Money, money, money: The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation announces its impact and artist awards

The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation grants thousands to New York choreographers

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Anna Halprin; Spirit of Place

Anna Halprin; Spirit of Place Photographs: Kent Reno; John Kokoska


Before I go down a dark hole, I will say how gratifying and amazing it is that the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation bestows so much money on dance. This year, 12 artists will receive a total of $2.13 million—a hefty chunk of change. The awards are split into two groups; artist awards (recipients receive up to $275,000) will go to Joanna Haigood, John Jasperse, Emily Johnson, Bill T. Jones, Annie-B Parson and Ranee Ramaswamy. The impact awards (up to $80,000) are reserved for Anna Halprin, Trajal Harrell, Jennifer Lacey, Jodi Melnick, Jennifer Monson and Adrienne Truscott.

Pardon my confusion: Shouldn't these names—for the most part—be reversed? Harrell, Lacey, Melnick and Monson are some of my favorite dance artists working today. Obviously, the artist awards must be diverse; the list, with the exception of Jasperse—yay—wafts of political correctness. And there are circumstances that stipulate that those given artist awards "must have won grants, prizes or awards on a national level for at least three different projects over the past ten years, with at least one project having received support from a DDCF-funded program." But still, on what planet does Anna Halprin, the 93-year-old pioneer of postmodern dance, come in second?


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Editor: Marley Lynch (@marleyasinbob)

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