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City of Bloomington, Indiana

For more information, please contact

Sean Starowitz, Staff Liaison to the Bloomington Arts Commission, starowis@bloomington.in.gov, 812-349-3534

Bloomington Arts Commission’s 2017 Arts Project Grants & Reception

Bloomington, Ind. – The City of Bloomington Arts Commission (BAC) awards 16 local organizations with Arts Project Grants that cultivate community, encourage collaboration and enhance the arts across Bloomington. The general public is invited to attend the awards ceremony in the City Hall Atrium (401 N Morton Street) on June 28, 2017 from 5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.

“The BAC Arts Project Grants continue to support the tradition of assisting artists and arts organizations in pursuit of ambitious projects that propel the vitality and diversity of arts experiences available to the Bloomington community,” commented Sean Starowitz, Assistant Director for the Arts and Staff Liaison to the BAC.

This project is an effort under the City's strategy to leverage and expand the economic development potential of the arts in Bloomington. According to the 2012 Americans for the Arts study, Arts and Economic Prosperity IV, Bloomington's nonprofit arts sector contributes $72 million to the local economy annually through direct spending by arts organizations and their audiences. For more information on the study, visit the website.

Here is a brief summary of the proposals that received funding:

Lotus World Music and Arts Foundation ($1,600)

In line with Lotus’s “Storytelling” theme for 2017, Lotus will engage youth, the community, and partner organizations with creating story and song “crankies,” a moving-panorama folk-art form dating back to the 19th century. Area youth will work with local artists to create a community crankie (re: the life of Quinten “Lotus” Dickey) as well as their own personal crankie stories.

Reimagining Opera for Kids ($1,500)

“Spirits,” an opera in three acts, is the story of four close friends and their relationships in the years leading up to and during war. Developed for secondary school performances by the composer, “Spirits” examines the moral decisions we make every day and encourages us to be diligent about even the smallest of those choices, lest even bigger compromises await us in the future.

Krampus Legend and Arts Workshop ($1,300)

Krampus Rampage is a five block parade through downtown highlighting the legend of the Krampus. Krampus Bazaar is an interactive (sack races, Harm's Way, balloon horns, photography, chalk art, and more) space for adults, teens and children to explore the legend of the Krampus and enjoy food trucks and buy merchandise.

BCT Management, Inc. / BCT Theater ($1,450)

Working with 3rd graders attending summer camp, BCT Management, Inc.'s (BCTM) team of filmmaker/educators will help students, via storytelling, to investigate their family's history, specifically "when we first came to Bloomington." These discovered stories will be combined with historic images of Bloomington and the students' artwork exploring what they think Bloomington should look like in the future, to create a short film to be screened at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater.

Quarryland Men's Chorus ($1,450)

“Tyler's Suite” is a nine-piece choral movement centered on the life and death of Tyler Clementi. It sheds light on the dark subject of bullying and teen/young adult suicide.

Bloomington Open Studios Tour ($1,425)

The Bloomington Open Studios Tour brings visual artists and audiences together in the most intimate and educational setting possible — the artist’s studio, where they join together in hands-on demonstrations, learning and discussions to generate a mutually meaningful art experience. Additionally, through its free educational activities and programs, BOST serves broad audiences, including both artists and the public at large.

Carlson-Palmer Productions LLC ($1,200)

Carlson-Palmer Productions LLC presents “All the World's a Stage: The Show-within-a-Show in Broadway and Opera,” their seventh annual summer community concert of Broadway and opera excerpts on Sunday, August 27 at 2:00 p.m. at Fairview United Methodist Church; performers provide brief spoken introductions to the semi-staged numbers, including historical background on pieces, composers, and interpreters. Free-will donations are accepted at the concert to benefit literacy and artful learning programs at nearby Fairview Elementary School.

Writers Guild at Bloomington, Inc. ($900)

The Spoken Word Stage is a 2-day performance tent at the 4th Street Festival, featuring poetry, fiction, and storytelling performers from Bloomington and all over Indiana, from high school teens to tenured IU faculty. There is also a smaller Poetry On Demand tent, where festival-goers can request a poem crafted specially for them.

Bloomington Playwright’s Projects ($1,050)

The highly successful and long-running MiniPlay Contest invites students in grades 2-12 to submit original 7-10 minute plays in three categories (Elementary, Middle School, and High School). Winning playwrights receive recognition in the local media and a staged reading of their winning play by local celebrities and adult actors at a special Education Event in their honor.

Dance Network Alliance (DNA) ($1,400)

Va-Va-Va-Vaudeville (V3) will bring together local dance, movement, flow, spoken word, music, and other performers for a unique event with historical roots in old-time vaudeville but with fabulous modern flair. V3 emerged from the 2016 BCT Arts Startup seminar, which awarded DNA free use of the BCT August 18-19, 2017.

Bloomington Bach Cantata Project($1,350)

This project will present cantatas by J.S. Bach, each with a lecture, free to the Bloomington community through an annual six-concert series. Performers and music directors are drawn from the Historical Performance Institute at Indiana University and regional musicians.

Bloomington Symphony Orchestra ($1,350)

During its 48th season, the Bloomington Symphony Orchestra (BSO) is featuring three soloists: pianist Sung-Mi Im, mezzo soprano Cecilia Duarte, and clarinetist Victoria Lupieri. Our Musical Ambassadors project will allow these artists to take their talents to unexpected venues and share them with people who might otherwise never get to enjoy or learn about them.

The Burroughs Century Ltd. ($800)

The Muttering Sickness is an audio art collective based out of Chicago that will perform "The Whole World is Watching" in Bloomington as part of the "Wounded Galaxies Festival + Symposium: 1968 - Beneath the Paving Stones, The Beach." It's the last night of the festival, and there will be an after party at the Back Door.

Middle Coast, Inc. ($1,300)

The two-day film festival aims to bring noteworthy indie films and projects from new filmmakers to our Bloomington audience. Middle Coast also brings filmmakers from around the country to Bloomington to showcase the vibrant arts scene in the Midwest.

Monster House Press ($1,300)

Monster House Presents, as a monthly reading series, will showcase emerging and established poets from across the U.S. Events will feature poets as well as local musicians and visual artists, reimagine the format of traditional poetry readings, and strive to engage diverse audiences, all in a committed effort to improve public access to poetry, strengthen collaboration between poetry and other expressions of art, and foster the reputation of Bloomington as an exciting hub for the arts in the Midwest and beyond.

Cardboard House Press ($625)

This project will involve the creation of 150 handmade books and 250 chapbook collections in 20 community workshops (locations TBD). These workshops are part of Cardboard House Press's regular programming to build local audiences for bilingual poetry and to involve community members in the book production process. Books published in art book hardcover format will be made by hand in community-based workshops using recycled cardboard, marbled paper, stenciling and hand-sewn binding, with a full color dust jacket illustrated by an artist. Books will be presented by workshop participants at the end of the workshop season.

For more information, contact Bloomington Arts Commission Staff Liaison, Sean Starowitz, at starowis@bloomington.in.gov or 812-349-3534.

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