The Festival Receives NEA Grant

Grant one of 832 Art Works grants totaling $23.3 million in funding nationwide

[November 28, 2012 — Ojai CA]— National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Chairman Rocco Landesman announced today that Ojai Music Festival is one of 832 non-profit organizations nationwide to receive an NEA Art Works grant. The Festival is recommended for a $15,000 grant to support the 67th Ojai Music Festival, slated for June 6-9, 2013.

The upcoming Festival will explore the musical interests and celebrate artistic collaborations of this year’s music director, noted American choreographer Mark Morris, whose programming focuses on American artists and American music. With an extensive series of concerts and events, the 2013 Festival marks a convergence of exceptional artists, adventurous repertoire, one of the most remarkable audiences for music anywhere and the idyllic setting of Ojai in a four-day immersion of almost continual music-making, discussion and community.

Mark Morris – the first dancer/choreographer to serve as Music Director of the Festival – has been the recipient of numerous awards in recognition of his contributions to the arts, including a MacArthur Fellowship and the prestigious Leonard Bernstein Lifetime Achievement Award for the Elevation of Music in Society. Celebrated as not only as a dancer and choreographer, Mr. Morris’ extensive work in directing opera has included partnerships with The Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, Gotham Chamber Opera, English National Opera, The Royal Opera, Covent Garden, and Cal Performances.

Ojai 2013 programming focuses on music Mark Morris champions and loves, including the music of Lou Harrison, John Cage, Henry Cowell, Charles Ives, and John Luther Adams. Joining Mr. Morris in Ojai will be his Mark Morris Dance Group and the MMDG Music Ensemble, as well as long-time collaborators including jazz artist Ethan Iverson and his jazz trio The Bad Plus (recognized by Rolling Stone magazine as “about as badass as highbrow can get”), pianist/organist Colin Fowler, the American String Quartet, percussion ensemble red fish blue fish, and the UC Berkeley Gamelan Sari Raras.

The 2013 Festival, in keeping with the growing trends of recent years, will include Libbey Bowl concerts, additional events, late night and sunrise concerts, films, and talks.

“I’m proud to announce these 832 grants to the American public including the esteemed Ojai Music Festival,” said Chairman Landesman. “These projects offer extraordinary examples of creativity in our country, including the creation of new work, innovative ways of engaging audiences, and exemplary education programs.”

“The Ojai Music Festival is grateful for its NEA support, which reflects a national commitment, essential in a civilized society, to music as one of the arts that expresses, nurtures and embodies the human spirit,” added Festival Board President Stuart Meiklejohn.

In March 2012, the NEA received 1,509 eligible applications for Art Works requesting more than $74 million in funding. The 832 recommended NEA grants total $22.3 million, span 13 artistic disciplines and fields, and focus primarily on the creation of work and presentation of both new and existing works for the benefit of American audiences. Applications were reviewed by panels of outside experts convened by NEA staff and each project was judged on its artistic excellence and artistic merit. Learn more about the NEA here >>

From its founding in 1947, the Ojai Music Festival has created a place for groundbreaking musical experiences, bringing together innovative artists and curious audiences in an intimate, idyllic setting 80 miles northwest of Los Angeles.  The Festival presents broad-ranging programs that embrace the music of our time and provides intellectual context and education around the Festival programming, creating an immersion experience of adventurous inspiration and vibrant collaboration. Considered a highlight of the summer classical music season, Ojai has remained a leader in the classical music landscape, provoking thought during the Festival and long after about why music matters.

The Ojai Music Festival attracts the world’s greatest musical artists. Under its unique structure of appointing an annual Music Director by the Artistic Director, Ojai has presented a “who’s who” of music: Aaron Copland, Igor Stravinsky, Olivier Messiaen, Michael Tilson Thomas, Kent Nagano, Pierre Boulez, John Adams, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Robert Spano, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, David Robertson, eighth blackbird, George Benjamin, Dawn Upshaw, Leif Ove Andsnes, Mark Morris and Jeremy Denk. For more information on 2013 click here >>