(Brooksville, FL) Emergency grants awarded to four key local performing arts groups in response to COVID-19.
Across the country and the world, the arts—especially the performing arts—are reeling from the dramatic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hernando County has not been spared. Scheduled spring performances and programs were canceled, drying up revenue that organizations depended on to pay their expenses.
In response to this emergency, the Hernando County Fine Arts Council took action at its June meeting to show support for local performing arts. The Council unanimously approved awarding $1500 emergency grants to four key performing arts nonprofit groups whose revenue has been affected by the pandemic: Hernando Symphony Orchestra, Live Oak Theatre, Stage West Playhouse, and Stir Up the Gift Talent Organization.
· Hernando Symphony Orchestra has featured some of the area’s finest musicians since 1983. The Orchestra’s concert series entertains audiences four times a year with crowd favorites. Their free Pops in the Park concert is featured at the Council’s annual Art in the Park festival. Learn more at hernandosymphony.com.
· Live Oak Theatre provides family-friendly performing arts entertainment, classes for all ages, and Roots & Branch Films from its home—The Carol & Frank Morsani Center for the Arts— in Brooksville. Learn more at liveoaktheatre.org.
· Stage West Community Playhouse is Hernando County’s oldest community theater. For 30 years Stage West has provided the residents of Hernando, Pasco, and Citrus counties with quality theatrical entertainment and excellent student programs at an affordable price. Learn more at stagewestflorida.com.
· Stir Up The Gift Talent Organization provides instruction, workshops, and performance opportunities for singers, dancers, models, actors, artists, and musicians. In addition to their home in Spring Hill, they offer afterschool programs at eight Hernando County public schools. Learn more at stirupthegifttalent.com.
In announcing the grants, Council Chair W. D. “Bill” Yerrick explained, “The Council’s mission is to support the arts in Hernando County. These grants help meet an immediate need in an unprecedented situation. It is right that the Council does what it can and takes action now.”
Beyond awarding this emergency funding, the Council’s two existing grant programs support art in the schools and the community year-round. Applications for 2021 grants will be available in August on HernandoArts.org.
The Hernando County Fine Arts Council was created in 1987 by the Board of County Commissioners to encourage, promote, and support all the creative arts in Hernando County and provide a means to showcase the arts. Its signature event is Art in the Park, held annually the second weekend in March at Tom Varn Park in Brooksville. To learn more about how you can help support the arts in Hernando County, visit HernandoArts.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org.