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Delaware Shakespeare receives two NEA Grants 

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WILMINGTON – Delaware Shakespeare has received two grants funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, recognizing the company’s continued commitment to engaging a diverse mix of Delawareans in an exploration of Shakespeare’s plays. Delaware Shakespeare has been approved for a $15,000 Grants for Arts Projects award to support the community tour of “Twelfth Night.” This project is among the more than 1,100 projects across America totaling nearly $27 million that were selected during this second round of Grants for Arts Projects fiscal year 2021 funding.

“As the country and the arts sector begin to imagine returning to a post-pandemic world, the National Endowment for the Arts is proud to announce funding that will help arts organizations such as Delaware Shakespeare reengage fully with partners and audiences,” said NEA Acting Chairman Ann Eilers in a statement. “Although the arts have sustained many during the pandemic, the chance to gather with one another and share arts experiences is its own necessity and pleasure.”

The community tour of “Twelfth Night, A New Musical” adapts Shakespeare’s all-time great romantic comedy reimagining Viola and Sebastian as Latinx immigrants whose shipwreck brings them ashore in Illyria. This bilingual musical will ask the question, “Can you survive through love?” The Community Tour will once again bring high-quality Shakespeare performances to the full spectrum of humanity in our state, by traveling to non-traditional locations such as homeless shelters, prisons, and community centers. “Twelfth Night” will travel all over Delaware as part of the fifth year of Del Shakes’ Community Tour in 2022.

The National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest has also awarded Delaware Shakespeare with a Shakespeare in American Communities grant of $15,000. Delaware Shakespeare is one of ten nonprofit organizations across the nation selected to participate to engage youths within the juvenile justice system with the works of Shakespeare through theatre education programs.

Now in its 19th year, Shakespeare in American Communities is a theatre program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest. By providing grants to theater companies that produce Shakespeare’s works, the program supports high-quality productions and educational activities in middle schools, high schools, and juvenile justice facilities throughout the United States. In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, these performances and educational events may take place virtually or in-person between August 1, 2021, and July 31, 2022.

“Delaware Shakespeare is honored to continue partnering with the National Endowment for the Arts and Arts Midwest, creating opportunities for a broader reach of our community to connect and explore their humanity through the lens of Shakespearean works,” said David Stradley, producing artistic director of Delaware Shakespeare in a statement. “In chaotic times for live arts organizations, we are most grateful for this support.”

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