NASHVILLE, Tenn. – State Senators Becky Massey (R-Knoxville), Randy McNally (R-Oak Ridge) and Richard Briggs (R-Knoxville) today announced that $463,790 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 Art Commission and Executive Director Anne Pope for their decision to award these grants,” said Senator McNally. “The arts are extremely important to our communities, especially in terms of education, economic development and cultural development. Our local organizations fared very well with these grants and I am sure the recipients will put the funds to good use in promoting our cultural heritage and the arts.”
“I am very pleased that these Knox County arts grants have been awarded,” said Senator Massey. “Tennessee has a rich cultural heritage and the art grants awarded help us preserve it for future generations.”
Major grants include $75,000 to the Knoxville Opera Company, $69,000 to the Knoxville Museum of Art, $69,000 to the Knoxville Symphony Society, $23,000 to the Joy of Music Youth Music School, $22,890 to Dogwood Arts, $21,170 to East Tennessee Community Design Center and $21,340 to Cumberland Communities Communications. Other recipients of the grants include the Mount Olive Music Academy, HoLa Hora Latina, Carpetbag Theatre, Mount Olive Elementary School, Mooreland Heights Elementary, Artistic Spectrum, Friends of the Knox County Public Library, Tennessee Folklore Society, Knoxville Jazz Festival, Tennessee Stage Company, Hazen Historical Museum Foundation, University of Tennessee School of Music, Go! Contemporary Dance Works, Knoxville Choral Society, Tennessee Association of Dance, Community School for the Arts, Tennessee Children’s Dance Ensemble and Jubilee Community Arts.
“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 is very fortunate to have elected leaders who support the investments in arts and cultural assets that benefit our communities and schools,” said Pope.
According to Pope, the Arts Commission will award approximately 1,000 community grants in both urban and rural areas through the 2016 fiscal year, totaling $5.3 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.