The non-profit choral and orchestral group performs the works of Johann Sebastian Bach and other composers, and conducts outreach programs throughout the region. It was founded in 1964 by Melvin and Margaret Dickinson.
The action stems from a voicemail Cowen left the director of the Louisville Visual Art Association last month. The message allegedly threatened the director’s job over a letter that appeared in Business First. In the letter, the director and others wrote that many visual arts groups do not receive money from the Fund for the Arts. Cowen has apologized for his actions
For the second day in a row, Fund for the Arts CEO Allan Cowen has been featured in the pages of the Courier-Journal. On Thursday, it was a story about a threatening voicemail he left an unsatisfied arts group leader. Today it’s 396 words in the editorial section about that voicemail, and Cowen’s actions as a whole.
When you go to the theatre to see a production of a classic, think Shakespeare or even A Christmas Carol, your focus is probably on the actors. Or the director. Or the costumes and set design.
That’s because those stories are well known and part of the reason people see familiar plays is to see how an old story is being retold. But that’s not how it works at the Humana Festival of New American Plays.
It costs Actors Theatre about $1.5 million to put on the festival, and the Humana Foundation will be contributing almost half of that. The foundation will contribute $700,000 toward the festival each year for the next three years. That’s a $25,000 annual increase over the previous award.
Since Humana began supporting the festival in 1979, the company and its foundation have given Actors Theatre more than $21 million, most of it dedicated to supporting the Humana Festival.
Steven Bowling with the Center for Women and Families says he hopes the hearing will help prevent the uncertainty his organization and others faced waiting for a response to their grant applications.
Actors Theatre Managing Director Jennifer Bielstein says the board will soon hire a search firm to find a new artistic director who meets the right criteria.
“A skillset in new play production and development because that is our core strength and what attracts people to us nationally and from around the world. And someone who will be a good person at developing relationships and being a goodspokesperson for the arts and for Actors Theatre in this community,” she says.
One challenge the Second City faced in preparing It Takes a ’Ville is that the show is so Louisville-centric that no one in Chicago who watched the rehearsals got any of the jokes. It was only when the troupe performed in front of Louisvillians for the first time that they had a sense of whether or not the show could succeed.
The fund has no specific goal, but officials say they want to match last year’s raised total of $8 million. Slightly less than 15% of the funds will go toward administrative and fundraising costs. The rest will go to various arts groups.