NEFA’s National Dance Project supports Production Residencies; The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Funds Pilot

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Rebecca Blunk, executive director of the New England Foundation for the Arts, announced that NEFA has received a $225,000 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to pilot new support for production residencies in dance through its National Dance Project.

“This support underscores the value of the process of dance creation, and the vital role that residency hosts can play,” said Jane Forde, Manager of NDP.

Six recipients of 2010 NDP production grants were selected to receive additional funding to more fully realize the potential of a new work with their partnering presenter/venue(s). The recipients of production residency awards and their projects are:

Big Dance Theater, Brooklyn, NY - Supernatural Wife
Dayna Hanson, Seattle, WA - Gloria's Cause
Dean Moss, Brooklyn, NY - Nameless Forest
Everett Dance Theatre, Providence, RI - Brain Storm
Martha Clarke, Sherman, CT - Angel Reapers
Ragamala Dance, Minneapolis, MN - Sacred Earth

A 2009 planning study conducted by NEFA identified production residencies - those providing full access to technical and production facilities, as well as artistic, directorial, and/or dramaturgical input - as the most underdeveloped and under-resourced type of residency opportunity. “This support underscores the value of the process of dance creation, and the vital role that residency hosts can play,” said Jane Forde, Manager of NDP. “We are hopeful that the success of this pilot will help bolster resources for production residencies in the future.”

The National Dance Project (NDP) has provided a system of support for the living, growing discipline of contemporary dance by supporting the production and touring of dance in the U.S. and beyond since 1996. To date, the program has awarded more than $17.3 million to 356 projects reaching over 200,000 audience members annually. NDP grants have supported more than 263 new dance works involving over 300 presenters of dance in more than 4,300 performances and 7,500 community activities. NDP has reached over 2.8 million audience members and funds tours to an average of 36 states annually.

NEFA's National Dance Project Production and Touring awards are generously supported by lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, with additional funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Community Connections Fund of the MetLife Foundation, and the Boeing Company Charitable Trust.

About The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
The Foundation’s Performing Arts Program provides multi-year grants on an invitation-only basis to a small number of leading orchestras, theater companies, opera companies, modern dance companies, and presenters based in the United States. Although the Foundation does not confine its support to large organizations with national visibility, it does seek to support institutions that contribute to the development and preservation of their art form, provide creative leadership in solving problems or addressing issues unique to the field, and which present the highest level of institutional performance. Grants are awarded on the basis of artistic merit and leadership in the field, and concentrate on achieving long-term results. Special consideration is also given to programs supporting generative artists—US composers, playwrights, choreographers, and artist-led theatrical ensembles. In conjunction with regular program grants, the Foundation also makes a limited number of grants to research and service organizations that are doing work closely related to program goals, particularly in the area of professional development. For more information about the foundation, please visit

About NEFA
NEFA creatively supports the movement of people, ideas, and resources in the arts within New England and beyond, makes vital connections between artists and communities, and builds the strength, knowledge, and leadership of the creative sector. NEFA is a 501(c)(3) that operates with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New England state arts agencies, and from corporations, foundations and individuals.

NEFA currently administers grantmaking programs of regional, national, and international scope that support the performing arts, public art, and Native American artists. NEFA also leads projects and initiatives that range from the analysis of the impact of the creative economy to the creation of online tools which link and advance the work of the cultural community.


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