We are pleased to announce grants to 39 Chicago arts and culture organizations totaling $610,000.
These grants are made in partnership with The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation through the MacArthur Funds for Culture, Equity, and the Arts at The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation.
This final cycle of grant funding supports organizations with annual operating budgets between $150,000 and $500,000. Grantees represent a broad range of creative disciplines, including music, dance, theater, visual arts, museums and collections, film and video, and more, with sixty-one percent self-identifying as racial and cultural equity organizations.
“Over these past 20 years, it has been meaningful for the Driehaus Foundation to support Chicago’s dynamic arts sector and cultural endeavors," comments Executive Director Anne Lazar. "We have been immensely proud of our grantees and their work and wish them continued success in the future!”
A complete list of grant recipients is below. We extend our congratulations to the MacArthur-Driehaus awardees!
A Red Orchid Theatre - $20,000
Founded in 1993, A Red Orchid Theatre is an ensemble of artists dedicated to the proliferation of live theatre in the modern world.
Aerial Dance Chicago - $14,000
Aerial Dance Chicago was among the first and remains one of the only organizations committed to blending circus arts with dance techniques.
Asian Improv aRts Midwest - $20,000
Featuring traditional Asian art forms and contemporary Asian American cultural aesthetics, Asian Improv aRts Midwest nurtures and produces art that accurately reflects the multi-cultural, multi-ethnic reality of Chicago and the U.S.
Chicago a cappella - $20,000
Founded in 1993, Chicago a cappella is a creative enterprise devoted to advancing the art and appreciation of singing. It is a premier small classical vocal ensemble, offering intimate performances, innovative programming, and musical virtuosity.
Chicago Dance Crash - $12,000
Founded in 2002, Chicago Dance Crash is a hip hop/contemporary dance company committed to exploring and exploiting the potential of human response and athleticism through live performance.
Chicago Dance History Project - $12,000
Chicago Dance History Project is a seven-year-old organization that archives first person dance narratives. It produces panels, lecture-demonstrations, and public events documenting Chicago dance and its influence.
Chicago Dancemakers Forum - $20,000
Chicago Dancemakers Forum elevates the field of dance by being a catalyst for the artistic and professional growth of dancemakers, providing support and resources at pivotal moments in their careers. It is the only organization in Chicago dedicated to this work.
Chicago Dancers United - $12,500
Chicago Dancers United provides financial relief for preventative health care and critical medical needs for Chicago dance industry professionals. Its primary fundraiser is the Dance for Life gala.
Chicago Danztheatre Ensemble - $12,500
Founded in 2001, Chicago Danztheatre Ensemble provides arts education and contemporary performances that illuminate social issues. Performances are multidisciplinary, incorporating dance, poetry, music, and visual arts, while tackling social issues.
Chicago Dramatists - $20,000
Founded in 1979, Chicago Dramatists is the city’s only organization solely dedicated to developing new plays.
Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus - $13,000
Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus is an inclusive, community-based chorus that performs traditional choral music, musical theater, jazz, and pop. It seeks to delight its audiences, enrich its members, and explore issues relevant to LGBTQ people.
Chicago Jazz Orchestra - $19,000
The Chicago Jazz Orchestra celebrates and perpetuates jazz orchestra music for all audiences through unique performances, collaboration, and education. Alongside engagements at Chicago jazz clubs, season highlights include tributes to Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles, Roy Eldridge, and Nat King Cole.
Chicago Maritime Museum - $8,000
Chicago Maritime Museum’s mission is to preserve and present the heritage of Chicago’s waterways and their impact on Chicago’s evolution.
Chicago Public Art Group - $20,000
Chicago Public Art Group brings together artists and communities to create collaborative, community engagement-driven public art. Its work can be found throughout Chicago, most notably murals and mosaics interpreting stories of communities of color.
Chicago Tap Theatre - $12,000
Chicago Tap Theatre preserves the American indigenous art of tap dance. It offers concerts, classes, and more, and stands apart by adopting a conceptual, narrative, and “emotive approach” to its work and performing exclusively with live music.
Deeply Rooted Productions - $20,000
Deeply Rooted Productions re-imagines and diversifies the aesthetics of contemporary dance by bringing together modern, classical, and African American traditions.
Elastic Arts Foundation - $18,500
Incorporated in 2002, Elastic Arts Foundation fosters artistic exploration from a versatile Chicago venue by programming and presenting multifaceted performances and exhibitions.
Free Street Theater - $20,000
Since 1969, Free Street Theater has used theater and performance as a tool to defy Chicago’s racial and economic segregation, becoming the Chicago Park District’s first Arts Partner in Residence in the historic Pulaski Park building and with operations in its Storyfront Theater space in Back of the Yards.
Full Spectrum Features - $14,000
Full Spectrum Features is committed to increasing diversity in the independent film industry by producing, exhibiting, and supporting the work of women, LGBTQ, and minority filmmakers.
Gerber Hart Library and Archives - $8,500
Gerber/Hart Library and Archives is a lesbian and gay library, archives, and cultural center focusing primarily on the Chicago metropolitan area and the Midwest.
Haven Theatre Company - $14,000
Haven empowers artists to practice and hone their craft by providing an equitable haven of opportunity for the creation of innovative performance, theatre, and media arts. Its work intentionally represents Chicago’s racial and cultural diversity.
Honey Pot Performance - $7,500
Honey Pot Performance is a collaborative of artists emphasizing everyday ways of valuing the human, through movement-based performance, community engagement, and archival writing.
Joel Hall Dancers & Center - $13,000
Joel Hall Dancers & Center, founded in 1974, comprises three ensembles for pre-professional, early-career, and professional dancers, plus a facility that offers public classes and rentable studio space.
Korean Performing Arts Institute of Chicago - $17,500
Korean Performing Arts Institute of Chicago, a seven-year-old racial equity organization, preserves traditional performing arts and culture and promotes collaboration and cultural understanding across genres and cultures.
Lucky Plush Productions - $20,000
Lucky Plush Productions is an internationally touring dance-theater company lauded for its unique blend of athletic choreography, casual dialogue, surprising humor, and socially relevant themes.
Mandala South Asian Performing Arts - $14,500
Mandala South Asian Performing Arts is uniquely positioned locally as a presenting and producing organization specializing in forms of dance, music, and theater rooted in the South Asian diaspora.
The Miracle Center - $15,000
Active in predominantly Black and Latinx neighborhoods on Chicago’s west side since 1995, The Miracle Center leverages the performing arts toward personal growth, leadership development, academic advancement, and community engagement.
The Neo-Futurists - $20,000
The Neo-Futurists is a theater collective of writers, directors, and performers based in Chicago and with branches in New York and San Francisco. The organization is a global source for experimental theater with approximately 200 performances each year.
The Newberry Consort - $14,000
The Newberry Consort brings together singers and instrumentalists of the highest caliber to create accessible and historically informed performances of Medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque music, with period instruments and performance practices.
OPEN Center for the Arts - $10,000
OPEN Center for the Arts provides a space where all artists can come together to share, showcase, refine, and develop their artistic talents as well as support entrepreneurship opportunities in the arts while connecting their growth to the community.
Otherworld Theatre Company - $13,000
Founded in 2012, Otherworld Theatre Company is the only theater in Chicago dedicated to producing science fiction and fantasy plays and celebrates the human imagination by engaging spectators with high-quality storytelling.
Pegasus Theatre Chicago - $20,000
Pegasus Theatre, founded in 1979, provides a voice for ideas, expression, and people often unheard. Its boldly imaginative theater champions new and authentic voices.
Pride Films and Plays - $19,500
Pride Films and Plays produces six fully staged productions each year along with a rich variety of cabarets, film festivals, and other events with LGBTQ characters or themes. Next season it will offer a mix of plays and musicals about the past and present experience of LGBTQ people.
Sones de México Ensemble - $20,000
Sones de México Ensemble presents folk music specializing in the Mexican ‘son,’ including the regional styles of huapango, gustos, chilenas, son jarocho, and more.
South Chicago Dance Theatre - $10,000
South Chicago Dance Theatre is a multicultural organization founded in 2017 that aims to preserve the art of dance through performances and education.
South Side Community Art Center - $20,000
The South Side Community Art Center has been a cultural and artistic leader in Chicago’s historic Bronzeville neighborhood for 80 years, presenting the work of African American artists.
Spudnik Press Cooperative - $20,000
Spudnik Press Cooperative is dedicated to printmaking and related arts. Its programs combine affordable studio and equipment access, professional development, classes, and exhibition opportunities to support sustainable artistic careers and advance the field of fine art printmaking.
Theo Ubique - $12,000
Theo Ubique presents a full season of four musical theater works at its storefront theater space in Evanston, Illinois. It is dedicated to engaging artists and audiences in an intimate and honest conversation through the language of strong stories and powerful musical performances to help create an enriched community empathetic to the human condition.
Visceral Dance Chicago - $14,000
Founded in 2013, Visceral Dance is dedicated to a bold and progressive world of movement. It connects artists and audiences, while changing perceptions of dance.