Find a back issue

National Endowment of the Arts funding flowing into North Texas will go towards the commissioning of a new hip-hop-infused theatrical production, a symphonic piece memorializing John F. Kennedy, a dance inspired by the Dia de Los Muertos, and five other new works of art.

Eight North Texas Arts Groups Receive $227K From National Endowment of Arts for New Works

National Endowment of the Arts funding flowing into North Texas will go towards the commissioning of a new hip-hop-infused theatrical production, a symphonic piece memorializing John F. Kennedy, a dance inspired by the Dia de Los Muertos, and five other new works of art.

In all, eight institutions in North Texas are among the recipients of $227,500 worth of funding. Topping the list is the Dallas Theater Center, which has been offered a $70,000 grant to fund Will Power and Justin Ellington’s Stagger Lee, a production aimed at urban youth that incorporates African American folk tales, dance, and music history. Other large grants were awarded to the Dallas Opera, which will use $30,000 to support the production of Tod Machover and Robert Pinsky’s Death and the Powers, and the Dallas Symphony, which will fund a newly commissioned work by 18-year-old phenom Conrad Tao to mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy.

Below you’ll find the full list of recipients, and here’s a link to the awards given to Texas groups.

Dallas Black Dance Theatre
Dallas, TX
$20,000
CATEGORY: Art Works   FIELD/DISCIPLINE: Dance
To support the creation and presentation of Calaveras, a new work by choreographers Armando Silva and Richard Freeman, Jr. Calaveras will explore the Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) tradition through music, theater, dance, and puppetry.

Dallas Opera
Dallas, TX
$30,000
CATEGORY: Art Works   FIELD/DISCIPLINE: Opera
To support performances of Tod Machover and Robert Pinsky’s Death and the Powers, developed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Media Lab. In an original creation by director Diane Paulus, the production will feature soprano Joelle Harvey and mezzo-soprano Patricia Risley and will involve designer Alex McDowell, choregrapher Karole Armitage, with technology created by the MIT Media Lab.

Dallas Symphony Association, Inc.
Dallas, TX
$25,000
CATEGORY: Art Works   FIELD/DISCIPLINE: Music
To support the commissioning, premiere, and broadcast of a new work by 17-year-old composer Conrad Tao in observance of the 50th anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy with related educational activities. Plans include four performances of the work, master classes by the composer with high school students, a radio broadcast, and collaborative events with the Sixth Floor Museum, the Mayor’s Office, and the Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs.

Dallas Theater Center
Dallas, TX
$70,000
CATEGORY: Art Works   FIELD/DISCIPLINE: Theater and Musical Theater
To support the development and world premiere musical production of Stagger Leeby Will Power and Justin Ellington. Known for energetic hip-hop interpretation of stories that speak to young urban audiences, Power’s story is based on African American folk tales and portrays the history of African American music.

Documentary Arts, Inc.
Dallas, TX
$35,000
CATEGORY: Art Works   FIELD/DISCIPLINE: Folk and Traditional Arts
To support Masters of Traditional Arts Touch Screens. The project will create interactive kiosks and wall environments containing photographs, interviews, video, audio, and biographical texts about the 350 NEA National Heritage Fellows. The touch screens will update existing DVD kiosks and will be made available to museums, libraries, and cultural organizations nationwide.

Fort Worth Opera Association, Inc.
Fort Worth, TX
$17,500
CATEGORY: Art Works   FIELD/DISCIPLINE: Opera
To support performances of Tom Cipullo’s Glory Denied. This production is the first professional company production of this work and marks the Fort Worth Opera’s continued effort to produce contemporary opera.

Kitchen Dog Theater Company (aka Kitchen Dog)
Dallas, TX
$10,000
CATEGORY: Art Works   FIELD/DISCIPLINE: Theater and Musical Theater
To support the 15th annual New Works Festival. The festival will feature as many as six staged readings picked from more than 350 scripts submitted nationwide; Playwrights Under Progress Fest, which consists of five staged readings of short plays written by local high school students; and a fully produced play chosen from those that were submitted in the past year.

Van Cliburn Foundation, Inc.
Fort Worth, TX
$20,000
CATEGORY: Art Works   FIELD/DISCIPLINE: Music
To support the commissioning of a solo piano work by Christopher Theofanidis, and performances featuring the Brentano String Quartet and conductor Leonard Slatkin. Founded in 1961, the foundation’s mission is to identify and promote the finest talent in classical music worldwide through piano competitions, concerts, and education programs in Fort Worth and Dallas schools.

Photo: Conrad Tao (via)