Seal of Dane County County of Dane
County Executive's Office


January 11, 2013
Pam Andros, 608-266-5915
County Executive

Thirty-four grants supporting arts and cultural activities countywide with public-private funds


The Dane County Cultural Affairs Commission announces the award of 32 project grants totaling $60,915 for community arts, cultural, and local history programs, and 2 capital grants in the amount of $2,750.  In the Commission’s third Grant Cycle of the year, county dollars combined with funds from Endres Manufacturing Company Foundation, The Evjue Foundation, Inc., charitable arm of The Capital Times, W. Jerome Frautschi Foundation, and Pleasant T. Rowland Foundation will be matched by over $1.5 million from other sources.  Grant recipients follow.

Project Grants



Madison Youth Choir, $1,220, in support ofthe Chavez Elementary School Choir, focusing on low-income and at-risk kids, this program will enable students to sharpen their listening skills, appreciate the nuances and cultural components of a piece, learn and apply musical techniques and skills, and gain confidence in performing before their peers and members of the community.


Madison Music Makers, $2,925, in support of Music Makers Spring Concert Tours, a tour of Dane County schools bringing a diverse student group to host-schools for an hour-long concert presenting performances by a Middle School performance group, The Colors of Music, foot-stomping music from the youngest members, and performances by local professionals.



Dance Wisconsin, $975, supporting theCoppelia Ballet, a work crafted during the romantic era of ballet, featuring folk dances and mechanical dolls that come to life, performed by dancers of all ages providing an accessible and affordable ballet experience.

Madison Ballet, $2,390, in support of theBehind the Curtains: 2013 Performance of The Nutcracker, a full-length performance of this holiday classic, geared specifically toward a student audience combining an opportunity to experience live, professional ballet with a study guide and program designed to deepen the students’ understanding, making ballet more accessible to young audiences.


Li Chiao-Ping Dance, $2,925, for support of Riot of Spring 2013, a project including new work based on inspiring and historically controversial music composed by Stravinsky and contemplation of the evolution of contemporary dance.


Kanopy Dance Theatre, $1,700, for support of Antigone, a celebrated work that is part of the Kanopy Dane Company’s spring concert at the Overture Center for the Arts, and premiers a dance by guest choreographer Maureen Janson, for Dane County audiences.


Multidisciplinary Arts/Culture

Opera for the Young, $1,460, for support of Family Opera Day featuring Cinderella,part of the third annual Family Opera Day at Overture Center for the Arts on June 1, 2013 including free performances of "Cinderella"  complemented with workshops in theater, music, and design with assistance from the Madison Youth Choirs and the Madison Children’s Museum.


Madison Children’s Museum, $2,000, supporting Wisconsin Folk Arts Series, partnering with the Wisconsin Arts Board and the James Watrous Gallery, this series will bring folk artists representing diverse cultures and regions of Wisconsin to the museum to share their talents in storytelling, music, dance, and the visual arts.


Simpson Street Free Press, $1,700, for the Where in Dane County is the Simpson Free Press Series, bringing local history and the arts alive for young readers, as feature stories lead young readers to fascinating content that celebrates history, performance, and the arts in Dane County.


Overture Center Foundation, $1,700, for support of Overture’s 2013 International Festival a free, day-long event to be held on January 27, 2013 showcasing the diverse cultural art forms of the people of Dane County. 


TAPIT/new works, $1,700, for Now What – New performances exploring what happens after the bottom drops out, a new one-act play, and presentation the New World Performance Laboratory, an internationally-touring theater inspired by theater visionary Jerzy Grotowski.  


Fabu Phillips Carter, $1,700, for Remember Me: Mary Lou Williams in Poetry by Fabu, composition and presentation of a new body of Williams-inspired poetry accompanied by pianist Jane Reynolds, to be presented at public venues in Dane County.



Trio Antigo, $1,700, supporting Madison Residency Outreach Concerts, giving the larger public in Dane County the opportunity to experience live chamber music of the highest level, presented in convenient, accessible locations including retirement communities and neighborhood community centers.


Village of Cambridge Arts Council, $585, for Free Outdoor Concerts in Cambridge, the second season of free outdoor concerts throughout the summer to enrich the music experience for Cambridge and surrounding area audiences, enhance community identity, and stimulate economic development in Cambridge.


Middleton Community Orchestra, $2,000, in support of Rising Stars, featuring performances of the Saint-Saëns 3rd Violin Concerto and the Saint-Saëns cello concerto by two young soloists collaborating with professional musicians and performing music they would not otherwise have the opportunity to play.


Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra, $2,000, supporting An evening with Tasmin Little and the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra, the February 2013 Masterworks program featuring Britain music sensation violinist Tasmin Little in her first appearance with the WCO and school partnerships with Middleton and Sun Prairie High Schools.


Fresco Opera Theatre, $1,700, for The Real Divas of Dane County, an original ballad opera pulling familiar operatic arias and ensembles from their original contexts and fitting them into an original storyline based on a live taping of a reality show, allowing the audience to watch as famous opera characters such as Carmen and Papageno live under the same roof.


Madison Opera, $2,000, for Madison Opera Presents Don Giovanni, a timeless treasure presented with exceptional artistry and community accessibility, produced with local artistic and technical teams, that is sure to thrive in the imaginations of audiences.


Madison Music Collective, $1,960, supporting the Winter/Spring 2013 Jazz on a Sunday concert series, three programs designed to expose audiences to music spanning five decades of modern jazz from bebop to avant-garde, and deepen audience appreciation and understanding of this music and its historical development.


Madison Bach Musicians, $1,570, for Mozart & Haydn – Symphonies & Concertos, two spring concerts featuring symphonies and concertos by Mozart and Haydn performed by a 17-piece chamber orchestra of classical-period original instruments, plus a lecture-concert outreach event on the music of Mozart and Haydn for a student audience.


Festival Choir of Madison, $1,360, for I’m Gonna’ Sing, an inspired combination of art forms, this February concert designed to celebrate Black History month, presents new work by Composer-in-Residence, Dwight Bigler, based on poetry by Langston Hughes, and includes installation and display of 3-D art created by local artist Danica Oudeans.


Madison Symphony Orchestra, $2,730, supporting the Spring Young People’s Concert 2013, offering middle and high school students across Dane County a unique opportunity to experience live classical music at Madison's Overture Center for the Arts featuring the Madison Symphony Orchestra, Maestro John DeMain and the extraordinary winners of the Bolz Young Artist Competition.


Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestras, $2,925, in support of Winterfest Concerts, a performance of Prokofiev's Symphony No. 7 among other pieces of challenging musical literature, helping WYSO musicians sharpen their technical skills in a variety of musical styles while providing an excellent introduction to live orchestral music for local families.



Children’s Theater of Madison, $2,730, for And Then They Came for Me: Remembering the World of Anne Frank, a presentation of the award-winning multi-media play incorporating oral history, videotaped interviews, historical photos, and film into the performance.


Playtime Productions, $1,460, in support of The Red Shoes, an affordable, family-friendly dancing tour of world cultures presented at fifteen Dane County venues.


Forward Theatre, $2,925, in support of the Good People production, a Wisconsin premiere of Good People by award-winning playwright David Lindsay-Abaire at the Overture Center, complemented with pre-show talks every Thursday and Sunday, and post-show talkbacks after every performance.


Four Seasons Theatre, $1,700, supporting  production of Avenue Q,  winner of the Tony "Triple Crown" for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book, Avenue Q tells the timeless story of a recent college grad named Princeton who moves into a shabby New York apartment all the way out on Avenue Q.


Visual Arts

Mount Horeb Area Art Association, $1,365, for the 7th Annual Spring Art Tour, highlighting art creation, Mount Horeb area artists will share their rarely seen small town and rural studios including art demonstrations in a variety of media during this 3-day open art studios event 


Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, $1,460, supporting Young at Art 2013, works of art by students in kindergarten through grade 12.  It is the result of a long-standing collaboration between MMoCA and the Madison Metropolitan School District’s Fine Arts Department. It underscores the value of early and continuing exposure to high-quality art education to the entire community.


Wisconsin Academy of Arts & Letters, $2,700, for Vital Skills, the work of about 30 Wisconsin artists and artisans who are dedicated to preserving traditional craft techniques.  These diverse individuals -- boatbuilders, weavers, metalsmiths, papermakers, and more -- represent an immense reserve of knowledge and experience that could be crucial to rebuilding local economies in the face of climate change and fossil fuel depletion.


VSA Wisconsin, $1,950, for Visual Expressions: A Call for Art Exhibition, a juried exhibition of work by nearly 250 children and adults with disabilities from across Wisconsin. The exhibition will expose the general public to the talents and accomplishments of schoolchildren with disabilities as well as emerging and established adult artists with disabilities.


UW Arts Institute – Wisconsin Film Festival, $1,700, supporting the 15th Annual Wisconsin Film Festival, a project celebrating the power of motion pictures – one that has grown into the largest campus-based film festival in the United States, averaging well over 100 films and more than 20,000 attendees each spring.


Capital Grants

Stoughton Village Players, $1,870, for purchase and installation of a hearing loop.


UW Arts Institute – Wisconsin Film Festival, $880, for purchase of Blu Ray players.


Special Merit Awards

Vi Miller Award of Excellence, $750 to Madison Symphony Orchestra, supporting the 2012 Fall Youth Concerts, and the many opportunities the orchestra provides for students from across the county to experience live classical music at Overture Hall.


The Commission annually designates one grant recipient whose activities demonstrate high artistic quality, strong educational value, and serve children and youth in Dane County communities both within and outside of the City of Madison.  The award is named in honor of the late Vi Miller, niece of William Evjue, wife of The Capital Times publisher, Fred Miller, and long-time officer of The Capital Times Co. and The Evjue Foundation, Inc.  Vi Miller was a very generous contributor to the cultural life of Dane County.  This special award, created in Miller’s memory, honors her devotion to the arts and community service.  The Evjue Foundation, Inc. and Dane County fund it jointly.


Liesl Blockstein Award for Distinguished Community Service in the Arts, $750 to the Dimensions in Sound & The Studio Orchestra, supporting Senior Living Establishments Concerts, countywide concerts continuing through the spring of 2013.


The Commission annually designates one grant recipient whose activities link the arts and human services---by offering exemplary arts experiences that either are especially provided for Dane County populations with special needs or promote cultural pluralism and the improvement of local racial and cultural relations.  The award is named in honor of the late Liesl Blockstein, a former member of the Dane County Board of Supervisors and the Dane County Cultural Affairs Commission.  Liesl’s devotion to the arts, her interest in educational opportunities, and her commitment to enriching the civic life of Dane County resulted in the creation of this memorial award upon her untimely death in a car accident over twenty years ago.  It is funded from a mix of public and private funds, combined with earned income from a trust fund established in the Office of County Treasurer. 



This year, Dane Arts awarded almost $300,000 in public-private funds to nonprofit organizations, schools, individuals, and municipalities for arts, cultural, and local history projects and programs offered countywide.  Three grant cycles each year have application deadlines of February 1, June 1, and October 1.


In late June, Dane Arts launched a new initiative,, an online cultural marketplace.  This innovative tool complements the Cultural Affairs Commission’s grant program and offers another strategy assisting our local creative sector in marketing and fund raising.  See   

For more information about Dane Arts’ grant program and other opportunities, see