News

Arts Midwest Announces 2013–2014 Shakespeare in American Communities Grants

Grants Mark 11th Year of Support Totaling $11,670,625

Minneapolis, MN -- Arts Midwest today announced $1 million in grants to 40 nonprofit, professional theater companies in 21 states, plus the District of Columbia, to perform Shakespeare for students through Shakespeare in American Communities. The awards mark the eleventh consecutive year of Shakespearein American Communities, a national program managed by Arts Midwest in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Each of the participating theater companies will present productions of Shakespeare plays to students from at least 10 schools. Accompanying educational activities include inschool residencies, workshops, or post-performance discussions. Performances will take place between August 1, 2013, and July 31, 2014.

Shakespeare in American Communities introduces middle and high school students to the power of live theater and the masterpieces of William Shakespeare. Since the program's inception in 2003, Shakespeare in American Communities has benefitted more than 2.25 million individuals, including 1.9 million students, with live performances and educational activities.

"Arts Midwest is thrilled to partner once again with the National Endowment for the Arts for Shakespeare in American Communities," says David Fraher, president & CEO of Arts Midwest. "Now in its 11th year, we continue to support worthy organizations across the country by providing the opportunity to reach young and diverse audiences and increase their appreciation of the incomparable works of Shakespeare."

Organizations receiving $25,000 grants for the 2013-2014 season include:

  • California Shakespeare Theater (Berkeley, CA) will present student matinees of The Winter's Tale as part of their Student Discovery program. The educational activities will be multifaceted and include teacher training, classroom workshops, residencies, and other experiences at the theater, including their "32-second Shakespeare" game.
  • Tennessee Shakespeare Company (Germantown, TN) will present student matinees of Romeo and Juliet at the City of Germantown's Performing Arts Centre. Their educational activities will take place with 9th grade students from the Memphis City and Shelby County Schools who will be visited three times by teaching artists in their classroom.
  • The Acting Company (New York, NY) will tour Hamlet at 30 to 35 communities throughout the United States. They will provide performances of this play and a number of educational activities, including their Learning Through Theater residencies, in partnership with venues and middle and high schools.

Please see the complete list of the 40 theater companies that have been selected to participate in Shakespeare in American Communities for 2013-2014.

One hundred and one theater companies across the United States have taken part in the NEA's Shakespeare program since its inception eleven years ago. These companies have presented 66 of Shakespeare's works through 7,600 performances and over 19,000 educational activities at more than 6,400 schools in 3,100 communities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

To enhance the educational impact of Shakespeare in American Communities, Arts Midwest and the NEA have developed a comprehensive Shakespeare in American Communities website. In addition, two educational DVDs, a CD, and a timeline poster. These resources can be ordered free of charge from the website.

About Arts Midwest
Arts Midwest promotes creativity, nurtures cultural leadership, and engages people in meaningful arts experiences, bringing vitality to Midwest communities and enriching people's lives. Based in Minneapolis, Arts Midwest connects the arts to audiences throughout the nine-state region of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. One of six nonprofit regional arts organizations in the United States, Arts Midwest's history spans more than 25 years. For more information, visit www.artsmidwest.org.

About the National Endowment for the Arts
The National Endowment for the Arts was established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. To date, the NEA has awarded more than $4 billion to support artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. The NEA extends its work through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector. For more information, visit arts.gov.