Arts Learning Round 2 Awards Announced

On April 23, 2019 MRAC awarded $216,136 to 22 organizations/projects in the second round of its FY 2019 Arts Learning grant program. The Arts Learning projects chosen will provide high-quality, age-appropriate arts education for Minnesotans to develop knowledge, skills, and understanding through the arts for children, youth, and adults by engaging people in extended arts experiences and activities with clearly articulated learning objectives. The Arts Learning grant program is a direct result of the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund of the Legacy Amendment. Geographic listings represent the county where the organization is based; note that Saint Paul is listed separately from Suburban Ramsey county.

We wish to acknowledge and thank our panelists who served as grant reviewers for this round of Arts Learning grants:

Berit Ahlgren, Carla Steen, Carol Sirrine, Chavonn Williams Shen, Cross, Hannah Walsh, Ian Vaver, Jon Rees, Julia Gay, Julie Zhou, Julie Strand, Justin Christy, Kealoha Ferreira, Leslie Carey, Lisa Dejoras, Mailee Vue, Melissa Brechon, Oleksandra Norwick, Stephani Atkins, Sun Yung Shin, Susan Tarnowski, Tommy Sar, Val Lockhart

Anoka County

Northern Starz Theatre                 $7,886.00
Funding for a seven-month course for adults 55 and older. Participants will learn the tools and techniques in the performing arts.


Black Table Arts                  $10,000.00
Funding for Black Lines Matter: Where Black Writers Meet, a nine month writing program centered on developing and fostering black writers, taking place at The Loft Literary Center. 

Exposed Brick Theatre                  $10,000.00
Funding for Omission Bake Off, an in depth playwriting workshop series and mentorship for eight emerging playwrights from September – November 2019.

Indigenous Peoples Task Force               $10,000.00
Funding for the Ikidowin Art Camp which will engage Native youth in script writing, visual arts, and theater. The program will take place May 2019 to August 2019.

Little Earth Residents Association                      $10,000.00
Funding for Dagwaagin (Ojibwe for “It is Fall”), a series of arts based workshops for teens in the Little Earth community focusing on storytelling and renewal. Activities will occur in fall of 2019.

Minneapolis American Indian Center                 $10,000.00
Funding to support young Native American women ages 10-18 to design and create fancy shawls for traditional Pow-wow dancing in summer and early fall of 2019.

Once Were and Again We Are (dba Northern Monday Films)          $10,000.00
Funding for Impact Lab, a distribution and engagement workshop for Twin Cities-based immigrants and refugee artists, activists, and community leaders to create impactful short documentary films.

Public Functionary             $10,000.00
Funding for a 12-month workshop series and mentorship program for 8 emerging artists as part of Public Functionary’s new Studio #400 which provides subsidized studio space for visual artists.

Soo Visual Arts Center                   $10,000.00
Funding to educate Walker Methodist Health Center residents about contemporary art through gallery tours and and instructional art workshops. Activities will take place May 2019 through May 2020 in Minneapolis.

zAmya Theater Project                  $10,000.00
Funding to support eight weeks of performance skills training for library patrons experiencing homelessness at the Minneapolis Central Library. Activities will take place in May and June 2019. 

Saint Paul

Ananya Dance Theatre                   $10,000.00
Funding for the Connective Creations projects at two St. Paul high schools: Gordon Parks High School and the High School for Recording Arts. Activities will take place in late spring and fall of 2019 at the Shawngram Institute for Performance & Social Justice.

Arcata Press dba Saint Paul Almanac                 $9,150.00
Funding for the Community Editors Project, which teaches writing skills and literary arts appreciation within an editing and publishing context. Activities take place October through December 2019.

ArtStart                     $10,000.00
Funding for Art Meets Science: A Bird’s-Eye View, engaging grade 3 students and teachers at 3 urban schools in ecoarts residencies in which students create textile banners and pole puppets based on Minnesota’s endangered and threatened birds who use the Mississippi River flyway to migrate annually.

CLUES            $10,000.00
Funding for the Latino Muralism Apprenticeship which will be led by 4 Minnesota-based Latino muralists with varied backgrounds and skill-sets who will mentor 10-20 aspiring muralists.

COLLIDE Theatrical            $10,000.00
Funding for 44 weeks of bi-weekly dance classes and complimentary childcare for company dancers and apprentices.

Highland Friendship Club             $10,000.00
Funding to collaborate with Eric Mueller Photography to offer 8 mobile device photography classes for 15 members and 7 personal care assistants delivered in sequential, weekly learning sessions. Five in-studio classes will run for 2 hours each and 3 field trip classes will run for 3 hours each.

In Progress               $10,000.00
Funding for an 8 month arts mentorship program for newly developing artists that lack access to digital learning opportunities. The program focuses on small group mentorship, individualized coaching, and goal planning with youth ages 12-22.

Indigenous Roots                $10,000.00
Funding for classes to pass on Indigenous art forms in ongoing structured master artist/students relationship; the project will be documented for community use.

Keane Sense of Rhythm                 $10,000.00
Funding to provide free tap classes for students in grades 6-12 in two Freedom School programs held at public schools in Saint Paul in summer of 2019.

Shakespearean Youth Theatre                 $9,100.00
Funding for a 6-week intensive theatre program for students aged 13-19, culminating in a production of Shakespeare’s comedy The Two Gentlemen of Verona. Students will gain skills in acting, movement, text analysis, and storytelling while creating community and developing confidence, critical thinking, and teamwork skills.

Suburban Ramsey County

113                 $10,000.00
Funding for Studio113, Minneapolis Public Schools, instrument builder and composer Schuyler Tsuda, and local teaching artists to present a 2-week children’s summer instrument building and music technology workshop. Activities take place in June 2019.

Washington County

StoryArk                   $10,000.00
Funding for students in grades six through twelve to develop writing, editing, acting, recording, and filming skills by producing either a podcast episode, short film, comedy sketch webisode, or short story to be shared and discussed at StoryArk Network Live! Activities will take place in Stillwater from June of 2019 to February of 2020.

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