Louisville’s Fund for the Arts kicked off its 2009 fundraising campaign today at the Brown Theatre. WFPL’s Elizabeth Kramer has more.
The kickoff featured performances of arts groups including the Louisville Ballet and Stage One children’s theater — along with a piano performance by 15-year-old Nansong Huang, the musical prodigy from China who plays with the Louisville Orchestra and the Louisville Youth Orhchestra this week.
It was all to highlight the Fund for the Arts’ campaign to raise a record $10 million, on the heels of raising $9.2 million last year.
Fund president Allan Cowen says this year’s campaign is more important as arts groups have seen declining revenues and nearly $1 million in losses from city and state government funding. He says any further losses would be hard to overcome.
“Once a city moves backwards, once a city declines, it’s very, very expensive and very difficult to move forward,” he says.
Fund president Allan Cowen says the organization has raised nearly half its goal so far. And he’s optimistic that the rest will come through workplace giving programs, even with the current recession.
“For most people, their gift is a dollar or two a month or a dollar or two week or a dollar or two a day, whatever the equation is, so the economics don’t typically get in your way,” he says.
Fund president Allan Cowen says that makes success in this year’s campaign important for the survival of some arts programs.
“It’s not that you’re really growing the art, it’s really a question of trying to keep vital the programs that we’ve already supported,” he says.