All artists interested in performing at SXSW 2013 must complete an online application through our exclusive online musical event submission platform Sonicbids. You will receive a free 3-month trial when you apply for SXSW. We'll use your Sonicbids Electronic Press Kit (EPK™) to listen to your music, read your bio, check out photos and in general review your band's materials, including press links.
If you have a Sonicbids account, you can apply to SXSW by logging into that account and Sonicbids will show you the easy process. The cost to apply through October 5, 2012 is $30 and then $40 until the final application deadline on November 7, 2012. Once done, your Primary Contact will receive an email from SXSW confirming receipt of your application. The next SXSW email your Primary Contact can expect will be your status notification (by January 25, 2013 at the latest).
Make sure that your EPK™ is filled out completely and updated since your last submission. Those who submit a thorough and accurate EPK™ will fair better in the evaluation process.
If you have questions or need help with the Sonicbids website, contact the Sonicbids Support Center here.
SXSW showcased nearly 550 international acts last year. We are aware of stringent visa and travel requirements, so, to the best of our ability, we prioritize processing of international band applications and invite acts earliest as we can. However, international artists are encouraged to apply as early as possible.
Yes. If your act is selected for a SXSW 2013 showcase, you can choose to receive either cash compensation OR a SXSW Music Artist Package (Artist wristbands for each band member. Artist wristbands are for band members ONLY - no managers, label representatives, crew, etc. Artist wristbands are good for admission to the SXSW Music Panels, SXSW Trade Show, Music Gear Expo, official SXSW showcases, artist lounges and more). If accepted, you will receive more details about both options in your notification email.
4. What is the difference between a Music Festival "registration" and a Music Festival Showcase "application?"
An "application" is the way to be considered for a showcase performance slot at the SXSW Music Festival. A "registration" is the badge purchased by individuals to attend the various SXSW Music events (music conference panels, Artist Central, the SXSW Trade Show, music festival showcases, softball tournament/BBQ, and other special activities).
If you are a band member, you do not need to purchase a registration badge to apply for a showcase, and if you are offered a showcase, the artist can choose cash or a SXSW Music Artist package as payment for your showcase. All applying artists, whether accepted to showcase or not, will be able to purchase registration badges at the lowest registration rate AFTER notification of status, if they choose to do so. There are no refunds (and no exceptions) if you purchase a registration at a higher rate or decide not to attend if you are not offered a showcase.
A badge enables you to attend all official SXSW daytime programming, official SXSW parties, registrant lounges and other SXSW special events. It also gives you first priority access to all SXSW music showcases. Artist wristbands also provide access to the panels, mentor sessions, Artist Central, the SXSW Trade Show, Music Gear Expo and official SXSW showcases. (Please note: entrance to all SXSW activities is on a space available basis.) Artist wristbands will additionally gain admission to the artist lounge after dark and the artist lounge.
SXSW has a committee of people who listen to and grade recordings according to originality, technical ability, songwriting skills, career establishment, and overall artistry. Every application is graded at least twice, then those with the highest scores are reviewed further and invitations are extended. As SXSW receives such a large number of applications each year, it is unfortunately not possible to invite and accommodate every great act who applies.
Opportunities for performers do not stop at showcases. SXSW Music Festival and Conference offers informative panels, mentor sessions, Artist Central, artist and industry leader interviews, registrant lounges and parties, trade shows and more as well as endless opportunities to network. As a Music Festival applicant, even if you are not offered a showcase, you can purchase a SXSW Music registration at the lowest price and access the many benefits of SXSW.
8. If my act is accepted for SXSW 2013, can I schedule non-SXSW Austin shows around my SXSW performance?
If accepted for a SXSW Music showcase, artists agree to not perform at any other public night (7pm-2am) shows in Austin between the dates of March 12-17, 2013. Artists acknowledge that a showcase slot at the SXSW Music Festival is a valuable commodity, and agree to limit their appearances at non-SXSW events to no more than one a day in order to not diminish attendance at the official showcase venue, and in order to maximize media, registrant, and public attention at their official SXSW showcase.
9. I've applied for a Music Festival showcase. How do I reserve hotel rooms for my act in case we're selected?
Because over 10,000 artists apply for showcases, the SXSW Housing Desk cannot book hotel rooms for artists until they have been offered a showcase. The housing desk blocks enough hotel rooms to accommodate showcasing artists who need them. There will be hotel rooms available for you and your bandmates when SXSW extends showcase invitations. Your acceptance email will contain details on how to book hotels.
If you purchase a conference registration, you can reserve a hotel room immediately. If you want to purchase a registration, please wait until you have been notified of your showcase status. Artists who are not given a showcase will have the opportunity to purchase a SXSW Music registration at the lowest price for the season.
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