Cohort Grant Program Provides Up to $150,000 in Project Support
Press Release – New York, NY – Audience (R)Evolution, a multi-year program designed by Theatre Communications Group (TCG) and funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation to study, promote, and support successful audience engagement and community development strategies for the U.S. not-for-profit theatre field, is proud to announce the release of the Audience (R)Evolution Case Study Follow-Up Report. Building on the original 2013 case studies, which were based on audience engagement and community development findings of AMS Planning & Research, this follow-up report by writer Ben Pesner re-visits seven of the eight original not-for-profit theatres studied and includes a mini-report on two additional organizations selected by TCG: Hattiloo Theatre in Memphis, TN, and Trinity Repertory Company with Spectrum Theatre Ensemble in Providence, RI.
“The impacts of innovative audience engagement and community development programs often take many years to fully materialize,” said Teresa Eyring, executive director, TCG. “By revisiting these original case studies, we learn how the work ripens and evolves over time. This research strengthens and informs Audience (R)Evolution’s grantmaking, convenings, and dissemination of audience engagement strategies that work.”
Audience (R)Evolution’s grantmaking initiative is now in its third round of activity and providing field-wide support through two initiatives: Exploration Grants of up to $5,000 and Cohort Grants of $75,000 or $150,000. This round has the specific focus of audience engagement and community development as they relate to theatre for youth and multigenerational audiences. Round 3 Cohort Grant applications will go live in mid-November with a deadline of January 15, 2019, and the second application cycle for the Exploration Grants will launch in mid-November with a deadline of March 12, 2019.
For more information on each grant initiative, please visit https://www.tcg.org/Grants/GrantsAtAGlance/Audience(R)Evolution/Description.aspx or email AudienceRev@tcg.org.
The Case Study Follow-Up Report is being released during the Audience (R)Evolution’s special “Audience Engagement Month” in partnership with TCG publication American Theatre, whose October 2018 issue focuses on engagement and education.
American Theatre October 2018 engagement features include:
- Engage!: Associate editor Allison Considine asks theatre professionals from the Goodman Theatre, Woolly Mammoth, Center Theatre Group, American Repertory Theatre, and People’s Light why theatres should be thought of as community centers.
- Talkback Backtalk: Writer Kerry Reid interviews four artistic directors about what works and doesn’t work in creating talkbacks and other show-related events.
- Come On Up to Pillsbury House: Minneapolis writer and editor Theresa J. Beckhusen asks co-artistic directors Faye Price and Noël Raymond how they connect to their community.
In addition to feature articles, Audience (R)Evolution is sponsoring a limited podcast series to explore the topic of audience engagement and community development in not-for-profit theatres. All three episodes have been released and may be listened to at links below:
American Theatre and Audience (R)Evolution podcast series episodes include:
- A Peek at Education and Engagement Programming: In the first episode, associate editor Allison Considine spoke with Nikki Toombs, director of education at Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theatre Company in Atlanta, and Tanya Mote, associate director of Su Teatro in Denver.
- Trinity Rep, Neurodiversity, and the Spectrum Theatre Ensemble: This episode chronicles Considine’s visit to Trinity Repertory Theatre to see the work of the Spectrum Theatre Ensemble and a sensory-friendly performance of Ragtime.
- Engagement From the Top: In this final episode of three, Considine speaks with Eileen J. Morris, artistic director of Ensemble Theatre of Houston, and Sean Daniels, artistic director of Merrimack Repertory Theatre, about leading engagement and education initiatives at their theatres.
For over 55 years, Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for U.S. theatre, has existed to strengthen, nurture, and promote the professional not-for-profit theatre. TCG’s constituency has grown from a handful of groundbreaking theatres to over 700 Member Theatres and affiliate organizations and more than 12,000 individuals nationwide. TCG offers its members networking and knowledge-building opportunities through conferences, events, research, and communications; awards grants, approximately $2 million per year, to theatre companies and individual artists; advocates on the federal level; and through the Global Theater Initiative, TCG’s partnership with the Laboratory for Global Performance and Politics, serves as the U.S. Center of the International Theatre Institute. TCG is North America’s largest independent publisher of dramatic literature, with 16 Pulitzer Prizes for Best Play on the TCG booklist. It also publishes the award-winning American Theatre magazine and ARTSEARCH®, the essential source for a career in the arts. In all of its endeavors, TCG seeks to increase the organizational efficiency of its Member Theatres, cultivate and celebrate the artistic talent and achievements of the field, and promote a larger public understanding of, and appreciation for, the theatre. www.tcg.org
The mission of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF) is to improve the quality of people’s lives through grants supporting the performing arts, environmental conservation, medical research and child well-being, and through the preservation of the cultural and environmental legacy of Doris Duke’s properties. The Arts Program of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation focuses its support on contemporary dance, jazz and theater artists, and the organizations that nurture present and produce them. In 2015, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) awarded the foundation with a 2014 National Medal of Arts, presented by President Barack Obama, in special recognition of DDCF’s support of creative expression across the United States and “bold commitment” to artistic risk, which has helped artists, musicians, dancers and actors share their talents and enriched the cultural life of the nation. For more information, please visit www.ddcf.org.