McKnight Fellowships for Choreographers: Guidelines

The Cowles Center is pleased to announce the 2017 round of the McKnight Fellowships for Choreographers. This program is made possible by the generous support of The McKnight Foundation. Read the full guidelines below.


Three unrestricted fellowships of $25,000 will be awarded.


Intent to Apply deadline: Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Final Application deadline: Wednesday, April 5, 2017 at 3:00 pm CST


Fellowships provide recognition and financial support for Minnesota choreographers. The program is designed to award choreographers whose work is of exceptional artistic merit, who have created a substantial body of work over a period of time, and who are at a career stage that is beyond emerging.

Resumé and application materials should indicate a history of sustained professional choreographic work over a period of at least five years, demonstrated through performances, creative work, residencies, grants, fellowships, or other recognition. Accomplishments must be outside of accredited degree programs, i.e. student performances will not count towards the five-year period of professional accomplishment.


The intent of this program is to enrich and strengthen our community by acknowledging the accomplishments of individual choreographers and providing for their artistic growth.


A panel of one Minnesota and three out-of-state choreographers and arts professionals will review applications and select fellowship recipients. As possible throughout the season, the local panelist will view applicants' live performances.


  • Individual choreographers, choreographers working with incorporated companies, and choreographic collaborations are eligible to apply.
  • A choreographer whose principal body of work has been created in collaboration is not able to apply as an individual unless s/he has a significant body of independent work in her/his recent career. Work samples and resume should clearly support this.
  • Applicants must have been continuous residents of Minnesota for at least one year prior to application and have produced choreography while living in Minnesota.
  • Fellows must remain in residence during the fellowship year or forfeit the award.
  • Applicants must have created a substantial body of work in their careers to date.
  • Full-time students are not eligible.
  • Recipients of 2014, 2015 and 2016 McKnight Fellowships in any discipline are not eligible.
  • Artists may apply to only one of the 10 McKnight Fellowship programs in a given year.
  • For applicants who previously received a McKnight Fellowship in any discipline, the panel will look for continued outstanding work since the past award. Work samples may only include work created since the last award.
  • To be eligible to reapply, prior fellowship recipients must have have completed all required final reports and project reports and must have completed all requirements for fellowship-related funds prior to the Intent to Apply deadline (National residencies, SOLO, etc.) or forfeit the funds.
  • Cowles Center staff and immediate family are not eligible.
  • Fellowship staff from any McKnight Artist Fellowship programs are not eligible.
  • Staff and board of The McKnight Foundation are not eligible, as well as immediate family members of foundation arts program staff.
  • The intent of this program is to award artists who live and work in Minnesota, have made a significant artistic contribution to this community, and who will continue their artistic growth in Minnesota.


Awarded fellows are eligible to apply for a national residency with one of our program partners. Fellows receive additional support for career development and are invited to attend a four-day retreat in rural Minnesota.


Watch video for step-by-step instructions

Intent to APPLY deadline

Submit online form by Wednesday, September 7, 2016


Submit written materials and work samples online by Wednesday, April 5th, 2017 at 3:00 pm CST

The applicants will be notified in early June 2017.


If you have questions about the technical aspects of the application or online submission, contact the SlideRoom Support team at They are open 9 am - 9pm Mon - Sat and will respond within an hour.

If you need access to a computer and the internet, go to your public library or Springboard for the Arts.