Call for Performers

The third annual Darkwater Womxn in Music Festival is pleased to announce a call for performers. 

The festival will be held on September 24-25 and is based at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke.

Deadline : June 1, 2021

Darkwater is a festival that celebrates womxn in music through papers, panels, and performances. The word "darkwater" is the literal Carolina Algonquian meaning of Lumbee, the American Indian tribe that built Pembroke and UNCP. By calling ourselves the Darkwater Festival, we tie ourselves to our place in North Carolina and to the Lumbee, a matriarchal culture with many strong women in its history.

The Program Committee invites proposals for lecture recitals (30 minutes) or recital performances (30 minutes) of music composed by womxn or non-binary composers. We are unable to accept performances of single works under 30 minutes. Recital performances and lecture recitals must include 5 or less performers on stage  at one time. Selected performance proposals will be given an opportunity for online performance at Darkwater Festival. The possibility of in-person performances will be determined following COVID-19 protocols at UNCP and in North Carolina; performers will be alerted of these options by Summer 2021. 

Complete proposals will include full program information with title, composer, composer dates, durations of all works, and performers; program notes of no more than 200 words describing the full program; any A/V or instrument needs; and a bio of each performer or performing group of no more than 300 words. Whenever possible, proposals should include a video or audio performance of the soloist/group submitted through a public or unlisted YouTube link; this performance does not need to be from the past year or the same works you are submitting. Given COVID-19 performance restrictions, we strongly recommend refraining from recording with anyone outside of your household.

Please email proposals to Sarah Busman at with the subject “Performer Proposal.”

There is no submission fee for this proposal. Should presenters attend in-person offerings, presenters agree to incur all travel costs. Presenters selected agree to attend the festival at their own expense, including the registration fee which will be paid by August 1. Darkwater invites submissions from presenters of all genders, races, and sexual orientations.

For more information, email Sarah Busman at