Performing Arts Global Exchange Grants now Open

Performing Arts Global Exchange (PAGE) is a new Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation grant program for performing arts presenters nationwide in cooperation with the National Endowment for the Arts. Launching with tours in 2020-2021, PAGE brings exemplary international music, dance, and theater to audiences across the United States. Fee support grants are available to nonprofit presenting venues and units of state, local, or tribal government based anywhere in the U.S. or its territories who book artists from a curated roster. Artists on the roster have not widely toured in the United States and reside in a selected region, with the inaugural year’s roster featuring artists from U.S. neighbors: Canada and Mexico.

To participate in PAGE, presenters should:

  • Review the program guidelines and artist roster.
  • To receive funding, presenters must reach out to the artist/ensemble’s representative (contacts included in roster) to discuss engagement details—be sure to mention the PAGE program. Presenters must book roster artists by March 25, 2020.

Keep in Mind:

  • Each booking must include an artist-involved community-engagement activity.
  • Funding applies to engagements taking place between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.
  • MAAF will confirm your grant amount in April 2020.

For complete eligibility details and information on receiving subsidies, please see the 2020 – 2021 program guidelines. Additional questions? E-mail Robyn Busch, Program Officer, International at

Grants Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the deal with partial funding? Why don’t applicants get the full amount that they requested?

At RISCA, each panel decides within the given budget whether and how much to fund each application based on the panel review process. Following guidance from our Council, RISCA’s panels typically award the highest scoring applications their full request, but the majority of applicants that do get funded only get a portion of their request. We receive far more applications than we have funding for, and in order to fund projects around the state we partially fund more projects.

For example, in Project Grants for Individuals (PGI), the most competitive of the project grants, we typically see around 50-55 applications requesting approximately $125,000-$150,000 each grant cycle. In contrast, PGI panels fund approximately 20-22 projects with $42,500 available to award. In the past few years, panels in this program tended to fully fund only the 1-3 top scoring applications.

In terms of grant request amount, what is the best strategy to ensure I am funded?

Ask for the amount money you need to complete your project, assuming ideal conditions. If you can accomplish an awesome version of your project with the maximum grant request in the program you are applying to, go for it. This is where your budget becomes really critical. When panels making funding recommendations and are considering partial awards, they will look at your budget in order to provide you with a partial award that will allow you to meaningfully complete your project. An accurate and thorough budget will ensure they accomplish that task!

What happens when my project gets partial funding?

RISCA does NOT expect to you execute the full project as proposed with a limited budget. You can scale back the project based on the new budget or spread the project over a longer period of time, and apply for another grant for the same project at subsequent grant deadlines. We do require you to keep the project as similar as possible to the proposal and update the appropriate RISCA program director via email with the changes – this should be a simple description of the changes, not a full new application.

The amount of money my application was awarded is not enough for me to do even a partial project. Can I decline the grant? Will anything bad happen?

You can absolutely decline the grant for any reason: the amount awarded was not enough to make it worth your while; the project has changed substantially since the application; you are unable to complete the project for any reason; or something else comes up. You simply decline the grant on the Grant Agreement form, and/or email your program director. This will have absolutely no impact on future applications, and any panel evaluating future applications will not know you declined a previous application unless you disclose that in the proposal. If you are unable to execute the project for any reason, we encourage you to decline the award – and to communicate this honestly with your program director. We are here to help and support you, and sometimes that means supporting you as you decide a grant or project is not in your or your organization’s best interest.

How is my application reviewed and decided on?

As a government agency, all of our grants are awarded through a panel process. RISCA staff members do NOT have any input into who gets grants or how much they are awarded. You can see a breakdown of the review process (and why it takes so long) here:

Who is on the grant panel?

For Project Grants in Education, Project Grants for Individuals, and Arts Access Grants, the review panel consists of five Rhode Island residents from around the state with some engagement in the arts community – as an artist, arts administrator, community advocate, educator, etc. For each panel, we recruit with an eye to diversity in: artistic discipline; arts experience; geographic location; community engagement; age; gender; and race. This means we will never have five white female actors from Coventry on one panel.

If you are interested in serving on a panel, feel free to let us know by filling out this form: Each year, RISCA needs the time and expertise of approximately 100 panelists.

What is your one top grant writing tip?

In short, fully read and then follow the directions. This means closely reading the guidelines for the grant you are applying for, directly answering each question on the grant application, and make sure your follow the formatting and file submission requirements. Todd’s bonus tip: make sure the numbers in your budget match the numbers in your narrative.

This budget form is super confusing and I need help.

In the last two weeks before the grant deadline, this is the most frequent request program directors get. First: yes, you MUST use the provided budget form. Second: yes, we will help you fill it out line by line. We strongly recommend you attend one of our grant workshops – there is a whole section on the budget forms. You can also make an appointment with your program director or come to one of our many drop in grant support hours. Check out the variety of ways to get help with your budget, or anything else related to your RISCA grant application here:

Applications for The Neighborhood Performing Arts Initiative Due February 10th

Supported by the Ely Fund, The Neighborhood Performing Arts Initiative (ELY PERFORMANCE FUND) is a partnership between Mayor Jorge O. Elorza, the City of Providence, Departments of Art, Culture + Tourism and Public Parks, and the Partnership for Providence Parks. This initiative encourages Providence-based organizations and artists to create public programming for the City’s diverse neighborhood parks.

Edward Francis Ely left the City of Providence an endowment so that this and future generations will continue to enjoy them as sites of congregation, play, and community life. Chairman of the Board of Parks Commissioners in Providence from 1907 until he died 1920, Ely loved the city’s parks and his whole heart was devoted to the work of creating new ones, as well as making existing parks useful and attractive in appearance. Commissioner Ely was one of the first and most zealous advocates of the playground movement and he devoted enormous energies toward the development of playground projects in Providence Parks. Indeed, the fact that the city has so many parks with playgrounds is largely due to his efforts.

  • Projects must have a public performance aspect in a city park that is handicap-accessible.
  • Because the City of Providence already invests considerable arts resources in downtown parks, proposals for public performances in downtown parks will not be funded.
  • One-off events like festivals will be considered, but preference will be given to events that happen more than once.
  • For purposes of this application, the performing arts are defined as film, theatre, music, dance, and spoken word/poetry.
  • Project awards will range from $50- $2,000.
  • The City of Providence will promote all funded projects; funded organizations should also promote and advertise their activities to their target audiences using their own means.

Applications are due February 10, 2020. For more information, visit the Providence Art Culture + Tourism Ely Performance Fund page.