to pay for your fee primarily - but if you want to use it to pay for travel expenses, rehearsal space or anything else that is up to you. Groups of artists may apply together but the fee remains the same whatever the number of applicants. No additional expenses or riders are offered. Fees will be paid after the performance on 8th June on receipt of an invoice. Artists are responsible for their own tax and national insurance. Additional access funds are available - please let us know in your application if you have any access needs.

A PA, microphones and basic lighting will be provided. We are unable to meet other technical needs and commissioned artists should be aware that they will be working in a busy environment with minimal time for set up on the 8th June.

Applicants need to know we are not an artist development agency and cannot commit to long term relationships with artists. This opportunity is a one off and no further opportunities are promised. However we like to champion artists and hope the experience will benefit you in building a portfolio of professional experience and we are happy to offer references.


Emerging Artist - a person of any age who is in their early career and can demonstrate a commitment to developing their artistic practice professionally. For example you might be:

  • in training at university/recent graduate or
  • gigging/auditioning/building a portfolio of work/doing fringe theatre or
  • developing yourself as an artist delivering workshops in community spaces

The opportunity is not aimed at established professional artists or people who engage with the arts recreationally. This is not to denigrate amateur arts (which are brilliant) but to save people time applying if they can't demonstrate a professional commitment.

Connection to Glastonbury - applicants should either live within a 5 mile radius of Glastonbury or be able to demonstrate a strong connection to our community. For example you may:

  • Have grown up here and moved away to train or work or
  • Worked in Glastonbury over a long period of time or
  • Be able to demonstrate a tangible strong connection with our community (i.e. more than feeling a connection to Glastonbury!)

How to apply

Please read all the information in this open call carefully then make an honest assessment of whether you fit the essential criteria as an emerging professional artist with a strong connection to Glastonbury. We appreciate applications take time and do not want people to apply if they do not fit the essential criteria.

To apply please send a short statement which briefly answers the following questions:

  • Your name
  • What is your art form? What kind of work will you produce for the commission?
  • What experience do you have that demonstrates your commitment to developing a professional career as an artist?
  • What is your strong connection to Glastonbury?
  • What interests you about Austerity?
  • How will this opportunity benefit your professional development?

Please keep answers to one side of A4 or film yourself answering the questions in a video no longer than 2 minutes. We are not concerned with fancy words/presentation/editing or spelling/grammar/video quality - as long as we can understand your application that's fine with us.

Please also send a link to 1 example of your work (website/soundcloud/youtube etc). If your link shows multiple examples of your work please specify which one you'd like us to watch. Applications outside these guidelines won't be considered as we simply don't have the capacity to manage lots of information.

Please send applications with links to

The deadline for applications is 20th May 2019. Decisions will be made by the 3 directors of Mean Feet Dance. Successful applicants will be informed by 23rd May and an announcement will be made of all 5 commissions on 24th May. Unfortunately we are not able to offer feedback on unsuccessful applications or enter into discussion about our decisions which will be final.