Request for Performing Arts Proposals at Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport
Purpose of RFP
The Arts@MSP Program, a partnership between the Airport Foundation MSP (Foundation) and the Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC), requests qualifications from performing artists and arts organizations (Artists or Organizations) whose work reflects the rich diversity of the Upper Midwest to showcase their unique talent at Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport (MSP).
The purpose of this RFP is to retain Artists and Organizations to propose and present performing arts activities at MSP, and to work collaboratively with Arts@MSP staff to ensure the work is appropriate for the airport environment and that it achieves the goals of the Program.

Intent and Goals of Performing Arts Program
MAC and the Airport Foundation MSP created the MSP Arts and Culture Program (“Arts@MSP”) to enhance MSP Airport’s image, enrich the public’s experience, and promote a sense of place through arts and culture. Arts@MSP intends to complement the design and operational features of MSP to reduce air travel stress, contribute to a safe and relaxing environment, and realize MAC’s vision to provide “your best airport experience.” MAC provides locations at MSP for the exhibition of art; the selection of art is made through Arts@MSP.
The Performing Arts component of the Arts@MSP Program provides the public with ongoing opportunities to experience a variety of interesting performances at select locations in the airport. All performances will be coordinated in accordance with the Program’s mission, organizing concept, and goals.
Minnesota and the surrounding region are home to many exceptional performing artists and organizations. The Performing Arts component of the Arts@MSP Program provides ongoing opportunities for these artists and organizations to showcase their unique talents at MSP. Performances will help satisfy many Program goals, especially in their ability to provide:

  • A welcoming atmosphere at MSP;
  • Thought provoking and memorable experiences for airport users;
  • Incentives for passengers to use MSP;
  • Activities that promote participation in and raise awareness of the arts in the community;
  • A venue with international exposure for regional artists; and
  • Support to artists and arts organizations.

Performances may be educational, aviation-related, or artistic in nature. Performances will be selected to showcase the talents of local musicians, dancers, storytellers and other types of performing artists that reflect the diverse arts and culture community in the Twin Cities and Minnesota.

Performing Arts Locations
There are several different venues throughout MSP so that multiple performances may occur simultaneously. Performances may not interfere with the airport's primary function of getting people to their destinations safely and efficiently. Dance, theatre, storytelling, and other performing arts that require captive stationary audiences are best suited for areas that can be sectioned off from passenger traffic and do not impede traffic flow. These types of performances may be most appropriate for and integral to special airport events or stages.
Music is more easily adapted to transitory audiences and can be performed in many locations without interfering with regular airport activities. Potentially, live music performances at MSP may be heard by millions of people annually. Passengers moving through the airport as well as those who stop to listen may benefit from and enjoy the experiences equally.
Live performances will be scheduled year-round in select airport locations, especially during peak travel times. The depth of performing arts offered will highlight regional talent and become more extensive as the number of participating artists increases.
Performances at MSP will be scheduled for specific locations in either pre-security or post-security areas of the airport. In some cases, artists will stroll through the airport while performing or move to several different locations for brief performances. All performance locations in both Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 will be approved by MAC staff.
The MAC has developed two permanent performance spaces in the Airport Mall of Terminal 1 to significantly broaden the range and reach of performing arts activities offered through the Arts@MSP Program. On the north and south ends of the space, audio cases and equipment have been installed for instrumental performances, and a Steinway concert grand piano is located in the North Mall performance space.
In Terminal 2, the Program has a Kawai baby grand piano near Gate H12, and also hosts instrumental performances in the space.
All artists are welcome to apply for:

  • Weekly Performers - Artists are asked to commit to four times a month for these performances that take place in our North and South Mall spaces along with Terminal 2.
  • Special Performances - These performances take place at varied times during the year.

Selection Processes and Partnerships
All Artists and Organizations performing at MSP will be from or have strong connections to the region. This is in keeping with Arts@MSP Program goals to provide activities that promote participation in and raise awareness of the arts in the community and to provide a venue with international exposure for regional Artists. To showcase the variety and depth of regional performing arts and provide fair access to all artists, the annual calendar will rotate to allow performances by Artists who have not previously performed at MSP.
Traditionally, community and school groups have been invited to perform at MSP at certain times of the year. The Arts@MSP Program encourages local arts and community Organizations interested in performing at MSP to submit their ideas for performances through this RFQ.
Arts@MSP staff will develop and maintain a list of potential Artists and Organizations through the applications submitted to this opportunity. The Performing Arts Subcommittee of the Arts and Culture Steering Committee meets twice annually (mid-summer and mid-winter) to review applications.

Application requirements include the following:

  1. Résumé or Artist Bio:  Please upload the résumé(s) or bio(s) of primary Artists that will be involved with this performance, or information related to the Organization(s).
  2. Work Samples:  Please provide work samples demonstrating recent work that is relevant to this performance. The minimum number of samples required is 3, and the maximum is 10.
  3. Application Form: Please complete the application form linked below.

Selection of Artists or Organizations will be based on evaluation of the following criteria:

  1. Artist Qualifications:
  2. Artistic and musical excellence as demonstrated by past work and submitted materials.
  3. A clear understanding of the performed material.
  4. A level of musical proficiency and performable repertoire that demonstrates ability to engage with and entertain guests.
  5. A demonstrated ability to collaborate with Arts@MSP Staff and presenting partners.
  6. Ability to present a complete, rehearsed, and professional-level performance at agreed-upon show date(s).
  7. Experience altering performance in order to accommodate to venue parameters such as sound levels and stage areas within the terminals.
  8. Experience performing in private and/or public settings.
  9. Experience loading-in and operating technical equipment specific to artist’s individual performance needs.
  10. Ability to prepare performance on time and on budget.
  11. Professional references.

2. Performance Design:

  1. Audience accessibility.
  2. If applicable, alignment with a community event or partnership (examples: sporting events, holidays, conferences).
  3. Audio/visual requirements.
  4. Safety requirements.
  5. Compatibility of performance with the proposed site.
  6. Cost.

3. Merit and Content:

  1. Performance should have merit as a work of art, independent of other considerations.
  2. Artistic value should be appreciable by audiences without a music and/or arts education.
  3. Performed content should be reflective of the diverse and vibrant arts and music community in the Twin Cities and Minnesota.
  4. Performances should not contain obscenity.
  5. Performances should not contain fraud, commercial speech, or advertising, nor should they be defamatory, libelous, or slanderous.
  6. Marketing messages should be limited to institutional branding and artist exposure.
  7. Performances should contribute to a diverse Arts@MSP Performing Arts program, including diversity of musical styles, genres, instrumentation, and educational content.
  8. Artist must have all appropriate permissions and rights related to the performed content.

Equal Opportunity Statement
Arts@MSP/ACSC commits to championing policies and practices that empower a just, inclusive, and fair community. Arts@MSP/ACSC respects the dignity and worth of all people, and embraces the values, policies, and practices that ensure that all people are represented in the development of arts policy; the support of artists; the nurturing of accessible, thriving venues for expression; and the fair distribution of programmatic, financial, and informational resources. Arts@MSP/ACSC recognizes that encouraging participation by all artists is critical to the long-term viability of the arts in our community and is therefore fundamental to the success of our programming.
Our commitment is followed by providing full and fair opportunity to all artists, and welcoming diversity both in our programming and in our audiences that we embrace.
How we act on this commitment:

  • We acknowledge our resources as a powerful communication platform, and we work to ensure all members of our communities have equal opportunity to use this platform.
  • We partner community members together to bolster support for the full and fair participation of all artists.
  • We seek awareness of ingrained practices, cultural norms, and decision-making structures that perpetuate inequities, and we seize opportunities to provide full and fair opportunity to all artists.
  • We encourage opportunity for artists and organizations who will expand cultural consciousness of our region and continue to build on it.
  • We commit time and resources to encourage opportunity for more diverse leadership within our board, staff, and advisory bodies.
  • We make artist and art selections on a fair, equal, and nondiscriminatory basis.

Contracts and Agreements
All performing Artists and Organizations must agree to terms specified in written contracts. Contract terms will vary depending on the type of performance art involved and the location of the performance. All performances will have sound level restrictions and may be ended at any time if deemed disruptive in the terminal environment or inappropriate for the airport audience.
Artists and Organizations may be authorized to sell or distribute performance-related materials. All sales or promotional activities must be preapproved and authorized by the Arts@MSP Program staff and must adhere to all MAC guidelines.
All Artists performing in the post-security areas of the airport will be screened for security purposes. Any personal equipment used during performances will also be screened. Artists selected to participate in the Weekly Performance Series will be required to pass a 5 – 10 year background check and maintain badge holder privileges.
Click here to view a sample Performance Agreement.

Equipment and Supplies
Basic equipment and supplies for performing Artists will be provided, including mobile sales units, sound reinforcement equipment, and other standard equipment. Equipment built for use by performing Artists will be maintained by the Foundation. Stages and other structures built specifically for the Arts@MSP Program and incorporated into airport buildings will be maintained by MAC.
Performance locations may have different technical provisions. Information about these provisions may be obtained from Arts@MSP staff prior to booking. Performers are responsible for providing their own musical instruments or approved props. Storage space will be provided as available. Pianos are owned by the Foundation. Qualified pianists may have use of the pianos for scheduled performances.

Funding and Public Relations
Performances may be promoted through various means including social media, digital signage throughout MSP, public and private receptions, the Foundation and MSP websites, and feature articles in internal publications. Community art publications may also be used to market select performances and advertise the performance calendar. When appropriate and feasible, the Foundation or MAC will generate publicity through the local and national media to attract attention to MSP and promote Arts@MSP programming.

Information Contact
All questions regarding this RFP should be submitted in writing to the information contact listed below:

Krin McMillen
Music and Entertainment Manager, Arts@MSP
Airport Foundation MSP
4300 Glumack Drive, Suite C3405
Saint Paul, MN 55111

Data Practices
All data submitted to the Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC) is governed by the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act. Under Minn. Stat. § 13.591, at the time and date submissions are due, the submitter’s name becomes public information. All other information submitted does not become public until MAC has completed negotiating the contract with the selected artist. At that time, all information in the submissions becomes public, with the exception of trade secret data under Minn. Stat. § 13.37.
During the evaluation process, submitters cannot look at submissions by others or data created as part of the selection or evaluation process. However, in MAC’s public Committee and Commission meetings, Commissioners are able to publicly discuss any information in the submissions to the extent reasonably necessary to conduct the business at hand.
By making a submission, you acknowledge that all information is subject to potential disclosure and agree that MAC will have no liability for any such disclosure.
Persons who supply data about themselves in response to this Request for Exhibit Proposals are entitled to know the following information:

  1. The information requested will be used to evaluate the submissions;
  2. You are not legally required to supply this information;
  3. Failure to supply information may result in a determination that the submission is non- responsive; and
  4. The public is authorized by law to receive information that is not classified by law as private, confidential, or nonpublic data.

Nondiscrimination Policy
Pursuant to 49 CFR part 26, it is the policy of MAC to practice nondiscrimination based on race, color, sex, or national origin in the award of this RFP. MAC encourages participation by all artists qualifying under this solicitation regardless of business size or ownership. The provisions of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (78 Stat. 252, 42 USC §§ 2000d to 2000d-4) and the Regulations, which prohibit discrimination on the grounds of race, color, or national origin are incorporated by reference into this RFP.
MAC, in accordance with the provisions of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (78 Stat. 252, 42 USC §§ 2000d to 2000d-4) and the Regulations, hereby notifies all bidders or offerors that it will affirmatively ensure that any contract entered into pursuant to this advertisement, disadvantaged business enterprises will be afforded full and fair opportunity to submit bids in response to this invitation and will not be discriminated against on the grounds of race, color, or national origin in consideration for an award.

This RFP does not obligate the Airport Foundation MSP or the MAC to award a contract or complete the project, and the Foundation and the MAC reserve the right to cancel the solicitation if it is considered to be in their best interest. The Foundation and the MAC also reserve the right to waive minor informalities and, notwithstanding anything herein to the contrary, reject any and all proposals received in response to this RFP.

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