National Endowment for the Arts Nebraska Recipients

National Endowment for the Arts
Nebraska Grant Recipients

The state of Nebraska is brimming with top-notch artists, museums and other art-supportive institutions. Here are the 2017 National Endowment for the Arts grantees from the Cornhusker State.

Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts -- $25,000

To support an artist residency program and related activities. Selected in an open call by a juried process, American and international artists will receive support to participate in residencies at one of Bemis's two facilities in Omaha. Together, the facilities provide a large installation and performance space, a dark room, an art research library, computer stations, and a 10,000-square-feet sculpture and ceramics facility.

Crane River Theater Company, Inc. -- $10,000

To support the production of the musical "The Little Mermaid" and the Page to Stage library outreach series. The complimentary outdoor production will occur at the Cope Amphitheater in the Yanney Heritage Park in Kearney, Nebraska. In conjunction with the performances, company members will travel to area libraries to provide workshops and the opportunity for young audiences to see literature come to life before their very own eyes. Actors from the musical will read, perform, and interact with children while sharing the classic story of Ariel and her journey under the sea.

El Museo Latino -- $35,000

To support a series of photography exhibitions and related programming. The project will focus on the topic of immigrants and immigration in Nebraska. Planned to coincide with the state's 150th anniversary, the exhibitions will cover historic imagery, urban renewal and development in Omaha, and contemporary life in Mexico and Cuba. Public programming will include art workshops and artist lectures.

Film Streams, Inc -- $25,000

To support a series of curated films. The series will include the presentation of repertory programs, special programs, and film events in collaboration with arts and social service organizations.

Lincoln Orchestra Association -- $10,000

To support a free music outreach program. Members of Family Literacy, an English Language Learning program serving members of the immigrant and refugee community in Lincoln, Nebraska, will receive free tickets to music performances, as well as transportation to the concert venues. Audiences will take part in pre-concert talks, with translators, about concert etiquette, classical music history, and the instruments used, and engage in family activities prior to the performance.

Nebraska Arts Council -- $764,400

To support Partnership Agreement activities associated with carrying out your NEA-approved State strategic plan

Nebraska Folklife Network, Inc -- $27,500

To support statewide folk arts fieldwork and public events, as well as the development of educational materials. In addition to ongoing public events, traditional arts workshops, NFN will conduct a pilot fieldwork research project in one of Nebraska's Natural Resource Districts. NFN will also work with Latino cultural organizations, local businesses, and arts and humanities organizations to present a citywide Day of the Dead celebration.

Omaha Performing Arts Society -- $20,000

To support the presentation of "it gets better," a multidisciplinary performance work created by the Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles. The chorus will be in residence at the Omaha Peforming Arts Society, during which they will work with local River City Mixed Chorus to create a unique presentation. In addition to performances, the artists will partner with local high schools and community organizations to participate in roundtable discussions, workshops, and school visits.

Opera Omaha, Inc -- $20,000

To support the premiere of "Proving Up" by composer Missy Mazzoli and librettist Royce Vavrek and a new production of Cherubini's "Medea" as part of the 60th anniversary spring festival. Based on the short story by Karen Russell, "Proving Up" is an allegory of the American dream as told through the invented narrative of a 19th-century Nebraska homesteader family. The work will be staged in a non-traditional venue and the creative team will include director and designer James Darrah. A co-production with Wexford Festival Opera (Ireland), the new production of "Medea" will be staged in the Orpheum Theater with a proposed creative team to include director Fiona Shaw. Performances of the two fully staged opera productions will book-end a festival that will include smaller-scale opera happenings around Omaha.

Union for Contemporary Art -- $75,000

To support The Artists Lofts on Lake Street. This planning and design project will support the creation of artist live/work space at North 24th and Lake Streets in North Omaha, catalyzing the completion of plans for an arts and cultural district in the area. The facility would be adjacent to the Union for Contemporary Art, which provides direct support to local artists and free cultural experiences, mentorship, and access to the arts for community members and neighborhood children. The project is a partnership between Union for Contemporary Art, the Omaha Planning Department, and Omaha Economic Development Corporation. North Omaha is socioeconomically and ethnically diverse, with a population of approximately 32,500, and a poverty rate 2.5 times higher than the city average.

Union for Contemporary Art -- $10,000

To support arts programming for youth. Visual artist Simone Leigh will create an interactive installation for youth (ages 8-14) from North Omaha. The children will participate in activities including storytelling, music, and educational programming, and will be served a full breakfast as part of the program. Adults accompanying the children will be invited to take part in enrichment activities hosted in the Union's garden.

University of Nebraska at Lincoln -- $15,000

To support the presentation of "Seedfolks" by the Children's Theatre Company of Minneapolis at the Lied Center for Performing Arts. Based on the book by Paul Fleischman, the play is a one-woman performance piece that celebrates the diversity and value of immigrant communities. The play tells the story of how a garden started in an abandoned urban lot by a young Vietnamese-American girl is embraced by an entire community, illustrating common threads among its diverse characters. Actress Sonia Parks plays 11 distinct characters, underscoring the play's central message of the common experience of diverse individuals. The Center will partner with community organizations to design multigenerational programming including pre-show and post-show activities.

Vision Maker Media -- $30,000

To support staffing and master filmmaker honoraria for the National Minority Consortia Producer's Lab. Through partnerships with the Center for Asian American Media, Latino Public Broadcasting, National Black Programming Consortium, and Pacific Islanders in Communications, as many as five master filmmakers will participate in public screenings and provide focused training sessions in a producer's lab for media artists. Focused on supporting artists from underserved communities, lab participants will work with master filmmakers in a year-long mentorship program to produce new projects.

Wabuke, Hope -- $25,000

About the National Endowment for the Arts

Established by Congress in 1965, the NEA is the independent federal agency whose funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the NEA supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America. Visit to learn more about NEA.