Hello, Houston!

Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) is the city’s designated local arts and culture agency.



Dominique Estevez - Grants, Capacity Building Coordinator
Deidre Thomas - Grants Coordinator
Gulara Alakbarova - Grants Coordinator

We are pleased to announce our 2016-2017 (FY17) Arts Project Grant recipients! This year’s funding will support 20 arts and culture organizations, university programs, and community and cultural centers in the total amount of $192,500. Congratulations to this year’s awardees!

Arts Project Grants support both 501(c)3 nonprofits and university departments in their production of projects that: (1) are open to the general public; and (2) contribute to making Houston a more attractive cultural destination for visitors and tourists. Projects range from festivals and visual arts exhibitions to a series of performances in the City of Houston. For more details on the great events being supported and offered in our city, visit artshound.com.

Panels for the 2016-2017 grant took place this past April and consisted of a diverse group of expert artists and arts administrators from both Houston and the nation. We would like to give our sincerest thanks to all of our Arts Project Grant review panelists: Diane K. Webb, Armando Silva, Jake Sinatra, Maura Sheffler and Ryan Dennis.

For a look at awarded projects, see below.

Aperio, Music of the Americas
Aperio, Music of the Americas will present four subscription series concerts at Midtown Arts & Theater Center Houston (MATCH), as well as an additional 13 outreach events in the Houston area. Internationally significant guest composers and performers will complement the ensemble's performances. You can catch the first performance titled Argentinean Masters (featuring music by Jorge Calandrelli, Astor Piazzolla and Carlos Guastavino) on Sunday, September 18, 2017, at MATCH.

Architecture Center Houston Foundation
Architecture Center will present Made/Unmade Houston: Technology, Fabrication, and Design, an exhibition and series of public programs that will connect and promote the work of both Houston designers and craftsmen. The project will include furniture, objects and products designed and fabricated in Houston, with a narrative emphasis on materials, process, technology and craftsmanship. The exhibit will be on view March 2017 through June 2017.

ArtX NonProfits
ArtX will conduct an advanced art vehicle build by assembling a team of artists, engineers and scientists. An apprentice program, workshop series, public promotion, drop-in work sessions, open house events and showings throughout the region will build upon (and further) Houston's art car culture. The artist team will be led by Natali Leduc, an internationally acclaimed contraption artists. ArtX will offer events until the art vehicle makes its debut at the annual Art Car Parade Houston, happening April 2017.

BooTown will be presenting Neo-Benshi, a spin on Japanese silent film-era practice, and providing an opportunity to both writer and performance teams to reinterpret film content and perform in front of a live audience. Neo-Benshi will be a monthly event of seven to ten teams performing every first Tuesday of the month at PJ’s Sports Bar, in the heart of Montrose. Check out the next performance happening September 6, 2017 at 8 p.m.

Chinese Community Center
The Chinese Community Center will present their Lunar New Year Festival, a multicultural celebration that bridges East and West by showcasing the diversity of Houston. Celebrating the Year of the Rooster, the 2017 Festival will promote multicultural awareness through arts performances and hands-on activities for the whole family. The Lunar Year Festival will take place on Saturday, January 28, 2017.

Colombia Folkloric Ballet
Colombia Folkloric Ballet presented excerpts of MI COLOMBIA, a show of dance and music, at several of Houston’s tourist attraction venues and festivals throughout the year. The event culminated in the full-length/acclaimed MI COLOMBIA presentation featuring prominent Colombian artists in the U.S., Colombia Folkloric Ballet dancers and other local artists at Wortham Theater Center on July 9, 2016.

East End Foundation
East End Foundation will present the East End Piñata Festival, a three-day event in the East End Cultural District coinciding with Cinco de Mayo, in celebration of the ancient piñata making cultural tradition. The festival will showcase traditional and contemporary piñatas, public art and live music. The festival will also offer workshops that explore this traditional craft through the lens of contemporary sculpture and design as well as an open house and outdoor market. The festival will take place from May 5, 2017 to May 7, 2017.

Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center of Houston Texas
Dance Month at the Kaplan Theatre will present local, national and international artists showcasing all forms of dance. Dance Month offers mid-size dance companies a platform for performance fostering new audiences; providing them with greater exposure and notoriety; and has been instrumental in launching careers of many Houston dancers, companies, and choreographers. Dance Month will highlight and showcase Houston talent, such as Roberta Paixas Cortes, Lindsey McGill, Rebecca French, Stacy Skolnik and many others from January to February 2017.


Frame Dance Productions
Hurry, get on the train - the doors are closing!  Frame Dance will present METRO DANCES for a stage in motion: the Houston METRORail. METRO DANCES, in partnership with METRO, will be a vibrant traveling dance and live music performance on the Green and Red Lines. Houstonians will get a preview of the dances via rehearsals conducted throughout the year, leading to a culminating performance in March 2017.

Horse Head Theatre
Horse Head Theatre will produce GRIMM, an immersive interdisciplinary event that digs deep into childhood nightmares by revisiting and modernizing the stories that inspired Brothers Grimm. Audiences will be agents of their own experience as they explore a large, labyrinthine venue populated by actors, dancers, puppeteers and interactive environments — triggering events in GRIMM’s action. In January of 2017, Horse Head Theatre will invite a core team of professional artists from many disciplines to flesh out GRIMM and incorporate the local folklore and culture of Houston into its storytelling. The culminating event will be 26 performances in June 2017.

Houston Palestine Film Festival
Houston Palestine Film Festival will celebrate its 11th year with a multi-week festival in May 2017. Houston will continue to learn about Palestine, its people, and celebrate the cinematic excellence of the country in hopes of continuing an artistic dialogue.

Italian Cultural & Community Center of Houston
The Italian Cultural & Community Center of Houston will present the 38th Houston Italian Festival, a weekend event attracting approximately 20,000 visitors with music, dancing, art, films, exhibits and unique, full-immersion presentations (including the Madonnari art contest, Italian language classes, Italian singers and an Italian theme photo contest). You can catch the festival this fall in October 13 -16, 2016.

Orissa Culture Center, Inc.
Orissa Culture Center will present Ratha Yatra (or the Festival of Chariot), a festival celebrated in Houston since 2008. Its major goal is to bring together people of all races and religions and showcase the cultural diversity of Houston. It represents a colorful, centuries-old cultural heritage from India promoting universal brotherhood. The festival is celebrated annually in July.

Public Poetry
Public Poetry will offer Public Poetry PM: Poets & Musicians, an evening showcase for creative collaborations between local poets and musicians at a well-known established venue - Rudyard’s British Pub. Four times a year, this ticketed event will spotlight twelve collaborations featuring diverse, accomplished poets performing with a variety of well-known musicians.

Savannah Blue Arts & Outreach
Savannah Blue Arts & Outreach will present the Bayou City Poetry Grand Slam at Alley Theater, a two-day poetry slam featuring 40 of the best performance poets from across the U.S. and the Gulf Coast region, in competition for a championship prize. The festival will include various writing and performance workshops slated to begin at the top of January 2017.

The Periwinkle Foundation
The Periwinkle Foundation will present the exhibition of Making A Mark (containing visual and literary art created by children with cancer and blood disorders – all treated by Texas Children's Hospital). The exhibit will travel year-round to six major venues throughout Houston, including summer-long displays at Hobby and Houston Intercontinental airports. The first stop for this traveling exhibit will be at Texas Children’s Hospital in fall 2016.

University of Houston - Clear Lake Art Gallery
The University of Houston - Clear Lake Art Gallery will present the nationally touring exhibition Faith Wilding: Fearful Symmetries, the first retrospective for the highly influential feminist artist. The exhibition features a selection of Wilding’s works from her 40-year career, highlighting a range of works on paper exhibited together for the first time. The exhibition will be on view September 2, 2016 through December 8, 2016.

WindSync will partner with The Hobby Center for the Performing Arts, KINETIC ensemble, Houston Youth Symphony’s Coda Music Program and the Center for Performing Arts Medicine to present concerts at Zilkha Hall and Houston Methodist Hospital. The project includes an educational Discovery Series concert, at Zilkha Hall, beginning on April 28, 2017.

Workshop Houston
Workshop Houston presented a public concert, fashion show and dance performance to culminate its 2016 summer session of creative workshops for at-risk middle and high school students. The show took place in July 2016 and featured original work by participants as well as included special guest luminaries from the Houston music scene.

Writespace will present Writefest, a festival for emerging writers. The celebration will feature a long weekend of panels, presentations and readings with authors and journal editors of literary and genre fiction, nonfiction and poetry. Writers will be empowered to submit their works for publication and learn from—as well as network with—top literary professionals.

Again, congratulations to the 2016-2017 (FY17) Arts Project Grant recipients!