NASHVILLE, Tenn. – State Senators Becky Massey (R-Knoxville), Randy McNally (R-Oak Ridge) and Richard Briggs (R-Knoxville) today announced that $508,610 in arts grants have been awarded to local arts organizations in Knox County. The grants are distributed by the Tennessee Arts Commission through an appropriation of state funds by the General Assembly, federal dollars from the National Endowment for the Arts and by Tennesseans who buy specialty license plates.
“We thank the Tennessee Arts Commission and Executive Director Anne Pope for their decision to award these grants,” said Senator Massey. “The arts are extremely important to our communities, especially in terms of education, economic development and cultural development.”
“I am very proud of the arts organizations we have in Knox County,” added Senator Briggs. “I hope these funds will help them in providing their services to area citizens during the coming year. Tennessee has a rich cultural heritage and the art grants awarded help us preserve it for future generations.”
“Our local organizations fared very well with these grants,” added Senator McNally. “I am sure the recipients will put the funds to good use in promoting our cultural heritage and the arts.”
Major grants include $75,000 to the Knoxville Opera Company, $68,000 to the Knoxville Symphony Society, $27,900 to Dogwood Arts, $21,700 to East Tennessee Community Design Center, $15,500 to the Historic Tennessee Theatre Foundation and $12,500 to Cumberland Communities Communications Corporation. Six organizations will receive grants in multiple categories combined of which total $75,580 for the Arts and Culture Alliance of Greater Knoxville, $27,630 for the Carpetbag Theatre, $72,200 for the Knoxville Museum of Art, $22,100 for the Community School for the Arts, $8,800 for the Tennessee Stage Company and $33,900 for the Joy of Music Youth Music School.
Other recipients of the grants include $9,400 to the Jubilee Community Arts, $5,100 to the University of Tennessee’s Clarence Brown Theatre, $2,100 to the Asian Cultural Center of Tennessee, $2,000 to the Knoxville Choral Society, $3,150 to the Friends of Knox County Public Library, $6,500 to HoLa Hora Latina, $3,600 to Tennessee Folklore Society, $450 to the Governor John Sevier Memorial Association, $1,200 to the Hazen Historical Museum Foundation, $4,500 to Go! Contemporary Dance Works and $9,800 to Tennessee Children’s Dance Ensemble.
“Tennessee is fortunate to have elected leaders who appreciate the importance of our vibrant arts and cultural heritage,” said Ann Pope, Executive Director of the Tennessee Arts Commission.
According to Pope, the Arts Commission will award approximately 1,000 community grants in both urban and rural areas through the 2017 fiscal year, totaling $5.5 million. The allocation process involves a review by citizen advisory panels made up of Tennesseans with expertise in appropriate disciplines and a final review by the full 15-member commission.