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National Endowment for the Arts announces grant to American Theatre Wing

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New York, NY (06/20/11) – Rocco Landesman, Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, announced that the American Theatre Wing has been recommended for a grant of $40,000 to support the Wing’s SpringboardNYC and Theatre Intern Group programs for emerging artists and professionals. The American Theatre Wing is one of 1,145 not-for-profit national, regional, state, and local organizations recommended for a grant as part of the federal agency’s second round of fiscal year 2011 grants. In total, the Arts Endowment will distribute more than $88 million to support projects nationwide.

An independent agency of the federal government, the National Endowment for the Arts advances artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman said, “NEA research shows that three out of four Americans participate in the arts. The diverse, innovative, and exceptional projects funded in this round will ensure that Americans around the country continue to have the opportunity to experience and participate in the arts.”

“At a time when funding for the arts is particularly challenged, we are enormously grateful for this grant from the National Endowment for the Arts – the first in the American Theatre Wing’s history,” said Howard Sherman, Executive Director of the American Theatre Wing. “It is recognition that our work in support of young professionals entering the theater field is of significant national value.”

The SpringboardNYC summer program offers young adults information and contacts that would otherwise take years to develop. Designed for serious students looking to take the plunge into the New York theatre world, SpringboardNYC prepares the next generation of theatre artists for working life in New York. Taught by industry professionals, sessions include on-your-feet audition training with directors and casting directors and seminars with the industry's leading agents and managers, as well as intimate conversations with some of Broadway’s biggest names. Sessions are held with a variety of the theater industry’s major “behind the scenes” players, including general managers, press agents, company managers and more, giving participants the advantage of better understanding the world into which they are entering. Participants also get to attend several Broadway and Off Broadway shows (with special talkback sessions), as well as the dress rehearsal for The Tony Awards.

The Theatre Intern Group offers social and professional development opportunities for anyone who currently serves as an intern in the theatre industry. Membership allows participants to build contacts with peers immediately upon starting work in the theatre community. Members are invited to attend monthly panel discussions on the many varied facets of the theatre industry. These events offer intimate opportunities to learn from professionals with 5 to 10 years of experience – long enough to be immersed in their professions, but not so far removed from their own experience as an intern.

The National Endowment for the Arts was established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. To date, the NEA has awarded more than $4 billion to support artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. The NEA extends its work through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector. To join the discussion on how art works, visit the NEA at www.arts.gov.

The American Theatre Wing (Theodore S. Chapin, Chairman, Board of Trustees; Howard Sherman, Executive Director) is a not-for-profit organization best known as the creator of the Antoinette Perry “Tony” Awards®, which it presents annually with The Broadway League. In addition to “Downstage Center,” “In The Wings,” “Working in the Theatre,” and a host of other online resources, The Wing operates many activities, all dedicated to recognizing excellence and supporting education in theatre, including SpringboardNYC, the Theatre Intern Group, the National Theatre Company Grants and the Jonathan Larson Grants. Visitors to americantheatrewing.org can listen to, watch or download from ATW’s extensive media collection, and learn more about all of its programming for students, aspiring and working professionals, and audiences who want to learn more about the making of theatre. Follow ATW on Facebook.com/TheAmericanTheatreWing, youtube.com/americantheatrewing and Twitter.com/TheWing.


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