February 5, 2021

NEA’S First Round of FY21 Grants Support Orchestral Concerts and Community Programming

Forty-four orchestras have been awarded FY21 Grants for Arts Projects (GAP), Part 1 awards by the National Endowment for the Arts to commission new works, support composer residencies, produce community engagement programs, present online performances, and support afterschool music education for young students. In light of ongoing public health restrictions relating to COVID-19, many NEA grantees are having to make adjustments to their originally-submitted projects, so program descriptions will continue to be updated in the NEA’s online Grant Search database. The list of 44 direct orchestral grantees, whose collective support totals $1,315,000, is listed further below, along with more than twenty related orchestral projects that have also received NEA grants. 

The Endowment has also awarded research grants, including Research Labs grants, which fund trans-disciplinary research partnerships that examine and report on the benefit of the arts in non-arts sectors. A $100,000 grant was awarded to New York University in partnership with the New World Symphony to establish the Sustainable Entrepreneurship in the Performing Arts Lab, which will investigate methods and characteristics that foster entrepreneurship and innovation in the classical music ecosystem. Another Research Labs grant, of nearly $150,000, was awarded to West Chester University of Pennsylvania in partnership with WolfBrown to establish the Research on Equity via the Arts in Childhood (REACH) Lab, which will also partner with the Settlement Music School, Carnegie Hall, and Play on Philly to study how arts experiences may foster positive self-regulation outcomes and promote equity for young children facing various forms of adversity.

Upcoming NEA grant deadlines

Mark your calendar with the following deadlines for NEA FY22 Grants for Arts Projects, the Endowment’s major support category for organizations for projects anticipated to take place beginning in 2021:

  • Grants for Arts Projects, Part 1: February 11, 2021
  • Grants for Arts Projects, Part 2: July 8, 2021
  • Challenge America Fast-Track: TBA (usually in April)

The NEA has released guidelines and application materials in the Apply for a Grant section of its website, with Challenge America guidelines and deadline expected to be posted this month. The League offers guidance specific to orchestras on our Tips for your application page.

FY21 GAP, Part 1 Grants to Orchestras

Application Deadline of February 12, 2020
Award Announced February 4, 2021

Project descriptions are not included in order to accommodate any pandemic-related adjustments. Current information is available in the Recent Grant Search. If any orchestral grants are missing from the list below, please email advocacy@americanorchestras.org.

Albany Symphony (NY), $25,000
American Composers Orchestra, $20,000
American Youth Symphony, $10,000
Apollo’s Fire: The Cleveland Baroque Orchestra, $35,000
Boston Symphony Orchestra, $70,000
Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras, $45,000
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, $20,000
Chicago Sinfonietta, $20,000
Chicago Symphony Orchestra, $45,000
Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra, $15,000
Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, $40,000
Civic Orchestra of Chicago, $40,000
The Cleveland Orchestra, $40,000
Detroit Symphony Orchestra, $50,000
El Paso Symphony Orchestra, $20,000
Florida Youth Orchestra, $10,000
Handel + Haydn Society, $40,000
Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, $20,000
The Knights, $25,000
Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, $25,000
Los Angeles Philharmonic, $85,000
Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, $10,000
Louisville Orchestra, $15,000
Minnesota Orchestra, $40,000
Nashville Symphony, $25,000
National Symphony Orchestra, $35,000
New Haven Symphony Orchestra, $15,000
New World Symphony, $60,000
Nu Deco Ensemble, $10,000
Orchestra of St. Luke’s, $20,000
Oregon Symphony, $25,000
Oregon Symphony in Salem, $10,000
Pacific Symphony, $25,000
Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and Chorale, $15,000
Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, $35,000
PostClassical Ensemble, $30,000
The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, $40,000
San Diego Symphony, $20,000
San Francisco Symphony, $75,000
Seattle Symphony, $40,000
St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, $40,000
Tempesta di Mare, $10,000
Washington Heights Chamber Orchestra, $10,000
Youth Orchestras of Fresno, $10,000

Boston University (on behalf of Tanglewood Institute), $20,000
BRIC Arts, $35,000
Buffalo String Works, $10,000
Carnegie Hall, $85,000
The Cliburn, $10,000
Community Music Center of Boston, $20,000
Front Exhibition Company, $20,000
Grand Canyon Chamber Music Festival, $30,000
Harlem Center for Strings, $15,000
Harmony Project, $45,000
Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, $20,000
League of American Orchestras, $90,000
Levine Music, $10,000
Lucy Moses School for Music & Dance, $15,000
Marlboro Music, $30,000
New Orleans Ballet Association, $50,000
The New School (New York String Orchestra Seminar), $15,000
Perlman Music Program, $20,000
Project STEP, $45,000
Stern Grove Festival, $25,000
Street Symphony Project, $40,000
University Musical Society, $30,000
Washington Performing Arts Society, $35,000
Wonderbound, $10,000
Young Concert Artists, $15,000

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