Grantee Profile

Old Town School of Folk Music

Grants to Old Town School of Folk Music

  • $425,000

    2016 (Duration 4 years, 11 months)

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — The Old Town School of Folk Music is the largest independent, accredited, community arts school in the United States. Its education offerings include music, dance, theatre, and visual arts classes for people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds. Its programs serve over 6,000 students per week and a total of 16,500 registered students each year. The School also operates 65 different music ensembles and a signature early childhood music program, Wiggleworms. The School also presents 300 national and international folk music concerts and events each year. Recent performers include Emmylou Harris, Loudon Wainwright III, and international performers from India, Mexico, and Iran. The School operates out of three main sites, which are situated in the Lincoln Park and Lincoln Square neighborhoods and include a 150-seat and a 425-seat concert hall, two music stores, a café, a resource center/library, and 47 classrooms. In 2015, its programs reached more than 120,000 people. This grant is recommended to renew general operating support to the Old Town School of Folk Music.

  • $48,000Active Strategy

    2013 (Inactive Grant)

    Arts & Culture in Chicago

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of an exchange between music faculty at Old Town School and a conservatory in Turkey. Each organization will share its music and culture with the other's students and communities.

  • $375,000

    2011 (Inactive Grant)

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of general operations (over five years).

  • $50,000Active Strategy

    2008 (Inactive Grant)

    Arts & Culture in Chicago

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of the Folk Arts Exchange Program.

  • $280,000Active Strategy

    2006 (Inactive Grant)

    Arts & Culture in Chicago

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of general operations (over five years).

  • $120,000Active Strategy

    2003 (Inactive Grant)

    Arts & Culture in Chicago

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of general operations (over three years).

  • $250,000Active Strategy

    2002 (Inactive Grant)

    Arts & Culture in Chicago

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of a temporarily-restricted facilities development fund to be used for major capital expenditures to provide additional space for expanded school programming (over two years).

  • $40,000

    2002 (Inactive Grant)

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of general operations.

  • $40,000

    2001 (Inactive Grant)

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of general operations.

  • $80,000

    1998 (Inactive Grant)

    CHICAGO, ILLINOIS — In support of general operations (over two years).

The MacArthur Foundation awarded Old Town School of Folk Music $1,708,000 between 1978 and 2016.

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