Recipients - Aurand Harris Grants & Fellowships HISTORY & RECIPIENTS

AURAND HARRIS GRANTS - Recent Recipients
For not-for-profit small to mid-sized develop new, creative projects for youth.
NOTE: Over the years criteria for these grants have varied. Refer to current criteria when preparing to submit an application.

2023 (Grants Average Award: $2,200.00)
NEW NATIVE THEATRE, Minneapolis/Saint Paul, MN -- To create a program designed for Native American youth living in the Twin Cities to practice conventional American theatre skills in a culturally-sensitive environment led by Native instructors and professional practitoners.

SPINNING TREE THEATRE, Kansas City, MO -- To produce a world premiere production of (working title) “Rubik" with the potential to educate and inspire Kansas City youth on the autism spectrum, their families, and the community.

To devise for The TYA BIPOC “Super Hero's” Project - creative processes, using Boal-like improvisatory drama strategies as spaces for participants to reflect upon their own creative processes. Framed through antiracist and de-colonial theory (Patel, Medina) video and voice recordings, participant created artifacts, comic strips, and poetic journals, a graphic novel style storying book will be created.

To create an interactive theatre piece that guides audiences through the story of immigrant families.

CLEAVON SMITH -- To develop a play for children in Oregon to help them gain an awareness of the history of Black Americans in Oregon and the exclusionary laws that resulted in the limited number of non-whites in the state. To work with educators to develop pre- and post-performance lessons to integrate the play into students’ classroom learning.

2022 (Grants Average Award: $2,400.00)
SAN FRANCISCO YOUTH THEATRE (SFYT) San Francisco, CA -- Will tour its new production, "Dancing Home", based on the young adult novel by Cuban-American authors Alma Flor Ada and Gabriel Zubizaretta, to Bay Area elementary and middle schools, libraries and community centers, opening conversations about immigration and inclusiveness.

TRUSTY SIDEKICK THEATER New York,NY -- Will tour Jem & Stonie, an interactive virtual performance for early year classrooms, and launch season 2 of S.O.U.P (Surveyors of Unused Potential), a podcast which uses guided audio adventures to promote young people’s deep engagement with their environments by combining inquiry-based learning with imaginative play.

ARTS ON THE HORIZON Alexandria, VA -- will fund the Emerging Artist Fellowship program, designed to provide professional pathways for 1-2 collegiate or young BIPOC professional artists interested in Theater for the Very Young (TVY), physical theater, and object transformation.

RIVER WEST THEATRE, dba Fonseca Theatre Company: Indianapolis, IN -- The Fonseca Theatre Company will expand their education programming to serve teens - they currently work with children ages 6-12 living in the Near Westside of Indianapolis, and are currently serving 100% BIPOC students. Their program gives young people the opportunity to write and produce their own original short play based on a predetermined theme.

METRO THEATRE COMPANY, Saint Louis, MO -- Will celebrate five decades of high-caliber theater for youth, Metro Theater Company (MTC) will launch its 50th season on October 15, 2022 with a weekend-long Free Family Festival in partnership with Grand Center Inc’s Plein Air Art Festival in the Grand Center Arts District.

(Grants Average Award: $1,600.00)
COMMUNITY THEATRE LEAGUE, INC, Williamsport, PA -- To include at least one sensory friendly performance aimed at families with special needs, specifically autism in their next season. Fall, 2020-Adapting to the COVID-19 restrictions, Community Theatre League of Williamsport, PA, who initially felt they would be closed by now, are performing on a high school football field to large audiences.

FRIGID NEW YORK, INC., New York, NY -- For artist fees to create a Spanish language version of their Young Audience production, "Show Up, Kids!" 2020-Adapting to COVID-19 restrictions, FRIGID in New York went to zoom immediately, employing technical theatre staff and other platforms to meet their spring and summer contracts. Their work has gone all over the world and now is showing at the Fringe Festival in Scotland. Their theatre has turned into a temporary TV studio with remote rehearsals and performances.

DRAMAWORKS' WEST END THEATRE, Quincy, CA -- To purchase an Eartec Co HUB7SMXS communications system.

ENCHANTMENT THEATRE COMPANY, Philadelphia, PA -- To support equipment for a touring production of an adaptation of "My Mommy’s Khimar", a portrait of a young Muslim American girl’s life, by a Philadelphia author.

METRO THEATER COMPANY, St. Louis, MO -- To purchase new audio equipment for our upcoming touring production of "JACKED!", a break beat musical interpretation of Jack and the Bean Stalk that introduces the opiod crisis to elementary children.

(Grants Average Award: $1,733.33)
ARTS ON THE HORIZON, Alexandria, VA -- To purchase LED lighting equipment.

CHILD'S PLAY TOURING THEATRE, Chicago, IL -- In collaboration with Chicago schools’ Social Emotional Learning and elementary schools, they will provide creative writing and theatre residencies for 300-400 students.

COLLECTIVE CONSCIOUSNESS THEATRE, New Haven, CT -- To support the development of BLACK BOOK, a new solo play by Ashford. Funds will be for artist stipend.

JACKALOPE THEATRE CO and THE YARD, Chicago, IL -- To reimage a new play commission and development process – currently their students select playwrights but have no input into the content. The redesign of the script development process would start with the commission workshops of playwrights and the youth and then continue with youth dramaturgy summits throughout the process.

SAN FRANCISCO YOUTH THEATRE, San Francisco, CA -- To accept the invitation to perform at the Kestenburg International Festival of Student Theatre and help create an environment for cooperation among theatre students from all over the world.

STAGES PERFORMING YOUTH ACADEMY, Hillsboro, OR -- To purchase a pipe and drape stage setting.

(Grants Average Award: $2000.)
ID STUDIO THEATER PERFORMANCE AND RESEARCH CENTER, INC. , Bronx, NY— To fund a bilingual children’s play/multidisciplinary performance following up their summer workshops, funded by NEA, focusing on new works for children from immigrant stories.

COLLABORATIVE APPLICATION OF SAM TOWER, Artist, and HEADLONG DANCE THEATER, Philadelphia, PA — To support a new Theatre for the Very Young production “Homeworld,” a performance installation for babies.

2017 (Grants Average Award: $2000.)
PUPPET SHOWPLACE THEATER, Brookline, MA —To support an after school enrichment program that supports STEM goals.

TEATRO DALLAS, Dallas, TX —To defray costs of lighting, body mics and travel for children’s productions in the parks.

TRUSTY SIDEKICK THEATER COMPANY, New York, NY — To subsidize the purchase of a large scale projection screen.

WORKING CLASSROOM, Albuquerque, NM — To travel to visit working children’s theatre companies to research sustainability, training and process, etc.

2016 (Grants Average Award: $3000.)
BOXTALES THEATRE, Santa Barbara, CA — To support the incorporation of media arts (screen projections) into their original production of Stand Up Stories! Multicultural Tales To Live By, which will tour elementary schools throughout WA and CA.

2015 (Average Award: $4500)
PEPPERCORN THEATRE at the Children’s Museum of Winston-Salem, Winston-Salem, NC — To commission a NYC folk band to write and original score for a new musical, THE TOURIST.

ADVENTURE STAGE CHICAGO at the Northwestern University Settlement House, Chicago, IL — To develop a site specific immersive theatrical piece about the 125 year history of the settlement which has pioneered the development of children’s theatre in the United States.

2014 (Average Award: $3150.00)
SEVEN STAGES, Atlanta, GA — To support the development of a world premiere production for young audiences about the experience of living with the Autism Spectrum Disorder.

COLLECTIVE CONSCIOUSNESS THEATRE, New Haven, CT — To support the establishment of a New Play Lab for youth to conceive, develop and produce new plays centered on social issues affecting local young people.

FOUNDATION FOR THE OPEN EYE, Margaretville, NY — To develop and fully produce a stage adaptation of “Dulce Domum” from Kenneth Grahame’s – “The Wind in the Willows,” creating a play with music for young audiences, their families and their adult friends, with 8 public performances and student matinees.

2013 (Average Award: $4,500)
Prime Stage Theatre, Pittsburgh, PA — To commission, create and produce the world premiere theatrical adaption of the Newberry Award novel, THE DEVIL’S ARITHMETIC, to be adapted by playwright Barry Kornhauser and opened at Prime Stage in 2014.

Teatro del Pueblo, St. Paul, MN — To commission and develop a new children’s play by Jose Cruz Gonzalez entitled “The Astronaut Farmworker.” This is a new commission which will provide a new script for the theatre field. (Update-project postponed until 2015.)

2012 (Average Award: $1,888.67)
Contemporary American Theatre Festival, Shepherdstown, WV — To produce stage readings with professional actors of two nationally selected contemporary plays specifically written for the teen/youth audience and create an immersion experience for the teen/youth audience in attendance.

Puppet Showplace Theatre, Brookline, MA — To support a new project of creating, producing, mounting in-house, and touring a new piece of puppet theatre for family preschool and elementary school audiences, in the American folk tale tradition, focusing on Boston’s colonial and revolutionary history and incorporating elements of the era’s traditional crafts.

South Carolina Children’s Theatre, Greenville, SC — To purchase equipment for wireless microphones for touring and to purchase lighting equipment for the main stage production.

2011 (Average Award: $2,324)
Boxtales Theatre Company, Santa Barbara, CA — To support the creation and presentation of a 40-minute original play based on the POPOL VUH (the central creation myth of the Quiche Maya people) for 10,000 students in public and private elementary schools throughout CA and WA.

Pennsylvania Youth Theatre, Bethlehem, PA — To support two professional actors in the regional tour of Jose Cruz Gonzales’s TOMAS AND THE LIBRARY LADY and a coordinating event with the playwright.

2010 (Average Award: $2,250)
Emerald City Theatre, Chicago, IL — To support a child development expert from the Erikson Institute to consult on their new works process, the ECT PlayGround, and collaborate with the playwrights, directors, design teams and actors on developing works as well as interact with audiences. This expert would be part of the production team and would be the Eduturg.

Collective Consciousness Theatre, New Haven, CT — To conceive, create and produce an original production, study guide and student/teacher workshops for middle and high schools based on the Amistad slave revolt and trial, tentatively titled Give Us Free.

2009 (Average Award: $1,666)
The Eckerd Theater Company, Clearwater, FL — To support the purchase of theatre equipment necessary for touring.

Falconworks Artists Group, Brooklyn, NY — To support Off the Hook, an out-of-school program in playwriting and acting for youth ages 11-15. The project comprises an 8-wek playwriting and acting workshop followed by public performances of the participants’ plays.

Metro Theater Company, St. Louis, Mo, to partially fund a New Work Incubator for the benefit of emerging, mid-career, established and international TYA artists

2008 (Average Award: $2,666)
Columbia Center for Theatrical Arts, Inc, Columbia, MD — To support the purchase of portable sound and light systems to use in outreach performances for at risk youth.

Alchemists Workshop, Henniker, NH — To commission Karen Haug to produce and write a play based on their town’s most interesting character—Ocean Born Mary. .

Stepping Stone Theatre for Youth Development, St. Paul, MN — To support the world premiere of Rainbow Crow by Rhiana Yazzie, commissioned by the theatre.

2007 (Average Award: $1,700)
ASSITEJ/USA —To assist in the funding of one or more graduate students or early career professionals to attend ASSITEJ in Australia and to represent the US in the Next Generation Project.

Oregon Children’s Theatre, Portland OR — For script development of Lois Lowry’s youth novel, Gossamer, to be co-produced in the following year by Oregon Children’s Theatre and First Stage of Milwaukee.

Jeanne Klein, Lawrence KS — To support research and writing of a book explaining how children formulate aesthetic judgments about theatre from early-middle childhood.

Here Arts Center of NY — To support an international festival featuring Dutch and French productions for young audiences.

2006 (Average Award: $1,900)
The Open Eye Theatre, Margaretville, NY — To produce a series of four Bear Bones workshop productions of new plays for young audiences and families - plays calling for young actors and adults in the cast.

The Marsh Youth Theatre, San Francisco, CA — To commission and perform an original musical piece entitled Siddhartha, The Bright Path. Siddhartha will be set with Indian music and dance by artists with cultural experience.

2005 (Average award: $1,042)
Metro Theatre Company — To help support the production and local/regional tour of Stix and Stonz, a new play by Nicholas Kryah that explores the exercise of power and the dynamics of prejudice.

Prime Stage Theatre — To support a program integrating theatre and literature, “Connect Kids to Classics.”

Youth Theatre at the University of Salt Lake — Toward travel costs and related expenses to bring playwright Sandra Asher to Utah for development workshops and rehearsal/performance of a new play.

Theatre del Pueblo of St. Paul, MN — For commission and production expenses for a new play dealing with current Latino issues to be used as the capstone of their bi-lingual Literacy Through Theater residencies.

2004 (Average award: $3,000)
The Children’s Theatre Company of Sioux Falls, SD — For partial support of playwright Wesley Middleton to participate in rehearsals and performance of “Emperor Incorporated.”

Edgefest, Los Angeles, CA — Toward expenses to develop and produce a program to assist Los Angeles based theatre companies develop original one-act plays targeted to children ages 5-15 and their families.

Theatre Building of Chicago, IL — In support of “The One-Acts Project” involving the creation and production of two original musicals for children ages 3-6.
To assist individual theatre artists in the development of their own artistic excellence or artistic growth.
NOTE: Over the years criteria for these fellowships have varied. Refer to current criteria when preparing to submit an application.

2020 (Fellowship Average Award: $2,000.)
ANDREW MORTON, Detroit, MI -- To deepen his understanding of trauma-informed approaches to engagement and best practices, he will embark on an observational listening tour with TYA organizations with a proven record of using trauma –informed approaches and after the tour he will develop a specific action plan on how to further his skills and implement this work in creating theatre with young people who have experienced homelessness and housing insecurity. One of the theatres is Rising Youth Theatre, which is finishing up its' 2-year 2018 CTFA Founders Grant award.

EMILY CATHERINE MARKS, Memphis, TN -- To study, with Mara McCewin at Treehouse Shakers in New York, the interactive experiences designed to give a sense of belonging and joy for ages 0 – 5 and also learning to do this in collaboration with older youth to build intergenerational empathy through a lens of social justice.

(Fellowship Average Award: $1,600.)
TAYLOR JANE COOPER, Austin, TX —To create her first piece of theatre for the very young based on DU IZ TAK by C. Ellis.

(Fellowship Average Award: $2000.)
DESI SHELTON, Artist, Camden, NJ —To provide the artist with time off to write the first play, “RJ,” in a series of plays that are part of the “Shakes for Small Fries,” and preparation for publishing. The work will involve classic puppets and music.

RAMON ESQUIVEL, Artist, Ellensburg, WA — To travel to Phoenix to further develop the script of “The Hero Twins Blood Race” with critical movement elements and help him continue his journey developing Mexican and Yaqui Indian heritage plays.

(Fellowship Average Award: $2000.)
RICK AVERILL, Evanston, IL — To commission a new musical.

RACHEL HYNES, Washington DC — To travel, as a member of a playwright collective (WELDERS), to Vietnam to research and develop a theatre piece from a story of a friend who grew up there and how he made choices about supporting his family.

2016 (Fellowship Average Award: $2000.)
GLORIA BOND CLUNIE, Lawrence, KS — For growing as an artist through the development of Blu-The Musical, via a new play workshop, a reading, audience discussion and the recording of selected songs to be shared with the TYA community

2015 (Award:$3000)
JONATHAN MIRIN, Shelburne, MA — To work with an internationally renowned clown to increase his clowning skills and principles of eccentric performing.

2014 (Fellowship was not awarded)

2013 (Fellowship was not awarded)

2012 (Fellowship was not awarded)

2011 (Award: $2,000)
KHAMARA PETTUS, San Francisco, CA — To provide a four week run of live performances in collaboration with the Brava Theater in San Francisco to bring the essence of Grimm’s fairytales to displaced neighborhoods in the Mission District giving them “an opportunity to encounter positive role models; and, to experience these tales in a fashion that is reflective of and respectful to their culture and surroundings.”

2010 (Average Award: $1,000)

NICHOLE PEARCE, Young Artist’s Theatre Company, Omak, WA — To begin a one year trial project called Young Artists Theatre Company, teaching theatre classes and producing original scenes from Brother’s Grimm Tales and A Christmas Carol, the Musical, in an area where there are no theatre opportunities, in order to further her artistic experience in youth theatre and fill the need in the community.

ERIC SCHMIEDL, Cleveland Hts., OH — To develop a non traditional play for family audiences in partnership with the Cleveland Public Theatre – "My Hemisphere and Your Hemisphere Live Across the Street"

2009 (Average Award: $1,000)
JANIS ASTOR del VALLE, New Haven, CT, to support the development and performance of Joaquin, a one-woman play for teen audiences that explores a transgendered Latino’s struggle for acceptance from his family and himself.

KAMUEL DeMOVILLE, Hemet, CA — To support the writing and development of three plays which deal with the causes and repercussions of violence and aggression occurring in schools. The plays will emphasize both quality of theatrical aesthetics and entertainments that serve to highlight the themes rather than approach the ideas of school violence and aggression heavy handedly.

FRAN SILLAU, Council Bluffs, IA — To support the writing and development of a new, two-person play, The Brass Ring, designed for touring that explores issues of disability.

2008 (Harris Fellowship was not awarded)

2007 (Award: $1,000)
LARISSA FASTHORSE — To complete development of a new play, Teaching Disco Square Dancing To Our Elders: A Class Presentation, with a 2 day choreography workshop to develop movement language.

2006 (Average Award: $1,000)
DAN FENTON — To support research and the writing of a play based on the exploitation of the Amazon Rainforest.

JON KLEIN AND LAURA Shamas — To support the writing and development of a contemporary holiday play for the whole family.

2005 (Average Award: $750)
RIC AVERILL, Lawrence KS — In support of his work on two new plays

CHRISTOPHER BROWNE MALIK, Eutaw, AL — In support of the creation of an interactive Rap and verse play for teens about a school conflict that ends in violence, after which the teen audience, improvising with actors, is challenged to reconstruct a non-violent outcome.

ALISA WEINSTEIN, Williamsville, NY — In support of a ten month long residency in New Delhi, India with the National School of Drama’s Theatre-in-Education Company, Sanskaar Rang Toli, a professional adult repertory performing plays and conducting workshops for children.

2004 (Award: $3,000)
MAX BUSH — To support artistic development through work on plays designed for high school age audiences.