Official Showcase Information
Official Showcase Info 2023
Split between Friday (Oct 20) and Saturday (Oct 21) evenings, FARM features 14 Official Showcase Artists. There is only one Official Showcase happening at a time, and there are no other conference events during the Official Showcase time. In other words, all eyes will be on YOU when you perform!
IMPORTANT DATES (Note these are last year’s dates and will be updated when available)*:
- March 20, 2023: Official Showcase Submissions Open
- June 1, 2023: Official Showcase Submissions Close at end of day, Midnight Eastern time
- July 1-14, 2023: Showcase artists and alternates notified and confirmed privately
- July 15, 2023: Showcase artists and alternates announced publicly, after all submitting artists are notified of their final status
- October 19 to 22, 2023: FARM Conference in Lisle, IL (near Chicago)
Official Showcase Coordinator is Smitty Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org
*Subject to change
- Submission fee is $25
- Official Showcase Artists will be privately notified between July 1st and 14th, and the public announcement will be on or around July 15th.
- Artists submit two (2) videos of a live performance.
- Links must go to a web page that automatically loads a live performance of a single song in its entirety. Example: http://youtu.be/vWwgrjjIMXA
- Links do not need to be accessible to the public but they must be available from submission through the date of notification.
- Judges will be instructed to do the best they can with what is provided by you, but they will not be encouraged to struggle with links that don’t work or songs that are embedded in a playlist.
- Links to audio only files (i.e. Spotify links) will severely limit your odds of being awarded an Official Showcase. We want video!
- After submitting your application, you’ll be able to test your links.
- All those who apply for a showcase will be given the Super Early Bird rate until Sept 1, 2023 (expires June 1st for everyone else).
If you performed an Official Showcase at the 2022 FARM Conference, you are not eligible to submit for an Official Showcase this year.
You cannot perform both an Official Showcase and a DJ Showcase, nor Performance Lane, in the same year. If you accept an official showcase, you will relinquish your Performance Lane showcase slot (if you had one) and may not accept a DJ showcase.
Please submit two live performance web links, which must go to a web page that automatically loads a live performance of a single song in its entirety (for instance, http://youtu.be/vWwgrjjIMXA). The links must be available from the date of your submission through the date of notification (July 15, 2023). There are spaces in the online application form for you to enter the links. After submitting your application, you’ll be able to test your links to verify they are working.
We strongly recommend live videos as your best presentation. Videos need not be professionally produced. The best submissions are a simple production of you playing in front of a live audience. The make-up of the act in the submissions must be the same as the intended showcase performance. Example: if you plan to perform solo, please do not submit a performance of you with a band or backup singers.
Judges will be instructed to do the best they can with what is provided by you, but they will not spend time struggling with links that don’t work, links that direct to an audio only recording, videos that are embedded in a playlist, or videos that have long introductions. We ask the judges to focus on the quality of your performance and songs rather than the production values of the video. But it is still important that the audio quality allow the judges to clearly hear your performance and lyrics (if you sing) without too much background noise.
Judges will focus on the following factors when evaluating submissions:
- Stage Presence
- Vocal quality (if applicable)
- Songwriting quality (if performing original songs)
Submissions for the FARM 2023 Official Showcases are scored by active venue and house concert presenters, folk DJs, previous FARM Official Showcase artists (during the time they are ineligible to apply), and other industry professionals from around the FARM region.
By applying for a FARM Official Showcase, you gain exposure to all these folks. There are venues that extend offers to acts based on their Official Showcase application. It’s true!
Additional Requirements /Info:
All showcase entries must be submitted online. No mail-in or CD submissions will be accepted.
A $25 showcase submission fee is due with the submission of your showcase entries. Payment will be accepted via the provided Paypal link (accepts PayPal or credit/debit cards), via your PayPal account to email@example.com (include “Showcase Submission Fee” and artist’s name in comments), or by check, made out to “Folk Alliance Region Midwest” and mailed to Lola Tyler c/o Wheatland Music Org, P O Box 22, Remus, MI 49340. (Include “Showcase Submission Fee” and artist’s name in the comment are of the check).
Showcases take place on the evenings of Friday, October 21 and Saturday, October 22, 2022. Make sure you are able to attend the conference on those dates before submitting. Official Showcases are very important to the conference and we expect artists who are awarded an Official Showcase to attend at least two full days of the conference. Official Showcase artists have an opportunity to perform at a time when no other conference activities are scheduled. Selected artists are a BIG DEAL to FARM, and we want them to be present and be part of our community! We will ask you to commit to attending and participating in at least two full days of the conference to share what you do and how you do it with other artists in the FARM community.
Selected artists, alternates, and all band members and backup musicians MUST be registered for the full conference. No exceptions. NOTE – we have discounts for band members beyond the 2nd member. In the event a selected showcase artist or alternate is unable to attend the conference or all members of the act are not registered by October 1, an alternate artist may be selected.
By submitting a showcase application you indicate your understanding and agreement to these terms. In addition, those selected agree to allow FARM to use their picture, videos, bio, and songs in advertising for the conference.
FARM board members and employees, the Official Showcase Coordinator, and Listening Room Network employees are not eligible to submit for a showcase, nor to be showcase judges.
Email your questions to the Official Showcase Coordinator, Smitty Smith, at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are chosen for an official showcase, you will receive a lot of publicity via our website, social media, and printed program. Also you will gain exclusive exposure to DJs, venue talent buyers, agents, and fans. Your performance is the ONLY THING on the conference schedule at that time. And we’ll sell your CDs for you and give you all the proceeds.
ALL submitting artists will be offered the Super Early Bird registration rate until September 1, 2023 (expires June 1 for everyone else).
Even if you are not chosen, simply by applying for an official showcase, your music will become known to the many folk DJs, agents, and venue presenters that are among our judges. If you then attend the FARM conference, you will have already been exposed to these key members of our industry.
How to make the most of your chances
The best video submissions simply present you in front of the camera, (for the in-person conference, preferably in front of an audience). Videos submitted must be in the same act configuration that you plan to use at the FARM Showcase if selected. So if you plan on performing solo, please do not send a link to a video of you with a band or backup musicians. A professional video is not needed, but be sure the sound quality is good – it will be hard to evaluate you if we can’t hear you!
What if I’m Not Selected for a Showcase?
Because there are only 14 slots and we receive anywhere from 150 – 200 applications, a majority of those who apply will not be selected. Keep in mind these things are subjective and many industry professionals are listening to your music. Not making it into the showcase doesn’t mean you didn’t impress the judges. There are several other opportunities to showcase throughout the weekend (Performance Lane, Private Showcases, DJ/Venue showcase) so we hope you will consider attending the conference either way.
We look forward to hearing from all of you.
Additional Terms and Conditions:
- Official Showcase Artists are expected to attend most, if not all, of the conference. You are a BIG DEAL to us, and we want you to be present and part of our community! We will ask you to commit to attending and participating in at least two full days of the conference.
- All showcase entries must be submitted online. No-mail in or CD submissions will be accepted.
- A $25 showcase submission fee will be due with the submission of your in-person showcase entries. Payments may be made using PayPal or by check.
- Showcases take place on Friday and Saturday evenings.
- Two to four alternate artists will be chosen in the event a selected showcase artist(s) is unable to attend the conference.
- Selected artists will be notified around July 1st.
- Selected artists and all band members or backup musicians MUST be registered for the full conference. No exceptions. In the event a selected showcase artist or alternate is unable to attend the conference, or all members of the act are not registered by September 1, an alternate artist will be selected.
- By submitting and being selected for a showcase, you agree that FARM may use your photo, video and songs in advertising for the conference.
- Selected artists may be asked to submit an MP3 of one of their songs to FARM, which will be used to populate a Sound Cloud playlist on our website.
- By submitting showcase entries you indicate your understanding and agreement to the terms listed above.
MANY thanks to Smitty Smith for coordinating the Official Showcases, to Fran Snyder and the staff at Listening Room Network for operating and supporting the in-person process with their online system for evaluating artist submissions, and especially to our judges for all the time and listening they put into the process. FARM board members and Listening Room Network employees are not showcase judges and are not eligible to submit for a showcase.
Email questions to Smitty Smith