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Arts News for March 13, 2020 
COVID-19 and the Creative Sector
All of us at the Vermont Arts Council are aware of the deep impact of the coronavirus outbreak on artists and cultural organizations across our state. The arts are the heart of public life, and the efforts required to limit the virus' spread are causing mass event cancellations, plummeting ticket sales, loss of donor revenue, and more.
To support the needs of artists and cultural organizations through this pandemic, we are maintaining a dedicated COVID-19 creative sector resources page on our website.
We will continue to provide information and links to resources as we identify them. We hope you'll feel free to contact us, and to support each other as we navigate this situation together.
The 2020 Poetry Out Loud Semifinals
On Thursday, March 5 at the Barre Opera House, twenty-seven champions from high schools around the state gathered in the 2020 Poetry Out Loud semifinals to recite with all their might. All brought passion to the stage, but only the ten highest scorers advance to the finals on March 16. Congratulations to the following students: 
  • Mollie Allen from South Burlington High School
  • Eliza Asante from Vermont Academy
  • Sadie Chamberlain from Lyndon Institute
  • Aiden Coli from Milton High School
  • Ethan Lisle from Champlain Valley Union High School
  • Kathleen Mayhew from Saint Johnsbury Academy
  • Fred Pohlen from Rice Memorial High School
  • Sam Powers from Woodstock High School
  • Owen Senesac from Bellows Free Academy - Fairfax
  • Eloise Silver Van Meter from Thetford Academy
And congratulations to the alternates as well:
  • Region I: Jade Edwards from Mount Abraham Union High School
  • Region II: Arianna Barrios from Arlington Memorial High School 
Revisit the semifinals via video: 
Photos from the semifinals
The finalists and alternate from Region 1 of the 2020 Poetry Out Loud semifinals.
The finalists and alternate from Region 2 of the 2020 Poetry Out Loud semifinals.
The Competition Must Go On... Video
The Vermont Arts Council has decided to cancel the public Poetry Out Loud competition on Monday, March 16 at Vermont PBS studios.
Given widespread concern about community transmission of COVID-19, it is clearly important to avoid bringing groups of people together from across the state of Vermont, whenever possible. In the end, the safety and well-being of our student contestants and our communities is our paramount concern.
The statewide competition will be conducted via video conferencing, and all of us at the Arts Council and VTPBS will do everything we can to make this a meaningful and successful event for all, despite the present challenges.
"Teenagers Recite Poetry" by Brett Ann Stanciu 
Brett Ann Stanciu.
2020 Poetry Out Loud semifinals judge Brett Ann Stanciu wrote these thoughts after watching an earlier round of the competition in February. Originally posted on her website,
Reluctantly, my daughter drags herself to a required high school poetry recitation.
While I chat with parents I haven't seen in ages, I see her laughing with a boy she's known since third grade.
Adolescents and poetry - how fun! One boy gives a comedic performance of "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening," beginning by asking the prompter, Where am I stopping now?
Another boy's fingers tremble as he reads a particularly beautiful poem. A shy girl comes alive.
Afterwards, talking in the dark on the short drive home from the theater, my daughter tells me about each student, how they chose their two poems, and what their voice was like. My daughter's second poem was Frost's Two roads diverged in a narrow road, so familiar, such a beloved poem. Nervous for her first poem, Emily Dickinson, she gained her voice with the second, her eyes on the upper balcony, her voice clear, melodious, utterly her.
Tonight the bear
comes to the orchard and, balancing
on her hind legs, dances under the apple trees,
hanging onto their boughs,
dragging their branches down to earth.
From "The Bear" by Susan Mitchell
Read more of Brett's thoughts on poetry and people on the Vermont Arts Council blog.
Arts Briefs
Applications for our
Artists in Schools Grants close Sunday March 29. Join our roster of teaching artists to bring your passion for writing, music, painting, theater, sculpture, and more to your local classrooms.
We're partnering with Inclusive Arts Vermont and the Southern Vermont Arts Center to off a special workshop on April 20, Inclusive Arts Education in Practice, to illuminate the power of art-making in authentic group spaces.
Nominations for the Vermont Arts Awards 2020 are open through April 6. Artistic achievement and outstanding efforts in arts education and advocacy are celebrated annually.
Upcoming Events
Bear Pond Books
March 15
Stage 33 Live
March 15
Bellows Falls
Catamount Arts Cabaret Room
March 18
St. Johnsbury
Vermont Jazz Center
March 14
March 21
South Pomret
Northern Vermont University
March 25
Brandon Music
March 21
March 26
Waterbury Center
Highland Center for the Arts
March 29
COVID-19 Event Cancellations
All Middlebury College Events Cancelled
through April 14
Savoy Theatre
March 20-25
Elley-Long Music Center
March 14
Due to the frequency of event cancellations during the COVID-19 crisis, we cannot guarantee that events listed in our calendar are current. Please confirm with the listed venue before attending.
Have you listed an event in our arts calendar that has since been cancelled due to COVID-19? Please email Desmond Peeples, Content Manager, at to update your listing.
The Vermont Arts Council is funded, in part, by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, which requires a 1:1 match from the Vermont State Legislature. Council grants, programs, and statewide arts promotion would not be possible without the critical funding provided by these government agencies.

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 Vermont Arts Council | 802.828.3291  

Vermont Arts Council, 136 State Street, Montpelier, VT 05633-6001

Past Issues, 2020

February 6, 2020 Creation, Artist Development, Arts Impact, and Cultural Facilities Grants open for application, workshops available | Animating Infrastructure special round opens February 11 | NEA funds work in every state, Challenge America Grants open | recognition for Lost Nation Theater | Vermont Artists to Watch 2020 in Spotlight Gallery | applications to summer Governors Institutes for the Arts open | Sandglass Theater's Summer Intensive open for application | Vermont Arts Award nominations open

January 9, 2020 JumpStart program | Sean Clute joins board | Kira Bacon retires from Council | Teaching Artist Roster open | Poetry Out Loud champions to register | Vermont Tourism Day | Vermont Studio Center seeks executive and finance directors

Past Issues, 2019

December 20, 2019 Happy Holidays!

December 5, 2019 public art and placemaking | shop artisan markets | Rob Hitzig's bumper stickers | Larry Bissonette in Folk Art Messenger | Axel's Gallery and Frame Shop seeks mural sketch | deadline extended for communications and outreach director

November 21, 2019 artist grant cycle scheduled | Head Start Arts Integration Grants awarded | literary mag for LGBTQ+ and POC relaunched | Marble House Project artist residency program accepting applications | Arts Council seeks communications and outreach director | Smart Artist workshop on getting press available

November 14, 2019 Vermont artist Cai Xi

November 7, 2019 Mary Ruefle named poet laureate | I AM .  . . opening events | new officers for Council board | Ben Cadwallader is named Rising Star | Spruce Peak Performing Arts seeks associate | Rep. John Killacky editorial on Arts Advocacy

October 31, 2019 Vermont artist Lina Longtoe

October 24, 2019 Vermont Arts Awards recap | I AM . . . to open | I AM . . . panel discussion | Arts Council communinications and outreach director search open | Circus Smirkus seeks development manager and executive assistant | Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation grants available | Helen Day Arts Center recruiting after-school instructors

October 17, 2019 Vermont artist Hom Pradhan

October 10, 2019 Arts and Humanities Month | Artists Lead! program introduced | Vermont Arts Awards 2019 | Voicing Art poetry reading event | surveying the creative economy | Public Art Learning Fund

October 3, 2019 Vermont artist Jarvis Green

September 26, 2019 remembering Paul Bruhn | Big Frog installed at Vermont Agriculture and Environmental Laboratory | Vermont Creative Network seeks sector data | director sought for Generator | call for applications to business program at Generator | Northern Stage seeks sales and marketing assistant

September 19, 2019 Vermont artist Migmar Tsering

September 12, 2019 five to receive Vermont Arts Awards 2019 | The State of Sculpture opens in Spotlight Gallery | sculpture to be installed at Vermont Agricultural and Environmental Laboratory | National Endowment for the Arts and Arts Council to present funding opportunities | Vermont Studio Center accepting residency applications | Highland Center for the Arts seeks executive director

September 5, 2019 Vermont artist Rajnii Eddins

August 29, 2019 Conduits coming to Spotlight Gallery | Vermont Arts & Culture Disaster and Resilience Network launch meeting September 10 | The State of Sculpture installed in Council garden | Bill Schubart comments on arts and culture solutions | Inclusive Arts Vermont invites work for ANEW | Will Kasso Condry welcomes help from young artists | Studio Place Arts calls for submissions 

August 22, 2019 Vermont artist Larry Bissonnette

August 15, 2019 Creation Grants announced | Cultural Facilities Grants announced | Artists in Schools Grants open | Artist Development Grants open | Sarah-Lee Terrat writes about recovery from Tropical Storm Irene | Toby MacNutt receives award | Next Stage Arts seeks director | Mary Anne Carter confirmed as chair of National Endowment for the Arts | Bennington Museum seeks executive director

August 8, 2019 Vermont artist Desmond Peeples

August 1, 2019 arts festivals in August and September | support arts-based programs in U.S. Defense Department, Veterans Affairs, and Justice Department budgets | Cultural Disaster Readiness Convening September 10 | Creative Ground profiles | #VTArts251 continues | Northern Stage seeks company manager | River Arts calls artists to environmental exhibition | Chandler seeks program and outreach coordinator

July 25, 2019 Vermont artist Kaylynn Sulivan TwoTrees

July 18, 2019 SiteTime : Cordwood : Sharing in Spotlight Gallery | John Killacky remains arts advocate | Levitt AMP Grants available for 2020 | Vermont Community Leadership Summit coming in August | Karen Mittelman to read at Bookstock 2019 | Our Town Grants available

July 11, 2019 Vermont artist Will Kasso Condry

June 20, 2019 Creative Placemakers share perspective | Burlington City Arts honored by New England Foundation for the Arts | Make Music Day approaches | #VTArts251 challenge | Our Town and Arts Works Grants open | Addison/Rutland Creative Zone hosting panel | Community Engagement Lab hosts Tacos & Teaching Artists

June 13, 2019 Vermont artist Mikahely

June 6, 2019, Animating Infrastructure Grants announced | arts-integrated learning history unit at Miller's Run School | expand Creation Grant funding ask | Head Start Arts Integration Grants available | Make Music Day: call | Helen Day Arts Center seeks part-time support person | call to UNBOUND Vol IX | studio space available at Center for Arts and Learning in Montpelier2019

May 30, 2019 Vermont artist Toussaint St. Negritude

May 23, 2019 ArtsFest in Montpelier a part of Creative Communities Exchange | open studio weekend | inclusion at Flynn: A Thoughtful Invitation | in memoriam: Malcolm Ewen | Creation and Arts Impact Grant deadlines approaching | Christy Mitchell to head South End Arts and Business Association | NEA announces Vermont grantees | Jarvis Green honored

May 16, 2019 Vermont artist Toby MacNutt

May 9, 2019 Aubrey Benoit photograph wins Congressional Arts Competition | inclusion at Circus Smirkus | Make Music Vermont call to artists | Vermont's appeal to writers and poets | Margaret Coleman appointed director of T.W. Wood Gallery | UNBOUND Vol IX call for entries | VSA Vermont's Inclusive Arts Education in Practice workshop

May 2, 2019 Vermont artist Bryan Blanchette

April 25, 2019 Almost Forgotten in Spotlight Gallery | Road to Recognition permanent installation | VSA Vermont's Inclusive Arts Education in Practice workshop | Green Mountain Youth Symphony auditions | Studio Place Arts open calls to artists | Art for Equity Educator Institute in August

April 18, 2019 Vermont artists Muslim Girls Making Change

April 11, 2019 PoemCity and PoemTown celebrations | Hail the Poets! is featured story | Dominique Gustin joins staff | grant seeker workshops available | Yellow Barn seeks general manager | Middlebury New Filmmakers Festival announced Shouldice Family Prize | MakerSphere space available

April 4, 2019 Vermont artist Misoo

March 28, 2019 Poetry Out Loud 2019 State Champion Vera Escaja-Hess | Vermont poet laureate profile and nominations open | Arts Impact Grants round begins | benefit concert for Council and Latchis Arts | Creative Communities Fellowship Program applications open | Vermont Arts Endowment Fund support available | production manager sought for Flynn Center

March 21, 2019 Vermont artist LN Bethea

March 14, 2018 Deployed debuts with reading | Creation Grants open | nominations for2019 Arts Awards open | Poetry Out Loud state championship | Council Annual Report available | Rural Prosperity Through the Arts and Creative Sector study published | Governors Institutes for the Arts applications open

March 7, 2019 Vermont artist Sachiko Yoshida

February 28, 2019 Looking North: Catamount Artists Connect to open in Spotlight Gallery | Poetry Out Loud 2019 Semifinals March 7 | Creative Communities Exchange in Montpelier June 6 and 7 | Chandler Center for the Arts seeks director | Circus Smirkus seeks business manager | T.W. Wood Gallery seeks director

February 21, 2019 Vermont artist Dr. Scarborough François Clemmons

February 14, 2019 staff loves Vermont arts | six Vermont arts organizations recieve NEA grants | EPIC Music featured | Cultural Facilities Grant workshops | Hunger Mountain journal accepting applications | TedxStowe seeks short animation | winners of Scholastic Art & Writing Awards named

February 7, 2019 Vermont artist Isadora Snapp

January 31, 2019 creative economy study launched | Spark coworking space in Greensboro | JAGFest 3.0 highlights women playwrights | Indira Goodwine named dance program director at NEFA | Spruce Peak Arts seeks administrative assistant | Vermont Arts Council seeks artist services coordinator | City of South Burlington seeks artist(s) for 180 Market Street project

January 24, 2019 Vermont artist Amy Hook-Therrien

January 17, 2019 Jackson Tupper in Artists to Watch 2019 | Hannah Morris joins Council staff | NEA Arts Works Grants available | arts and the shutdown | Community Engagement Lab opens Communities Project Grants | Arts Bus seeks director | call to artists: Hunger Mountain Coop

January 10 Vermont artists A2VT

January 3, 2019 Burlington Lake & City Semester's THRIVE! event | introducing I am a Vermont Artist | upcoming Artists to Watch 2019 | Big Heavy World receives Spark! Grant | Dorset Players' auditions for Oklahoma! | apply for Governor's Institutes Winter Weekend Masterclasses

Past Issues, 2018

December 19, 2018 staff favorites | Council receives Ally of Accessibility Award

December 6, 2018  Vermont cultural leaders issue statement | grant for emergency arts readiness | Vermont Arts 20XX on leave | holiday markets | Animating Infrastructure letters of intent deadline | four additional Artist Development Grants awarded | Carving Studio and Sculpture Center accepting residency applications | Heather Geoffrey of Main Street Arts featured

November 22, 2018  arts awards recap | Democracy and the Arts | State House statue to be installed November 30 | artisan markets | Marble House Project residencies | auditions for Lyric Theare Company | Vermont Arts Council seeks executive/development assistant

November 8, 2018  Governor's Arts Awards November 14 | 7Women 7Walls opening reception November 9 | Artist Development Grant deadline November 15 | Irene Green named managing director at Northern Stage | Catamount Arts in running for funding through Levitt Foundation | VSA Vermont seeks part-time development and communications assistant

October 25, 2018  Convening recap | Honor installed at Veterans Cemetery | Head Starts Arts Integration Grants awarded | 7Women 7Walls coming to Spotlight Gallery | call for submissions to Arts Connect at Catamount | 2019 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards open | SafeArt seeks executive director | Second Stage at Walker Farm completes first year

October 11, 2018  Governor's Arts Awards ceremony | Corrina Thurston Rising Star | David Macaulay Lecture | Animating Infrastructure Grant workshops | Leonardo Vazquez at Network Convening | Call for NXNE 2019 | Weston Playhouse seeks director of marketing and communications | about the arts award recipients

September 27, 2018  FY2019 grantees announced | gallery proposals invited | Tom Pilon joins Council staff | 13th Annual Independent Television Festival approaches | Vermont Poetry Out Loud begins | Sarah-Lee Terrat to discuss Green and Gold | interview with Leo Vazquez

September 13, 2018  Governor's Arts Awards recipients announced | opening reception for Macaulay in Montpelier | Creation Grant awardees named | new public art in Waterbury | Making it Happen Leadership Summit Oct. 1 | administrative assistant needed at Carving Studio and Sculpture Center | Leahy to sit on committee influencing NEA budget

August 30, 2018  Macauley exhibit coming Sept. 14 | #VTArts251 announced | new sculpture for State House | workshops for Animating Infrastructure Grants | Journalism in Today's Democracy | Vermont Art Teachers Association Conference | Main Street Arts storytelling event | advocating for arts in education

August 16, 2018  arts events with international flavor | Alexandra Contreras-Montesano named a National Student Poet | Animating Infrastructure and Artists in Schools Grants open | ECHO, Leahy Center for Lake Champlain call to artists, architects, and makers | scholarship available for Bennington Writing Seminars | Indiana State University call for public art | grantmaking expresses Council priorities

August 2, 2018  Vermont Filmmakers featured in Middlebury Festival | calls to artists abundant in Council classifieds | Artist Development Grants open | NEFA accepting applications for program director, dance | 2019 Levitt AMP Music Series accepting applications | SEABA and Magic Hat invite artists to submit designs | Reclamation at Helen Day Arts Center

July 19, 2018  Jim Sardonis selected for Art in State Buildings installation | Vermont Book Award nominees announced | The Fabric of Emancipation at Rokeby Museum | proposals sought for Clemmons Family Farm workshops and events | Taryn Noelle Swings reviewed | NEFA seeks consultants for planning growth of CreativeGround | more about Highland Center for the Arts

July 5, 2018  New American Artists: Celebrating Tradition and Culture coming to Spotlight Gallery | Head Start Arts Integration Grants open | Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition | Performing Arts Readiness offers Emergency Preparedness Grants | New England Youth Center hiring technical director | exhibit honors Gregory Sharrow

June 21, 2018  Creative Network developing plan to advance sector in Northeast Kingdom |  Creation Grant deadline | John Killacky's legacy | Center for Arts and Learning director search | Peter Schumann receives Lockwood Prize | residencies at Studio Place Arts | eight museums to visit

June 7, 2018  Special Project Grants | teahing artists  added to roster | National Arts Strategies selects community fellows from Vermont | Flynn Summer Arts Literacy Institute | Susanna Gellert to head Weston Playhouse Theatre | TLC Project at Vermont Arts Exchange

May 24, 2018  Open Studio Weekend | Creation Grants increase | arts-oriented summer camps | Blue Starts Museum program | call for What Happened to the American Dream and shows for shows at Studio Place Art | Sean Hunter Williams sculpture honors art teacher | Brattleboro Music Center

May 10, 2018  new trustees and board chair for Council | "Breathing" in Sculpture Garden Friday | Northern Stage expands BridgeUP program | new finance assistant at Council | NEFA grant recipients announced | CCX host communities sought | call to artists at T.W. Wood Gallery | beer and art tour

April 26, 2018  Artists to Watch Part II opening | grant programs opening | grant seeker workshops | 2018 annual meeting | panelists sought | Poetry Out Loud champion ranks high in national competition | Sculptfest call open | executive director needed at Town Hall Theater | National Dance Project Grants | Norwich University collaborates on elementary school playground

April 12, 2018  mourning Greg Sharrow and Peter Kriff | Council grants available | annual meeting May 4 | disability awareness training | Crafting Your Legacy available as download | 48-hour filmmaking competition for students | northeast region teaching artist trainings | changes at G.R.A.C.E.

March 29, 2018  Art in State Buildings call for RFQ | Poetry Out Loud broadcast on VermontPBS | workshop on sensory-friendly performance | CERF seeks deputy director | scholarships available at Carving Studio and Sculpture Center | Burlington City Arts accepting applications for Summer Artist Market | featured story explores arts-integrated learning

March 16, 2018  Vermont Poetry Out Loud finalists and champion | Vermont Arts Advocacy Day recap | Amy Cunningham is Council deputy director | inclusion workshops coming up | Creative Community Fellows program open | Teaching Artist Roster deadline March 24 | Sculptfest invites proposals | Northeast Region Teaching Artist Training | Arts Council hiring finance assistant | Spruce Peak Performing Arts seeks facility manager | Building the Barrette is featured story

March 1, 2018  Artists to Watch opens | Arts Advocacy Day | Poetry Out Loud semifinals | Cultural Facilities grantee reception | Cultural Facilities grant seeker workshops | become exhibiting member Brandon Artists Guild | Governor's Institutes applications open | Vermont Studio Center seeks admissions manager | Why Watch Artists is featured story

February 15, 2018  NEA grants to seven Vermont organizations | Annual Report available | Vermont Arts 2018 stickers available | Cultural Facilities reception | Elizabeth Alexander now president of Andrew W. Mellon Foundation | Vermont Book Award nominations open | NEA chair's statement on elimination of funding in President's budget | skiing and arts in Vermont

February 1, 2018  commentary and survey on creative workforce | Caroline Tavelli-Abar talk and SiteTime event | Cultural Facilities grant seeker workshops | Council awards nominations open | Vermont's African American Heritage Trail | Humanities Council grants open | John Dunlop profile | VCFA attracting international talent

January 18, 2018  SiteTime: Falling and talk by Caroline Tavelli-Abar February 2 | Teaching Artist Training in Northeast Kingdom | Pauline Jennings receives SEED award | BMAC looking for office manager | New England Dance Fund grants available | new publication by Michael Caduto | Spread the News blog post

January 4, 2018  SiteTime Scene Two: Falling (postponed) | Teaching Artist Roster open | Vermont Arts 2018 announced | ThinkVermont seeks ambassadors | Miranda Thomas taking craft to Davos, Switzerland | Tessa O'Brien and Kat Clear bring art to Burlington City Hall Park | Ballet Vermont auditions open | Caroline Tavelli-Abar show in Spotlight Gallery

Another Newsletter

Notes From Outside the Box  Keeping our sector informed about the progress and shaping of the Vermont Creative Network.