Austin live music venues receive $1.34M in emergency funding

The City of Austin is providing $1.34 million in emergency funding to local live music venues impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. 67 local live music venues will receive relief grants from the city. 

The funding was provided through the Austin Live Music Venue Preservation Fund, which is a $5 million program established by the Austin City Council on December 3, 2020, via Resolution No. 20200103-013. As part of a partnership with the City of Austin, the Long Center processed applications and distributed grants as part of the program’s Phase 1: Emergency Funding.

"Economic Development Department and Long Center staff worked through the holidays to get these funds to local live music venues," notes Veronica Briseño, Austin's Chief Economic Recovery Officer. "We are proud that this support has benefited many cultural and economic icons in our community, and we are determined to build upon the initial grants by offering support through technical assistance and additional financial resources."

The Long Center began accepting Phase 1: Emergency Funding applications on December 11, 2020, and the first funds were dispersed on December 24. Grant recipients must complete a technical assistance evaluation and an Equity Strategic Plan before applying for enhanced grant funding of up to $140,000 in Phase 2. Applications submitted by the deadline of January 11, 2021, at 5 p.m. will continue to be processed and notifications sent out this week.

The City of Austin will continue to provide updated metrics for economic impact through the online dashboard for the Austin Live Music Venue Preservation Fund.

"In less than a month, we were able to partner with the City of Austin and distribute over a million dollars of emergency funds to venues at a critical time," said Cory Baker, President & CEO of the Long Center. "Our team looks forward to the next phase the Austin Live Music Venue Preservation Fund where we can provide additional financial support as well as initiate a technical assistance program for venues that need it."


The Austin Live Music Venue Preservation Fund will be distributed in two phases:

Phase 1: Emergency Funding

  • Eligible applicants experiencing immediate risk of closure will receive a $20,000 grant, which the Long Center distributed in December 11, 2020 through January 11, 2021.
  • Additional services available to venues receiving emergency funding include: legal and accounting services; real estate advice and guidance on lease negotiations; and other professional services and long-term planning from community experts. 

Phase 2: Enhanced Funding

  • Only Phase 1 grant recipients are eligible to apply for additional grant funding in Phase 2.
  • Phase 1 grant recipients must complete a technical assistance evaluation and an Equity Strategic Plan in order to apply for additional funds.
  • Eligible applicants from Phase 1 can apply for additional grant funding up to $140,000 (this does not include funds received from the first phase). The funding will be distributed in monthly payments with a maximum of $40,000 per month.

For eligibility questions and application assistance, contact the Long Center by email or by phone 512-457-5181.