Performing Artists Directory Guidelines

FY2021 Performing Artists Directory
Application Deadline: Feb. 17, 2020

The Kentucky Arts Council strongly encourages you to read and understand the Performing Artists Directory guidelines before accessing the application.

Like all programs of the Kentucky Arts Council, the Performing Artists Directory is guided by the arts council’s core values. Successful applications will embody these core values, and all applicants are strongly encouraged to read and reflect upon them before submitting an application.

Core Values of the Kentucky Arts Council

Program Purpose

The purpose of the Performing Artists Directory is to promote, showcase and provide professional development opportunities to a diverse selection of Kentucky's finest contemporary and traditional performing artists.


Who May Apply

Residency Requirements

Applicants must be U.S. citizens or lawfully admitted to the U.S. for permanent residence or have permission from the Department of Homeland Security to work permanently in the U.S.

Applicants must have been legal Kentucky residents for a period of at least six months immediately before the application deadline (e.g., legal residency must have begun no later than August 17, 2019, for applications due Feb. 17, 2020).

For proof of residency, you must submit by mail or email a copy of two of the following documents by the application deadline:

These are the only acceptable forms of proof of residency for this application.

Program Description

The Performing Artists Directory is an adjudicated roster of Kentucky professional performing artists who have an established performance history. It is a marketing program that offers roster artists professional development and a variety of opportunities to promote their performance work, including a detailed entry in the online directory. In addition, the directory is used by in-state and out-of-state presenters and others as a resource for identifying artists for performance bookings and projects.

Performance Expectations

Applications will be assessed using the following performance expectations.

  1. Artistic Excellence (70 points)
  1. Performance Experience (20 points)
  1. Marketing Capacity (10 points)

You may wish to refer to the Panelist Scoring Rubric to better understand how your application will be evaluated.


Participation Requirements

In order to maintain eligibility, participants of the Performing Artists Directory must apply and be approved for inclusion in two back-to-back rounds (e.g., FY21 and FY23). After successfully jurying into the program twice consecutively, artists will be required to reapply only if they fail to submit the mandatory annual Final Report by the deadline, change performance genre, change performer status (e.g., switch from a solo act to a group or vice versa) or if there is a significant change to performer personnel. Artists who leave or who are dropped from the directory for any reason must repeat the application process. If you are uncertain as to whether you need to reapply to the directory, contact the program director.

Participants must:

All Performing Artists Directory artists selected for inclusion in the program are required to attend a daylong orientation and training on Friday, June 19, 2020. Returning directory artists are encouraged, though not required, to attend.

Program Timeline

Application deadline

Review of applications by panel

Applicant notification

Mandatory artist orientation/training

Program Agreement Form due

Feb. 17, 2020

April/May 2020

As soon as possible after panel meeting

June 19, 2020

June 19, 2020

Program Benefits

Application Deadline

Submit the online application no later than 4 p.m. Eastern, Feb. 17, 2020, with all required documents and supporting materials, in accordance with the program guidelines.

Note: The application can take several minutes to upload, and closes promptly at 4 p.m. Eastern. Applicants are strongly advised not to wait until the last minute in order to avoid being shut out of the application. Following the deadline, each application will be reviewed by the program director, who may contact the applicant if clarification is needed.

Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) Number

The arts council requires that all applicants have a DUNS number. Dun & Bradstreet keeps track of more than 70 million businesses worldwide through its Data Universal Numbering System. In recent years, the DUNS number has become increasingly important as an arts advocacy tool for both federal and state governments (e.g., the National Endowment for the Arts and the Kentucky Arts Council) and national arts organizations (e.g., Americans for the Arts). Organizations use data from DUNS number applications to demonstrate the power of the arts to stimulate economic activity and create jobs. For more information about how DUNS numbers are used, go to


To apply for your free DUNS number, call Dun & Bradstreet at 866-705-5711 or apply online at https://www.dnb.com/duns-number.html

Note: It may take up to thirty (30) days for your DUNS application to be processed. We recommend that you submit your application immediately.

How to Apply

Carefully review the program guidelines and create a profile in the GoSmart application system.

Note: Due to compatibility issues when using Internet Explorer, the arts council recommends using Google Chrome, Firefox, Safari or other browsers to complete your application.

To determine district numbers, contact your county clerk’s office. You can also find your congressional district by going to https://www.house.gov and entering a zip code and, when prompted, a street address. Find your state legislative districts by going to https://legislature.ky.gov/Pages/index.aspx.

Access the application by selecting the “Current Programs and Applications” tab, find "Performing Artists Directory" and click “START.”

Click the “Save Work” button on each page or your work will be lost.

Digital Images

As part of the application process, you must submit two professional quality promotional images of the performer. Images should be:

Images must be uploaded to the “Manage Work Samples” page. Many of the fields on the “Manage Work Samples” page do not apply to this application program. The only required field for work sample images is the Image Title. The image title should include the name of the applicant individual or group. You may include your name in the Work Sample image title.

Within the application you will be prompted to attach images at the “Promotional Images” section. You may sort the order of images once they are attached to this page.

For detailed information about preparing your promotional images for submission, go to:


Work Samples

Work samples are the primary means by which panelists assess artistic and professional quality. Carefully consider your choice of work samples in relation to the program’s performance expectations. See Work Sample Preparation for detailed information on preparing application work samples.

Applicants to the Performing Artists Directory must submit links to no more than three video samples uploaded to YouTube or other easily accessible website.

Work samples must support the selected discipline or medium (e.g., dancers must submit work sample video of dance performances only; bluegrass bands must submit work sample video of bluegrass music performances only).

Work samples submitted for review must not exceed a total of 10 minutes for all work samples combined. Applicants may submit full-length work samples if the Work Sample Index includes stop and start times. Panelists will not review more than the required 10 minutes.

Work samples must have been recorded within the past three calendar years (e.g., for the application deadline of Feb. 17, 2020, eligible work will have been recorded between Jan. 1, 2017, and Feb.17, 2020).

Applicants applying as solo performers must submit at least one work sample of the applicant performing solo. Any solo applicant submitting work samples that include a group of performers must identify him or herself in the work sample.

Narrative Questions

Applicants are required to respond to criteria about their performances, their experience working with presenting organizations, their current marketing processes and their goals for increasing those processes.

To assist panelists in reading your application, duplicate the Performance Expectation and the number of each item before your response. Include complete information for each item, in the order listed, when completing your narrative. Place your name and the words “Performing Artists Directory Program” in the upper right-hand corner of each page. Note that line spaces between responses to the narrative items make the narrative much easier to read.

In addition, all applicants must submit:

Panel Meeting

A panel of arts professionals and other individuals with relevant experience will review all applications according to the performance expectations. Please be aware that panels are comprised of individuals from both inside and outside Kentucky who may be unfamiliar with the state’s organizations, artists and/or communities.

Programs receiving fewer than five eligible applications will not receive a panel review due to the expense of such a review.


There are no appeals in this program.

Program Agreement Form

Successful applicants will receive a Program Agreement Form (PAF), which will detail benefits and responsibilities as an adjudicated participant of the Performing Artists Directory. Successful applicants must agree to the terms, sign the form and return it to the arts council within 15 days if they choose to participate in the program.

Final Report

All Performing Artists Directory artists must submit an annual Final Report. A link to the report will be emailed to participants each year. If a Performing Artists Directory artist fails to submit the required report, the arts council will accept no future applications from that artist and the artist’s online directory page will be suspended until an acceptable report is received.

For More Information

The arts council welcomes all questions regarding this program. For more information, please contact:

Tamara Coffey
Organization Support and Individual Artist Director
888-833-2787 (toll free)

Page last updated: December 12, 2019
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