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The Calgary arts community continues to face the challenge of attracting audiences back to arts events post-pandemic, which is having a significant impact on earned revenue and budget bottom lines. A recent survey of Alberta-based arts managers showed that audience retention and attraction are the second-most pressing concern for arts managers and leaders (after the overall increased cost of doing business).


The Rozsa Foundation’s Audience Development Funding Program is intended to support arts organizations in their efforts to engage arts audiences, both by learning more about their existing audiences and by designing and testing new engagement strategies aimed at increasing attendance. This work can assist arts organizations in attracting new audiences in the short-term, while developing stronger connections with them long-term.


This new funding program is intended to allow organizations to build upon the findings and strategies emerging from the Spotlight on Arts Audiences research project being led by the Rozsa Foundation and Stone Olafson.  


Friday, April 5

Friday, June 28

Friday, October 4

Friday, November 29

Funding decisions will typically be made within 6-weeks of the application deadline. 



Organizations may request up to $15,000.


There are two streams of support available through this program: Understanding Your Audience and Acquiring Your Audience. 

Understanding Your Audience

This program stream supports arts organizations who have not undertaken recent audience analysis and segmentation processes. It provides funding to hire experts to complete audience research to understand who is currently interested in their events, how to reach them, and how to promote to aligned demographics. The project should include a clear plan for the transfer of knowledge from the consultant that enables the organization to refresh this research themselves in the future.


Funding can be used to:

  • Complete audience analysis and segmentation with support from an external consultant.

  • Access other tools or expertise required to deepen your understanding of your audience.

  • Support staff to undertake professional development learning to strengthen the organizations understanding of these processes.

  • Deepen connection with current audiences. 


Acquiring Your Audience

This program stream supports arts organizations in creating and testing strategies to attract audiences. The focus is on testing approaches that are new to the organization – something they have not attempted before. The goal is to experiment with strategies that are designed to effectively target, attract, and engage new audiences to increase immediate and future attendance, access, and participation.


Funding can be used to:

  • Design targeted approaches to reach identified audience segments in new ways.

  • Identify and reduce barriers to attendance.

  • Design and test new pricing strategies, such as ticket scaling or dynamic pricing.

  • Explore new ways to monetize online attendance or programs.

  • Design new outreach efforts to reach new audiences.

  • Support efforts to recapture lost audiences.

  • Creation of new partnerships or the extension and evolution of existing partnerships:

    • between arts organizations, through initiatives such as

      • combined marketing campaigns

      • group promotional packages

      • collaborative ticket approaches.

    • between arts organizations and organizations outside the sector, through strategic community partnerships to maximize reach and efficiency.

  • Support the development of new marketing or promotional materials related to new strategies or the translation of materials to other languages to reach new audiences.


The program is intended to support new and strategic ways forward for organizations, so requests centered around existing or planned advertising buys or offsetting the cost of tickets will not be considered.


Organizations who are interested in applying for funding are strongly encouraged to review the latest Spotlight on Arts Audiences reports. While we do not require projects to align directly with the research work, the materials may be a helpful tool as you ideate your approach and speak about your goals. 


Organizations must be a charity with a valid CRA charitable business number (9 digits, 2 letters, 4 digits), however:

  • Equity-deserving organizations that are not charities may be able to apply for funding in partnership with a registered charity through an agency agreement. Please email Funding Manager, Ayla Stephen, at to discuss this option further.


You must be an arts-focused organization that presents arts-based work for a public audience.


The focus of our investment is in the Treaty 7 region of Southern Alberta, encompassing Calgary and the surrounding area, as well as Banff, Canmore, Drumheller, Medicine Hat, Lethbridge, Red Deer, and others.

  • We also grant to provincial organizations in Alberta whose initiatives will directly benefit the Calgary arts community.

  • Organizations located outside of these areas may still be eligible but should contact us prior to beginning the application.


Organizations can submit only one application per deadline.​



Please review the Audience Development Funding Guidelines (linked above) for more detailed information on this funding program. We encourage interested individuals and organizations to discuss your eligibility and the program with us prior to application. Please email Funding Manager Ayla Stephen.  

All applications must be made via our online form, please click on the button below to start your application. If you would like to work in a hard copy of the application as you prepare your submission, please download the Funding Application Template. You can then copy and paste your responses from this template into our online form.   

All project budgets submitted must use the Rozsa Foundation Funding Program Budget Template. Please complete the “Budget” column of the template. 


We encourage interested organizations to discuss eligibility and proposed projects with us prior to application. Please contact Funding Manager, Ayla Stephen, at  

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