Singapore, 22 March 2016 – A total of 62 arts organisations will receive Organisation Development support from the National Arts Council’s (NAC) Major and Seed Grant schemes for the Financial Year (FY) 2016. This year, $16.2 million has been set aside by the NAC for both grants, an increase of nearly $1.1 million from FY 2015 funding. The three-year Major and Seed Grant schemes continue to support Singapore’s diverse performing, literary, and visual arts scene, by encouraging a growing pool of strong artistic talents and arts managers to shape Singapore’s cultural development for future generations.
This year, 25 Major Grant recipients join the 19 arts companies who were awarded in FY14 and FY15. The Major Grant scheme will enable these established organisations to deepen their unique artistic capabilities and organisational strengths, champion the development of their art form and industry in Singapore’s cultural landscape, as well as actively engage the community. Recipients include TheatreWorks, Siong Leng Musical Association, Era Dance Theatre, and Bhaskar’s Arts Academy.
The Seed Grant, which focuses on helping emerging, non-profit arts organisations kick-start programmes and operations, will support five first-time recipients in addition to the 13 recipients from FY14 and FY15. The new recipients are National Poetry Festival, Objectifs Centre Ltd, SA the Collective, Sing Lit Station, and Young People’s Performing Arts Ensemble. Please refer to Annexes A and B for the full list of all Major and Seed Grant recipients.
This increase reflects the Council’s funding strategy, with an emphasis on nurturing key intermediaries, such as Singapore Drama Educators Association and the National Book Development Council of Singapore, which are critical to the arts industry, as well as strengthening the Traditional Arts scene. There is a bumper crop of 12 Traditional Arts organisations among this year’s recipients.
NAC is also heartened that the Seed Grant has had some success in nurturing strong arts organisations as eight former Seed Grant groups across different arts genres have advanced to the Major Grant scheme this year. These groups, including Art Photography Centre, NADI Singapura, Nine Years Theatre and Singapore Hokkien Huay Kuan Dance Theatre, have achieved stability and growth as arts organisations, and will benefit from the Major Grant scheme as they continue to build their artistic practice and programming.
Says Ms Kathy Lai, Chief Executive Officer, NAC, “The Major Grant and Seed Grant are among the most impactful tools we have to support the arts in Singapore. We hope the funding continues to strengthen the arts companies, inspire more diverse arts making and create more avenues for outreach. Given the uncertain economic climate ahead, we also hope paying audiences, patrons and corporates continue to support these companies, which represent the best of our nation’s creative talents. NAC is also taking the timely opportunity to fine-tune the Major Grants framework this year to improve the long-term sustainability of our groups, help diversify their income streams and develop new audiences while maintaining their artistic excellence. We will be engaging our various stakeholders in due course as we refine the framework.”
Annex A - FY16 Major Grant Recipients
Annex B - FY16 Seed Grant Recipients
Annex C - Assessment Panel