Local arts organizations have received another infusion of COVID-19 relief funds thanks to a $100,000 contribution from Hollingsworth Funds Inc.
The funding, which is being distributed by the Metropolitan Arts Council, was awarded to the following groups: Artisphere, Centre Stage, Greenville Chorale, Greenville County Museum of Art, Greenville Symphony Orchestra, Greenville Theatre, Metropolitan Arts Council, Peace Center, South Carolina Children’s Theatre and Warehouse Theatre.
Each of the 10 organizations will receive $10,000 within the next few days, said Alan Ethridge, executive director of the Metropolitan Arts Council.
“There are no restrictions placed on the use of these funds, and there is no paperwork involved, either,” Ethridge said in an email. “It is very rewarding to see Greenville’s most generous philanthropic entities supporting our amazing cultural community.”
The Metropolitan Arts Council has coordinated and distributed $375,500 in virus relief grants so far this year.
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In May, it partnered with the Graham Foundation and Canal Charitable Foundation to distribute $275,500 in COVID-19 relief funds to 28 arts organizations.
To gauge the extent of the virus’s impact on the arts community, calls were made to every organization that had received MAC support in the last three years. Any group that reported losses because of COVID-19 — 28 organizations in all — was selected for funding.
With no money coming in, the organizations’ combined losses at the time easily totaled $4-5 million, according to Ethridge.
“This virus can be very, very catastrophic, and it has been,” Ethridge had said.
Since the pandemic was declared in March, arts organizations have had to cancel and postpone performances, events, exhibits and fundraisers, according to Kerry Murphy, the executive director of Artisphere. Artisphere organizers were forced to cancel the downtown Greenville arts festival this year due to coronavirus concerns.
“That loss of income can be devastating. These relief funds will have a tremendous impact on our cultural community,” Murphy had said in a statement.