CPT Announces Inaugural Class Of 2019/2020 Premiere Fellows

Cleveland Public Theatre (CPT)'s Executive Artistic Director Raymond Bobgan is proud to announce the selection of five Cuyahoga County-based artists as 2019/2020 Premiere Fellows, made possible by dedicated funding from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture (CAC).

The purpose of the Premiere Fellowship is to celebrate, reward, and support artists who have demonstrated excellence in and are committed to new play development. The award is for theatre artists from multiple disciplines including acting, directing, playwriting, design, and stage management. Fellows receive a $5,000 cash award, plus additional fees for projects, professional development, and access to space, equipment, and other important assets needed to create their work. Each Fellowship is designed in collaboration with the Fellows.

CPT's 2019/2020 Premiere Fellows include Aaron Benson, Sheffia Randall Dooley, Les Hunter, Andrew Aaron Valdez, and Jimmie Woody.

CPT Executive Artistic Director Raymond Bobgan says, "We know from experience that substantial financial awards to individual artists have a massive impact on our artists and beyond. We also have a great track record of supporting artists in project-based Fellowships that have served as important growth opportunities for both projects and individual artists. We wanted to create a Fellowship that combined both of these aspects-a direct financial award and project-based professional development. The entire community benefits from investments like this, and we are grateful to Cuyahoga Arts & Culture for their support of artists and their commitment to bolstering Cleveland's artistic vibrancy. CPT values principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion and CPT celebrates diverse aesthetics and approaches to making theatre. The five artists selected, from early career to mid-career, have demonstrated excellence in their craft and a commitment to adventurous new theatre."

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture (CAC) is one of the largest local public funders for arts and culture in the nation, helping hundreds of organizations in Cuyahoga County connect millions of people to cultural experiences each year. Cuyahoga County residents created Cuyahoga Arts & Culture in 2006 when they approved a tax on cigarettes to support arts and culture in our community. Since 2007, CAC has invested more than $182 million in more than 400 organizations both large and small, making our community a more vibrant place to live, work, and play. Learn more at www.cacgrants.org.

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