Shortly after Julie Wake was named the Executive Director of the Arts Foundation of Cape Cod (AFCC) in 2015, she had the honor of awarding over $15,000 to 17 organizations as part of the nonprofit’s annual grant giving.
A little more than seven years later, the AFCC has increased that figure by more than eight times with its latest round of awards. In total, the regional arts nonprofit is distributing a record $120,388 in grants and sponsorships to 58 recipients.
The amount represents the seventh straight year the AFCC has been able to continue this upward trajectory and is a significant increase from its previous round of funding when it awarded $77,800 to 42 recipients.
“This grant funding is the direct result of individual donors, businesses, and foundations believing in the importance of the arts to our region. With their support, the AFCC has been able to make a meaningful investment in the arts sector so that arts organizations, artists, educational institutions, and nonprofits can move forward with projects that offer entertainment, education, inspiration, connection, hope, and healing,” said Wake. “The arts have long been tied to the character of the Cape, and this round of AFCC grants ensures that they will continue to remain an integral part of our creative economy.”
This year, the AFCC was able to address more of the sector’s needs thanks to a $25,000 grant from the Cape Cod Foundation as well as the support of its Title Sponsor William Raveis and its AFCC Patron Program. Through that support, the AFCC was able to award $90,388 in grants to 42 recipients this year. It provided another $30,000 in sponsorships to 16 recipients.
Among those receiving funding is the Woods Hole Film Festival, which will be celebrating its 32nd year this summer. “The pandemic was and is a huge financial challenge for us. We are working to get back to where we were before. We’ll be two or three years behind the recovery of the commercial sector because so much of our funding is dependent on grants, donations, and sponsorships,” said festival Executive Director Judy Laster.
She praised the work of the AFCC in stepping up to fill these gaps at a time when the arts remain woefully underfunded. “Everyone talks about how the arts and culture sector is so important to the economy of the Cape, but at the same time if you break down the numbers for public support of arts and culture, it is miniscule,” she said. “It is amazing the sector has the people that do what we do. The foundation of it has to change. It can’t continue to be so difficult for people to do it or we won’t be able to.”
The AFCC also funded several projects that expand access to the arts among children. This includes a grant to the Provincetown Jazz Festival’s Jazz in the Schools, a free program which started in 2014 and which brings live jazz music into schools across Barnstable County.
Founder and musician Bart Weisman of Orleans on drums partners with Fred Boyle of South Yarmouth on piano and Rich Hill of East Falmouth on bass to expose children to America’s music – jazz, combining history and music lessons with live performance. “It is such a unique thing to inspire a young person,” said Weisman. “Music has been cut back in our schools to a great extent. For us to come and bring this program of art, at no charge to the school, and get the kids to experience this is a great thing. It’s missing from a lot of curricula and I’m glad we can do it.”
The AFCC grant, Weisman said, “means we can go out to a few more schools we wouldn’t have been able to.”
Last September, the AFCC distributed $139,000 in National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) funding to 14 cultural nonprofits. The additional $120,000 in grants distributed last week means the nonprofit has invested over a quarter of a million dollars in the arts sector in less than a year.
The following are recipients of the latest round of grants from the AFCC:
- Alzheimer’s Family Support Center ($500) – The Artist Within, an arts program for adults with memory impairment and their caregivers at the Cape Cod Museum of Art.
- Alzheimer’s Family Support Center ($2,000) – The Re-Memorable Multigenerational Chorus of Cape Cod which brings together 4th grade students from Eastham Elementary School, people living with Alzheimer’s and dementia-related diseases, and caregivers to sing together and share music across generations.
- Ana Glig ($300) – MusArt Interconnections, an annual multimedia concert created and curated by pianist Ana Glig.
- The Art & Justice Collective ($5,000) – A three-part program that includes planning to establish a physical, year-round collaborative community space; a summertime multi-day Arts and Justice Festival; and a series of art and justice events featuring local musicians, visual artists, dancers, writers, and speakers. The goal of this work is to transform downtown Hyannis into a place of belonging.
- The Awareness Project ($1,500) – Mindful Theater for Older Adults which will bring live theater, in the form of short plays and shows with mindful themes, to residents of assisted living facilities, skilled nursing centers, councils on aging, and memory care units on the Upper Cape and Mid-Cape.
- Barnstable Land Trust ($750) – Words in the Wild, a unique hiking trail initiative at properties owned by Barnstable Land Trust that features plaques with site-specific poems penned by local poets.
- Beyond the Bounds ($3,000) – Six concerts for the upcoming 2023 season of Beyond the Bounds, an interdisciplinary arts organization that provides free public performances on the beautiful landscapes of Cape Cod.
- Cahoon Museum of American Art ($2,000) – The museum’s 2023 Streetside Series artist installation which will feature large-scale, bold, colorful flower sculptures by artist Daina Shobrys.
- Cape Cod Children’s Place ($3,750) – Early Child Development Multicultural Arts Series which utilizes the expertise of local artists to create and facilitate parent-child engagement art programs.
- Cape Cod Collaborative Arts Network ($3,500) – “Hello World,” an innovative and inclusive multidisciplinary arts program for youth in grades K-12 with and without developmental, intellectual, and physical disabilities and social emotional health concerns.
- Cape Cod Maritime Museum ($1,638) – A student art exhibit, “Surrounded by Water,” to be held from March 2023 to March 2024.
- Cape Cod Potters ($2,500) – The creation of a new website for Cape Cod Potters, Inc.
- Cape Cod Theatre Company ($3,000) – Introduction to Stage Management class.
- Cape Rep Theatre ($2,500) – The Bold Company (BoldCo), a free educational program for Cape Cod residents who are 55 and older and who are eager to learn the craft of acting through a fun and friendly rehearsal and production process.
- Cape Rhythm ($950) – Live performances in Falmouth Public Schools which introduce elementary school students to traditional music from Brazil, Haiti, Cuba, Morocco, Nigeria, and Ghana.
- College Light Opera Company ($2,500) – A series of free community shows, including one to commemorate Juneteenth and another for residents at Atria Woodbriar Park, a senior living community in Falmouth.
- The Cordial Eye ($2,000) – Grow Into Art, an 8-week paid internship/mentorship program for local teen artists of all disciplines.
- Cultural Center of Cape Cod ($1,000) – Rise & Shine, an arts program serving at-risk youth and young adults.
- Dennis-Yarmouth Regional High School Music Department ($3,000) – D-Y George Gershwin Festival Concert to be held Friday, March 16th and Saturday, March 17th at Dennis-Yarmouth Regional High School.
- Eastham Public Library ($1,000) – A five-part hybrid writing program, “So You Want To Write ____”, to be held in the fall/winter of 2023-24.
- Falmouth High School ($850) – Students in ceramics classes at Falmouth High School will create mugs with designs based on lessons they learn from leaders of The Osprey Project in Falmouth.
- Heather Pillar Images ($2,500)– A photography book and corresponding exhibition featuring Heather Pillar’s images of Morrie Schwartz, who was featured in Mitch Albom’s best-selling memoir “Tuesdays with Morrie.”
- Hyannis Public Library ($650) – An interactive series of puppet shows held during the summer, culminating in a puppet show performed by children.
- Falmouth Art Center ($1,500) – Ceramics classes for adults suffering from mental illness.
- Fine Arts Work Center ($2,500) – Winter Showcase, a new series featuring readings, exhibitions, and performances by Fine Arts Work Center (FAWC) Fellows.
- Judith Partelow ($2,500) – Bringing Judith Partelow’s play “NEIGHBORS” into schools or other institutions as an educational tool to address racism and promote inclusion and acceptance.
- Ken Field ($2,400) – “A Symphony of Crickets,” a 75-minute music and spoken word performance that is based on the poetry of award-winning African-American writer and musician Charles Coe.
- Kim Moberg ($2,000) – A recording of an original album, “The Seven Fires Prophecy: A Suite for Humanity,” that will be later accompanied by live performances throughout the region.
- Mashpee Public Schools ($4,000) – Alex Torres & His Latin Orchestra performing for and with students at Mashpee Public Schools along with a free open-air public concert at Mashpee Commons.
- Meetinghouse Clay Center ($1,200) – A series of skills-based workshops taking place on Sunday afternoons in the winter and early spring of 2023.
- Music for the Soul ($2,300) – A multi-cultural celebration in Falmouth, organized by Dawna Hammers, that will bring artists and musicians together to share rhythms, songs, dances, stories, and food with the public in the late summer/early fall.
- Orleans Cultural District ($2,600) – Pop-Up Practices in Parish Park, a program that gives local musicians a welcoming space on Orleans’s Main Street to rehearse informally while connecting with the public.
- Oversoul Theatre Collective ($2,500) – The Radio Theatre Project which will create radio drama recordings of the novel, LAND of the BLACK SQUIRRELS by Mwalim.
- Patrick Riviere ($1,000) – A short documentary film, “Artists at the Edge,” that will highlight the work and life of two Provincetown artists, Ken Lockwood and Darlene Van Alstyne.
- Provincetown Art Association and Museum ($5,000) – An exhibition of work by longtime artist, feminist, and advocate Mira Schor.
- Provincetown Jazz Festival ($2,000) – Jazz in the Schools Program, a 45-minute presentation that educates and entertains students in schools throughout Barnstable County about jazz.
- Sturgis Library ($1,000) – A free five-session film series that focuses on journalism. Following each screening will be a discussion led by film critic Tim Miller.
- Truro Playwright Collective ($1,500) – A series of free staged readings of plays featuring local, experienced playwrights.
- Twenty Summers ($2,500) – 10th season of Twenty Summers which will feature up to two dozen public events including artist talks, poetry readings, panel discussions, performances, art classes, concerts, and more.
- Veterans for Peace ($500) – The 28th Annual Voices of Peace Poetry Contest which starts in February and concludes in May.
- Wellfleet Historical Society & Museum ($2,500) – A 2-day workshop in flute making led by artist Hawk Henries, a Nipmuc flute player and flute maker.
- Woods Hole Film Festival ($3,500) – Filmmaker in Residence program.
- Yarmouth New Church Preservation Foundation ($2,500) – The purchase of a new lightboard for Thacher Hall in Yarmouth Port.
The following received AFCC Sponsorships for their upcoming events:
- ArtsFalmouth ($2,000) – Arts Alive, a three-day celebration of the arts which takes place in Falmouth Village in June.
- Cape Cod Chamber Orchestra ($2,500) – Toward the Sea, the final program of the orchestra’s season, which will be held on April 30th at Pilgrim Congregational Church in Harwich Port.
- Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival ($3,000) – A series of 10 live performances that will be held as part of the festival’s 44th season this year.
- Cape Cod Chorale ($1,000) – A celebration of the chorale’s 40th anniversary, featuring two gala concerts of Mozart Requiem and Fanny Mendelson’s Hiob, taking place May 6th at Scituate High School and May 7th at Mashpee High School.
- Cape Cod Quilters Guild ($500) – The guild’s annual quilt show at the Cultural Center of Cape Cod.
- Cape Cod Shakespeare Festival ($1,000) – A series of two Shakespeare plays held at Kate Gould Park in Chatham in July and August.
- Cape Cod Strings ($500) – Spring Is Here, a concert featuring the Cape Cod String Quartet, at the Cape Cod Museum of Art on March 5th and Lucas Hall in Falmouth on March 10th.
- Open Mic Classical ($1,000) – 9th season of Open Mic Classical
- Provincetown Tennessee Williams Theater Festival ($2,500) – Scheduled for September 21st through September 24th, the theme of this year’s festival is Tennessee Williams and science fiction.
- Red Door Chamber Music ($1,500) – A chamber music concert series taking place in Provincetown that focuses on music composed by LGBTQIA+ artists.
- Sandwich Arts Alliance ($1,500) – A concert featuring Vento Chiaro, a woodwind quartet, that will take place at Sandwich Town Hall on March 31st.
- Soleil Women’s Choir Project ($2,500) – A series of concerts produced by a new project-based choir to bring awareness to issues prevalent to Cape Cod.
- Truro Center for the Arts at Castle Hill ($3,000) – 17th Annual Provincetown Dance Festival which will take place in the summer and autumn of this year.
- Truro Concert Committee ($4,000) – Eight free concerts, featuring local musicians, held every Thursday behind the Truro Public Library.
- Vinegrass ($2,000) – A free music concert series, in partnership with Truro Vineyards, held in the spring and summer of this year.
- WOMR ($1,500) – Rockin’ Picnic in the Park, a new food truck and live bands event held in Brooks Park in Harwich.
To learn more about the Arts Foundation’s grants program, click here.