TACA News

Media contacts:
Caroline Manning, 214.520.3930, Caroline.Manning@taca-arts.org
Juliette Coulter, The Coulter Group, 214.394.5532, juliette@coultergroup.com

TACA Announces The Donna Wilhelm Family New Works
Fund to Support the Development of New Work in the Area
of Performing Arts

DALLAS, Texas, February 1, 2012 — At its annual Grant Awards presentation at the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre on January 30, TACA made an announcement that will be music to the ears of the Dallas performing arts community. In addition to contributing $1 million in grants to support 41 local performing arts organizations, TACA leaders announced the TACA Donna Wilhelm Family New Works Fund, which represents an additional $100,000 in TACA funding available each year for at least the next three years.

TACA Chairman Andy Teller stated, "We are proud to announce The Donna Wilhelm Family New Works Fund, which will be a competitive grant initiative separate from the current annual funding opportunity and will be available to TACA beneficiaries from every discipline within the performing arts. We applaud and thank Donna Wilhelm for her leadership in contributing $200,000 to establish this fund to support the creation and performances of new works in Dallas County. I also thank members of our board of directors who contributed an additional $100,000 to make this Fund a reality."

New works supported by the Fund may include dance, plays, musical theater, solo and choral vocal works, instrumental performances, spoken word performances or any comparable work presented for an audience. The grants are intended to particularly encourage the creation of innovative and experimental work. Awards will be available to organizations that have otherwise qualified as TACA beneficiaries through TACA's annual general operating and project grants funding process.

The idea for the New Works Fund arose from TACA's annual State of the Arts discussions, led by nationally recognized arts leaders each fall. Donna Wilhelm, in whose name the fund is established said, "I believe that Dallas, with its amazing architecture, contiguous arts district and vibrant urban scene, is on the cusp of a remarkable renaissance. And the arts play an important role in that renaissance."

Wilhelm is the founding donor of Art & Seek at KERA North Texas Public Broadcasting, a trustee of the Dallas Theater Center and Dallas Fort Worth World Affairs Council, and a partner and friend to performing artists throughout the community.

Wilhelm added, "Creating new work means taking risks. And in this economic climate, that's difficult for many arts groups. This Fund will make it possible for more organizations to take those risks and create original work with the potential for national and international impact."

In addition to Wilhelm's $200,000 gift for two years, TACA secured $100,000 from its board of directors. TACA directors who have contributed to date include: Shannon Brame, Diane and Hal Brierley, Marsha Cameron and Michael Halloran, Nita Clark, Lauren Embrey, Nicholas Even, Tara Lewis, Wolford McCue, Jim Nugent, Karol Omlor and Zannie Giraud Voss. For those interested in supporting this Fund, contact TACA's President and Executive Director Becky Young at 214.855.0400.

Any winner(s) of a New Work Grant will be chosen from among organizations selected to receive annual funding from TACA during the same application/funding cycle. Guidelines and applications for a 2012 grant will be available online beginning February 10 and will be due in the TACA office by March 9. Awards will be announced on June 4.

Wilhelm concluded, "In the world of art, I envision new work as the metaphorical equivalent of the fountain of youth. New work puts forth new ideas, inspires innovation, leads to new ways of thinking, living and universal human connection."