TRENTON – The New Jersey State Council on the Arts has awarded more than $1,053,000 in grants to Middlesex County artists, arts organizations and projects, and $529,876 to Union County artists, arts organizations and projects.
The awards were announced at the Arts Council’s 47th Annual Meeting held at the Lafayette Yard Hotel & Conference Center in Trenton at which they announced support for nearly 800 arts organizations, projects and individuals statewide.
“The funds awarded today will serve as a catalyst for the economic growth and creative vitality of communities statewide,” said Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno, who also serves as Secretary of State. “The cultural assets in every region help shape New Jersey as a unique tourist destination and a desirable place to live, work, do business and raise a family. The arts industry is critical to New Jersey’s future and Governor Christie and I remain committed to maintaining New Jersey’s place as a national leader in support for the arts.”
In commenting on the results of the meeting, Arts Council chair Elizabeth Mattson stated, “The Council’s grants process is competitive and transparent, and designed to make the most responsible investment of valuable resources. These funds will have profound positive impact on individuals and communities in every county, improving quality of life in the essential ways only the arts can.”
The Council receives funding from the State of New Jersey through the Hotel/Motel Occupancy Fee legislation passed in 2003, which established a dedicated revenue source to support arts, history and tourism. Additionally the Arts Council receives annual competitive grants from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). The $15.6 million in grants awarded today include approximately $400,000 from the NEA. Funding decisions are made through a merit-based and rigorous grants process that assures access and equity. Independent peer panels evaluate grant applications to eliminate the possibility for conflict of interest.
“We are grateful that our state leaders recognize the importance of strategically investing in the arts,” said Mattson. “The arts are a proven tool for success in addressing education, healthcare, economic and community development, and more.”
According to Arts Council records, state arts funding employs an estimated 17,000 workers, supports 37,000 cultural events, and attracts five million visitors who spend another $125 million.
In Middlesex County, grants were awarded to:
|Aakash Patel||Piscataway||$3,000||Folk Arts Apprenticeship|
|American Repertory Ballet Company||New Brunswick||$20,000||Arts Education Special Initiative|
|American Repertory Ballet Company||New Brunswick||$175,551||General Operating Support|
|Brodsky Center for Print and Paper at Rutgers Univ.||New Brunswick||$13,139||General Program Support|
|Crossroads Theatre Company||New Brunswick||$26,125||General Operating Support|
|4George Street Playhouse||New Brunswick||$160,687||General Operating Support|
|Lewei Shang||East Brunswick Twp.||$3,000||Folk Arts Apprenticeship|
|Middlesex County Cultural & Heritage Commission||New Brunswick||$17,353||General Program Support|
|Middlesex County Cultural & Heritage Commission||New Brunswick||$163,864||Local Arts Program|
|Nelson Baez||South Plainfield||$3,000||Folk Arts Apprenticeship|
|Rahul Prabhudesai||Edison||$3,000||Folk Arts Apprenticeship|
|Rutgers Univ./Center for Latino Arts and Culture||New Brunswick||$5,000||Arts Project Support|
|Rutgers Univ./Institute for Women and Art||New Brunswick||$15,263||General Program Support|
|Rutgers Univ./Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum||New Brunswick||$137,580||General Program Support|
|State Theatre Reg. Arts Ctr. at New Brunswick||New Brunswick||$294,844||General Operating Support|
|VSA New Jersey||New Brunswick||$12,196||General Operating Support|
In Union County, grants were awarded to:
|Arts Guild New Jersey||Rahway||$7,120||General Operating Support|
|Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company||Union||$34,513||General Operating Support|
|Dance/New Jersey||Fanwood||$9,341||General Operating Support|
|Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre||Summit||$5,000||General Operating Support|
|Institute of Music for Children||Elizabeth||$22,000||General Operating Support|
|6Judith G. Wharton Music Center||Berkeley Heights||$35,000||General Operating Support|
|Kean University/Premiere Stages||Union||$17,228||General Program Support|
|Music For All Seasons||Scotch Plains||$27,775||General Operating Support|
|New Jersey Intergenerational Orchestra||Berkeley Heights||$5,123||General Operating Support|
|New Jersey Youth Theatre||Westfield||$36,308||General Operating Support|
|The Theater Project of New Jersey||Union||$7,000||General Operating Support|
|Union County Office of Cultural & Heritage Affairs||Elizabeth||$137,917||Local Arts Program|
|Union County Performing Arts Center||Rahway||$29,209||General Operating Support|
|Visual Arts Center of New Jersey||Summit||$101,342||General Operating Support|
|Westfield Symphony Orchestra||Westfield||$55,000||General Operating Support|
In other business, thirty-four organizations and projects that received the highest evaluations from the panel reviewing the applications were recognized with Citations of Excellence. Forty-two groups were designated as Major Arts, Presenting or Service organizations in recognition of their history of excellence, the breadth of their impact, and their longstanding leadership.
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