Inspired by the October 2018 community sing led by composer/singer Ysaye Barnwell (front), The Reston Chorale will kick off its 2019-20 Season on Oct. 20 with ‘I Dream a World,’ featuring traditional spirituals and works by African-American composers supported in part by the fiscal year 2020 Operating Support Grant award by ARTSFAIRFAX.
Photo by Michael Olson
ARTSFAIRFAX, Fairfax County's designated local arts agency, announced seven Herndon- and Reston-based arts organizations among its 37 recipients of Operating Support Grant (OSG) awards for fiscal year 2020 that runs from July 1, 2019–June 30, 2020. Local grantees included ArtsHerndon, NextStop Theatre, Greater Reston Arts Center, Public Art Reston, Reston Community Players, The Reston Chorale and Voce Chamber Singers.
ARTSFAIRFAX funded $396,703 in Operating Support Grant awards to a total of 37 grant recipients within the boundaries of the County, the City of Fairfax or the City of Falls Church. The need for Operating Support Grant awards was self-evident. ARTSFAIRFAX reported applicants submitted $1 million in requests, almost triple the amount of funding available.
According to ARTSFAIRFAX, the competitive-based grant program required each applicant organization to raise a 2:1 match from any source except ARTSFAIRFAX or the Fairfax County government. In addition, an organization could request no more than 15 percent of their actual expenses for the most recently completed fiscal year. Awards ranged from $500 to $50,000. A panel review process determined the awards to ensure that the recipients met the highest artistic and management standards, as well as diverse public engagement that would strengthen communities through the arts.
Lisa Mariam, ARTSFAIRFAX Director of Grants and Services, said, "Fairfax County's community-based arts organizations' impact transcends their size or budgets. These grants fund programs that make art a part of the everyday lives of Fairfax residents and create connection through the arts. The social and economic impact of the County's cultural sector is a critical measure of the public value delivered by these arts grants."
"Public Art Reston is thrilled and extremely grateful to be a recipient of the ARTSFAIRFAX Operating Support Grant. This is the most significant grant awarded to our organization by ARTSFAIRFAX," said Anne Delaney, Executive Director of Public Art Reston after hearing the announcement of award. "The grant will support our mission to inspire an ongoing commitment to public art and create a new generation of artworks in Reston such as the upcoming public artwork by Ben Volta at the Colts Neck Road underpass."
Ruth Ann Pinkman, President, The Reston Chorale, agreed, "Funding from ARTSFAIRFAX enables The Reston Chorale to begin our season on sound financial footing and expand our offerings to include a concert in October," said Pinkman. "Beyond that, the grant review process itself is beneficial, sharing valuable feedback on our programs and a chance to learn about best practices of other ensembles."
When hearing ArtsHerndon received an award, Joanna Ormesher, President & CEO of ArtsHerndon, stated, "Arts Herndon is delighted to be a recipient of an Operating Support Grant from ARTSFAIRFAX. Linda Sullivan and her staff are an amazing team, helping all qualifying arts organizations. Without their support, expertise and care for the Arts, our County would be a cultural desert. Through this grant, Arts Herndon can have the opportunity to host a broad spectrum of the arts, such as visual arts, theatre, spoken word/poetry, music and dance, and also support young artists and musicians from our local schools."
Evan Hoffmann, Producing Artistic Director, NextStop Theatre Company, concurred. "NextStop Theater is once again honored to have received grant funding from ARTSFAIRFAX. Their support helps to ensure our work can continue to be as big, bold, and accessible to our community as possible. We simply couldn't do it without them."
ARTSFAIRFAX is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization, incorporated in 1964, as Fairfax County's designated local arts agency. ARTSFAIRFAX is funded in part by Fairfax County, corporations, foundations, individuals, the Virginia Commission for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. For a complete list of all 37 grantees and to learn more about arts events and grant opportunities, visit ARTSFAIRFAX.org.