First ASC Cultural Vision Grant Recipients Announced

Categories: News & Media
Seventeen groups and individuals receive a combined $102,420 in funding for cultural projects that build community and increase relevance and innovation.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Jan. 30, 2017) – From a collaboration using ZIP codes and photography to strengthen connections between neighbors to a theatrical production where audiences cast the show, Charlotte-Mecklenburg residents and visitors will have opportunities to experience more community-focused and innovative cultural programs thanks to ASC Cultural Vision Grants.

ASC announced the new grant in August 2015 to respond to the Charlotte-Mecklenburg community’s interest in arts, science, history and heritage programming. Cultural Vision Grants provide funds of up to $10,000 for Mecklenburg County-based creative individuals and nonprofit groups to pursue projects that:

  • Build community by: Connecting individuals across points of difference to increase understanding, acceptance and positive regard between communities; and/or nurturing, celebrating and supporting the authentic cultures and creative expression of specific neighborhoods; or
  • Increase relevance and innovation by: Activating nontraditional performance or exhibition spaces close to where people live; and/or providing groundbreaking and participatory experiences that reflect the changing communities in which we live.

More than 40 groups and individuals applied for the first round of Cultural Vision Grants, with 17 recipients selected to receive a combined $102,420 in funding for cultural projects. All projects are scheduled to begin by June 30, 2017, and conclude before June 30, 2018.

Award recipients are:

  • Caroline Calouche & Co. – $7,000 to support the creation and production of “Star Gazer: A Trek Into Outer Space,” which will include interactive astronomical experiences, in April 2017 at Blumenthal Performing Arts Booth Playhouse.
  • Central Piedmont Community College Foundation – $5,000 to produce “Dances of India,” a cultural program that celebrates Charlotte’s Indian community by presenting Asian Indian classical and folk performing arts traditions.
  • Charlotte Jewish Film Festival – $5,000 to support experiences that engage diverse, non-Jewish audiences with universally appealing stories, characters and themes shared through the film festival.
  • Charlotte Museum of History – $1,250 to support the performance of traditional African drum music and to engage East Charlotte audiences in exploring African-American culture that was part of the settlement of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County.
  • Community Education Project – $4,695 to support “Utrennik,” the annual International New Year Celebration for children that showcases the traditions of Russian-speaking cultures found in the Charlotte area.
  • The Cornelius Cultural Arts Group – $5,000 to support Tawba Walk, a community arts festival that celebrates the culture and character of historic downtown Cornelius by bringing together local artists, businesses and community residents.
  • Della Freedman – $5,000 to produce “Humanizing Homelessness,” a performance, photo exhibit and video which illuminates the issue of homelessness in Charlotte and elsewhere.
  • Donna Scott Productions – $6,000 to produce “Eat the Runt,” a play that challenges gender and race differences by utilizing a diverse cast and allowing the audience to cast the show each night.
  • Girls Rock Charlotte – $5,000 to launch a new Kids’ Summer Camp program for girls and gender diverse youth that uses rock music education to teach social justice leadership.
  • HistorySouth – $5,000 to produce “Legacy Narratives,” a video that will feature the oral histories of 12 long-time residents of Charlotte’s McCrorey Heights neighborhood and be presented in a variety of public forums in 2018.
  • Martha Connerton/Kinetic Works – $5,000 to support a partnership with Changed Choices to present “The Sessions,” a two-day series that includes dance-making workshops for non-dancers, recorded performances of “Moving Stories/Changing Lives” and public discussions.
  • MoRA (Monroe Road Advocates) – $10,000 to support middle Monroe Road residents’ and stakeholders’ collaboration with artist Leslie Scott on a public artwork project for their community.
  • Nicholas Napoletano – $6,500 to support a collaboration with Time Out Youth and Aerial CLT for a mural that represents a racially diverse, LGBTQ-inclusive community along the North Tryon corridor.
  • Queen City Forward – $7,000 to support the ZIP Code Project, a collaboration with the 100 Love Notes Foundation and Read Charlotte designed to build connection between neighbors through participatory photograph and digital storytelling.
  • Que-OS – $10,000 to produce the BOOM Festival, an artist/community-led fringe arts festival centered in Charlotte’s Plaza-Midwood neighborhood.
  • Three Bone Theatre – $4,975 to engage prospective audience members during the rehearsal process to create performances that directly bind people to the art they help create.
  • XOXO – $10,000 to produce “#CAKE,” a multiplatform interdisciplinary performance work that will occur throughout uptown Charlotte and consist of an art installation, a mp3-enhanced surrealist walking tour and a theatrical performance at Goodyear Arts.

Mecklenburg County-based creative individuals and nonprofit organizations that want to apply for the next round of ASC Cultural Vision Grants must submit a letter of intent by noon on Friday, March 3, 2017. Full application guidelines are available at

Organizations that have a current operating or project grant from ASC are not eligible to apply at this time. Funded projects must start between July 1, 2017-June 30, 2018, and conclude before June 30, 2019.

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Bernie Petit