PictureMountain Play. Courtesy image.

As we’ve been reporting for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis, few sectors of our local economy have been hit harder than arts organizations, which have been thrashed by their complete inability to gather people in a room to experience art, live music and performance since mid-March. 

In recognition of that fact, the Marin Cultural Association, a nonprofit arm of the county’s department of cultural services, created the Arts & Culture Recovery Fund to provide grants to organizations directly impacted by the COVID-19 restrictions.  

The fund just awarded 15 Marin County arts organizations with grants totaling $51,575, including five with direct ties to Mill Valley: Marin Theatre Company ($4,500), Mill Valley Fall Arts Festival ($500), Mill Valley Philharmonic ($3,500), Mountain Play Association ($5,000) and O’Hanlon Center for the Arts (3,800).  

“Art teaches us empathy, understanding and appreciation for those who have had different life experiences. The arts reflect not only who we are, but who we aspire to be,” Gabriella Calicchio, Director of Marin County Cultural Services and MCA Executive Director, said in a statement. “Even before COVID-19, the arts in Marin were threatened by the reality of surviving in a community that has huge disparities racially and economically.”

The Arts & Culture Recovery Fund began with initial contributions from the California Arts Council, the Marin Community Foundation, the Fenwick Foundation, private donations and a separate $15,000 from CARES Act funding. Grants were awarded to arts organizations that reflect and serve Marin’s diverse communities, Calicchio said. 


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