New York, NY - April 28, 2014 Funding for 39 projects undertaken by many of America's most vital artists working in the fields of contemporary performance was announced today by the MAP Fund, a program of Creative Capital primarily supported by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, with additional support by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The MAP Fund, among the longest-standing nongovernment grants programs in the nation, has supported new works in performance that challenge the conventions of contemporary performance, particularly those that address issues of cultural difference in race, ethnicity, sexuality, gender, generation or any other aspect of diversity since 1989. 

This year, the Fund received over 900 requests for support, which were reviewed in three stages by a total of 51 artists and arts professionals from around the country. Panelists at the final stage of selection were Jenny Bilfield (President and CEO of Washington Performing Arts Society, Washington DC), Yolanda Cesta Cursach (Associate Director of Performance Programs at Museum of Contemporary Arts Chicago), Deborah Cullinan (Executive Director of Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco), Darrell Jones (Performer, Choreographer, Associate Professor at Columbia College Chicago), Travis Just (Composer/Musician & Co-Founder of Object Collection, NYC), Gavin Kroeber (Producer, NYC), Carla Peterson (Director of the Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography, Tallahassee), Tanya Selvaratnam (Writer, Actor, Producer, Activist, NYC), Andrew Simonet (Artists U Founder and Director, Philadelphia), Somi (Singer/Songwriter & Founder of New Africa Live, NYC), Michèle Steinwald (Independent Dance Curator and Producer, Minneapolis), Shay Wafer (Executive Director of 651 Arts, Brooklyn). 

Grantee projects will receive grants in the range of $20,000 to $40,000, plus additional funds of up to $5,000 for general operating support. Individual artists associated with these projects are also invited to take part in Creative Capital's signature Professional Development Program. Over half of the artists involved with these projects are first-time MAP Fund grantees. 

Projects will take place in San Francisco, Houston, Providence, Seattle, Chicago, Portland, Tucson, Los Angeles, and New York City, with many touring nationally and internationally and varying widely in scope. In the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center's At War With Ourselves, the Kronos Quartet will join jazz luminary Terence Blanchard, poet Nikky Finney and a 500-member choir on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to commemorate the dual anniversaries of the Civil War and the Civil Rights Movement. And on a more intimate but no less urgent front, singer, composer, and performing artist Holcombe Waller will create The LGBT Requiem Mass, honoring LGBT people persecuted in the name of religion worldwide. As a group, the projects represent myriad interpretations of the MAP Fund's core objective - to foster diversity and aesthetic daring in performance today. 

"In a time when there is anxiety about the health of the performing arts, the MAP Fund is an eloquent testimonial to the massive creative and artistic energy in performance today," said Ben Cameron, Program Director for the Arts at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. "We are honored to support these exemplary projects and look forward to seeing these works brought to fruition." 

Grantee Holcombe Waller adds: "As one of the only major grants available to artists creating new performance work in the US, MAP is fundamentally shaping the ongoing life of the performing arts. Without this grant, my supported project would be hard-pressed to find comparable initial funding to get off the ground. The MAP Fund continues to be a beacon of light for the new work and new ideas born everyday, funded or otherwise."