Midsumma Futures

Supporting early-career queer artists and culture makers

Midsumma Futures is a nine-month development and mentoring program for early-career artists and culture-makers.

This program provides a queer context in which participants can develop their practice, and includes access to professional mentoring, workshops and likeminded (or radically different-minded) peers.

For 30 years Midsumma has been fertile ground for queer culture-makers, forging careers for some of Australia’s most respected cultural and artistic voices. Midsumma Futures provides the opportunity for today's generation of early-career artists to advance their career, deepen their practice, gain exposure and lead the future of queer culture.

Applications close at midnight on Tuesday 9 May 2017.

Applications for Midsumma Futures 2017 - 2018 have now closed.
Successful applicants will be announced early June 2017.

Learn more about the program by following the tabs below.

Who is it for?

Midsumma Futures brings together a diverse range of emerging cultural practitioners, creating a unique space for the intersection of ideas and modes of practice. Artists from across disciplines as well as producers, socially engaged practitioners, community leaders, thinkers and culture-makers of any kind are encouraged to apply.

This program is for people who identify as queer or LGBTQIA+ in some way. We strongly encourage applications from people who are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, culturally or linguistically diverse, or living with disability.

Only a small group of participants (up to 10) will be accepted into the program.


What do you get out of it?

Midsumma Futures consists of three components:

  1. Five dynamic workshops that will challenge, invigorate and strengthen your practice through peer-to-peer exchange as well as presentations and activities delivered by established practitioners. Workshop themes will address the intersection of contemporary practice with queer history, the role of queer cultural practice now, sustainable practice, self care and tools to talk about your work. Other content of the workshops will be devised in response to the needs of successful participants. All workshops will take place at Siteworks, located on Saxon St, Brunswick, Vic. See timeline below for dates.
  2. A mentorship with an established practitioner. You can apply with a confirmed mentor attached to your application OR you can ask Midsumma to match you with a mentor upon successful entry into the program. Midsumma has a diverse network of local, national and international industry professionals - we'll work closely with participants to match them with a mentor who has the appropriate lived and professional experience. Mentorships will kick off in August 2017 and run through to March 2018. Mentors will be paid $800 for the equivalent of 10 hours of mentorship.
  3. Engagement with Midsumma Festival. You'll be given a VIP pass to Midsumma Festival 2018 to experience the intersection of ideas, events and people that only a context like Midsumma Festival can provide. And if you want to produce an event as part of Midsumma Festival 2018 or 2019, we'll provide free registration and on-going production advice.

The emphasis of this program is on developing practice, so you're not expected to produce an outcome as part of your involvement in Midsumma Futures.


Criteria and selection process

The assessment panel will be looking for how your application matches the following key criteria:

  • Clarity and timeliness: Is it the right time for a mentorship in your practice? Are you clear about what you intend to get out of this program and a mentorship?
  • Impact: What impact would this program have on your practice?
  • Commitment: Are you able to commit to the workshops and hours required for the mentorship?

The Selection Panel is made up of a diverse range of industry professionals and Midsumma staff, including:

  • Jax Jacki Brown: writer, performer and disability advocate
  • Jacob Boehme: Yirramboi Creative Director; dance and theatre maker
  • Ryan Hale: Darebin Arts Producer; Tilde board member
  • Karen Bryant: Midsumma CEO
  • Daniel Santangeli: Midsumma Program Manager and independent theatre maker



  1. Applications close: Tuesday 9 May 2017, midnight
  2. Successful applicants announced: Early June 2017
  3. Workshop #1: Friday 14 - Sunday 16 July 2017 (3 days): 9am – 5pm, plus evening activities
  4. Mentorships Commence: Early August 2017
  5. Workshop #2: Friday 15 September 2017: 9am – 5pm, plus evening activities
  6. Workshop #3: Friday 27 October 2017: 9am – 5pm, plus evening activities
  7. Midsumma Festival 2018: Sunday 14 January – Sunday 4 February 2018
        (three weeks; participants expected to attend a minimum of three events)
  8. Workshop #4: Wednesday 31 January 2018: 9am – 5pm, plus evening activities
  9. Mentorships Conclude: Early March 2018
  10. Workshop #5: Friday 16 March 2018: 9am – 5pm, plus evening activities



Midsumma is committed to making our programs accessible to all people.

View transcript of the introductory Auslan video (pdf).

Alternative format applications: If writing is a barrier for you, you can respond to the main section of the application (part B) via audio recording or video. If appropriate, use Auslan in your application video (we'll arrange to get it professionally interpreted for the selection panel).

Talk to us: If you would like to discuss your accessibility requirements, please contact our friendly staff. Call 03 9296 6600 or email [email protected]. Midsumma is National Relay Service ready: contact the National Relay Service on 133 677 or via relayservice.com.au, then ask for 03 9296 6600 during business hours.



So you're serious about applying? Read the following to help you prepare your application:

  1. Application Drafting Tool. You can't save your online application as you work on it, but you can write your draft in the Word version of the application which can be downloaded here. Once you're ready to submit, simply cut-and-paste your answers from the Word version of the application into the online application.
  2. Support Material. This may be a letter of support, examples of past projects and documentation that demonstrates projects that you are about to embark on. You can provide a maximum of three (3) pieces of support material and they must be provided as URLs (e.g. As links to your Dropbox account or website).
  3. Prepare your CV or bio. Max one page. You can copy and paste your bio/CV into your application or provide a weblink.
  4. Prepare you mentor's CV or bio (if you are applying with a confirmed mentor). Max one page.
  5. Prepare your profile. If successful, you will be featured on the Midsumma website. Please provide:
      ☆ Up to 3 images of yourself or images that best capture your practice
            (300 x 300px, 72dpi, jpeg; or alternatively, URL only)
      ☆ A video of your previous work or that is indicative of your practice (optional, 5 mins max, URL only)
      ☆ A short bio for yourself (max 1600 characters, including spaces)
  6. Check the criteria. See the "Criteria and selection process" tab above.
  7. Speak to Midsumma's friendly staff. We strongly encourage you to discuss your application before applying. Call 03 9296 6600 or email [email protected]. Midsumma is National Relay Service ready: contact the National Relay Service on 133 677 or via relayservice.com.au, then ask for 03 9296 6600 during business hours.

Apply online here

Applications for Midsumma Futures 2017 - 2018 have now closed.



Here you will find answers to some of the most Frequently Asked Questions.

Can I apply as a group?

Yes. Ensembles, artist run initiatives and small groups working together on a project can apply. However, there are some considerations:
  ☆ A maximum of three group members can attend the workshops
        (preferably the same group members for each workshops)
  ☆ The entire group would be matched with a mentor; each group member would not receive their own individual mentor
  ☆ Please nominate one group member to lead all communications with the mentor and Midsumma


What's required of my mentor?

Your mentor is required to:
  ☆ attend an introductory/briefing meeting with yourself and a Midsumma staff member (1 hour) in August 2017
  ☆ attend a debrief with yourself and a Midsumma staff member (1 hour) in March 2018.
  ☆ commit to 10 hours of interaction with their mentee. Mentors are paid a one-off fee of $800
    (this fee was calculated according to NAVA standards of $80 per hour for 10 hours).


Does my mentor need to live in the same city as me?

No. The mentorship can take place online and/or over the phone. Midsumma does not contribute towards travel costs.


How do I know if I'm the right fit for the program?

You are right for this program if you:
  ☆ are in the first 10 years of your practice
  ☆ identify as queer or LGBTQIA+ in some way
  ☆ want to develop your practice through mentorship, engagement with new ideas and interaction with peers from across disciplines.

Still unsure? Contact Midsumma on 03 9296 6600 or email [email protected].


Can I be mentored by a group?

Yes. Please note, individual group members would not be paid a fee each; the entire group would receive $800 for 10 hours of interaction. If you are planning on being mentored by a group, please discuss with Midsumma staff.


Do I have to have a project that I'm working on?

No. There is no expected outcome as part of this program. However, you will probably get more out of the program if you are simultaneously working on a project.


I live outside of Melbourne, will Midsumma cover my travel costs to workshops?

No, Midsumma is unable to pay for travel or accommodation costs.


Midsumma Futures is made possible by the generous support of Stomping Ground, Love Machine and NAB.