Funding Principles

of the Dachverband Tanz Deutschland (German Dance Association) for the "Absolvent*innen-Förderung Tanz" graduate support programme DIS-TANZ-START as part of NEUSTART KULTUR, an initiative of the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media

(Version of 13 September 2022)

►The English translation has to be considered as a help. Only the German version is legally binding.


1.      Funding Goal

The goal of the NEUSTART KULTUR programme is to support the renewal of cultural life in Germany amid considerable restrictions and financial burdens in the wake of the global SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. The overall programme focuses on strengthening and adapting the cultural infrastructure in Germany as a basis for the resumption of the work of artists and ensembles as well as artistic production and the development of new programmes and projects. In general, the programme is intended to help cultural life flourish once again, to provide people with cultural and artistic offerings and thus also to act as a step towards the return to the normality of cultural education, social communication and intellectual exchange. The federal NEUSTART KULTUR programme, which complements corresponding measures implemented by the federal states, is subdivided into individual subprogrammes. Each of these has been developed taking into account the specific requirements of a particular industry or sector and is clearly differentiated from other federal government funding offerings.

The "Absolvent*innen-Förderung Tanz / DIS-TANZ-START" graduate funding programme is intended to support graduates in the field of dance who could not and cannot begin their careers during the COVID-19 crisis. Theatres and independent productions still have few opportunities to accept young artists from training institutions. There have been hardly any auditions for vacant positions or new productions, there is a lack of project funding and resources to create additional positions and at least one complete cohort of young dancers was and still is excluded from the profession and professional training. This is a particularly serious problem for dance graduates, especially since the period during which they can actively pursue their careers on stage is very limited.


2.      Funding recipients and application eligibility

In principle, all theatres, production houses and dance and ballet ensembles based in Germany that can provide appropriate contractual security for graduates, guarantee proper management and provide evidence that funds have been used as intended are eligible to apply.


3.      Funding

A Object of Funding

Funding is provided to cover the cost of employment subject to social security contributions for graduates resident in Germany who have completed their dance training1 (usually university, vocational school or state-recognized training).2

Funding is provided to cover payroll costs up to the amount of the employee's gross salary.

Necessary costs for fees and additional personnel (training, choreography, coordination), space, material and travel costs can also be funded to a limited extent to secure the accompanying vocational training programme.

No funding will be provided for productions by theatres, production houses or dance ensembles.

B Funding Period

Funding is available for employing graduates from 1 July 2021 to 30 June 2023.

C Project Period

The project period (the duration of employment) should generally be at least 6 months and may not exceed 12 months.

In individual cases, it is possible to fund the subsequent employment of graduates for an additional period of up to 12 months through a second project.3 In exceptional cases, the project period may end on 31 July 2023 provided that only the applicant's own funds or third-party funds are used after 30 June 2023.

D Funding Amount

As of 1 July 2021, the funding for graduates usually amounts to up to €2,000 gross per month (minimum fee according to the NV Bühne standard stage contract). Funding can be up to €2,300 gross if the minimum fee at the theatre and the cost of living in the city in question are significantly higher. From 1 September 2022, the funding for graduates will be up to €2,550 gross, increasing to up to €2,715 gross per month from 1 January 2023.4

The costs of additional necessary personnel for graduate training, mentoring or further education may not exceed 30% of the total costs of the funding measure.

The sales tax, which is deductible as input tax pursuant to Section 15 of the German Value Added Tax Act (UStG), is not eligible for funding.

E Procedure

Theatres, production houses and dance and ballet ensembles will submit expressions of interest, which must include assurances that the necessary space and personnel are available to accommodate graduates.

An application procedure will be established for graduates in order to verify their residence in Germany as well as their training or educational qualifications for entry into the profession and thus determine whether they are eligible for the programme. Graduates will be selected for the programme by the theatres, production houses, dance and ballet companies through auditions or other appropriate selection procedures.

The Dachverband will enter into a funding agreement with the theatres, production houses, dance and ballet companies based on a formal application by the theatres, production houses, dance and ballet companies and subject to a review of the contracts prepared.

F Funding Body:

Dachverband Tanz Deutschland e. V.


4.      Funding

A) In principle, project-related expenses for personnel costs and professional fees as well as additional material, travel and – in duly justified exceptional cases – rental costs incurred in connection with the employment of the graduates are eligible for funding.

B) The programme does not cover benefits that are generally available through other federal or state assistance or funding measures implemented in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. If funding from other federal programmes that are not related to Covid-19 is to be used for a specific measure in addition to funding from this programme, it must be ensured that the two grants serve different purposes and can be differentiated from each other.

C) Employer costs (difference between employer gross and employee gross) are to be paid by the applicant institutions and shall be considered to be their own contribution. They are an expression of the institutions' vested interest and their solidary participation in assisting graduates.
This requirement may be waived in justified cases if the necessary funds are provided by means of earmarked third-party grants.

D) The federal funds will only be available once in the fiscal years 2021–2023.

E) Grants may be subject to possible budgetary freezes or other economic measures.


5.      Procedure

The digital grant application may be submitted online or by downloading and e-mailing it to Dachverband Tanz Deutschland:, /

The following documents (maximum of 3-5 pdf files, maximum size of 5 MB) must be attached or uploaded:

  • application for funding: completed online application or completed and scanned pdf file with handwritten signature
  • detailed financial plan
  • (where applicable) valid articles of association or comparable document, excerpt from the Commercial Register/Register of Associations
  • proof of the signatory's power of representation
  • in the case of legal entities, evidence of proper business management (e.g., excerpt from audit reports)
  • additional documents are listed on the respective application forms.

The Dachverband Tanz Deutschland is responsible for application consultation, review and the granting and disbursement of funds. Funding approval, payment and accounting shall be based on a grant agreement under private law in accordance with Administrative Regulation No. 12 in conjunction with Section 44 BHO (federal budget code).

Applications will be processed in the order in which they are received. Applications will not be considered formally submitted until all supporting documents pertaining to the application have been submitted for review in compliance with the application deadlines. The procedure will end when all funds have been awarded, but no later than 30 June 2023.

There is no entitlement to a grant. The granting agency will decide on the distribution of funds at its due discretion in accordance with the available budgetary funds.


6.      General Provisions

Funds will be awarded on a one-off basis by way of project funding as a non-repayable grant, generally in the form of gap funding, in accordance with these principles and shall apply mutatis mutandis to Sections 23 and 44 of the German Federal Budget Code (Bundeshaushaltsordnung), including the administrative regulations issued in conjunction with it. Sections 48 to 49a of the German Administrative Procedures Act (Verwaltungsverfahrensgesetz/VwVfG) shall apply mutatis mutandis in the case of any necessary termination and clawback of the funding granted.

The "Allgemeine Nebenbestimmungen für Zuwendungen zur Projektförderung des Bundes" (General ancillary provisions for federal project grants) will be incorporated into the granting of the funds ( › ZMV › nebenbestimmungen_anbest_p_2019).

In principle, projects must not have been started before the application is submitted and until the grant agreement under private law has been concluded. The funding application may be combined with an application for early implementation of the project without impacting the funding. As a rule, the conclusion of a service contract attributable to the implementation of the project is considered the start of the project.

The applicant's proof of use of funds and the overall proof of use of funds by the agencies managing the funds are subject to review by the granting authority.

As the body disbursing the funds, Dachverband Tanz Deutschland e.V. will ensure that the proof of use of the funds by the final recipients is audited in accordance with the requirements set forth in budgetary law.

Only projects that are compatible with EU state aid law as defined in Article 107 (1) TFEU will be funded. In particular, no funding will be provided to entities that have not complied with a recovery order based on a previous Commission decision establishing the inadmissibility of aid and their incompatibility with the internal market. Pursuant to Article 53 GBER, this emergency programme is exempted by the EU Commission from the notification requirement (applied for), provided that any relevant provisions of the GBER are observed.

The German Federal Court of Auditors shall be entitled to audit pursuant to Sections 91, 100 BHO (German Federal Budget Code).


7.      Validity

These funding principles shall be valid from the date of their publication until 31 December 2024.

Continuous information, all necessary forms and answers to frequently asked questions (FAQ) can be found on the websites of the responsible funding agency –, – and on the BKM homepage



1 Unless there are special circumstances to be taken into account, the completion date should not be before 2019.
2 The respective graduate may not have been permanently employed in an ensemble for more than one season.
3 Graduates who have not yet been employed in an ensemble subject to social security contributions prior to their first funded employment may be funded for up to 24 months.
4 cf. Agreement of the collective bargaining parties on raising the minimum wage (press release of the Deutscher Bühnenverein of 28 June 2022)