SEATTLE: The Sheri and Les Biller Family Foundation have announced 10 recipients of their annual Social Impact Theatre Grant Program, which provides production support for theatres in Western states that are igniting positive changes in their communities through their onstage programming, and are innovating how they engage audiences around timely, relevant issues.
“We know that this is a critical moment for theatres across the country, with many theatres struggling financially,” said Sheri Biller, co-founder of Biller Family Foundation, in a statement. “We believe theatre is central to every community’s economic and social vitality, and we are thrilled to support 10 productions that use the power of theatre to address relevant social justice issues and engage their audiences. We believe in the positive impact these productions will have on audiences that will extend well beyond the theatre walls.”
“We feel extremely grateful to all of the theatres who took the time to apply,” said foundation CEO Audrey Haberman in a statement. “We learned so much about the wide array of issues they are addressing. We celebrate the commitment all the applicants demonstrated to raise up important voices and give visibility to issues and communities.”
The productions receiving awards this year use the power of live theatre to explore issues of injustice and resilience. These productions were also selected for their commitment to bringing different viewpoints together on challenging subjects, reaching new audiences, and partnering with organizations, community members, and subject matter experts to help amplify their production’s impact.
This year’s grantees include:
- In Colorado: The Laramie Project at Denver’s Arvada Center for Arts and Humanities; cullud wattah at Denver’s Curious Theatre Company; and The Prom at Town Hall Arts Center in Littleton
- In California: The Far Country at Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Summer Session With the Bones Brigade at Coachella Valley Repertory in Cathedral City, Tacos la Brooklyn at Latino Theater Company in Los Angeles, Inherit the Wind at Pasadena Playhouse
- In Oregon: What the Constitution Means to Me at Portland Center Stage
- In Washington: Sanctuary City at Seattle Repertory Theatre
- In Arizona: Tiananmen at Phoenix Theatre Company
Theatres throughout Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington state with 501(c)(3) status, at least two years of operating history, and annual revenue of at least $1 million are eligible to apply for the Social Impact Theatre Grant Program. The next cycle begins May 2024.
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