TRENTON – State funding grants for arts and theater organizations from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts have been announced and more than $525,000 has been awarded to area programs.
The funds will provide assistance for the day-to-day operation and general programming needs of each group.
Created in 1966, the Arts Council is the largest single contributor to the arts in the state. The council works closely with groups involved in arts education, cultural planning and tourism.
The Count Basie Theatre is one of the grant recipients. The theater, which opened in 1926 as the Carlton Theatre, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In 1984, it was renamed after Red Bank native and legendary jazz pianist, composer and bandleader William “Count” Basie, who died that year.
The following are recipients of grants in the area:
- Count Basie Theatre, Red Bank: $178,815
- Monmouth County Arts Council, Red Bank: $173,207
- Monmouth University, West Long Branch: $42,681
- New Jersey Repertory Company, Long Branch: $23,894
- Two River Theater Company, Red Bank: $118,812
“The arts are not only important because of their cultural value, but also because of their economic contributions to our state,” said Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande, R-Monmouth. “The assistance provided by the arts council helps both start-up programs as well as stalwart organizations that have enriched our communities for many years.”
Assemblywoman Mary Pat Angelini, R-Monmouth, agreed.
“The council’s funding supports the development of skills for those whose talents might otherwise go unnoticed,” she said. “The grants provide valuable assistance to artists who are established in their field and those who aspire to exhibit their work or perform. This funding helps sustain an important cultural and economic component of our state.”