The National Endowment for the Arts Funds 16 Art Projects in NC

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) announced today that 16 nonprofit organizations and one artist in North Carolina will receive $452,500 for fiscal year 2017.

In total, the NEA plans to award $30 million to nonprofit organizations and individuals across the country to promote opportunities for people in communities across America to experience the arts and exercise their creativity. 

“The arts are for all of us, and by supporting these projects, the National Endowment for the Arts is providing more opportunities for the public to engage with the arts,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “Whether in a theater, a town square, a museum, or a hospital, the arts are everywhere and make our lives richer.”

Below is a list of grants to North Carolina organizations:

Jean Godfrey, Black Mountain
$25,000, Creative Writing Fellowship

LEAF Community Arts (LEAF), Black Mountain

To support the LEAF Festival. The weekend-long Legends of Africa themed festival will feature performances by internationally renowned African artists. Educational and outreach activities with festival performers will include up to two multi-day residencies for underserved youth and a school concert with student participation. Plans also include an educational performance with a question-and -answer session for as many as 500 youth in grades K-12, teachers, and the community in downtown Asheville.

Appalachian State University, Boone

To support a series of programs exploring the influence of various cultural groups on the banjo and fiddle music of the United States. Scholars and musicians will present concerts, lectures, and workshops demonstrating how the interaction between various cultural groups-including African, African American, Native American, French, and Judaic - have influenced banjo and fiddle traditions. The programs will be recorded and the documentation deposited at the university.

Charlotte Ballet, Charlotte

To support the world premiere of Wuthering Heights, by Associate Artistic Director and Resident Choreographer Sasha Janes. Drawing inspiration from Emily Bronte's novel, Janes will utilize contemporary ballet technique, modernized storytelling, and technical production elements to bring the iconic love of Catherine and Heathcliff to life in this full-length ballet. Janes will explore themes from the novel such as friendship and love across time, gender, cultural, and social classes.

Obey Foundation, Inc., Charlotte

To support the Drums 4 Life Program. Incarcerated youth will receive instruction in West African drumming techniques and drum construction, as well as learn about the historical and cultural origin of the various drums. As a culminating event, the students will participate in a performance and have their drum music professionally recorded. Participants will receive the drum they assembled and a copy of their recording.

American Dance Festival, Inc., Durham

To support the presentation of dance companies from the United States and abroad, as part of the 2017 American Dance Festival. Programming may include commissioned works by Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Mark Morris, Beth Gill, Clair Porter and Sara Juli, and Mark Dendy. Additional performances may include work by Shen Wei Dance Arts, Mark Morris Dance, Jessical Lang Dance, Brian Brooks Moving Company, and Paul Taylor Dance Company.    festival also will feature a variety of education, outreach activities and discussions with visiting artists, post-performance discussions, open rehearsals, tours of ADF classes, and complimentary tickets for children and other community groups.

Center for Documentary Studies (Full Frame Documentary Film Festival), Durham

To support the 20th Full Frame Documentary Film Festival. Held in the spring, the festival will include discussions, panels, and master classes for students and professionals on the topic of documentary film. Panel discussions are recorded and posted online for the general public. New documentaries and retrospectives will be screened, as well as a thematic series presented by a guest artist or curator.  

Nasher Museum of Art, Durham

To support the exhibition, Nina Chanel Abney: Royal Flush. The solo exhibition at the Nasher Museum of Art will feature approximately 50 drawings, collages, and paintings, including mural-sized triptychs by Chicago-born artist Nina Chanel Abney, whose narrative figurative style articulates complex social dynamics through humor, irreverence, and satire. Abney's works address social attitudes and inequities. The museum will offer a workshop for educators to demonstrate how the artist's work can help facilitate difficult conversations related to contemporary concerns.    

Duke University, Durham

To support residencies, performances, and related activities focused on hip-hop music and dance.
Duke Performances will engage the university and surrounding communities through hip-hop music and dance. Duke Performances will host internationally known hip-hop artists for a series of week-long residencies that will culminate with performances in Durham.

Cape Fear Regional Theatre, Fayetteville

To support a production of Caroline, or Change by Jeanine Tesori and Tony Kushner.

The production will serve as the centerpiece for the theater's effort to diversify its audience and regional partnerships. The musical addresses the societal turbulence experienced during the American civil rights movement and following the assassination of John F. Kennedy.

Elsewhere, Inc., Greensboro

To support a site-specific residency and fellowship program for Southern artists. A committee of arts professionals will nominate artists to receive travel funds, room and board, and a stipend. The residency will include access to Elsewhere's collection of vintage objects, production support for experimental new works, professional development tools, project publicity, video documentation, and access to Elsewhere's global artist network. Additional artists will be selected to produce a public art project in downtown Greensboro.

Penland School of Crafts, Inc., Penland

To support an artist-in-residence program. Artists working in a variety of mediums including papermaking, ceramics, drawing, painting, glass, iron, metal, photography, printmaking, textiles, and woodworking will be invited for one - to six - week residencies. Selected by a jury comprising current and alumni Penland artists, as many as 150 participants will receive studio space, equipment access, technical assistance and community engagement opportunities.

Carolina Ballet, Inc., Raleigh

To support the presentation of Carmen, with live musical accompaniment by the Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle. The full-length ballet is choreographed by the company's Artistic Director Robert Weiss, with music arranged by Glenn Mehrbach taken from George Bizet's opera Carmen and Pablo Sarasate's violin tribute, Carmen Fantasy.

North Carolina Opera, Raleigh

To support a new production of Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro. This production will mark the final installment of the organization's multi-year Mozart/Da Ponte cycle. Engagement activities may include a lecture series at North Carolina State University in Raleigh and Durham, a series of introductory opera talks accompanied by singers performing  at public libraries and local bookstores.  

Cucalorus Film Foundation, Wilmington

To support the 23rd Cucalorus Film Festival. Film screenings, live performances, site-specific installations, and educational programs will be presented during the festival. Events are programmed thematically and will include work-in-progress screenings, a curated program of live performances incorporating dance and film, and an interactive installation inspired by David Lynch's film Blue Velvet.  

University of North Carolina at Wilmington

To support the publication and promotion of the journal Ecotone and related activities.
Featuring writing and art that reimagines place, a planned issue will focus on the theme of craft and will explore artisanship of all kinds. Issues also will include illustrated excerpts of manuscripts by authors whose work is expected to be published at a later date through the journal's sister imprint, Lookout Books.

Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation (Blue Ridge Music Center), Winston-Salem

To support Roots of American Music Concert Series. The traditional music of the Southern Appalachians (bluegrass, blues, gospel, and old time music) will be celebrated in a series of performances by local and regional artists. In addition to the performances, scholars and artists will offer lectures and workshops for instrumental techniques, and flatfoot dance styles.  

For more information about the grants visit  

For more information about the North Carolina Arts Council visit