The has announced grants totaling more than $1.5 million to eleven performing arts organizations in support of projects designed to strengthen infrastructure and improve conditions for performing artists.
Six of the eleven projects are receiving first-time support from the foundation, while the other five are receiving phase II support to build and expand on previously funded projects. Each grant of up to $225,000 contains funds for project costs as well as general operating support.
Grants from the 2015 Fund for National Projects include support for Performing Our Future, a project from Roadside Theatre in partnership with Imagining America and the Economic Empowerment and Global Learning Project at Lafayette College; the first Albert Murray Symposium on Jazz, Culture, and Society at Jazz at Lincoln Center; and a national convening presented by the New England Foundation for the Arts featuring artists creating new work about the military experience. Phase II grants include a new digital publication platform developed by the Danspace Project as a complement to its continued role as a practicum to the Institute for Curatorial Practice in Performance at Wesleyan University's Center for the Arts; the expansion of the National New Play Network's New Play Exchange; and the development of a choreographic center by the Urban Bush Women that aims to catalyze a shift in how the dance field identifies and nurtures female choreographers of color.
"We are delighted to support six new projects that will benefit the national jazz, dance, theater, and presenting fields. This year's projects are an exciting array and will be especially valuable in strengthening the bonds between the arts and audiences, whether through research, messaging, or performance, both in the U.S. and abroad," said Ben Cameron, program director for the arts at the foundation. "Five previously funded projects have also shown special promise, and we are happy to offer them additional funding to continue to move forward in the future."