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Natalie Dietz: Writing a Grant Application Helps to Refine Your Goals as an Artist

Jul 18, 2017

Natalie Dietz is a leading Australian jazz vocalist, composer and educator who has made a strong impression on the Australian and international jazz scene, delighting both audiences and critics with her warm vocal tone and varied abilities as a musician.

Natalie received $24,963 when she applied to the Music panel for a Career Development grant in March 2015.

Natalie was funded to develop an international level of skill as a jazz vocalist, composer and music educator, and undertook a twelve month mentorship program in Boston, USA.

Natalie’s proposal was for a confirmed mentorship with five world-class professionals in the fields of improvisation, music teaching skills, vocal technique, music theory, aural skills and composition.

Image: Natalie with American composer Paul Williams, receiving the ASCAP Herb Alpert National Young Jazz Composer’s Award.

This wasn’t Natalie’s first application, and she knew the value of talking to a Grants Officer before submitting her application. ‘I spoke to the Australia Council staff to clarify whether my project was suitable for the program. You should do the same, as it will quickly clarify any questions you have. The staff are very knowledgeable and happy to help!’

Natalie found that writing her grant application helped to refine the ideas and framework behind her proposal. ‘Constructing a distinct framework during the grant writing process helped me to put into words what I was aiming to achieve from this project. I was also able to refer back to it as a personal affirmation during the period of development. I put a lot of thought into refining these ideas in order to make the most out of this opportunity for artistic growth.’

‘I saw great results from the mentorships.’ says Natalie.  ‘Thanks to the support of Australia Council I received mentorship and resources needed to produce high-quality work. In February of 2016 I was awarded the ASCAP (APRA equivalent in the USA) Herb Alpert National Young Jazz Composer’s Award, and I’m now preparing exciting new material for a full-length album.’

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