Professional Development

DM Collective is Drake Music’s Artist Development programme. It aims to change the landscape for Disabled artists, making a career as a musician more accessible and possible.

What is DM Collective?

DM Collective helps emerging, experienced and established Disabled artists to break into the music industry and build their career.

Dike wears a Nike hoodie and looks off camera with a soft, slightly smiling expression. Shot inn low light against a dark backdrop, the image has a rich tone.
Emergent Commissionee: Dike Okoh

Through DM Collective, Disabled musicians of all genres can find opportunities to:

  • Grow their creative practice
  • Progress their professional career

Artists are supported to gain experience and develop new skills and networks to develop a sustainable portfolio career.

This support comes in the form of commissions, mentoring and residencies.

The use of music technology to remove barriers runs through all of Drake Music’s work, including DM Collective. The programme will make opportunities for artists to connect with the DMLab community of technologists, Disabled musicians and instrument-makers.

Who is it for?

The DM Collective programme is for people who:

  • identify as Disabled*
  • and as a Musician**
  • and live/work in the UK***

* We use ‘Disabled’ as an umbrella term to include Deaf, Disabled and Neurodivergent people, anyone who faces disabling barriers.

** We use ‘Musician’ as a global term to cover any artists who create original music as part of their practice. This includes all ways of making music and all genres.

*** We are based in London, but we work with people from all over the country.

Commitment to diversity

We aim to make our programme intersectionally inclusive.

We are keen to work with more Black, Asian and ethnically diverse artists as they are currently under-represented in our commissioning. To do this we are actively reaching out to make new connections to try and achieve a balance of diversity within the programme. We welcome and invite Black, Asian and ethnically diverse musicians to get in touch via our social media or email.

We would also like to work with more women and LGBTQIA+ artists and are working to build new networks to achieve this.

Steve wears a suit with blue skies and clouds on it as he performs underneath a large white balloon in the Barbican
Previous Commissionee: Steve Varden

How do I become part of DM Collective?

We work directly with a small number of artists per year through commissions and training. These artists then make up the DM Collective.

Open and accessible calls for each commission or training opportunity will be promoted across the country. All Disabled musicians in the UK are invited to apply for them.

The opportunities will be shared in the following places:

  • Drake Music’s website, social media & newsletter
  • Arts Jobs, Disability Arts Online, The Sampler and other arts/music listings as appropriate
  • Our partners’ websites and social media channels

We also host a group for musicians on Facebook which we would encourage you to join and connect with.

Plus we hold events online and in person as part of our broader Drake Music work, where you can meet our team and discover new music and technology.

Musician Cina Aissa introduces her sound art work onstage with Daryl
Emergent Commissionee: Cinarama

Find out more about the DM Collective programme:

PRS Talent Development logoFenton Arts Trust logoEsmee Fairbairn Foundation logoArts Council logo