For arts groups in need, a little goes a long way

Posted on: December 8, 2009

In Sunday’s (12/6) Washington Post, Jacqueline Trescott writes, “At the beginning of the year, Washington’s Joy of Motion Dance Center was experiencing some of the financial pain that was crippling many of its fellow arts groups. … Then, last summer, something unanticipated happened. The D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities invited local groups to apply for $240,000 it had received from the federal government as part of President Obama’s stimulus package. Joy was one of 18 organizations to receive much-needed, albeit small, grants. … When many people think of the stimulus program, jobs in the arts are not what first come to mind. … Though they are usually at the bottom of the pay scale, they do indeed pay taxes and contribute to the economy. As for the organizations themselves, the money may seem minuscule but will definitely help keep doors open. … Even not getting what was on your wish list is good enough, said Richard Strange, a violinist for the Capital City Symphony, which, like Joy of Motion, produces shows at the Atlas Performing Arts Center. ‘I asked for $8,000 to cover part of the salary costs for two of our essential positions, general manager and personal manager. We were awarded $4,000.’ With that and some cost-cutting, Strange said, ‘the orchestra will stay alive.’ ”

Posted December 8, 2009