Propulsion Award


April 3 2024, 17h


Trajectoire cirque 2

This award recognizes an innovative circus arts artist, cultural worker, collective, or organization whose unique and bold contributions renew and enrich the discipline.

Propulsion Award


En Piste and the Conseil des arts de Montréal wish to showcase Montréal’s circus arts artists who innovate, enrich, and develop the discipline through unique and meaningful contributions while enhancing Montréal’s artistic vitality. 

En Piste and the Conseil seek to recognize all manner of exciting innovations in the reimagining of circus arts practices, including bold creative approaches and stage designs, short forms or unique works, eco-responsible practices, technical and technological advances, new organizational models, avant-garde working methods, new ways of disseminating and touring works, among others. 

Who is eligible for this award?

Organizations, artists’ collectives, professional artists and cultural workers in Montréal whose works or activities are carried out in the circus arts sector, regardless of their number of years of experience. 

What are the program’s objectives?

This award aims to: 

  • highlight innovation in circus arts practices in Montréal to recognize bold contributions that help develop the discipline 
  • recognize all forms of innovative advances (artistic, technological, management, dissemination, etc.) that contribute to the renewal of circus arts and underpin Montréal’s reputation as the leader and international capital of circus arts 
  • provide tangible support to recipients 
  • enhance the discipline’s outreach, democratization, and recognition among the general public  


What is the value of the award?

The winning organization or individual receives a $10,000 grant from the Conseil des arts de Montréal. 

What do the partners contribute?

The Conseil des arts de Montréal is proud to partner with En Piste, National Circus Arts Alliance for this annual award. 


How many prizes will be awarded?

Only one award is presented per year. 

What are the general eligibility criteria?

Individual artists 

  • must be a professional artist, as defined by the Conseil 
  • reside on the Island of Montréal 
  • for Indigenous creators only, reside and work on or within 50 km of the Island of Montréal (including the communities of Kahnawake and Kanesatake) 
  • be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada on the application deadline 

Artists’ collectives

  • be represented by a person responsible for the application who resides in Montréal and is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident 
  • be a group of artists, regardless of the number (minimum of two) 
  • have two thirds of its members who are artists with Canadian citizenship or permanent residence; the proportion of members of the collective residing outside Canada may not exceed one third 
  • a majority of the group’s members (50% +1), including the person who submitted the application, must reside on the Island of Montréal. 
  • be composed of professional artists, as defined by the Conseil  

Arts organizations 

  • be a non-profit organization or artists’ cooperative that pays no dividends  
  • be headquartered on the Island of Montréal  
  • have a board of directors whose members are mainly Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada 
  • have the principal mandate to create, produce and present work or have the mandate to bring together and represent artists or cultural workers 
  • meet the Conseil’s definition of a professional arts organization 
What are the special eligibility criteria?

Individual artists could have distinguished themselves in circus arts as performers, directors, designers, playwrights, or any other role that contributes to the creation and presentation of works. 

What types of projects are eligible?

 Projects related to following mandates: 

  1. Dissemination 
  2. Creation/production
  3. Festivals/events
  4. Service organizations
When must the project be carried out?

Artistic works must have taken place between  January 1, 2023, and  December 31, 2023. 

Who is ineligible to apply?

Ineligible applicants 

  • collectives and organizations that do not meet the general conditions for eligibility 
  • collectives that have the role of presenter or that organize festivals or events 
  • public or para-public organizations representing governments or municipal corporations 
  • artists, artists’ collectives, and organizations that have already won this award 

Activity sectors 

  • organizations working exclusively in variety or comedy 
  • applicants working exclusively in cultural mediation  
  • artists, artists’ collectives, and organizations that do not work in circus arts  

Ineligible applications 

  • incomplete applications  
  • applications received after the deadline

Questions about certain terms?

Consult our glossary


How do I apply?

Visit En Piste, National Circus Arts Alliance’s website to find out more and submit your application. 

The application may be submitted by the organization, the artists’ collective, the artist, or by a designated representative. The person responsible for the application must complete the application form. The form must be duly signed by the applicant artist, artists’ collective, or organization. 


How are applications evaluated?

Applications will be evaluated by a selection committee composed of professionals recognized for their expertise in the circus arts sector and their familiarity with the circus arts community and the issues addressed by the award. The Conseil’s circus arts advisor shall sit on the committee as an observer member. 

The Conseil will work with En Piste, National Circus Arts Alliance to ensure that the representativeness of each jury is in keeping with its vision of equity, diversity and inclusion.  

All applications will be evaluated on merit; the comparative value of the proposals will be taken into consideration. 

What are the evaluation criteria?

The evaluation committee will take into account the objectives of the award and the following criteria:  

1. The quality and relevance of the contribution or artistic achievement 

  • The innovative nature of the contribution or artistic proposal. 
  • The relevance of the contribution or artistic proposal in the current context of circus arts. 
  • The originality of the artistic proposal or contribution and its capacity to inspire the community. 

2.The impact of the contribution or artistic achievement on the circus arts community 

  • The exemplary nature of the contribution or artistic proposal within the discipline. 
  • The ability to promote the diversity of circus arts practices and participate in their renewal. 
  • The ability to engage the circus community and create new synergies. 
  • The impact on the recognition of Montréal as the international capital of circus arts. 

​​​3. The impact of this award on the winner’s career path 

  • The catalyst effect and financial importance of this support. 
What is the response time?

The winner (organization, artists’collective, or artist) will be announced publicly at an awards ceremony at the 2024 Montréal Complètement Cirque festival. 


How is the grant paid?

En Piste, National Circus Arts Alliance will pay the $10,000 award on behalf of the Conseil des arts de Montréal in a single instalment following the announcement of the recipient. 

Visibility Standards and Logos

Arts organizations, collectives or individual receiving grant from the Conseil must mention this funding in their information, promotional, or advertising material.

Need more information?
Éloi Savoie
Acting Communications Director