Press Release

February 28, 2017

Lincoln Center - Save the National Endowment for the Arts

Lincoln Center News

Date: March 16, 2017

Press Contact: Mary Caraccioli, 212.875.5100

[email protected]


The 11 arts organizations of Lincoln Center stand firmly in favor of continued federal funding for the National Endowment for the Arts, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the National Endowment for the Humanities, and we ask that support for these agencies not be eliminated or diminished in any form.


From our stages and screens at Lincoln Center in New York City to theaters, concert halls, and galleries across the country, the arts inspire and delight all Americans and bring our diverse communities together. And it has been clearly demonstrated that exposure to the arts shapes achievement, with profound and practical effects.


For example, a recent comprehensive study conducted by the School of Social Policy and Practice at the University of Pennsylvania found that cultural assets in New York City’s neighborhoods improve citizens’ health and safety and increase the effectiveness of local schools. The same is true in cities and towns across the country.


Since 2012, Lincoln Center’s 11 arts organizations have received a combined total of nearly $5 million in grants from the NEA. These grants have helped make dozens of initiatives possible: music education programs in New York City public schools; public television series; high-definition webcasts; tuition-free education and community activities; free outdoor programming; world premiere productions; commissions of new works; and so much more.


Beyond these benefits, art institutions and districts provide an economic boost for American cities and towns, breathing life into neighborhoods by attracting investment, spurring development, fueling innovation, and creating jobs. Arts and culture help power the U.S. economy at the astounding level of $704.2 billion each year.


American arts institutions are also a source of national pride on the world stage. In a unique model, private sources provide the vast majority of funding for our artists and arts organizations, with government funding used conservatively and in targeted ways: by providing early funding to get projects off the ground, for example, or helping to create or expand promising initiatives to achieve greater reach and impact.


The total cost of the NEA, for instance, amounts to less than a dollar a year for every American. But the prestige of an NEA grant leads to donations of nine additional dollars from other sources for every one dollar from the federal budget. The other programs offer similar returns on investment.


As leaders in the performing arts field, we firmly believe that it is our responsibility to stand up for and with all who will be most affected by these proposed cuts, from small-town theaters and orchestras to children and veterans enrolled in educational and therapeutic programs, not to mention the artists themselves and the country as a whole. The arts feed the soul; jobs in the arts feed families and nourish communities. We urge that funding be continued.


The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center

Suzanne Davidson, Executive Director


Film Society of Lincoln Center 

Lesli Klainberg, Executive Director


Jazz at Lincoln Center 

Greg Scholl, Executive Director


The Juilliard School

Joseph W. Polisi, President 


Lincoln Center Theater

André Bishop, Producing Artistic Director


The Metropolitan Opera

Peter Gelb, General Manager


New York City Ballet

Katherine Brown, Executive Director


New York Philharmonic

Matthew VanBesien, President


The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts

Jacqueline Z. Davis, Barbara G. & Lawrence A. Fleischman Executive Director


School of American Ballet

Marjorie Van Dercook, Executive Director


Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts

Debora L. Spar, President

Powered by Press