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Performing Arts Program

Grants to Alabama Nonprofits, Schools, IHEs,
Agencies, and Artists for Performing Arts Activities

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Funding Source:

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Alabama State Council on the Arts

Deadline Date:

09/01/17 5:00 PM


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Grants to Alabama nonprofit organizations, schools, IHEs, government agencies, and individual artists for a broad range of activities in the performing arts. Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact program staff prior to applying. Draft applications will be accepted for review three to four weeks prior to the deadline.

This grant program supports projects and activities which are presented to ensure that high quality performances of music, dance and theater are available to Alabama audiences and to support Alabama’s performing arts organizations and artists.

Eligible projects and/or activities may include producing, commissioning, planning processes and touring. Arts organizations, governmental and other nonprofit organizations are eligible to apply.

Also under this grant program cash awards are made to individual artists in the performing arts based on merit of work, career achievement, career potential and service to the state.

Program Components:

Operating Support Grants:

Operating Support is awarded to performing arts organizations that demonstrate a consistent track record of high artistic achievement, public service, and managerial competency. Eligible organizations are expected to have a well-maintained educational outreach program and broad-based community involvement.

Operating Support grants permit use of funds for general, ongoing operational activities of an organization. New applicant organizations must submit a letter of intent to apply one year prior to submitting an Operating Support application.

Presenting Grants:

This component provides support for a performing arts series or single events where an artist or ensemble is contracted to give a public performance. Grants are reviewed by discipline, so applications for dance, music and theater performances should be submitted separately by discipline. More than one ensemble may be included in a single application as long as they perform in the same

The artist or group being presented must live outside the county in which the performance takes place in order to be eligible for funding. The artist or group presented should have touring experience and a reputation for quality presentations. Proposals that include educational workshops and residencies, or a comprehensive plan for audience or community development will receive priority for funding. Performances of highly commercial or seasonal entertainment, which could be self-supporting are unlikely to be funded.

Project Grants:

This component provides support for a wide range of activities undertaken by performing arts organizations for the benefit of their communities. Eligible projects include producing, commissioning, planning processes and touring. Education and outreach projects are generally a funding priority of the Council. An applicant may submit no more than two applications per deadline.

Administrative Project Support:

Administrative support may be requested if a case is made in the application that directly connects administrative support to organizational growth and to enhancing the quality of programs. Salaries for full and part-time staff may be included as a prominent part of the request.

Consolidated Projects:

A single application that consolidates several related projects by the requesting organization may be submitted for new or existing activities. The amount requested and the number of project components will affect the limit of applications each organization is permitted to submit per deadline and per year. If a Consolidated Project application is submitted, only one additional application may be submitted in the same fiscal year.

Technical Assistance Grants:

Organizations and individual artists may receive funding for special, one-time needs such as purchasing materials for a small- scale project, attending a conference, or bringing in a consultant. Requests must not relate to any program or project already funded or applied for in another component, and must not be eligible and appropriate for funding under any other component.

Internships and Individual Artist Grants:

This funding support artists engaging in projects that will have a demonstrated benefit to the art form, community, region or state. Funding may also be used for internships within an arts organization where there is a specific project to be done for the benefit of the community or organization. Applications must be made by a sponsoring 501(c)(3) organization, which will serve as a fiscal agent and partner in the project.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 181329

Estimated Size of Grant:

-Project Grant Request Range $1,000 - $10,000
-Administrative Project Grant Request Range $1,000 - $10,000
-Consolidated Project Grant Request Range $1,000 - $20,000
-Presenting Grant Request Range $1,000 - $10,000
-Individual Artists and Internships Grant Request Range: $250 - $10,000

Term of Contract:

If submitting by the June 1st deadline, projects must occur between October 1, 2017 and September 30, 2018.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

An organization is eligible to apply for funding support of arts activities taking place in Alabama if the organization is legally domiciled in Alabama and meets either of the following qualifications:

-The organization is nonprofit with a determination letter from the Internal Revenue Service declaring the organization exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

-The organization is a public or private educational institution (such as an elementary or secondary school), a school board, a local or county government agency or a college or university. Private educational institutions must be nonprofit and meet the tax-exempt requirements described above.

An Individual artist is eligible to apply for an artist fellowship if he/she is a legal resident of Alabama and has lived in the state two years prior to the application deadline date. Additionally, applicants must be willing to maintain Alabama residency during the grant award year (October 1 - September 30).

To be eligible for Operating Support, an organization must meet all these requirements:

-They must be incorporated and recognized as having nonprofit tax exempt status by the Internal Revenue Service for at least three years prior to application, or have been an agency of a city or county government for that length of time

-Must have an actual three-year average cash income of at least $650,000

-Must have a full-time administrative staff responsible for the overall functions of the organization

-Must have an annual audit conducted by an independent Certified Public Accountant


Colleges and universities are eligible only for activities that clearly serve the needs of the general public and communities. Indirect costs involving the administration of the institution cannot be included. Activities producing academic credit (except internships) or those oriented primarily to students and the academic community are not eligible.

Private nonprofit organizations which are requesting funds directly from the legislature for arts programing for the com- ing year are not eligible to apply under any program in these guidelines.

In instances where an organization receives other state money for any purpose covered by the support programs in these guidelines - whether directly from the legislature or through another fiscal agent - the Council will consider such state support when evaluating applications and awarding grants.

The Alabama State Council on the Arts does not fund:
-Projects not available to the general public
-Activities and performances planned solely for fundraising purposes
-Food, beverages or other refreshments
-Interest on loans, fines, penalties, and/or litigation costs
-Expenses incurred prior to October 1or after September 30 of the current grant year
-Investments of any kind
-Church projects which have sectarian or faith-based objectives; however, nonprofit religious groups may apply for community arts activities and programming where artistic expressions are the primary focus
-Indirect costs

Pre-Application Information:

-June 1 for projects which will occur between October 1 and September 30.
-September 1 for projects which will occur between January 1 and September 30.

Operating Support Grant applications are accepted for the June 1 deadline only. NOTE: New operating support applicants must submit a one-year notification (in writing) of intent to apply.

For a Technical Assistance Grant, call program staff for availability.

All applications are due by 5:00 PM on the deadline date. If the deadline date falls on a weekend or state holiday the application is due by 5:00 PM the next business day. Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit applications by 4:45 PM on the deadline date to be sure it is transmitted before 5:00 PM.

Applications go through an extensive review process. It takes approximately three months between the time an application is received by the Council and the time the applicant is notified of final action.

With the exception of Artist Fellowships, Folk Arts Apprenticeships and AIE Enhancement, grant requests to the Council must be matched dollar-for-dollar in cash or a combination of cash and in-kind support. Presenting grants must be matched dollar-for-dollar in cash. In order to count as matching funds, cash or in-kind contributions must be used to accomplish the programming objectives outlined in the application during the specified grant period. In-kind contributions may include donated services, space, or materials essential to the completion of the arts project.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the Council office and communicate with a program manager. It is advisable to begin communication with a staff member well before the deadline date.

Organizations or individuals who are applying to the Council for the first time are encouraged to submit a draft version of their application to be reviewed by a program manager. Draft applications should be submitted for review no later than three to four weeks prior to the deadline date.

All applications, with the exception of Folklife Apprenticeships and Technical Assistance requests, must be submitted electronically via eGRANT.

Submission of the electronic form is the first part of a two-part application process. The second part is the mailing of the certification page with original signatures and the required supplemental materials.

After submitting the electronic form, mail the certification/ signature page with original signatures and the required supplemental materials. This material is due in the Council’s office within three days after the electronic application is submitted.

How to Apply:

Grant Application Process:



Projects - Administrative:

Project Consolidated:


Operating Support:

Individual Artists and Internships:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online through eGRANT:

For questions related to Performing Arts Programs or to set up a consultation, please contact:

Yvette Jones-Smedley, Performing Arts Program Manager
334.242.4076 ext.226

Alabama State Council on the Arts
201 Monroe Street, Suite 110
Montgomery, AL 36104-3721

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama