New grant program helps artists adapt during pandemic

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      The B.C. Ministry of Tourism, Arts, Culture, and Sport today announced a new grant program to help artists with challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

      People can apply for up to $12,000 to learn new skills or adapt their practices, such as modifying a dance piece for a smaller audience. 

      Artists have been hit hard by the pandemic," says Bob D’Eith, Parliamentary Secretary for Arts and Film, in a press release. "We need to support them now to make sure they can inspire and entertain us later. I’m proud our government is helping people find new ways to make art in this unprecedented time.”

      “As an independent artist myself, I know how daunting it is right now," adds theatre artist and BC Arts Council member Pat Henman. "This new program will be so welcome by artists trying to maintain their practice. These grants offer financial support for professional artists who are vital to our communities and our economy.”

      Melanie Mark, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport, echoes D'Eith and Henman's concerns.

      Melanie Mark, B.C. Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport.

      “We’re building on our support for arts and culture in British Columbia by helping artists adapt their work," says Mark, "ensuring our province has a strong creative industry to enjoy when the pandemic is over.”

      The program is available to professional artists and cultural workers, including:

      • dancers and choreographers;
      • visual artists;
      • writers;
      • actors;
      • multi-media artists; and
      • arts administrators.

      Applications are open until February 16, and the BC Arts Council will adjudicate and award the grants in early spring. Interested artists can apply here.