Company Announcements

First Up with RBCxMusic has opened applications, and continues to provide emerging Canadian artists with a platform for exposure, funding, mentorship and skills development

Applications are now being accepted at until November 15, 2021

TORONTO, Nov. 1, 2021 /CNW/ - RBC has opened applications for First Up with RBCxMusic, which will continue to spotlight emerging Canadian musicians and recording artists across the country into 2022. Selected artists will receive funding and promotional support, along with valuable mentorship and networking opportunities with industry leaders and experts.

First Up with RBCxMusic was launched in May 2020 to help emerging recording artists continue to hone their craft, perform for new and diverse fans, and ultimately progress their careers. The program has since supported over 150 emerging artists representing a variety of genres, backgrounds and perspectives. Exciting new program offerings in 2022 will include:

  • Performance and exposure opportunities through RBC's network of partners including Live Nation Canada, the country's leading live entertainment producer and promoter.
  • The integration of AWAL, the music industry's leading alternative to traditional music label deals, which will support with the talent identification and selection component of the program.
  • An artist retreat in partnership with Conscious Economics, where artists will have access to new skills, mentorship and networking opportunities, as well as the resources to create custom content at Toronto'sLunar Studios.
  • Educational workshops, learning and development support through Artscape, a global leader in creative placemaking.

"Each time we open applications for First Up with RBCxMusic, we are blown away by the incredible number of talented and diverse artists we have across Canada," said Matt McGlynn, Vice-President, Brand Marketing, RBC. "We are incredibly proud of the 150 emerging artists the program has supported to date, and are looking forward to showcasing more of Canada's homegrown talent in 2022 and beyond."

Now in its second year, First Up with RBCxMusic has provided emerging talent with once-in-a-lifetime performance and exposure opportunities. First Up with RBCxMusic Featured Artists recently appeared alongside Grammy-award winning artist H.E.R. in First. Love. – a digital campaign that conveys what RBCxMusic stands for: Acceptance, respect, and equal opportunity for all artists. First Up artists also starred in a national campaign that aired during the Canadian broadcast of the 2021 Grammy Awards.

"AWAL is proud to work alongside RBC in their support for emerging artists in Canada through this unique program," said Chris Hardy, Senior Vice-President, North American Artist Development and Head of Canada, AWAL. "Participation in First Up with RBCxMusic aligns with AWAL's mission of working with artists at every stage of their career."

First Up with RBCxMusic is open to Canadian recording artists and musicians who are in the early stages of their career and seek primary income from their music. Along with receiving funding and promotional support, recipients will have access to mentorship, education, and networking opportunities with notable industry experts through RBC's partnerships with Live Nation Canada, AWAL, Conscious Economics, and Artscape. Applications are now open at and will close on November 15, 2021 at 5 PM EST. Successful applicants will be contacted in January and will be publically announced afterwards in early 2022.

First Up with RBCxMusic is part of RBC's ongoing commitment to supporting emerging creative artists through the RBC Emerging Artists Project. Since 2015, over 25,000 alumni have been supported by the RBC Emerging Artists Project, with support from the RBC Foundation totaling over $8 million each year to hundreds of arts organizations across Canada.

About RBC
Royal Bank of Canada is a global financial institution with a purpose-driven, principles-led approach to delivering leading performance. Our success comes from the 88,000+ employees who leverage their imaginations and insights to bring our vision, values and strategy to life so we can help our clients thrive and communities prosper. As Canada's biggest bank, and one of the largest in the world based on market capitalization, we have a diversified business model with a focus on innovation and providing exceptional experiences to our 17 million clients in Canada, the U.S. and 27 other countries. Learn more at‎

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