What is jazzahead!?

jazzahead! is the largest gathering of world-class professional delegates working in jazz. In 2019, 3408 delegates representing 64 countries attended the jazzahead! Trade Fair, with a total of 25,000 visitors in total attending the jazzahead! Festival. The event also features showcases and conference sessions, alongside a very significant opportunity to network with industry professionals from all over the globe: record labels, publishers, distributors, artist managers, broadcasters and journalists.
Scotland’s jazz scene will again have a presence at jazzahead! in 2020, supported by Creative Scotland.

Who can apply for a bursary to attend jazzahead!?

Scotland-based jazz and improvising musicians, their representatives or organisations are now invited to apply for a 2020 Delegate Bursary. Successful applicants must be able to demonstrate that they are ready to tour internationally and therefore able to take advantage of this opportunity. We envisage supporting five delegates attending the event for the first time, and two who have previously attended jazzahead! – although we reserve the right to award more or fewer bursaries, based on quality of application and available budget.

What does the bursary cover?

The selected First Time Delegates will have their conference registration fee, travel and accommodation arranged and paid for. Please note, these delegates will be expected to cover their own subsistence, transfers and travel insurance costs. The selected Returning Delegates will have their conference registration fee arranged and paid for and are expected to cover all other costs themselves.

Who will make the decisions on the bursaries?

The applications will be assessed by a panel of industry professionals, including representatives from Glasgow Jazz Festival and Creative Scotland, who will aim to select a cohort of delegates that best represents the vibrancy and diversity of Scotland’s jazz scene. We will let applicants know who was on the panel when we inform them of the outcome of their applications.

In return for the bursary, what does attendance at jazzahead! involve?

It is a condition of funding that all selected delegates:

  • Participate in a pre-event briefing session with other delegates before the event. This is likely to take place in March, in either Glasgow or Edinburgh. Reasonable travel costs will be covered for this.
  • Commit to being at jazzahead! in Bremen from Thursday 23 – Sunday 26 April 2020, unless by prior agreement (it is envisaged/recommended that outbound travel will be on Wednesday 22 April and inbound travel on Sunday 26 April).
  • Participate in the daily (Thursday – Saturday) networking receptions at the trade-fair stand.
  • Attend at least three showcases during jazzahead!
  • Commit to assisting the Scotland team on the trade-fair stand.
  • Provide feedback during and after the event: this will form part of the evaluation for funders.


Individuals and organisations – First Time Attenders

In order for artists to be able to make the most of this opportunity, we’re looking for people who can:

  • Show that their work is of a high quality, innovative, rooted in the jazz music genre and is suitable for the jazzahead! market. Potential delegates are advised to consult the attendee list on the website to get an understanding of which organisations and individuals attend the event:
  • Demonstrate a committed track-record of working professionally in the Scottish jazz scene.
  • Demonstrate that they and their work are ready to tour or export to an international market.
  • Demonstrate that they will be able to clearly communicate, express and promote their work and practice to potential partners (promoters, labels, commissioners, artists).
  • Convey what they aim to achieve by attending jazzahead! 2020 and why this point in their career is an appropriate time to do so.

Returning Delegates

  • Must have already attended jazzahead!
  • Must demonstrate a clear rationale for a return visit, such as tangible evidence of progress made since the previous visit (eg: bookings, potential new collaborations, development of relationships, etc) and a clear development plan for a return visit.


  • Open to individuals, groups and organisations working in jazz and improvised music in Scotland. (NB: Organisations in receipt of Creative Scotland RFO funding are ineligible to apply. However, individuals who are employed by an RFO but have their own distinctive artistic practice may apply to attend if they wish to represent their own work and not the work of the RFO).
  • If applying to represent a specific group/organisation then only one representative for that group/organisation can be supported to attend.
  • Applicants must be currently based in Scotland.
  • Applicants must hold a passport valid for travel in the EU. (NB: please be aware of the current advice from the Home Office:
  • Those who have attended jazzahead! previously are only eligible to apply for a Returning Artist Bursary.
  • This bursary scheme is funded by Creative Scotland to support the Scottish jazz sector, and funding for jazzahead! is being channelled specifically through this project. As such, bursary applicants cannot therefore apply to other funds (such as the Open Project Fund) to supplement the costs to attend.


Bursary Applications Open: 10 January 2020

Deadline for applications: 6pm, 31 January 2020

Decision making panel meet: Early February 2020

When you will hear your decision: Mid-February 2020

Pre-Event Briefing: March 2020

Jazzahead! takes place: 23-26 April 2020

Further information and how to apply:

If you have any queries about Jazzahead!, this bursary programme or would like to speak to someone before submitting your application please email with ‘JAZZAHEAD 2020’ in the subject line.

Applicants should complete the application form available to download here: JAZZAHEAD 2020 BURSARIES APPLICATION FORM

Please submit your completed form, along with any supporting materials, in one email, to by 6pm, on 31 January 2020.


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