Newton Festival of the Arts Grants Awarded

The Newton Festival of the Arts Grant Committee has announced the recipients of its 2015 Grant Program. Following the very successful 2015 Festival of the Arts, a call for proposals was issued by the committee for applications for projects that would most benefit Newton’s cultural life. Gloria Gavris, Chair of the 2015 Festival announced today that 22 Newton organizations would be receiving grants either for projects to be held throughout the year or during the 2016 Festival of the Arts next spring.

Winners are:  Dance Currents, Kathy Hassinger and Joanie Block for a 2016 Festival of the Arts performance;  Jill Chen, Newton Chinese Language School for a January 2016 Chinese New Year Festival; Stephen Bourassa and the New England Jazz Enrichment Foundation for his September 19 annual Jazz In the Yard Concert at the Jackson Homestead,; and Newton Family Singers for a free community sing-a-long as part of the 2016 Festival of the Arts. Also receiving support are Jerry Reilly for his Newton Nomadic Theater and Story Slams, Barbara Cassidy for Acoustic Newton Coffeehouses to be held at the Cultural Center at Newton City Hall this coming season,  and the Scandinavian Charitable  Society of Greater Boston for their September 12 Smorgasbord Nordic Food Festival.  To support performances in Newton’s assisted living facilities,  the Commonwealth Chorale has been awarded a grant, as have the Highland Glee Club for a Spring 2016 concert; Amelia Le Clair and Cappella Clausura; Jade Lin for the American Chinese Art Society; and Sachiko Isihara for Suzuki School of Newton’s Nomadic Traditions program, a concert of world folk music traditions next May.  Hankus Netsky will receive support for his Hebrew National Salvage project, as will Kevin O’Connell of the West Suburban YMCA Cultural Program for his 2016 Youth Singers Showcase.

Grants have also been awarded to Kim Kashkashian’s Music for Food effort to continue her work fighting hunger with the help of professional musicians;  Alexander  Prokhorov to produce Mussorgsky’s  opera Boris Godunov with the Commonwealth Lyric; Ellen Fisher and Newton Open Studios to support the Small Exhibits Project in the galleries of Newton City Hall; Yelena Neplok and the Nigun Chamber Ensemble for a classical chamber music concert; Adrienne Hartzell and the New Philharmonia Orchestra for an all-Beethoven program during May 2016 and Dan Elias and the New Art Center to support its Spring Spirit Day at the New Art Center June, 2016. Finally, also awarded grants are Joshua Jacobson, Founder and Music Director of the Zamir Chorale of Boston and Newton Community Pride for its on-going support of the Newton Festival of the Arts.

In addition, donations from the proceeds of the 2015 Newton Festival of the Arts were made to each of Newton’s three food pantries to help fight Newton residents who experience food insecurity.

Planning for the 2016 Newton Festival of the Arts begins Tuesday morning, October 6, 9-10am at Newton City Hall, Room 205. Everyone welcome to join the Festival committee. Contact Linda Plaut at the Mayor’s Office for Cultural Affairs to add your name to the committee list and with any ideas for projects to be included in the May 2016 Festival calendar: lplaut@newtonma.gov

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