Abhijeet Tambe explains how the award which includes a cash prize aims to encourage and motivate young musicians with potential  

In 2004, Toto Funds the Arts (TFA) started the Toto Music Award in the memory of Angirus “Toto” Vellani, a bright young man, who passed away in an unfortunate accident. The TFA was started by his family and friends to encourage and nurture young Indian artists in the field of music, writing, photography and film through awards, workshops and other events. Past winners of the award have included Peter Cat Recording Co. (Delhi), Parvaaz (Bangalore), Prateek Kuhad (Delhi) and Disco Puppet (Bangalore).

The Toto Music Award comes with a cash prize of INR 60,000. The call for applications for the 2018 Award is still on, the last date of it is 31st August.

Musicians of any genre can apply. As long as the applicant/applicants are Indian citizens under 30, they are eligible. The application process is fully online and you can follow this link for instructions. TFA is looking to reward potential more than achievement, so the recordings don’t have to be from an expensive production. The TFA tends to select individuals who are exploring new territories or channeling their influences in creative ways.

The applicants are judged by a jury that changes every year but always comprises of three experienced individuals who are engaged with the Indian music scene. They’re often musicians or music writers. After applications are collected, the first stage is the creation of a “long list” of around 10 to 15 candidates, and that happens in-house. Once there is a long list, the TFA has an idea of the scope of the music on its hands and they hand pick a jury that they think will be able to do justice to it. The jury then picks a short list and a winner from the long list. The long-list is announced in November, the short-list in December, and the winner at a ceremony in January.

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