Latest Aotearoa Touring Programme Recipients

March 1st 2021
The Aotearoa Touring Programme is pleased to announce the third round of grant recipients for the programme, which closed in January 2021. Applications for the next round close at 5:00pm on Wednesday 24 March.

The Aotearoa Touring Programme invests in approved domestic touring costs, to enable more NZ artists to grow sustainable careers and increase the access to live music for NZ audiences. The Aotearoa Touring Programme is a contestable fund intended to reinvigorate the live music sector and assist in the recovery from the effects of COVID-19 in the domestic touring market.


As one of the initiatives in the Government’s New Zealand Music Recovery Fund, the Aotearoa Touring Programme is part of the Manatū Taonga Ministry of Culture & Heritage led Arts & Culture COVID Recovery Programme, which is focused on the recovery, regeneration and revitalisation of the cultural sector.


The Programme is run by the NZ Music Commission to grow the potential for original New Zealand artists touring across Aotearoa and enable more New Zealanders to experience live, local music. It is a matched investment programme (i.e. the Programme will match your investment), so applicants can apply for 50% of the eligible costs for undertaking national tours across Tiers 1 and 2. The different Tiers have a maximum limit for each grant.

Applications for this round closed on 27 January 2021.


Aotearoa Touring Programme Tier 1 – Nineteen grants were confirmed this round:


Pickle Darling for a 12 date nationwide tour in support of Pickle Darling's upcoming sophomore album ‘Cosmonaut’.


Merk for a 6 date album release tour of the North Island and South Island in support of Merk's sophomore record 'Infinite Youth'.


Merv Pinny for an 11 date North Island tour as an introduction to ‘New Zealand's best kept secret’.


Greg Johnson Band for a 7 date New Zealand tour in support of Greg's new album to be released in June 2021.


Team Dynamite for a 7 date tour of the North and South Islands in support of album 'Respect The Process'.


ARLI and Rhian Sheehan for an 11 date tour of New Zealand.


Lost Tribe Aotearoa for an 11 date tour of Aotearoa.


Arjuna Oakes for a 5 date tour of Aotearoa in support of Arjuna's upcoming collaborative EP ‘First Nights’ with Serebii.


Dead Favours for a 4 date tour to support the first of two EP's Dead Favours are releasing in 2021.


Pull Down The Sun for 13 shows around the North and South Island promoting their debut album 'Of Valleys and Mountains'.


Julie Lamb Outfit for an 8 date North Island tour between April and June in support of their 2020 album ‘How Humans Think’.


Tim Allen and The Two for an 11 date tour of the North and South Island to promote the new single ‘Love is a Pill’.


Looking For Alaska for a 12 date tour of the North and South Island in support of our new album ‘Light and Shadow’.


Crooked Royals for a 4 date tour of the North Island in support of two singles from the their upcoming album.


Francisca Griffin & the Bus Shelter Boys for a 6 date tour of the North Island in support of new single 'Wolf'.


Monty Bevins for a 13 date tour of NZ in support of the debut album 'Time To Bide'.


Dick Move for a 4 date tour including Wellington and the South Island.


Neive Strang for a 5 date tour, with 4 shows in the South Island, in support of the latest single ‘Sick Love Tick’.


Swallow the Rat  for a 7 date tour of the North Island to promote the release of a split LP with NYC band Clone.


Aotearoa Touring Programme Tier 2 – Two grants were confirmed this round:

The Chills for a 13 date tour of Aotearoa New Zealand to mark the release of the ninth studio album.


Nadia Reid for a 8 date tour of New Zealand's opera houses, Churches and/or theatres with a full band.


Aotearoa Touring Programme Tier 3 – Significant Production Fund

The Tier 3 Fund is specifically for the production costs of significant large-scale New Zealand music events and tours. It is only for tours and events that have exclusively New Zealand music performances, at venues that are over 2,000 capacity per show, or have combined capacities in excess of 8,000 for tours. For one-off events, the capacity must be in excess of 4,000.

The intention of the Tier 3 Fund is to encourage large-scale NZ artist tours and events over the months from March until September 2021, to provide access to significant sized local music performances for New Zealanders, and to support concert production companies and suppliers through the next phase of New Zealand’s COVID recovery.

Aotearoa Touring Programme Tier 3 Significant Production Fund – Three grants were confirmed this round:

College Hill, Oceania, Monsta Vision and Tone Deaf via Loop Media NZ Ltd for L.A.B, Mt Smart Stadium Upper Field, Auckland. The show will employ over 500 staff over 7 days.


Western Audio, MonstaVision, Oceania, Spotlight, Empire Electrical, Red Badge, Rapid Fence, Evolution Traffic Management and Clean Event via Quiet Please Ltd for Outerfields2021, the Outer Fields at Western Springs, Auckland. The festival will employ up to 200 during the set up/production week and around 500 on show day.


Audio Progress, The Sound Crew, Creative Lighting, The Soundpeople, Strawberry Sound, Sono Sound, Allied Security, PPS Security, KJI Security, PBT Freight, Mc Music, QBE Insurance, Entertainments Solution and The Production Co via Rockquest Promotions Ltd for Smokefreerockquest and Smokefree Tangata Beats, nationwide. The events employ over 50 crew members over the course of the 46 shows.

Stageset, Big Picture, College Hill Productions, Spot Light  Systems, Global Production and Human Person via Eccles Entertainment for Six60 at Eden Park. Saturday 24 April. The event build will start on April 16 with the last day being April 27 or 28. The event will employ 100+ core crew with another 100 people as additional crew and support artists, plus approx. 500+ on show day. [NB: This grant was added after original publication of this article as the event was yet to be announced]


Applications for the next round of Aotearoa Touring Programme close at 5:00pm on Wednesday 24 March.


About the Purpose and Criteria of the Aotearoa Touring Programme

The overarching goal of the Aotearoa Touring Programme is to increase national touring activity by New Zealand musicians performing original, live New Zealand music.

The objectives of the Programme are to:

  • Maximise the New Zealand live music industry’s economic recovery from COVID-19
  • Create skill development opportunities in live music performance and touring to strengthen and grow the New Zealand live music industry
  • Support New Zealand artists to grow viable and sustainable careers
  • Promote more opportunities for audiences across New Zealand to access original, live New Zealand music.


Applications to the Aotearoa Touring Programme will be limited to:

1.     Businesses or individuals that are registered in New Zealand, physically located in New Zealand, and

employing individuals who are working legally in New Zealand.

2.     New Zealand artists performing original New Zealand music. For the definition of ‘New Zealander’ and

‘original New Zealand music’.

3.     Tours that comprise at least three venues or locations outside of the performer’s home town.


Applicants also need to fulfil the following criteria:

·       Be financially viable to the extent that they can demonstrate how they can finance at least 50% of the cost

of the touring project.

·       Be able to demonstrate they have the capacity and capability (including financial, business planning and

delivery support) to undertake the touring project.

·   Are not crown entities, government departments or their agencies. This includes any organisation that receives baseline funding from Creative New Zealand’s Toi Tōtara or Toi Uru Kahikatea investment programmes.



More information on the Aotearoa Touring Programme is availble on the Touring section of our website.

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