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Boosting our Community Through the Arts

January 12, 2018 | Features

As part of Chapman Cultural Center's mission to provide cultural leadership for Greater Spartanburg, our Community Grants Program supports local artists and non-profit organizations for various projects and programs in Spartanburg County. The grants, which can be up to $5,000, are awarded quarterly and are funded in part by the South Carolina Arts Commission. 

We are pleased to announce we have awarded 5 Non-Profit organizations with Community Grants this quarter. Read more about their projects and the impact they will have in Spartanburg County. 

Spartanburg Community College

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Spartanburg Community College (SCC) is a public, two-year, multi-site, suburban college serving the citizens and communities of Cherokee, Spartanburg and Union Counties of South Carolina. With Community Grant funding, SCC plans to launch Ascend SCC Student Magazine. Ascend will give the opportunity to showcase the varied artistic talents of Spartanburg Community College’s students across multiple campuses. It will also feature an educational aspect, as students will gain exposure and learn skills such as design and working in a team environment.

"This magazine will provide our students the opportunity to show their artistic talents, as well as gain experience in project design and management. We are so grateful to the Chapman Cultural Center for the support. My students are excited to have a chance to express themselves and build their skills, and this grant will help us reach our goals."

Gwen Murtha, Grants Coordinator, Spartanburg Community College

Spartanburg Earth Day Festival

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Spartanburg Earth Day Festival is a collaborative community festival celebrating stewardship, sustainability, and our amazing planet Earth. It is an interactive, multigenerational festival with a focus on environmental education and fun. The art components include music, poetry reading, and art contests. In the past, they have had West African Drummers, Native American flutists, children’s dance studios, spoken word poetry artists, folk singers, and instrumentalists. "The art contests will be hosted in Spartanburg County Schools and the winners’ works will be displayed during the festival. From our inception, we have included the arts as an educational tool, for entertainment, to promote creativity, and to encourage earth consciousness"

"The Community Grant funding allows us to encourage broader participation in the festival and to engage children and youth in exploring art as a medium for thoughtful consideration of environmental issues and themes."

Joyce Harrison, Chair, Spartanburg Earth Day Festival

Spartanburg Repertory Opera 

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photo credit: Nicole Watford Photography

The Spartanburg Repertory Opera Company is dedicated to serving the upstate community by providing outstanding opera and operetta performances, enriching the lives of citizens, educating both young and old, and providing performance opportunities to Spartanburg's gifted singers. Community Grant funding will be used for their production of Little Red Riding Hood. Specifically, for sponsoring free student tickets to be distributed to local schools. Their goal is to expose students of Title I schools to an art form they may otherwise not have the opportunity to experience. A primary goal of Spartanburg Repertory Opera's founder was to promote education and involvement in the arts by thoughtfully and intentionally including educational programming as part of their season.

"The Spartanburg Repertory Opera is honored to be the recipient of one of the Chapman Cultural Center's Community Grants... We want to expose young students to the world of opera and the arts in order to inspire the next generation to be patrons and participants in the arts, particularly music and theater productions."

- Robert Mitchell, President, Spartanburg Repertory Opera

Speaking Down Barriers

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Speaking Down Barriers is a team of listeners, healers, artists, researchers, teachers, theologians, & creatives who work together to offer spoken word poetry, transformative dialogue, workshops, and deep listening to communities, organizations, and institutions. They plan to use their funding to launch a pilot program: Days of Transformation. Currently, Speaking Down Barriers has 5-6 meetings per month for events like Community Dialogue, Healing Us, Learning Us, No Words, and Reading for Transformation. Days of Transformation would combine all these into a one day program once a month through June.

"Through spoken word poetry and the process of listening, even when difficult, we believe that we can have the conversations our community most desperately needs. [This funding] will also allow us to introduce a community-wide intentional day of liberation & healing: 'A Day of Transformation'."

Marlanda Dekine, Founder & Executive Director, Speaking Down Barriers

Treefalls

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photo courtesy of Treefalls: Vicky Chow

Treefalls is dedicated to the presentation of contemporary chamber music written by living, active composers. Through a series of free concerts, Treefalls endeavors to offer the public inventive and creative new works performed by professional musicians who support New Music. To present new music to the public performed by the acclaimed musician Vicky Chow, and to present educational outreach to the community in the forms of talks, presentations, and masterclasses. The main event will take place at Chapman Cultural Center. The talks, presentations, and masterclasses will take place at USC Upstate, Fairforest Middle School, Spartanburg High School, and other schools in Spartanburg County.

The Community Grant from Chapman Cultural Center helps us bring a world-class musician to Spartanburg. We are very much looking forward to having Vicky Chow come from New York to perform cutting-edge music for our community and to speak with young musicians in Spartanburg. She is inspirational!

- Nolan Stolz, Board Member, Treefalls

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