NEFA Strengthens Artist-led Ensemble Theater

$3.6 million from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation continues program

(Boston, MA) The New England Foundation for the Arts is pleased to announce a three-year $3,625,000 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to continue the work of the National Theater Project.  

Modeled after NEFA’s National Dance Project, NTP is conceived as a full system of support for collaborative, devised theater. In addition to providing grant funding, NTP facilitates an informed, interactive network of producing theaters, presenters, and ensembles that promotes funded projects throughout their development and tour planning. Since its inception, the program has funded 25 theater projects, supporting the production and touring of each, with awards ranging from $80,000-$130,000.  

“The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s commitment to supporting this work  - from the pilot study in ’10-‘11 and now through 2017 - is unprecedented,” said NEFA board chair Lawrence J. Simpson. “Through our extensive evaluation, we know that NTP is strengthening these ensembles, particularly by facilitating new relationships between artists, presenters, theaters, and audiences.”   

Additional support for NTP comes from California Community Foundation and the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.

About The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation currently makes grants in four core program areas: Higher Education and Scholarship, Scholarly Communications and Information Technology, Art History, Conservation, and Museums, Performing Arts.  Within each of its core programs, the Foundation concentrates most of its grantmaking in a few areas. Institutions and programs receiving support are often leaders in fields of Foundation activity, but they may also be promising newcomers, or in a position to demonstrate new ways of overcoming obstacles to achieve program goals. Its grantmaking philosophy is to build, strengthen and sustain institutions and their core capacities, rather than be a source for narrowly defined projects. As such, it develops thoughtful, long-term collaborations with grant recipients and invests sufficient funds for an extended period to accomplish the purpose at hand and achieve meaningful results.

About NEFA
NEFA builds connections among artists, arts organizations, and funders, powering the arts to energize communities in New England, the nation, and the world. NEFA is a 501(c)(3) that operates in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the New England state arts agencies, with additional funding from corporations, foundations, and individuals. 

NEFA administers grantmaking programs 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 regional, national, and international cultural community. For more information, visit or call 617.951.0010.


Contact: Ann Wicks | 617.951.0010 x534

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