- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 11, 2001

Operating under its first budget increase in six years, the National Endowment for the Arts announced today that $20.4 million will be given through 825 grants to theater, dance and art groups around the country.

Twenty-six grants totaling $1.1 million will be given to art groups in the District of Columbia, including $30,000 to the Woolly Mammoth Theatre Co. for its production of "In the Blood" by Susan Parks. One of the larger grants of $100,000 will go to the Phillips Collection to support a touring exhibition on the work of Jacob Lawrence.

The Arena Stage will get $50,000 to support productions of "Constant Star" by Tazewell Thompson and "Tom Walker" by John Strand, both American playwrights. Gallaudet University will receive $30,000 for "The Deaf Way II," an international festival on the arts in July 2002. The National Symphony Orchestra will get $150,000 for a residency program in Oklahoma this March.

The Dance Place on Capitol Hill will receive a $20,000 grant for a series of performances and residencies. A $70,000 grant will go to Americans for the Arts, a lobbying group, to create the Public Art Network. Pilobolus Inc., another dance company, will get $10,000 for a work to premiere during the 2002 Olympic Games in Salt Lake City.

Other grants include $100,000 to the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater for a national tour to 30 cities this year and $60,000 to the American Ballet Theatre to fund a one-act ballet, "The Pied Piper."

In Alaska, $20,000 will go to the Anchorage Concert Association to support a residency of the Moscow Festival Ballet. The project includes performances and classes connected to two full-length ballets: "Giselle" and "Don Quixote."

CultureWorks Ltd., a Philadelphia company, will get $25,000 to support a four-hour radio documentary on the life of jazz artist John Coltrane. A Chicago film company, Kartemquin Educational Films, will receive $47,000 to shoot a documentary, "Refrigerator Mothers," on mothers of autistic children.

Perhaps the most unusual grant is a $20,000 award that will go to the Redmoon Theater in Chicago for some workshops and its seventh annual All Hallows' Eve Ritual Celebration.

A few institutions that have aroused the ire of members of Congress will receive grants as well, but all for mainstream-sounding projects. Women Make Movies, a Manhattan-based film distributor that has been criticized by Rep. Peter Hoekstra, Michigan Republican, for its lesbian-themed offerings, will get a $20,000 grant for "Hula Beyond Hawaii," a documentary about Hawaiians living on the mainland.

The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, which came under heavy criticism in 1994 for a sadomasochistic art performance indirectly funded by the NEA, will get $55,000 for an artist residency project.

The Kitchen, a Manhattan theater, will receive $35,000 for a consortium project with a Massachusetts company. The Kitchen and its parent company, Haleakala Inc., has featured explicit acts by feminist and homosexual performers.

Grants will go to several Maryland groups, such as the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange in Takoma Park, which will get $20,000 for "Hallelujah," a dance creation involving a Web site, videos, an artist training institute and travel costs for dancers. The Puppet Company in Glen Echo will receive $6,000 for the design and remounting of two puppet repertory pieces.

In Virginia, the Richmond Ballet will get $10,000 to support the commissioning of a new work by choreographer Kirk Peterson. The University of Virginia will receive $25,000 to support a series of public readings and writing workshops at black colleges and universities around the country.

Two other grants have been earmarked for works produced by black artists. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond will get $60,000 for a touring exhibit on the work of Martin Puryear. Hesperus, an Arlington group, will be given $7,500 for a concert next month that traces nearly 400 years of African-American music in Latin America, the Caribbean and North America.

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