NEFA is excited to spread the word about Jazz Road, a new national initiative of South Arts that will support jazz artists throughout the United States through expanded opportunities to tour. Grant guidelines for the program will be posted in April 2019, and are anticipated to support artists via:

  • Touring subsidies to help artists make the leap from localized success to reach new audiences outside their home area

  • Residency subsidies to help artists explore their work in a community outside their home area through new collaborations, performances, and experiences.

Here’s what you need to know about Jazz Road:

  1. Jazz Road is a national program to help jazz artists residing in every part of the country develop small (three-to-six site) tours. See more program details below.
  2. Jazz Road aims to engage the full spectrum of jazz programmers and venues. This includes non-traditional or alternative spaces for jazz, clubs, performing arts centers, and established jazz programs or festivals. Jazz Road encourages the presenting of jazz in new ways, and bringing artists to underserved, isolated and rural areas to build audiences for jazz.
  3. Jazz Road will support artists to work with not only established jazz programs (both nonprofit and commercial), but also with organizations that may not be so immediately or currently associated with jazz such as artist spaces, community centers, galleries, listening rooms, libraries, house concerts, places of worship, retail and civic events
  4. Jazz Road will support artists and presenters in collaboration to create new audiences for jazz in new locations.
  5. Grants will be awarded to fairly pay artists when presenters with smaller budgets may not have the capacity to do so.
  6. Jazz Road Tours Guidelines will be available in April 2019. The first deadline is July 1, 2019 for tours taking place between September 2019 – August 2020.

Watch a Webinar About the Program

Call for Presenters, Programmers, & Venues

To facilitate building connections for jazz artists, we would like input from New England’s jazz presenting community. NEFA invites all New England-based jazz presenters, programmers, and venues that may want to participate in a Jazz Road project, partner with artists to build new jazz audiences, and potentially receive partial artist fee subsidy to present Jazz Road artist grant recipients to complete a short survey. Expressing interest in Jazz Road will help artists connect with potential presenters to plan tours and residencies in New England through this forthcoming initiative.


Please spread the word to other jazz programmers by sharing this survey. This survey is found in this link: Feel free to contact South Arts or NEFA’s Presenting & Touring team if you have any questions about Jazz Road and be on the lookout in April to share the guidelines with artists that may wish to apply!

South Arts contact info:

Sara Donnelly, Director, Jazz

NEFA contact info:

Daniela Jacobson, Program Manager, New England Presenting & Touring and Accessibility Coordinator

About Jazz Road:

Jazz Road is funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation with additional support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and is led by South Arts in partnership with the five other U.S. Regional Arts Organizations (Arts Midwest, Mid-America Arts Alliance, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, New England Foundation for the Arts, and Western Arts Alliance/Western States Arts Federation. For more information about Jazz Road, visit for program updates.