PERFORMING ARTS GRANT GUIDELINES FOR 2020-21
The performing arts have shifted fundamentally since Covid-19 took root as a pandemic in March 2020. The global magnitude of what has occurred affects a funding entity as much as any producing organization, and for that reason, the Samuels Foundation must change its Guidelines for all 2020-21 performing arts grants.
The funding process that will be in place for 2020-21 comes after a considerable review of constantly evolving pandemic field conditions, both locally and nationally. At its annual meeting in July, our Board discussed and approved new Guidelines for the year ahead.
As in the past, Samuels Foundation performing arts grants in FY21 will continue to focus on general operating support, but our traditional “open door” application policy will be suspended. All our arts funding in the year ahead will consist of invitation-only emergency triage general operating grants, intended to help the core organizations on our roster survive cancelled seasons during 2020-21, in the hope that full production will resume in 2021-22.
IF YOUR ORGANIZATION APPLIED TO THE SAMUELS FOUNDATION IN FY20, BUT DID NOT RECEIVE AN E-MAIL ANNOUNCEMENT OF CHANGING SAMUELS FOUNDATION 2020-21 POLICIES, PLEASE CONTACT COLETTE LUI AT CLUI@SAMUELS.ORG.
All organizations invited to apply for funding during 2020-21 will receive an e-mail notification by August 13, 2020.
Because our overall grants budget has not expanded significantly in recent years, the funds needed to make emergency allocations possible will have to be drawn from our existing budget. As a result, in order to create even minimal flexibility, we will have to realign our current roster of funded organizations. Not every group that received a Samuels Foundation grant in FY20, or even in years before, will necessarily receive support in FY21. We are going to have to make tough choices among our current grantee roster – at least for 2020-21. Knowing that there will be hardship for some, we regret having to select among past grantees, but pandemic conditions have forced this response.
With the intent of delivering all possible Samuels Foundation performing arts grants to approved applicants as quickly as possible, our 2020-21 review process will be condensed into just two filing deadlines:
* Organizations that in the past submitted applications in our First Quarter (September) or our Second Quarter (December) will be merged into a Fall Review with a new application deadline of September 8, 2020.
* Organizations that in the past submitted applications in our Third Quarter (March) or our Fourth Quarter (June) will be merged into a Winter Review with a new application deadline of December 1, 2020.
All organizations invited to submit grant applications for 2020-21 should be aware that proposals cannot not be assured of funding until each is voted on and approved by our Board of Directors at a scheduled meeting. After such approval, applicants in the Fall Review will receive their grants in early November. Applicants in the Winter Review will receive their grants in early February.
As we have said for many years, all of us at Samuels know how hard people in the arts work and how much is sacrificed in pursuit of artistic mission – never more than during the current pandemic crisis. This is a time of extraordinary challenges for everyone in the field, and the Samuels Foundation respects the effort and loyalty demanded by each passing week. Despite the hardship, losses – and successes – ahead, we look forward to seeing our community thrive in future seasons, when stage work once again becomes possible.