Princess Grace Foundation-USA: Grants for Theater

OVERVIEW: The Princess Grace Foundation-USA supports theater artists, dancers, and filmmakers by funding apprenticeships, fellowships, and scholarships.

IP TAKE: The Princess Grace Foundation-USA supports talents in dance, theater and film through a combination of apprenticeships, fellowships, and scholarships.

PROFILE: The Princess Grace Foundation-USA is named in honor of who you think it is: Princess Grace of Monaco, also known as Grace Kelly. The foundation was established by her husband, Prince Rainer, upon her death, and it’s been giving out awards to artists since 1984.

In the theater world, this comes first and foremost in the form of fellowships, apprenticeships, and scholarships to individual directors, designers, and actors:

  • Fellowships are for directors, primary designers, or lead actors who will have a “substantial relationship” with a theater company throughout a season.
  • Apprenticeships are for directors, designers, or actors who will be mentored by a theater company’s artistic director or a senior company artist throughout a season, with the opportunity to create his/her own work in a workshop or second stage venue.
  • Scholarships are for tuition assistance for the last year of professional training at a non-profit, U.S. school.

Though funds go to individual theater artists, the application must be collaborative—with either a non-profit theater company or a school. In Princess Grace Foundation-USA-speak, the non-profit theaters or schools are “nominators” and the individual theater artists are “nominees.” Both nominators and nominees have responsibilities for the application process. Those applications are open to anyone (so long as you meet the qualifications) with a late March deadline.

The Princess Grace Foundation-USA showcases its previous winners on its website. What it doesn’t showcase, however, are the grant amounts any individual theater artist receives. But for some frame of reference, in 2012 the Princess Grace Foundation-USA gave seven theater awards totaling $170,850.

The foundation also has an opportunity for playwrights in the form of a partnership with New Dramatists. It’s called the Princess Grace Awards Playwriting Fellowship, with that fellowship occurring with New Dramatists. The award includes a $7,500 grant as well as the opportunities for script development and mentorship.

This is a grant for a playwright who hasn’t yet seen a production of her or his work on a large scale—applicants cannot have had their plays produced under anything grander than the Equity showcase code or its equivalent. Playwriting Fellowship applications are also due in late March. You can scope out the former winners on the Princess Grace Foundation-USA’s website.


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