The Classical Theatre of Harlem (CTH) has been approved by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to receive a Grants for Arts Projects award of $45,000. This grant will support Uptown Shakespeare in the Park (USP), CTH’s outdoor production that serves free theatre to over 16,500 attendees per year. This grant is one of 1,251 Grants for Arts Projects awards totaling nearly $28.8 million that were announced by the NEA as part of its first round of fiscal year 2023 grants.
“The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to support arts projects in communities nationwide,” said NEA Chair Maria Rosario Jackson, PhD. “Projects such as this one with Classical Theatre of Harlem strengthen arts and cultural ecosystems, provide equitable opportunities for arts participation and practice, and contribute to the health of our communities and our economy.”
“The National Endowment for the Arts is behind the greatest arts institutions in the country. We are honored by their support and grateful that they see the value that Uptown Shakespeare in the Park gives back to the community.” said CTH Producing Artistic Director Ty Jones. “This funding is critical, especially as we prepare for this summer’s production of “Malvolio,” an original sequel to Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” by CTH’s Mellon Playwright in Residence, Betty Shamieh.”
Uptown Shakespeare in the Park was launched by CTH in 2013 with the mission of providing freely accessible theatre to Harlem. The program has served over 135,000 attendees to date with productions that have won multiple AUDELCO awards and New York Times Critic’s Picks.
For more information on other projects included in the NEA’s grant announcement, visit arts.gov/news.
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Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer, activist, documentarian and an Award winning filmmaker and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Lia is also the host and Executive Producer of BACKSTAGE PASS WITH LIA CHANG, an Arts and Entertainment and Lifestyle program that airs on Sundays at 6:30pm on FIOS 34, RCN 83, Spectrum 56/1996 and MNN2.
Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. Her short film, When the World Was Young garnered a 2021 DisOrient Film Audience Choice Award for Best Short Narrative. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman. She stars in and served as Executive Producer for the short independent films Hide and Seek, Balancing Act, Rom-Com Gone Wrong, Belongingness and When the World was Young. She is also the Executive Producer for The Cactus, The Language Lesson, The Writer and Cream and 2 Shugahs. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers, musicians and corporations.
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