MAY 10, 2016

More Than $82 Million Awarded for Arts Projects Nationwide, Includes $10,000 Awarded to Miami Theater Center

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Chairman Jane Chu has approved more than $82 million to fund local arts projects and partnerships.

More Than $82 Million Awarded for Arts Projects Nationwide

Includes $10,000 Awarded to Miami Theater Center


Miami, FL (May 10, 2016) – National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Chairman Jane Chu has approved more than $82 million to fund local arts projects and partnerships in the NEA’s second major funding announcement for fiscal year 2016. Included in this announcement is an Art Works award of $10,000 to Miami Theater Center (MTC) for their project, “Indigenous Allies.” The Art Works category supports the creation of work and presentation of both new and existing work, lifelong learning in the arts, and public engagement with the arts through 13 arts disciplines or fields.


“The arts are all around us, enhancing our lives in ways both subtle and obvious, expected and unexpected,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “Supporting projects like the one from Miami Theater Center offers more opportunities to engage in the arts every day.”


“We are extremely excited to begin this Indigenous initiative at Miami Theater Center,” said Stephanie Ansin, MTC’s founder and artistic director. “We are very grateful for the collaboration of all of our partners and for the NEA’s support in helping us build relationships with Indigenous people from this content and others.”


The “Indigenous Allies” project will consist of two parts. Part one is a collaboration between MTC and Indigenous Celebration, The Kampong of the National Tropical Botanical Garden, and Florida International University’s Program in the Study of Spirituality to bring eight members of the Yawanawá Tribe of Brazil to Miami to present “Journey to Mutum,” 75 minutes of sacred music and dance never before seen in the United States. This part of the project will take place from September 28th to October 1st, 2016. The Yawanawá will also present a “Family Day” at The Kampong on October 1st. Adults and kids will be able to experience Yawanawá games, body-painting, story-telling, music and jewelry-making on the luscious grounds of The Kampong in Coconut Grove, Florida. MTC is honored to have the opportunity to support and join Indigenous Celebration’s mission: “to facilitate the transfer of wisdom between Indigenous people and the modern world through a celebration of culture while empowering Indigenous peoples to thrive as natural guardians of the environment.”


Part two of the “Indigenous Allies” project is a collaboration with Native American theater artists Larissa FastHorse of Sicangu Lakota Nation, Ty Defoe of the Oneida/Ojibwe tribes, and Houston Cypress of the Miccosukee Tribe to facilitate a one-day writing workshop for South Florida’s Indigenous community, a week-long playwriting workshop for Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists, and public presentations of the full-length plays and shorter pieces created in the workshops.


A month before the workshops take place, FastHorse and Defoe will spend 7 to 10 days with “boots on the ground” listening to and connecting South Florida’s Indigenous community with MTC. They will also lead protocol training and consulting to help MTC raise its cultural understanding and help everyone involved communicate with sensitivity and awareness.


The “Indigenous Allies” project seeks to build relationships between MTC and Indigenous communities and create opportunities for Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists and audiences to create and experience performances together.


For more information on MTC’s project and the NEA grant announcement, please visit


About Miami Theater Center:

Led by our Founder and Artistic Director Stephanie Ansin, the team at Miami Theater Center produces thought-provoking contemporary works and newly imagined adaptations of classics that bring the transformational power of theater to audiences of all ages and abilities. Programs include: MTCperformance – original theater, fresh adaptations, and innovative new works; MTCeducation – learning opportunities for students, professionals, and the general public; and MTCfilm – a partnership with O Cinema that screens the best in independent cinema at MTC several nights a week. To learn more, visit