ADV – Leaderboard

Balaban and Katz Chicago Theatre, June 2012. (Photo by Victor Grigas)

Jeff Awards Launch Impact Fellowship Program

The program is currently accepting applications from Chicagoland theatre artists of color, two of whom will receive grants of $10,000.

CHICAGO: The Jeff Awards have announced the creation of the Jeff Impact Fellowship, a new grant award program designed to support early to mid-career artists of color in the greater Chicagoland area. The program will award grants of $10,000 each to two artists to support their pursuit of artistic excellence in Chicago theatre.

“Supporting a vibrant Chicago theatre community is part of our mission, so we understand how vital it is to provide this type of opportunity for emerging artists in our hometown,” said Jeff Awards chair John Glover in a statement. “Our hope is that applicants will use the Jeff Impact Fellowship to step away from conventional ideas for how to approach their work and commit to applying the grant funds towards developing and growing their work as a Chicagoland theatre artist.”

The fellowship is intended for the professional, academic, and/or personal development of candidates in the theatre community. Eligible recipients are early to mid-career artists of color who reside in or are based in Chicago or a Chicago suburb and are at least 18 years of age. They must have been involved in Chicago theatre for at least one year as actors, directors, stage managers, designers, technicians, cabaret artists, playwrights, music directors, composers, musicians, or improvisational performers.

Applications can be submitted online here and will be accepted until June 30 at 5 p.m. CDT.  All applications must be accompanied by two letters of recommendation, one of which must come from an artistic director of a Chicago-area theatre company that has produced for at least two years, and be submitted by the recommender via email to Fellowship recipients and all applicants will be notified by Sept. 1.

Applicants with questions are encouraged to email John Glover at A phone conversation with an applicant may be arranged upon request. All applicants will be notified within 48 hours to confirm submission including two required letters of recommendation. For applicants that would like to submit additional documentation, information can be submitted via email to with documents and email subject line titles as “[Applicant Name] – Jeff Impact Fellowship 2023.”

The Jeff Awards seeks to recognize excellence, honor theatre artists, celebrate the vitality of Chicago area theatre, and serve as a champion of a rich arts community. Annually, the Jeff Awards evaluates over 250 theatrical productions and holds two awards ceremonies highlighting artistic and technical excellence over the past season.

Support American Theatre: a just and thriving theatre ecology begins with information for all. Please join us in this mission by making a donation to our publisher, Theatre Communications Group. When you support American Theatre magazine and TCG, you support a long legacy of quality nonprofit arts journalism. Click here to make your fully tax-deductible donation today!

ADV – Billboard