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Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Announces Endowment Grants for Six Leading Theatres

New York, N.Y., December 15, 2004 -- The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF) today announced it has awarded six endowment grants totaling $3.5 million as part of the third round of funding through the Leading National Theatres Program, which is part of a larger Theatre Initiative launched by the DDCF and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation in 2000 to support the country’s nonprofit theatre community. The Leading National Theatres Program supports artistic programs and provides matching endowment grants to exemplary theatres across the U.S. The six new theatres receiving grants are:
  • Actors Theatre of Louisville, Louisville, Ky., awarded DDCF endowment support of $400,000;
  • American Repertory Theatre, Cambridge, Mass., awarded DDCF endowment support of $700,000;
  • Center Stage Associates, Baltimore, Md., awarded DDCF endowment support of $600,000;
  • Intiman Theatre, Seattle, Wash., awarded DDCF endowment support of $400,000;
  • The Public Theater/New York Shakespeare Festival, New York, N.Y., awarded DDCF endowment support of $700,000;
  • Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Chicago, Ill., awarded DDCF endowment support of $700,000.
The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation's endowment support will establish an ongoing source of revenue for artistic programming at each theatre, and must be matched one-to-one by the grantees. As part of the Leading National Theatres Program, the theatres also are eligible to receive support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for artistic programs such as commissioning of new plays, residencies, and other artistic endeavors. Selected theatres demonstrated artistic excellence, strong organizational capacity, long-term managerial and financial stability, and geographic and programmatic diversity. Grant proposals were solicited on an invitation-only basis, and were evaluated by a peer-review panel. Including the new grantees, the Leading National Theatres Program currently supports 23 theatres in 12 states and the District of Columbia. "We are proud to be supporting such a stellar and diverse group of nonprofit theatres producing ambitious and imaginative work for audiences across the country," said Joan E. Spero, president of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. The Leading National Theatres Program is one of two programs supported by the Theatre Initiative. The initiative also supports the New Generations Program, which is a competitive re-granting program administered by Theatre Communications Group that has provided support to nearly 100 theatres to mentor theatre professionals and build younger and/or culturally specific audiences. In 2005, a new component will be added to the initiative to support ensemble theatres. To date, the two foundations have invested a total of $34.5 million in the Theatre Initiative. Doris Duke Charitable Foundation ( The mission of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation is to improve the quality of people’s lives through grants supporting the performing arts, wildlife conservation, medical research and the prevention of child maltreatment, and through preservation of the cultural and environmental legacy of Doris Duke’s properties. The foundation’s assets currently total approximately $1.5 billion. Of its total grants to date, the foundation has approved approximately $129 million to support nonprofit performing arts organizations throughout the United States. The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation ( A private philanthropic institution, with assets of approximately $4 billion, AWMF makes grants on a selective basis to institutions of higher education, independent libraries, centers for advanced study, museums, art conservation, and performing arts organizations. The Foundation’s Performing Arts Program focuses on achieving long-term results by providing multi-year grants to leading organizations in the disciplines of music, theater, dance, and opera. Annual giving in the area of performing arts has averaged $16.8 million since 2000. THEATRE PRESS CONTACTS Actors Theatre of Louisville Louisville, Kentucky, Contact: James Seacat Communications Director (502) 584-1265 x3040 American Repertory Theatre Cambridge, Massachusetts, Contact: Kati Mitchell Director of Press and Public Relations (617) 495-2668 Center Stage Associates Baltimore, Maryland, Contact: Aaron Heinsman Public Relations Director (410) 986-4016; Intiman Theatre Seattle, Washington, Contact: Stephanie Coen Director of Communications (206) 269-1901 x208; The Public Theater/New York Shakespeare Festival New York, NY, Contact: Arlene R. Kriv Director of Communications (212) 539-8680; Steppenwolf Theatre Company Chicago, Illinois, Contact: William Nedved Public Relations Manager (312) 654-5656;