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National Endowment for the Arts Awards $565K to Ohio Recipients

Twenty-nine Ohio recipients have been awarded grants through the National Endowment for the Arts’ (NEA) Art Works, Challenge America, and Creative Writing Fellowship programs.

Through Art Works and Challenge America, $540,000 has been awarded to 28 nonprofit arts organizations throughout the state. Additionally, Hugh Martin of Athens, Ohio, was awarded a $25,000 Creative Writing Fellowship. Martin was one of just 35 individuals chosen for this fellowship and is a first-time recipient of this award.

“The National Endowment for the Arts is a valued partner in supporting the work of Ohio’s artistic and creative leaders,” said Ohio Arts Council Executive Director Donna S. Collins. “Every day, these 29 grantees from around the state are engaging audiences and inspiring others through meaningful and impactful arts experiences. We are grateful for the National Endowment for the Arts’ support of the arts in Ohio.”

More than $27 million in grants were awarded in total during this first round of funding announcements, with recipients in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

“The arts enhance our communities and our lives, and we look forward to seeing these projects take place throughout the country, giving Americans opportunities to learn, to create, to heal, and to celebrate,” said Mary Anne Carter, acting chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. 

 A complete list of Ohio NEA grant recipients follows:


  • Hugh Martin: $25,000

Chagrin Falls

  • Fevered Dreams Productions (aka Chagrin Documentary Film Festival): $20,000


  • Cincinnati Ballet Company, Inc.: $10,000
  • Cincinnati Opera Association: $30,000 
  • Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park: $10,000
  • Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra: $40,000


  • Center for Arts-Inspired Learning: $10,000
  • Cleveland International Film Festival, Inc.: $20,000
  • Cleveland Modern Dance Association (aka DANCECleveland): $25,000
  • Cleveland Play House: $15,000
  • Cleveland Public Theatre, Inc.: $15,000
  • Community Partnership for Arts and Culture: $10,000
  • Cuyahoga Community College Foundation: $20,000 
  • Cuyahoga Community College Foundation (on behalf of Tri-C JazzFest Cleveland): $20,000
  • L.A.N.D. studio, Inc.: $25,000
  • Musical Arts Association (aka The Cleveland Orchestra): $40,000
  • SPACES: $30,000
  • Zygote Press, Inc.: $20,000

Cleveland Heights

  • Apollo's Fire, The Cleveland Baroque Orchestra: $35,000


  • Ballet Metropolitan, Inc. (aka BalletMet): $15,000
  • Columbus Museum of Art: $20,000
  • OhioDance: $10,000
  • Opera Association of Central Ohio (aka Opera Columbus): $20,000 
  • Wexner Center Foundation: $15,000 


  • Muse Machine: $20,000 


  • Central Ohio Symphony, Inc.: $10,000 


  • Kenyon Review: $15,000


  • Slowik Music Institute (aka Credo Music): $10,000 

Shaker Heights

  • Verb Ballets: $10,000

For more information about these recipients and their projects, click here to download a complete, filterable list of awards.

According to the National Endowment for the Arts, Art Works grants support “artistically excellent projects that celebrate our creativity and cultural heritage, invite mutual respect for differing beliefs and values, and enrich humanity.” It is their largest funding category. These matching grants typically range from $10,000 to $100,000.

For federal FY 2019, the National Endowment for the Arts awarded 972 Art Works grants totaling more than $25 million.

Challenge America grants support projects that “extend the reach of the arts to underserved populations—those whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability,” according to the National Endowment for the Arts. Each grant is $10,000.

This year, the National Endowment for the Arts awarded 138 Challenge America grants totaling $1.38 million.

According to the National Endowment for the Arts, Creative Writing Fellowships in fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction “enable recipients to set aside time for writing, research, travel, and general career advancement.” Each grant is $25,000, providing direct support to creative writers.

This year, 35 Creative Writing Fellowships were awarded totaling $875,000.

For more information about the National Endowment for the Arts’ grant programs, visit

Established by Congress in 1965, the National Endowment for the Arts is the independent federal agency whose funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the Arts Endowment supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America. Visit to learn more. 

The Ohio Arts Council is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically. Connect with the OAC on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, or visit our website at


Article by Amanda Etchison, Communications Strategist

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