Following an unprecedented year of hardship for the performing arts, the Shubert Foundation announced today that it would award a record $32.1 million in 2021 grants to 575 not-for-profit arts organizations nationwide, as many of the groups continue to struggle under the impact of the 15-month Covid-19 pandemic shutdown.
Among the grant recipients are theaters, dance companies, professional theater training programs and related service agencies across the United States.
“This has been a year like none other for our grantees,” said Diana Phillips, President of The Shubert Foundation, in a statement. “Covid precipitated an existential crisis while outrage over racial injustice precipitated a national reckoning. Each had a profound impact that will resonate for years. The Shubert Foundation is gratified to provide critical support to hundreds of organizations at this pivotal time. Never has it been more needed or more deserved.”
The grants, which range from $10,000 to $325,000, benefit a broad spectrum of theater and dance organizations, the Foundation said, “from large to small, from urban to rural,” including groups that provide early arts exposure to young audiences.
This year’s total tops the $32 million awarded in 2020 grants.
Shubert Foundation funds are allocated as general operating support. Established in 1945 by Lee and J.J. Shubert, the Foundation is the nation’s largest funder of unrestricted aid for not-for-profit theater and dance companies. Since the establishment of the Shubert Foundation grants program in 1977, nearly $540 million has been awarded to not-for-profit arts organizations throughout the United States.
“The pandemic highlighted the vital role of the performing arts in our lives,” said Foundation Chairman Robert E. Wankel. “In a year deprived of live performances, we were more determined than ever to maintain our commitment to theater and dance companies nationwide.”