University Park, IL,
11:56 AM

GSU CPA Receives NEA Grant

DATE: October 12 , 2017

CONTACT: Sharon Morrissey


More Than $82 Million Awarded for Arts Projects Nationwide

Includes $20,000 awarded to Center for Performing Arts at Governors State University

University Park, IL –National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu has approved more than $82 million to fund local arts projects across the country in the NEA’s second major funding announcement for fiscal year 2017. Included in this announcement is an Art Works award of $20,000 to Center for Performing Arts at Governors State University in Chicago’s Southland for its Made in Chicago performing arts series. The NEA received 1,728 Art Works applications and will make 1,029 grants ranging from $10,000 to $100,000.

“The arts reflect the vision, energy, and talent of America’s artists and arts organizations,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to support organizations such as Governors State University in serving their communities by providing excellent and accessible arts experiences.”

“We are so excited that the National Endowment for the Arts has recognized our Made in Chicago series and the great relationships we have developed in our community as a result of expanded access to the arts. Governors State University is committed to the concept of living in the midst of art, and now, with the help of the NEA, we can share this experience with an even wider audience,” said the center’s director, Lana Rogachevskaya.

Since its launch in 2011, with support from The Chicago Community Trust, Made in Chicago has welcomed over 40 companies and 700 artists. The series is designed to introduce Southland audiences to Chicago artists and companies, to engage youth and minority populations, to increase first-time cultural attendance, and to remove pricing and racial barriers to arts attendance. Past series data shows that the mission is working, with 85% of attendance from minority populations, up to 30% first-time attendance, and a high level of program satisfaction (95%).

This year, three collaborative projects will celebrate unity through diversity with relevant topics, genres, and companies that transcend boundaries:

On October 7, the Stomping Grounds Festival highlighted the universality of rhythm from a variety of cultural perspectives, featuring Chicago Human Rhythm Project, Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater, Trinity Irish Dance, and Muntu Dance Theatre. This event was part of GSU’s Family and Friends Weekend, an annual event that invites the community to campus for a shared experience.

On October 21, MPAACT Afrikan Centered Theatre returns to GSU with Starting Over, a love story that transcends race, class, and gender identity, illuminating transgender issues with multi-generational casting.

April 21, 2018 brings a collaborative production by award-winning journalist Sylvia Ewing and harmonica legend Billy Branch, called The Blues Hip Hop Experience. Emphasizing Chicago’s rich musical legacy, and showing its parallels with hip-hop, this multi-generational event features a hip hop collective including Avery R. Young, Lucy Smith, FM Supreme, and more.

For more information on Center for Performing Arts programs, visit, or call the box office at 708.235.2222.

The 2017-18 Cultural Season is supported by generous funders First Midwest Bank, The Chicago Community Trust, Arts Midwest Touring Fund, The Illinois Arts Council, as well as individual donors.

The Center for Performing Arts is located at 1 University Parkway, University Park, IL. Parking is free. For best GPS directions use the location search term “Governors State University” only.

To join the Twitter conversation about this announcement, please use #NEASpring17. For more information on projects included in the NEA grant announcement, go to


Governors State University serves 5,200 undergraduate and graduate students with degree programs that prepare them for success in business, industry, healthcare, the arts, and education. As a state university, GSU is committed to providing high-quality, accessible, and responsible higher education opportunities. GSU is located 35 miles south of Chicago in University Park, IL and committed to embracing diversity and academic excellence while transforming student passion into lifelong purpose.