Recent Community Arts Grant Awards

FY 2017 Community Arts- Round 2

On March 28, 2017 MRAC awarded $345,191 to 73 organizations/projects in the second round of its FY 2017 Community Arts grant program. The organizations and projects chosen demonstrate both strong artistic quality and a connection to a community.

The Community Arts grant program utilizes a block grant system to ensure funds are distributed broadly in the seven counties of MRAC’s service area. The following is a list of this round’s grant recipients sorted by the county of activity that includes award amounts, project summaries, and links to the grantees’ websites when available. Please note that the cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul are separated from the surrounding suburban Hennepin and suburban Ramsey counties.

Anoka County

Centennial Community Education $2,100.00
www.isd12.org/community-education
Funding for Music on the Lake it’s Golden, a summer concert series consisting of four performances. The concerts are held at Golden Lake Park in the City of Circle Pines between June and August 2017.

Fridley Community Theatre $5,000.00
www.fridleycommunitytheatre.org
Funding to stage the musical, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. Performances will take place at the newly renovated Fridley District Auditorium in July 2017.

Carver County

Edge of the Big Woods Art Wander $5,000.00
www.artwander.com
Funding for the sixth Edge of the Big Woods Art Wander, an art and artist studio crawl in Carver County. The free event will take place in September 2017 in Carver County.

ISD 112 Community Education $5,000.00
Funding for the 13th annual “Hooked on Books…and the Arts, too!” event, a one-day community event to celebrate the joy of reading and the arts. The annual event provides performing and creative arts experiences to children and families. This year’s event will be held on a Saturday morning in February 2018 at Chanhassen High School.

Dakota County

Allegro Choral Academy $5,000.00
www.allegroca.org
Funding for the Access to Choir Initiative, a project by the Allegro Choral Academy in partnership with two elementary schools in Dakota County to bring a choral music opportunity to students. The program will create weekly choir rehearsals over an 11-week period at Oak Ridge Elementary in Eagan and at Diamond Path Elementary in Apple Valley with culminating concerts at each school in May 2017.

City of South St. Paul $5,000.00
http://www.southstpaul.org
Funding for South St. Paul Art aRound Town (ART), a four-day Art in the Community Celebration showcasing local artists and their work. Residents will be exposed to a variety of art genres, professional artists sharing their talents & knowledge, and interactive hands-on art activities for young & old alike. The festival will take place in South St. Paul in July 2017.

Eagan Theater Company $5,000.00
etc-mn.org
Funding for the Eagan Theater Company to mount a readers’ theater presentation based on the book “Shrapnel In The Heart” by Laura Palmer. The script will be adapted from the book as monologs of people reading letters and talking about photos and mementos that have been left by visitors to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C. Four free performances and two paid performances will take place in October and November 2017 in Dakota county.

International Festival of Burnsville $4,400.00
www.intlfestburnsville.org
Funding for International Festival of Burnsville, featuring an indoor art exhibit with interactive global cultural display booths in conjunction with outdoor activities showcasing a parade of flags, on-stage traditional cultural attire and entertainment from established and emerging Minnesota artists, an array of ethnic foods, and family arts activities. The Festival will be held in July 2017 at Nicollet Commons Park and the adjacent Ames Center in Burnsville.

ISD 197 Community Education $5,000.00
www.tridistrictce.org
Funding for ISD 197 School-Age Care program to partner with three resident artists from COMPAS to lead youth in a community event called Hip-Hop Party. The artists will teach breakdancing, urban arts, and spoken word, then lead youth in a showcase and performance for family, friends, and community members. This two-week long project will take place during the School-Age Care summer camp in July 2017 at Moreland Elementary School in West St. Paul.

Minnesota Brass, Inc. $5,000.00
http://www.mnbrassinc.org
Funding for March On!, a drum and bugle corps show organized by Minnesota Brass in partnership with the Farmington High School Marching Band. The competition features both Minnesota-based and nationally touring competitive drum corps and will be held in August 2017 at Farmington High School.

Minnesota Scottish Fair & Highland Games $5,000.00
www.mnscottishfair.org
Funding for performances and workshops by Celtic fiddler Mary MacGillivray, cellist Ed Willitt, and five other Celtic groups/artists as part of the 2017 Minnesota Scottish Fair and Highland Games. Workshops will take place at The Celtic Junction in St. Paul in May, June, and July 2017 and performances will take place at the Scottish Fair in Eagan in July 2017.

River Valley Band $4,400.00
http://hpaac.org/
Funding to support two concerts of the River Valley Band. The first concert will feature River Valley Band performing with a guest trumpeter and will be held at the outdoor Hastings Pavilion in May 2017. The second concert will feature River Valley Band in a combined concert with the Hastings High School Wind Ensemble and the Sheldon Brass Band from Red Wing and will take place at Hasting High School in October 2017.

Rosemount Community Band $3,700.00
www.rcbmusic.org
Funding for JazzBlast, a free one-day big band and jazz festival featuring six to seven Twin Cities bands at a one day festival. Activities will take place at the Rosemount Amphitheater in June 2017.

Minneapolis

113 $5,000.00
www.113collective.com
Funding for a collaboration between 113, the Gregorian Singers, and Artemis consisting of two concerts and two workshops. The concerts will be held in May 2017 at Lakewood Cemetery Chapel and Grace University Lutheran Church, both in Minneapolis. Workshops will be held in April 2017 at the University of Minnesota’s Regis Center for Art and in May 2017 at Graham Place Senior Center in St. Paul.

Ancia Saxophone Quartet $5,000.00
http://www.anciaquartet.com/
Funding to present four concerts of new and traditional music for saxophone quartet. Performances will take place in October 2017 at Studio Z in St. Paul and the Weisman Art Museum. Two additional outreach concerts will be held at Touching Lives, an adult day care facility in Savage, MN and Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Minnesota.

Aniccha Arts $5,000.00
www.aniccha.org
Funding for 3600 Cuts, an interdisciplinary performance piece about our endless quest for higher resolution, an obsession with a finer grain and more detail. The project includes three community workshops, a works-in-progress presentation, and three public performances at the Southern Theater and Northern Spark Festival in June 2017.

Bells of the Lakes $5,000.00
www.bellsofthelakes.org
Funding for a four part concert series held at senior living facilities in the Twin Cities, designed to introduce communities to the musical artform of handbells.

Byzantine Choral Festival $4,800.00
Funding for the 8th Annual Byzantine Choral Festival, featuring a free workshop and public concert. The concert of diverse ethnic choral traditions in the Byzantine rite will take place at St. Constantine Ukrainian Catholic Church in October 2017.

Friends of the Minnesota Sinfonia $5,000.00
www.mnsinfonia.org
Funding for the ninth annual Summer Youth Outreach Week, offering 45 advanced student musicians the opportunity to learn from professional orchestra musicians as they rehearse and play a concert of a major symphonic work plus a new composition by an emerging student artist. The free, public concert will be held at the Lake Harriet Bandshell in Minneapolis in July 2017.

Gadfly Theatre Productions $5,000.00
www.gadflytheatre.org
Funding for The Final Frontier Festival, an annual one act festival highlighting the stories of marginalized people, particularly from queer and feminist voices. Performances will take place in June 2017.

Hope Community, Inc. $5,000.00
Funding for The Power of Vision, a neighborhood mural program that will partner with St. Stephens Human Services and Mia to engage approximately 20 youth of color and 20 adults experiencing homelessness. The project will take place between April and September 2017 and culminate in a public mural and community unveiling ceremony.

Mad Munchkin Productions $5,000.00
www.madmunchkinproductions.com
Funding to produce Odyssey on the Edge of Light, an original puppetry piece collaboratively written and designed by the company, and featuring original music and “traveling audience” staging. The production, which includes a series of free community workshops, will be presented at Squirrel Haus Arts in October 2017.

Maggie Bergeron and Company $5,000.00
http://www.maggiebdance.org
Funding for Hear Here 2017!, a live music and movement festival celebrating the intersection and overlap of sound and movement in live performance. The festival will include open rehearsals and public showings, and will culminate in a premiere of new work at The Cedar Cultural Center in August 2017.

Metro Work Center, Inc. $5,000.00
www.metroworkcenter.org
Funding for a metal sculpture project for adults with severe to moderate intellectual disabilities. Each participant will create an individual sculpture and help create a group showpiece display. The project will culminate in an open house and exhibition of finished works.

Minneapolis Southside Singers $5,000.00
Funding to present at least 20 free concerts to under-served audiences across the seven-county metropolitan area between April 2017 and March 2018.

Minnesota 9-11 Tribute $5,000.00
Funding for the 16th annual Minnesota 9-11 Tribute community concert, a rain or shine event featuring an all-volunteer orchestra, volunteer chorus, individual ensembles, and at least 25 7-member volunteer flag units from across Minnesota. The concert will be held at Lake Harriet Band Shell in Minneapolis in September 2017.

New Griots Festival $5,000.00
www.newgriotsfestival.com
Funding for the 2017 New Griots Festival, a 10-day event dedicated to celebrating emerging Black artists in the Twin Cities. The Festival features 10 Black artists from a variety of disciplines. Each participating artist will hold two performances/showings, conduct two free arts­-centered classes, participate on panels, and host a live studio session where community members will be invited to “watch me work.” The festival will be held in July 2017 at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis.

Oratory Bach Ensemble $5,000.00
www.oratorybach.org
Funding for Bach & Brews, a new concert series that will present the secular music of J.S. Bach in brewpubs. The first program, titled A Coffee Cantata, will feature works that Bach wrote to originally be performed at a cafe. Performances will take place at Able Brewing in Minneapolis in July 2017.

Picasso Projects $5,000.00
Funding for Suited for this Life, a new dance theater work exploring control, choice and transformation supported by an evolving light installation operated solely by the performers. Performances will take place in April 2018.

Poetry for People $5,000.00
Funding to host the fifth annual Poetry and Pie Picnic in Powderhorn, a solstice celebration featuring a diverse group of ten poets and pie bakers from Central and Powderhorn neighborhoods. The picnic will take place at Powderhorn Park in June 2017.

Powderhorn Porchfest $5,000.00
https://www.facebook.com/PowderhornPorchFest/?fref=nf
Funding for Powderhorn Porchfest, a neighborhood music festival that is free to the public, family friendly, and features over 20 local musical and spoken word groups performing on residential porches. The festival will take place in the Powderhorn neighborhood in September 2017.

Prairie Fire Lady Choir $5,000.00
http://www.prairiefireladychoir.org/
Funding for the Artist Collaboration Project, during which Prairie Fire Lady Choir members will engage with local songwriter and musician Chris Koza, who will provide songwriting/arrangement workshops and create original and revised arrangements for the choir, direct rehearsals, and collaborate in a finale show. Two workshops will be held at Richfield Lutheran Church in Minneapolis during June and July 2017 and the finale show will be held in November 2017.

Small Art $5,000.00
http://www.smallartmn.com
Funding for BETTER, a movement-based, site specific performance that examines the way our bodies hold and process past experiences. Performances will take place at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts during winter 2017/2018.

The Dream Songs Project $5,000.00
http://thedreamsongsproject.org/
Funding to commission Minnesota composer Craig Carnahan for a new 15 minute work for the classical voice and guitar duo. The work will be premiered at three metro venues in January 2018.

The Minneapolis Art Lending Library $5,000.00
http://www.artlending.org
Funding for the Minneapolis Art Lending Library, a program that allows patrons to browse a collection of artworks and select one to borrow for three months, to display and enjoy in their homes. The Library will host a lending event in April 2017 at Folwell Recreation Center and Powderhorn Recreation Center in July 2017.

The White Page $5,000.00
www.the-white-page.org
Funding for a series of three artist residencies that will culminate in public exhibitions. The residencies will take place at The White Page’s studio and gallery between April and October 2017.

Toneworks Community Foundation $3,350.00
Funding for Camp Art for All, an inclusive two-week arts experience for youth that are typically developing and campers with special needs ages 8-21. Campers will be engaged in puppetry, theater, music, yoga, and dance, and will create an original musical theater production. The camp will take place in June 2017.

Suburban Hennepin County

4 Community Theatre $5,000.00
http://www.4communitytheatre.org/
Funding to stage the family musical Willy Wonka with a multi-generational cast of 60+ actors and orchestra musicians. 4 Community Theatre will bring live musical theater to suburban and rural western Hennepin County through six performances in July 2017 at the 300-seat Orono High School auditorium in Long Lake.

Alma Folklorica Dance Ensemble $5,000.00
Funding for Alma Folklorica Dance Ensemble’s Community Tour. A youth performing dance ensemble comprised mainly of children from Latino descent will perform six one-hour long ethnic/folkloric dance presentations from April to November 2017 at Lagos Restaurant in Long Lake, the Gillepsie Senior Center in Mound, Trails of Orono senior living facility, Wayzata Public Library, Corn Days Festival in Long Lake, and Interfaith Outreach and Community Partners in Plymouth.

Chain Reaction Theatre Project $5,000.00
www.chainreactiontp.com
Funding to support Chain Reaction Theatre Project’s production “Body & Sold,” a documentary play which portrays the stories of nine juvenile sex trafficking survivors in five major US cities, including Minneapolis. Performances will occur in October and November 2017 at seven Twin Cities metro area sites in Minnetonka, Minneapolis, Bloomington, Eden Prairie, Woodbury, and Prior Lake.

Discovery Arts Council $4,375.00
Funding for the Orono International Festival, an annual fall arts festival in which community members share the arts and culture of their heritage through country booths, folk arts, costumes and displays. Five to seven performing arts groups will share music and dances from around the world at this event which attracts approximately 600-700 attendees. The festival will be held in October 2017 at Otten Brother’s Nursery in Orono.

North Suburban Chorus $5,000.00
Funding to provide live interactive musical entertainment to metropolitan area seniors in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, senior housing and community centers from April through December 2017.

Plymouth Rockers $4,381.00
www.plymouthrockers.org
Funding for the Plymouth Rockers to involve 70 seniors in weekly choral rehearsals for eight months and to take live music to senior groups throughout the metro area. Plymouth Rockers will perform 21 concerts for seniors and four free concerts in the metro region from May – December 2017.

The Suomi Finland 100 Chorus $5,000.00
Funding for the Suomi 100 Chorus to present a concert of Finnish classical music in partnership with the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra. The concert celebrates the 100th anniversary of Finland’s independence and features choral and symphonic works that are meaningful within Finland’s centennial. The concert will take place at the Masonic Heritage Center in Bloomington in October 2017.

Women of the West Quilt Guild $5,000.00
http://www.wowquiltguild.com
Funding for the ninth biannual quilt show entitled “Our World in Stitches” which includes approximately 200 quilts on display and presentations by a well-known professional quilter. Attendees will participate in educational activities to learn about the art of quilt-making. The event will be held at Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church in Plymouth during September 2017.

Saint Paul

Community-Participation Art Projects $5,000.00
Funding for a Community-Weave Weekend, a community arts event that involves children in its design, a team of teens as event co-leaders, and weaving participation from local community groups and at least 100 neighbors. The Community-Weave Weekend will be held in May 2017 at Hamline Elementary School in St. Paul.

Consortium Carissimi $5,000.00
www.consortiumcarissimi.org
Funding for performances of Monteverdi’s Vespro della Beata Vergine Maria directed by Kathy Salzman-Romey and performed by Consortium Carissimi singers and players joined by visiting guest artists Bruce Dickey, Kiri Tollaksen and Carson King-Founier. Performances will be held in May 2017 at the Cathedral of St. Paul, St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Minneapolis, and the Church of St. Therese in Deephaven.

Deborah Elias Danza Espanola $5,000.00
http://dedanza.org/
Funding for Displaced/ Desplazados, a project that will illuminate and express the plight of people displaced from their homes by the impacts of climate change, told through a series of traveling flamenco performances. The project will be presented during Northern Spark in June 2017.

El Arco Iris $5,000.00
Funding for a seven-week program offering 30-35 youth an opportunity to learn about the traditional Afro-Puerto Rican folkloric rhythms, songs and dance through art, dancing and music classes. Activities take place in April & May 2017 at the Dunning Recreation Center in St. Paul and will culminate with a family showcase.

Friends of Swede Hollow Inc. $5,000.00
www.artinthehollow.org www.swedehollow.org
Funding for the eighth annual Art in the Hollow – Artists in Action, a multi-disciplinary community art festival held in Swede Hollow Park. The festival uses art to: explore and cherish the park’s natural setting, educate about the park’s immigrant history, and create community among diverse residents of the park’s surrounding neighborhoods. The festival will be held in June 2017 at Swede Hollow Park in St. Paul.

Full Perspective Productions Ensemble $5,000.00
Funding for Full Perspective Production Ensemble to produce a bilingual Latino live radio drama/variety show entitled Coco’s Latinidad. The project will involve the creation of a 60-minute segment, using live performing arts and music to help contextualize the arts in layman terms to Latinos unaccustomed to Saint Paul’s art scene. 3-5 shows will be presented in Saint Paul to be broadcast on WEQY FM radio during September 2017.

Hmong Cultural Center $5,000.00
www.hmongcc.org
Funding to support the Hmong Cultural Center’s Qeej Instructional Program. The Center’s Qeej classes are offered 3 afternoons a week to teach children and youth how to play the Qeej, a bamboo wind pipe instrument that plays a pivotal role in the traditional Hmong funeral ceremony and the Hmong culture more generally. Classes will run from June 2017 through July 2018 at the Hmong Cultural Center in St. Paul.

Indonesian Performing Arts Association of Minnesota d.b.a Sumunar $4,000.00
http://www.sumunar.org
Funding for Sumunar to bring choreographer and dancer Wisnu Aji Setyo Wicaksono and four dancers of his company “Cakil Squad” from Indonesia to Minnesota for one week in April or early May 2017. The visiting artists will perform in a concert with the Sumunar dance and gamelan ensembles and offer at least two workshop/performances to students from area arts schools and colleges.

Minnesota State Band $5,000.00
www.minnesotastateband.org
Funding for the Minnesota State Band to present five concerts from May – August 2017 in the Twin Cities metropolitan area.

Prevent Child Abuse Minnesota $5,000.00
www.pcamn.org
Funding for Prevent Child Abuse MN to provide parent leadership training to inform the child welfare system with the intent of engaging parents who have personal experience in the child protection system either as a parent or child. COMPAS artist Aimee Bryant will lead 4 monthly sessions from April – September 2017 at Minnesota Communities Caring for Children’s site in St. Paul.

St. Anthony Park Branch Library Association $1,880.00
www.sapfest.org
Funding for the Foci Minnesota for Glass Arts (Foci MCGA) Mobile Hot Shop to provide a glassblowing demonstration during the St. Anthony Park Arts Festival in St. Paul during June 2017.

Strains New Music Ensemble $5,000.00
http://www.strainsnewmusic.com/
Funding to perform four concerts of new music at Hoverston Chapel at Augsburg College, the Schubert Club Museum in Saint Paul, the performance space at Regis Center for Art and SPACE at Savage Umbrella, and to present one educational workshop and one instrument builder workshop at the University of Minnesota School of Music. Events will take place in June and July of 2017.

The Illicit Sextet $5,000.00
https://www.facebook.com/theillicitsextet
Funding for the All Originals Jazz Series, a sequence of six jazz performances featuring existing local jazz ensembles who specialize in performing original jazz compositions. Performances will take place at Studio Z in Lowertown St. Paul in July, August and September 2017.

The St. Paul Snowblower Ballet $5,000.00
www.snowblowerballet.com
Funding for the St. Paul Snowblower Ballet, a one-time, public arts performance project involving dancers from the St. Paul Ballet and musicians from the Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra presenting a free, outdoor winter dance performance incorporating snowblowers, snow shovels and flying snow. The performance will also be shared to the world through an online video. The St. Paul Snowblower Ballet will be at Harriet Island in St. Paul in January 2018.

Twin Cities Labor Chorus $4,855.00
Funding for 9 to 12 choral performances in the Twin Cities area between April 2017 and March 2018. Performance venues include the East Side Freedom Library in St. Paul in April or May 2017, a summer concert at AFL-CIO Labor Pavilion in July 2017, and 3 performances at the Minnesota State Fair in August and September 2017.

Vail Place $5,000.00
www.vailplace.org
Funding to work with History Theatre teaching artists to develop a performance piece based on participants’ lived experiences with mental illnesses. The project will include two separate 15-week workshops, each with a final performance at the History Theatre in St. Paul in December 2017.

Vox Nova Chorale $5,000.00
www.voxnovachorale.org
Funding for the choral concert, We Are the Music Makers, a concert centered around Arthur O’Shaughnessy’s poem, “Ode.” Performances will take place in August 2017 at St. Mary’s Chapel in St. Paul.

Suburban Ramsey County

CommonBond Communities $5,000.00
www.commonbond.org
Funding for CommonBond to partner with EngAGE, an organization in California that is expanding to Minnesota, to offer new arts programming for seniors at CommonBond’s Maplewood facility. The program, consisting of three series of classes, will run from September 2017 – April 2018.

Mounds View Community Theatre $5,000.00
http://www.mvct.org/
Funding for the 34th annual Mounds View Community Theatre’s summer production, Gilbert & Sullivan’s “H.M.S. Pinafore”. 13 performances will take place in July 2017 at Irondale High School in New Brighton.

Roseville Parks and Recreation $5,000.00
http://www.cityofroseville.com/parks
Funding for the Live at the Rog outdoor performances series including “Global Adventures,” a weekly summer series of integrated outdoor arts performances with the goal of making cultural connections through art forms representing a variety of world cultures. The series will be held at the Roseville Central Park Frank Rog Amphitheater in summer 2017.

Scott County

Domaci Inc $4,200.00
domaci-inc.weebly.com
Funding for ‘Hometown Holidays, Celebrating European Traditions’ featuring traditional folk dancing and singing, vendors with homemade crafts, a Kid’s Corner and European style cuisine. The event will take place in December 2017 at the Park Ballroom in New Prague.

Washington County

Canvas Health $3,830.00
www.canvashealth.org
Funding for Jammin’ Art, a program requested by participants of Canvas Health’s Clubhouse Recovery, which provides social and learning opportunities for 20 – 25 adults in Washington County who live with mental illness such as severe depression, schizophrenia, PTSD, and bi-polar disorder. Jammin’ Art will provide 25-28 art sessions through 6-8 different visual art mediums at East Suburban Resources in Stillwater from April 2017 – March 2018.

Encore Wind Ensemble $4,800.00
www.encorewind.com
Funding for four concerts performed by an ensemble of 35 professional wind and percussion musicians, 60 high school musicians, and 60 college musicians. Performances will take place in April 2017 at Wayzata Community Church, October 2017 at King of Kings Lutheran Church in Woodbury and Ted Mann Concert Hall in Minneapolis, and November 2017 at Tartan High School in Oakdale.

ESR, Inc. $4,000.00
www.esrworks.org
Funding for the ESR/Singing Heart Music Education and Performance Project which provides multicultural music instruction for adults with disabilities and guides them through the process of creating a performance piece. Working with music therapists from Singing Heart, up to 20 individuals will participate in 20 week-long education sessions culminating in a public performance(s) during the holiday season of 2017. The program will take place in ESR’s program sites in Washington County.

FamilyMeans $1,120.00
www.familymeans.org
Funding for the Cimarron Youth Breakdancing Project, which will offer 20 youth ages 13-18 living in Lake Elmo’s Cimarron mobile home community the opportunity to learn the basics of breakdancing from professional breaker and certified coach Joseph “MN Joe” Tran. The project will consist of eight weekly, one-hour sessions in April and May 2017 and will culminate in a youth performance. All sessions and the youth performance will be held at Cimarron Youth Center in Lake Elmo.

Pollinator Friendly Alliance $5,000.00
Pollinatorfriendly.org
Funding for Polli-NATION, an Art Festival of the Bees that blends art, science and community at a sustainable farm site to engage folks around pollinator conservation issues. The Festival provides community collaborations for artists to create interactive art, community art salons, workshops, music, dance, storytelling performances, live bee exhibits and experiences. The Festival will be held at Kissing Birch Farms in Stillwater in September 2017.

Vets for Music $5,000.00
www.Vetsfest.org
Funding for VetsFest, a free one-day music festival honoring military veterans, held at Richard Walton Memorial Park in Oakdale in July 2017.

Washington County 4-H Federation $5,000.00
www.extension.umn.edu/county/washington
Funding for the Washington County Arts-In, which provides youth ages 13-19 with first-hand exposure to the performing arts. Approximately 60 youth will perform in the cast, band, and technical crew of a musical performance. Participating youth will experience a four-day overnight encampment and will give nine performances at the Washington County Fair in August 2017 and two performances at the Minnesota State Fair in August and September 2017.


FY 2017 Community Arts- Round 1

On December 13, 2016, MRAC awarded $324,927 to 69 organizations/projects in the first round of its FY 2017 Community Arts grant program. The organizations and projects chosen demonstrate both strong artistic quality and a connection to a community.

The Community Arts grant program utilizes a block grant system to ensure funds are distributed broadly in the seven counties of MRAC’s service area. The following is a list of this round’s grant recipients sorted by the county of activity that includes award amounts, project summaries, and links to the grantees’ websites when available. Please note that the cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul are separated from the surrounding suburban Hennepin and suburban Ramsey counties.

Anoka County

Anoka-Hennepin Community Education Project Power                    $5,000.00  
http://www.anoka.k12.mn.us/domain/434
Funding to support Project Power, a program providing music and drama experiences for adults with special needs, offering opportunities to learn from professionals in the field through observation and education. Activities will take place between January and April 2017.

Chorus Polaris                                $5,000.00  
www.choruspolaris.org
Funding for Year One of a three-year series of performances of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana. The performance will consist of Chorus Polaris singers accompanied by the Eden Prairie High School Percussion Ensemble and will be held in May 2017.

City of Blaine                                    $4,000.00  
www.blaineparks.com
Funding for the 10th annual Blaine World Fest, a public event exploring the cultural arts and ethnicities that currently exist in the city. The event will take place in May 2017.

Mississippi Valley Orchestra                               $4,753.00  
http://www.mississippivalleyorchestra.com
Funding to present a free concert called “Let the Spirit Sing Free”, showcasing the winner of the St. Paul Piano Teachers Concerto Competition and featuring collaborations with Chorus Polaris and four vocalists from the University of Minnesota. The concert will take place at First Lutheran Church in Columbia Heights in February 2017.

Carver County

Centre Stage Theatre and Arts                              $5,000.00  
Funding for a production of the musical “Chitty, Chitty Bang, Bang”.  This project will include elementary age children through adults and will be held at Central High School in Norwood Young America in August 2017.

ISD 108 Community Education                            $5,000.00  
Funding for the Music in the Park Series, held on Thursday evenings at Legion Memorial Park in Norwood Young America during the summer of 2017.

Dakota County

Caponi Art Park                               $5,000.00  
www.caponiartpark.org
Funding for Caponi Art Park’s 2017 Summer Performance Series of three performances that will take place in the Park’s Theater in the Woods amphitheater during July and August 2017.

Chamber Music Lakeville                          $5,000.00  
Funding for three of four concerts during the 2017 season of Coffee Concerts. Concerts will be at the Lakeville Area Arts Center in January, April, and June of 2017.

Eagan Men’s Chorus                                   $5,000.00  
http://www.eaganmenschorus.org/
Funding for the Eagan Men’s Chorus to perform at least 15 concerts at Twin Cities area nursing homes, senior centers and veterans’ facilities in 2017.

Eagan Parks and Recreation                                 $5,000.00  
http://www.eaganarthouse.org
Funding for Welcome Home, a celebration of 20 years of the Eagan Art House. Key community engagement activities will include a temporary public art project and the annual Harvest of Art community event, and events will take place during summer 2017.

Forte Fine Arts Academy                          $5,000.00  
www.fortetheater.weebly.com
Funding to present Seussical Jr., a 60-minute musical based on the full length play adapted for young performers. Performances will take place at Kenwood Trail Middle School’s theatre in July 2017.

Rosemount Area Arts Council                             $5,000.00  
www.rosemountarts.com
Funding for ArtBlast 2017, the 4th annual week-long, city-wide celebration of the arts designed to provide Rosemount residents with the opportunity to experience many kinds of art in an “explosion of the arts” week. It will include daily arts experiences, such as performing and visual arts, classes, art shows, a photo contest, theatrical productions, and the 8th Annual Bluegrass Americana Festival. ArtBlast events will take place in Rosemount during June 2017.

Velvet Tones                                    $5,000.00  
http://www.velvettones.org
Funding to present nine free concerts across the greater metropolitan area. The performances will take place in various venues between January and June 2017.

Minneapolis

American Civic Forum                              $5,000.00  
https://americancivicforum.org/
Funding for “A Great and Happy People”, performances of speeches, letters, court rulings, songs, poems, play excerpts, newspaper editorials, and other documents from U.S. history. Each show is centered on a different theme and illustrates the legal and moral evolution of the topics in American history. Monthly performances will take place at the Strike Theater in Minneapolis from January – June 2017.

The Arts’ Nest                                  $5,000.00  
www.artsnest.org
Funding for the Arts’ Nest Fledgling program, mentoring emerging directors, designers and actors through a two-week production using three one act scripts by local writer Sam Graber. The program will culminate in public performances at Phoenix Theater in May 2017.

ASH: Sacred Arts                             $5,000.00  
Funding for Fugitive Sense, a project that aims to uncover a sixth sense of cultural memory that exists within us all. Artists of various backgrounds will share ideas and engage in community outreach activities to galvanize these cultural memories of Twin Cities’ residents. Performances will take place in spring 2018.

Balkanicus Institute for Balkan Art Culture and History                   $4,480.00  
http://www.bibach.org
Funding to produce a free public concert of new Balkan chamber music that will include two world premieres written specifically for Balkanicus as well as numerous American premieres. The concert will take place at Lloyd Ultan Recital Hall on the U of MN’s West Bank in April 2017.

Black Table Arts                             $2,400.00  
Funding for six Free Black Table open mic events, featuring the merging the artistic practices of presentation; community gathering and sharing; and entrepreneurship. The events will be held at Illusion Theater between December 2016 and October 2017.

Borealis Dance                                $5,000.00  
www.borealisdance.org
Funding for Love Stories, an evening of dance that includes a variety of performances focusing on the many facets of love. This mixed repertory dance concert will feature a collaboration with the deaf and hard of hearing community; a partnership with Avenues for Homeless Youth; and guest choreographer Tierra Foxworth, as well as other original works by Artistic Director Danielle Ricci. The performance will take place at the Cowles Center Tek Box in May 2017.

CAPI USA                               $5,000.00  
www.capiusa.org
Funding for the Twin Cities World Refugee Day Festival, a family-oriented day of celebration that highlights the stories, arts, and cultures of refugees in Minnesota and the diversity of cultures, experiences and assets they bring to our community. The annual event will be held at a Minneapolis park in June 2017.

Corcoran Neighborhood Organization                           $5,000.00  
www.corcoranneighborhood.org
Funding to support 52 performing arts activities to take place during the Midtown Farmers Market’s Saturday markets, with a focus on increasing racial and cultural diversity to better reflect the surrounding communities. Performances will take place over 26 weeks between May and October 2017.

Diversity Street Dancers                            $5,000.00  
Funding to research, design, choreograph, and practice a new folk-inspired program to perform in three different venues in Minneapolis – Loring Park Art Festival in July 2017, Squirrel Art House in September 2017, and a TBD venue in November 2017.

Duniya Drum and Dance                            $2,850.00  
www.duniyadrumanddance.org
Funding for the Fakoly Drum and Dance Project, providing opportunities to explore and experience traditional West African rhythm and movement with renowned master drummers and dancers. The June 2017 project includes dance and hand drumming workshops taught by local and visiting artists culminating in a public performance at the University of Minnesota’s Barbara Barker Dance Center and Rarig Center.

Eclectic Edge Ensemble                             $5,000.00  
www.eclecticedgeensemble.com
Funding to produce and perform four shows of “Foot Flight by Night”, an original version of “A Midsummer’s Night Dream”, told in a theatrical jazz dance style. Eclectic Edge Ensemble will work with four local composers to create the score. The production will be presented at The Lab Theater in Minneapolis in July 2017.

Grace Minnesota                             $5,000.00  
www.graceminnesota.org
Funding for Don’t You Feel It Too?, a participatory public dance and a behavioral art practice of civic presence, social healing, and personal liberation. Activities include 40 free public sessions throughout the Twin Cities between April and June 2017.

The Gregorian Singers                               $5,000.00  
www.thegregoriansingers.org
Funding to present two performances of unusual choral music of the Burgundian School of the early Renaissance, accompanied by period instruments. The performances will include projections of famous visual art of the period and will be preceded by informative lectures about the music and how it relates to the art of the early Renaissance. Concerts will take place in March 2017.

Jenson Dance                                    $5,000.00  
jensondance.org
Funding for Wicked Little Myths, a multi-media modern dance performance, visual art installation, and figure drawing salon.  Wicked Little Myths will be performed six times over two weekends in October 2017.

Journey Productions                                  $5,000.00  
journeyproductions.co
Funding for the 2017 Winter Theatre Experience, a 15 week audition based performing arts program in North Minneapolis for youth between the ages of 7 and 18 to learn about history through the performing arts. The program culminates in public performances of The Children’s March at the Tex Box Theatre in March of 2017.

Ka Joog                                  $5,000.00  
www.kajoog.org
Funding for Intersections, an interdisciplinary Somali arts performance incorporating spoken word poetry, story telling, music, a play, and a post performance discussion panel. Programming will take place at The Southern Theater in June 2017.

Metropolitan Boys Choir                           $5,000.00  
www.mbchoir.com
Funding for the Winter Musical Cavalcade, a free choral music concert series performed for the general public as well as seniors and veterans. Performances will take place at seven venues in Minneapolis and surrounding suburbs between December 2016 and March 2017.

Monkeybear’s Harmolodic Workshop                          $5,000.00  
www.monkeybear.org
Funding for a contemporary puppet theater production, offering artists of color and native artists the opportunity to create a short puppet performance, and to gain skills in contemporary puppet theater production and artistry. The project will culminate in the presentation of new works in June 2017.

Morris Park Players                                   $5,000.00  
http://www.morrisparkplayers.org
Funding to produce Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Performances will take place at Edison High School in spring of 2017.

One World Many Papers                            $4,000.00  
cavepaper.com/about/one-world-many-papers-project.html
Funding for an artist residency with Lu Jingren to celebrate and promote the traditional craft of handmade paper and its use as a creative and collaborative medium in numerous artistic genres. Activities include public lectures, workshops, an exhibition, and an internship program to take place in February 2017.

Red Bird Theatre                            $5,000.00  
Funding to present Charles L. Mee, Jr.’s, Time to Burn, a play about a group of refugees forced to live out their private lives amongst strangers.  Performances will take place at The Southern Theatre in September 2017.

She Rock She Rock                          $5,000.00  
http://www.sherocksherock.org
Funding for Ladies Rock Camp, a three-day music camp for women, gender nonconforming and trans folks ages 19 and older. Participants will form a band, write original songs, take workshops on songwriting and gear, and perform in a live rock show. Activities will take place at Lake Harriet House of Music in South Minneapolis and culminate in a public performance at Bunkers Music Bar and Grill in April 2017.

Sub-Saharan African Youth & Family Services in MN (SAFYSM)      $3,779.00  
www.sayfsm.org
Funding for weaving classes geared towards African immigrant women to learn bias/continuous warp weaving on square and triangular frame looms to create wearable art. Classes will be held at the Textile Center in Minneapolis from February – April 2017.

Twin Cities Flamenco Collective                         $5,000.00  
Funding to host the residency of a professional Flamenco singer from Spain for 20 activities including 15 classes, four performances, and a community activity that focus on flamenco singing, culture, and tradition. Activities will be held over three weeks in June 2017.

Universal Dance Destiny                            $5,000.00  
www.universaldancedestiny.com
Funding to produce the thirteenth annual showcase themed “Global Dances of the World”, featuring dances created by up to fifteen local emerging and established Twin Cities presenters. The showcase will be held at a centralized location in Minneapolis in August 2017.

Scott County

South Metro Chorale                                  $5,000.00  
www.southmetrochorale.org
Funding for the concert series “Love: Agape, Storge, Éros, Philia” as a part of South Metro Chorale’s 2016-2017 season. The concerts will take place at Glendale United Methodist Church in Savage and Christ the King Lutheran Church in Bloomington in May 2017.

St. Paul

African Economic Development Solutions                                $5,000.00  
http://aeds-mn.org/
Funding for the 2017 Little Africa Fest, an annual celebration of St. Paul’s Little Africa Business & Cultural District and a creative placemaking initiative for connecting African immigrant business, art, culture, music, and food to mainstream markets. The festival will take place at Hamline Park in St. Paul in August 2017.

International Friendship Through the Performing Arts                    $5,000.00  
Funding for the premiere performance of “Chinglish”, a multimedia production which includes storytelling pieces from standard pipa (Chinese lute) repertoire, based on Chinese musician/composer Gao Hong’s immigrant experiences. The performance will be held at The O’Shaughnessy in 2017 with an outreach performance at the Kang Le Asian Adult Day Care in Edina.

Ladyslipper Ensemble                               $5,000.00  
http://www.ladyslipperensemble.org
Funding for a concert of Spanish and Latin music titled “Seasons” which will feature a commissioned arrangement of Manuel de Falla’s “Sietes Canciones Populares” for mezzo soprano, violin, cello, bass, and piano from composer David Evan Thomas. The concert will take place at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church of St. Paul in April 2018.

Lowertown Blues Festival                                    $5,000.00  
http://lowertownbluesfestival.com/
Funding for the 2017 Lowertown Blues Festival, a free event held over two days showcasing national blues artists and Minnesota headliners such as Lamont Cranston Blues Band, Ken Valdez, Lisa Wenger, and Sena Eberhardt. LBF is expected to draw 25,000 attendees at Mears Park in July 2017.

Minneapolis Guitar Quartet Association                                   $5,000.00  
www.minneapolisguitarquartet.com
Funding to present the world premieres of recently commissioned works by Minnesota composers Wade Oden and Maja Radovanlija, and California composer Ian Krouse. A total of three performances and one workshop will be presented at White Bear Lake Center for the Arts and Sundin Music Hall in Saint Paul.

Mixed Precipitation                                    $4,670.00  
www.mixedprecipitation.org
Funding for the ninth annual Picnic Operetta, a musical theater project that will combine story-specific picnic tasting menu with live operatic performances.  A traveling series of 8 performances will be staged outdoors at collaborating Twin Cities area community gardens and urban farms, including locations in North Minneapolis, Frogtown and the East Side of St. Paul during summer 2017.

MNKINO                                 $4,775.00  
www.mnkino.com
Funding for the 4th annual MNKINO Film Score Fest, an event that brings filmmakers, composers, and musicians together to create new short films with original scores that are performed live at the screening. The event will take place the Science Museum of MN in St. Paul in August 2017.

One Voice Mixed Chorus                           $5,000.00  
www.onevoicemn.org
Funding for four free productions of Pirates of Penzance. The production will feature a lesbian pirate King and her swarthy crew of sailors, the Major General’s daughters (men in dresses), dancing, a live band, and audience sing-alongs. The production will be staged around the band shell at Raspberry Island in St. Paul during Twin Cities Pride week in June 2017.

Raw Sugar                             $5,000.00  
http://rawsugartheater.com/
Funding for The Funny 2017, the fourth annual curated feminist comedy festival of original works created by self-identified feminist artists. Performances will take place in May 2017.

The Singers – Minnesota Choral Artists                         $5,000.00  
www.singersmca.org
Funding for The Singers: An American Pastiche, a concert series presented to explore choral music from leading composers of the mid-20th century while connecting their works to iconic Minnesota composers Stephen Paulus and Dominick Argento. Performances will take place in St. Paul and Columbia Heights in May 2017.

Twin Cities Housing Development Corporation                                  $5,000.00  
http://www.tchdc.org
Funding for TCHDC to renew its partnership with BareBones Productions to provide children from low-income families in St. Paul with a free, ten-day, multidisciplinary creative arts camp experience. This year’s theme, “Mythic Monsters and Superheroes,” will engage the children in exploring cultural/historical monsters and heroes, then making large-scale puppets. The camp will operate at Liberty Plaza in St. Paul from July – August 2017 with a final performance on the last day.

Suburban Hennepin County

Bloomington Chorale, Inc                         $5,000.00  
www.bloomingtonchorale.com
Funding to prepare for and perform the Spring 2017 Concert entitled “Celebrating 35 Years of Music with the Community” with guest conductor, Dr. David Docter, the founder of the Chorale. The performance will include the chorale and a pit orchestra, and will be held in Bloomington Center for the Arts Schneider Theater in May 2017.

Drama Interaction                          $5,000.00  
http://cokartscenter.com/dramainteraction501c3.html
Funding to support a pilot program that combines theater and dance with autism relationship-based techniques to allow parents to give their children the gift of art while also teaching them how to connect better socially and develop theater skills. Classes will be held at Capoeira Academy in Richfield from January – March 2017.

Edina Singing Seniors                                $5,000.00  
edinasingingseniors.com
Funding to bring 31 concerts of interactive music from the ’20s to the ’60s in a sing-along format to residents at senior centers, nursing homes, and senior day care centers in the southwest metro area during 2017.

Honeywell Concert Band                           $2,400.00  
Funding for 12 concerts presented at care centers, assisted living centers, senior housing complexes, and public parks. The performances will take place between February and December 2017.

JazzMN, Inc.                          $5,000.00  
www.jazzmn.org
Funding to present two concerts completing the JazzMN 2016-2017 season. The NexGen Jazz concert features Minnesota Youth Jazz Bands, the Dakota Jazz Combo, and guest artists from LA’s Urban Renewal Project. The second concert features 5-time Grammy award-winner and Minnesota native Maria Schneider. Both performances will be held at the Hopkins High School Auditorium during March and April 2017.

Maple Grove Arts Center                           $1,820.00  
http://maplegroveartscenter.org/
Funding for the second Maple Grove chalk festival which includes public education sessions. The festival will take place at the Maple Grove Arts Center in June 2017.

Music Association of Minnetonka                                   $5,000.00  
http://www.musicassociation.org
Funding for four young people’s concerts focused on building children’s familiarity with instruments in the orchestra. These concerts will be performed at Wayzata Community Church in February 2017, at Minnetonka United Methodist Church in February 2017, at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in conjunction with its fall festival, and the Minnetonka Community Center in late October 2017.

Orono Community Education Early Learning Program                     $5,000.00  
www.oronoearlylearning.com
Funding for Roots & Wings – Growing Young Artists, a five month study of the creative intersection of art and nature by 180 young children and their families. The series will culminate with an art fair and evening family event at the Discovery Center in Maple Plain in May 2017.

Plymouth Concert Band                             $5,000.00  
http://www.plymouthconcertband.org
Funding to present Winter and Spring 2017 concerts. The theme of the Winter March concert will be “Collage” and will feature the PCB, the Wayzata High School Wind Symphony and small ensembles. The Spring concert theme will be “Saxophonia” and will feature the Ancia Saxophone Quartet performing with the PCB. These free concerts will be held in Wayza High School’s auditorium in March and May 2017.

St. Louis Park Friends of the Arts                                   $5,000.00  
slpfota.org
Funding for Our Town Sings!, a concert and community sing series celebrating the diversity and unity of the St. Louis Park and Twin Cities communities. Five musical artists will each present an evening of music, leading the audience in singing, and educating attendees about the music of a particular culture strongly present in St. Louis Park. All performances will take place at the Wolfe Park Veterans’ Memorial Amphitheater in St. Louis Park during June and July of 2017.

Suburban Ramsey County

Harmonic Relief                              $5,000.00  
www.harmonicrelief.org
Funding for “Thank You for the Music,” a series of three performances of a two-hour show featuring a mix of songs and choreography ranging from Broadway to old standards to pop. The shows will take place at the Maplewood Performing Arts Theater in May 2017 and will be reprised via three free summer presentations.

Lakeshore Players                          $5,000.00  
www.lakeshoreplayers.org
Funding for the production of “Happy Days: A New Musical”, which will be performed at Lakeshore Players’ downtown White Bear Lake theater in April and May 2017.

Silverwood Park-Three Rivers Park District                           $5,000.00  
http://threeriversparks.org/parks/silverwood-park.aspx
Funding to support the 2017 Silverwood Onstage season, a four-month season of performing arts presentations  which includes concerts, dance, performance arts, puppetry, and film presentations. The events will take place  at Silverwood Park in St. Anthony between June – September 2017.

Washington County

Arts Garden          $5,000.00
Funding to create and perform an original new community theatre musical production called, “A Trip to Nerdville” which will feature movie scenes and musical numbers from nerd classics like Star Trek, Dr. Who, Princess Bride, Holy Grail, and many more. The production is open to community members ages 10-100 and performances will take place at the Arts Garden in Hugo in April 2017.

Marine Film Society                                   $5,000.00  
Funding for the Marine Documentary Series, a five-month curated film series featuring local and regional film makers. Screenings will take place at the historic City of Marine Town Village Hall, one of the only non-fiction dedicated film venues in Minnesota, between October 2017 and March 2018.

Music Saint Croix                            $5,000.00  
http://www.musicsaintcroix.com
Funding to perform five concerts: two concerts of classics of chamber music repertoire and two concerts of a new chamber music setting of Richard Strauss’ epic tone poem, Don Quixote, featuring baritone/actor Bradley Greenwald. Performances followed by ‘meet the musicians’ receptions will be held at the Washington County Historic Courthouse in January and April 2017. A fifth free concert of chamber music will also be held at Boutwell’s Landing in Oak Park Heights in April 2017.

Square Lake Film & Music Festival                                 $5,000.00  
www.squarelakefestival.com
Funding for the 2017 Square Lake Film & Music Festival, a daylong, outdoor celebration of Minnesota-made music and film held on a 25-acre hobby farm near Stillwater.  The festival will take place in August 2017.

StoryArk                               $5,000.00  
www.theshireonline.com
Funding for students in grades six through twelve to write the scripts, compose music, create sound effects, act in roles, and produce original episodes for a sci-fi radio drama called #HUSHpodcast. During the winter/spring trimester of 2017, students will create four 22 minute episodes that will be aired on the radio show Voices in the Valley before being uploaded as the next four episodes in the #HUSHpodcast series.