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Metro Creative Connection

$9 million in grant awards to galvanize more than 770 live performances across every region of New York


Tue, Aug 3rd 2021 01:40 pm

To date, nearly $30 million of New York's $105 million investment in the arts distributed through the New York State Council on the Arts
√ NYSCA distributed close to $2 million to statewide community regrant partners to spur live performance in local communities

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday announced the first of four rounds of grant awards to 438 performance organizations across New York state. In this round, 773 grants were awarded through the "Restart NY: Rapid Live Performance Grants" program, developed by the New York State Council on the Arts. In addition, nearly $2 million was distributed to NYSCA's statewide community regrant partners to support performances in local communities around the state. In total, nearly $9 million was awarded through NYSCA's Restart NY program.

To date, nearly $30 million of the state's $105 million investment in the arts has been distributed through NYSCA's “Restart NY: Rapid Live Performance Grants,” NYSCA's statewide community regrant partners, and through multiyear awards.

"The pandemic has deeply impacted New York's unparalleled artistic community, specifically live performers, performance organizations and venues," Cuomo said. "NYSCA's accelerated grants are a powerful affirmation of our commitment to support the return of arts and culture. This investment in our artistic industry will pay dividends through the economic activity generated by our creative ecosystem, which will continue to flourish and inspire us as we work together to reimagine our future."

The 773 grants administered by NYSCA will support the return of live performance, an area that has been profoundly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. In a rapid response to the field's urgent needs, the application period and approval process was achieved in an  expedited timeline. Through the “Restart NY: Rapid Performance Grants” program, NYSCA will administer this aid to catalyze the return of near-term live performances. At least 60% of each grant award will provide compensation for artistic and or creative professionals.

NYSCA Executive Director Mara Manus said, "This is an extraordinarily challenging time for the arts and culture sector, and we recognize that it calls for responsive action. The goal of our ‘Restart NY: Rapid Live Performance Grants’ program is to quickly provide needed funds to support performance organizations, artists and creative professionals that have been unable to produce live, in-person performances for more than a year. These awards reflect NYSCA's FY2022 priorities with 75% of grants awarded to organizations with operating budgets of less than $1 million. The arts, including live performances, drive our state's economy and cultural tourism, inspire audiences, and bring communities together – the NYSCA team is excited to welcome back live performance statewide."

In June, NYSCA announced its fiscal year 2022 opportunities and goals, which includes four rounds of funding. The agency opened the application process for “Restart NY: Rapid Live Performance Grants” on June 16, and the application period closed on July 1. The NYSCA Council awarded grants to performance organizations in every region.

NYSCA Chair Katherine Nicholls said, "This is an important first-step on a multifaceted road to recovery for our sector. The state's historic investment of $105 million for arts and culture charged us to respond to the needs of the sector after more than a year of hardship. Council is proud to support artists, cultural professionals and performance organizations with expedited funding. We recognize Gov. Cuomo and the State Legislature for their unwavering commitment to the recovery of the arts."

“Restart NY: Rapid Live Performance” grantees span every region of the state, and performances will be open to the public. A complete list of recipients is available HERE.

A press release stated, “The New York State Council on the Arts preserves and advances the arts and culture that make New York state an exceptional place to live, work and visit. The Council on the Arts upholds the right of all New Yorkers to experience the vital contributions the arts make to our communities, education, economic development, and quality of life.

“Through its core grantmaking activity, the Council on the Arts awarded more than $40 million in FY2021. Through the statewide grants and regrants program, Council on the Arts funding reaches all 62 counties throughout New York state. This funding supports the visual, literary, media and performing arts and includes dedicated support for arts education and underserved communities. The Council on the Arts further advances New York's creative culture by convening leaders in the field and providing organizational and professional development opportunities and informational resources.”

Created by Gov. Nelson Rockefeller in 1960 and continued and expanded to the present day with the support of Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, NYSCA is an agency of the executive branch of New York state.

For more information on NYSCA, visit www.arts.ny.gov, or follow NYSCA's Facebook page, Twitter @NYSCArts and Instagram @NYSCouncilontheArts.

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