The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation recently awarded $601,000 to 13 cultural and performing arts groups that enrich and engage Akron in innovative ways.

“Through these projects, Akron residents will have the opportunity to become more engaged in their community’s growing and vibrant arts scene,” said Jennifer Thomas, Akron program director for the Knight Foundation. “Collectively, these projects cover a broad range of cultural offerings, from providing theater and artistic enrichment programs to new opportunities to encourage young people’s participation in the arts.”

The recipients are:

•?Actors’ Summit, $20,000 to bring new audiences to performances through a community engagement program targeting youths and their parents.

•?Akron Art Museum, $35,000 for its digitization project.

•?Akron Civic Theatre, $100,000 to enhance intergenerational, multicultural and community-based programming through the 2013 season.

•?City of Akron, $65,000 for the Akron Summer Arts Experience.

•?Cleveland International Film Festival, $70,000 to support Knight Night in Akron and the Akron Preview Event for the 36th annual festival in March.

•?Cuyahoga Valley Youth Ballet, $20,000 to expand the Reach Out and Dance (ROAD) program in Akron Public Schools.

•?DANCECleveland (Cleveland Modern Dance Association), $15,000 for event sponsorships.

•?Greater Akron Musical Association, $50,000 to support the American Visions multi-media concert combining music and photography in celebration of the Akron Symphony Orchestra’s 60th anniversary; and $36,000 for 60 Random Acts of Culture.

•?GroundWorks Dance Theater, $10,000 to support choreographers Ronen Koresh, Doug Elkins and Kate Weare, who will bring innovative dance to Akron audiences.

•?Keepers of the Art, $15,000 to support the production of the fourth annual Akron Hip-Hop Showcase.

•?Ohio Shakespeare Festival, $10,000 to produce Love’s Labours Lost and The History of Richard III.

•?Tuesday Musical Association, $125,000 to support its 125th anniversary season; and $20,000 to support a 2011 collaboration that featured Wynton Marsalis.

•?Weathervane Community Playhouse, $10,000 to provide theater and artistic enrichment programs to Akron schools.

The Knight Foundation has committed more than $132 million to Akron since its inception.

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