The Schubert Foundation has given a record $37.6 million in unrestricted grants to non-profit theaters, dance companies, academic theater training programs, and related service agencies, and has additionally given a gift of $1 million to create thriving scholarships for theater students. Spelman College And Morehouse CollegeThe two most prominent HBCUs (historically black colleges and universities).
The grants and gifts were announced by the Foundation today. The $37.6 million figure topped last year’s record-setting $32.1 million from $55 million.
“We are pleased to increase both our funding and the number of our grantees this year,” Diana Phillips, president of The Schubert Foundation, said in a statement. “While it has been exciting to see a return to life in the performing arts, COVID has dealt a terrible blow and is much needed everywhere.”
Founded in 1945 by theater impresario Lee and JJ Schubert to honor their brother Sam, the foundation is today the nation’s largest funder of unrestricted aid to non-profit theater and dance companies. Since the foundation’s grant program was established in 1977, the organization has awarded more than $575 million.
According to Phillips, the foundation sought to broaden access and eliminate barriers to grants this year, and “welcomes first-time applicants with smaller budgets without the need for audited financial statements.” He said the change led to the addition of 18 of the 50 new grantees to the foundation’s roster.
President Robert E. Wankel said the foundation board has approved two $1 million endowments for scholarships at Spelman and Morehouse to “expand opportunities for college students of color to gain extensive experience in the performing arts.”
“Spelman College is honored to receive such a generous endowment gift from The Schubert Foundation in support of the developing theater artistry of women of color,” said Spelman College President Mary Schmidt Campbell. “With the expansion of the college and the renovation of our theaters and performance spaces, the support of our promising young students is the perfect complement.”
David A. Thomas, president of Morehouse College, said, “Creativity is the most important talent the world will need in the future. This gift will ensure that men of color communicate ideas, bridge cultural barriers, problem-solve and inspire, ignite enthusiasm.” , are able to use their unique artistic talents to serve as a catalyst for reflection and introspection. Leadership in the arts is one of the most important fulfillment of the Morehouse mission.”