Artistic Director Christopher Zinovitch and Managing Director Line Sandsmark.
ArtsWest wins $10k grant from American Theater Wing; First theater in state to win
West Seattle's ArtsWest Theater has won a $10,000 grant from the American Theatre Wing, best known as the creator of the Antoinette Perry "Tony" Awards. The grant, one of the organization's 2012 National Theatre Company grants was given to only 10 theaters . ArtsWest is the first theater in Washington State to win this award.
According to a press release from ArtsWest, "The grant is given to emerging regional theaters that have articulated a distinctive mission, cultivated an audience, and nurtured a community of artists in ways that strengthen and demonstrate the quality, diversity, and dynamism of American theatre."
The ATW Grants have distributed some $3 million dollars over the past 55 years.
Artistic Director Christopher Zinovitch said, "Any grant, any award is always a surprise." He expressed his gratitude to, " the board, staff, actors, volunteers, and founders, and all who have contributed to ArtsWest. Because of all of you, we were able to move forward and get to this level."
The theater has not determined yet where the money will be spent but Zinovitch said, "We are looking at this as a possibility to help grow audiences so it might possibly go to hiring a second marketing person but we don't know what we will do with it yet. For any theater company, or for that matter any company the greatest need is to get the message out. To get people to come to their events or buy their products."
The award is for emerging theater companies and we are now embarking into our 15th season. I've been here for 13 years and everyone here have worked really hard at staying true to our mission. That mission drives us, that we are financially prudent, pay attention to the voice of the people and with me moving into the Artistic Director position (formerly the Education Director and Director of Theater) I have been responsible for working with the board and upholding that mission."
The National Theatre Company Grants, launched in 2010, distributes $10,000 grants for general operating support to companies which, according to grant guidelines, have been in operation at least five, but not more than fifteen years, have articulated a distinctive mission, cultivated an audience, and nurtured a community of artists in ways that strengthen and demonstrate the quality, diversity, and dynamism of American theatre.
ArtsWest was in the last year of its eligibility for such an award.
"I think ArtsWest has been a part of why the Junction is thriving now. When I first came to West Seattle it was very sleepy and now it's a destination people are coming to because of the great restaurants, because of what we do, because of the great shopping. It's becoming a true destination place instead of that 'place across the water.'"