Performing Arts


Program Mission

To enhance the arts vibrancy of the greater Chicago area by recognizing and rewarding outstanding artists and performing arts organizations.

Read about how we are responding to COVID-19.

The problem we want to address

Artists play a unique role in society as creative conveners, activists, and innovators. In the United States, there is a strong belief that the arts contribute to strong, healthy, equitable communities. Despite this belief, artists rarely receive the same benefits as other professionals, such as access to reliable income, healthcare, and professional support.

Our approach

Through grantmaking, awards, programs, and strategic investments, we support artists to create innovative, critical work while also having healthy and sustainable professional lives.

Connection to the founders

Elizabeth Walder is an accomplished clarinetist who studied at the Juilliard School’s pre-college program and was a touring musician in Greece. Her early study of music and recognition of the challenges of being a working musician led her to the decision to support creative careers in the Performing Arts.