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Arts Midwest: Shakespeare in American Communities

Deadline: February 25, 2015

Shakespeare in American Communities is a national theater program of the National Endowment for the Arts in cooperation with Arts Midwest, bringing performances and educational activities to audiences across the country. The program reaches middle- and high-school students in underserved schools throughout the United States with high-quality, professional productions of Shakespeare’s plays. To apply, theater companies must:

  • Conduct programming between August 1, 2015 and July 31, 2016.
  • Perform a Shakespeare play. This program supports Shakespeare productions of artistic excellence and merit that give students exposure to a live performance. While productions may be somewhat abridged, they must offer students the opportunity to hear Shakespeare’s text and experience, to the extent possible, a performance of the complete play. Performances may be held in the theater company’s facility, a school, or a community venue, but must be conducted in partnership with schools or school districts. Productions loosely based on Shakespeare’s text do not meet the intent of the program and are not eligible.
  • Conduct related educational activities for students, led by experienced teaching artists with strong credentials. These must take place in conjunction with your Shakespeare performance. Examples of these activities include workshops, in-depth pre- or post-performance discussions/talkbacks, seminars, and curriculum-based residencies.
  • Reach a minimum of 10 middle or high schools with a performance and educational activity(ies). The majority of schools must educate underserved students whose access to the performing arts is limited by ethnic background, economic conditions, disability, or geographic location. This may include schools in rural or urban communities or in federally recognized tribal communities.

Amount: The standard grant award is $25,000, which much be matched 1:1. Forty grants will be made.

Eligibility: Applicants must:

  • Be a nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization or unit of state or local government
  • Have produced Shakespeare or classically-based repertoire within the past five years
  • Have a minimum of three years’ experience providing performances and educational activities to middle and/or high schools
  • Be a U.S.-based theater company that compensates all professional performers and related or supporting professional personnel at no less than the prevailing minimum compensation

Link: http://www.shakespeareinamericancommunities.org/about/application-process/2015-2016-rfp

Note: An optional intent to apply email is due January 28, 2015.

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