2019 Cultural and Arts Investment Program

The City has completed a strategic plan, titled Savannah Forward, to guide focus areas and resources. To align FY19 resources with the Savannah Forward initiative, the City invested in organizations that position arts, cultural, and creative programs as catalysts to meet the City goals of Economic Strength, Poverty Reduction, and Neighborhood Revitalization.

2019 Cultural & Art Investment Program Organizations: 

Coastal Jazz Association -- Savannah Jazz Festival -- $67,500            

Three nights of free performances in Forsyth Park and a week of concerts at Savannah venues features local jazz talent, national/regional jazz artists, and military bands.   Program design, site selection, and collaborative relationships are mechanisms used to engage a demographically inclusive audience. The festival is managed by an all-volunteer organization and is partnered with local business, schools, and universities.  Savannah Jazz Festival expands the audience’s appreciation and understanding of the jazz art form and brings free cultural activities to the historic district neighborhood and adjacent areas.

Deep Center, Inc. -- 
Deep Literacy Programming -- $100,000                        

Deep Center brings the literary arts to youth through creative writing workshops, publication, and performances. Deep engages the community’s diverse youth as planners, performers, and creatives, and develops sustainable collaborative relationships with community organizations. In 2019, Deep Center's Savannah Stories is a single program with three sequential projects: 1) Introductory: Young Author Project provides middle schools students with fun, rigorous creative writing workshops, meeting weekly (approx. 15 hours over 12 weeks), 2) Intermediate: Block by Block conducts place-based community engagement with high-school youth, who conduct community research, discover Savannah’s past and unfolding stories, and connect their personal stories to the narratives of their neighborhood (approx. 260 hours of programming in 10 months). 3) Youth Leadership Team is a sequential writing program that engages youth in advance writing on critical community issues. This program is a paid internship program, where 10 students receive 46 hours of programming over 10 months. In addition, Deep will expand 2019 programming to include 1) a Slam Poetry Team, 2) Programming for Court-involved Youth, and 3) Drop-in hours.

King-Tisdell Cottage Foundation -- $35,000

Beach Institute Genealogical Research Support Center (GRSC)

Beach Institute Lecture and Learning Series (BILLS)

King-Tisdell Cottage Foundation programming includes the Beach Institute Lecture and Learning Series (series of twelve lectures) and Genealogical Research Support Center (a resource program for research). The Beach Institute Lecture and Learning Series will feature topics including post-Civil War African-American towns, Prominent Abolitionists, African-American Scientists and Inventors. Genealogical Research Support Center provides Savannah residents with databases, on-line tools, and professional expertise for participants’ to pursue genealogy research.

Live Oak Public Libraries -- School that Author -- $17,500

Live Oak Public Libraries' (LOPL) project School That Author would bring quality children and teens authors and illustrators to Savannah's youth in their neighborhoods and schools. Consulting with children's librarians and school teachers, LOPL has selected potential presenting authors who are award-winning authors and well-known to Savannah's youth.

Mountainfilm on Tour in Savannah -- Movies that Matter -- $7,000

Mountain film on Tour in Savannah provides the local community with singular access to films on critical contemporary issues in their Movies that Matter project to over 4,000 local youth. Environmental and cultural issues are introduced to youth through educational materials, a one-day screening of a series of films in a local theatre, two on-site school film presentations, and a mentoring program with Georgia Film Academy. Following the screenings, the personalities behind the stories (filmmakers and film subjects) present their stories and their expertise in the film industry to students. The Q&A sessions following the screenings provide a forum for youth to engage in critical discussions with featured performers, artists, activist, and environmentalists. 

Savannah Ballet Theatre -- The Nutcracker -- $28,000

Savannah Ballet Theatre presents The Nutcracker in a version that leverages the talents of local artists, local musicians, and young dancers and that honors the traditions and history of Savannah. Programming includes one-day abbreviated performances for youth and seniors, and multiple ticketed evenings and matinees for a total audience of 4,800.

Savannah Music Festival -- $100,000

The Savannah Music Festival (SMF) produces an array of programs with a centerpiece 17-day festival. SMF outreach and education initiatives include a national weekly public radio series, a year-round local music education youth program (Musical Explorers), and two tuition-free young artist development programs. Musical Explorers program reaches 11,000 K-2 students with in-classroom lessons, 6 teacher training professional development sessions per year at schools located in and serving students of all aldermanic districts. In 2018, the festival attracted over 35,000 participants with 43% visitors, resulting in $12 million of local direct spending, 9,250 hotel room nights and nearly $1 million of local tax revenues

Savannah Philharmonic -- $90,000
Orchestra Lab Concert Rehearsals

Philharmonic in the Streetz

Picnic in the Park

Savannah Philharmonic is a per-service orchestra of musicians and a chorus that provides educational programs for youth.  Savannah Philharmonic produces "Picnic in the Park"; a free one-day event in Forsyth Park featuring youth performers, military bands, and a professional orchestra. In 2018, programming includes Orchestra Lab Concert Rehearsals and Philharmonic in the Streetz. The Orchestra Lab is a curriculum-based youth program that teaches youth about the concert’s composer, history, and other aspects of an orchestral performance. Philharmonic in the Streetz is a series of free afternoon weekend performances taking place in Savannah neighborhoods beyond the historic district. Savannah Philharmonic provides access to the arts in Savannah neighborhoods. 

Savannah State University -- Savannah Black Heritage Festival -- $90,000

A family oriented month-long festival expands awareness, educates, and exposes attendees to African American culture and history. Program design incorporates a variety of offerings to engage a demographically inclusive audience through the visual, literary, performing, or media arts. The Savannah Black Heritage Festival develops educational and outreach components to the community's diverse youth, provides access to the arts, and develops collaborative relationships with organizations in the community.

Telfair Museum of Art -- $100,000

Telfair Museums' Art in Our Neighborhoods program will present a series of 243 events to residents, all taking place within city limits, with an emphasis on education for youth and expanding awareness of the City's early African American experience. The program will consist of: 120 community outreach sequential learning sessions at sites throughout the city, including 10 sessions of after-school STEAM outreach at neighborhood centers; 12 after-school sessions for teenagers at library branches; 32 youth sessions during the summer at neighborhood centers; 30 sessions at social service organization for disabled citizens and veterans; 110 free tours of museum exhibitions; 10 new tours serving 8th graders at the Owens-Thomas House & Slave Quarters; 5 multi-generational Free Family Days; a “Telfair to Go” Free Family Day in an Aldermanic district neighborhood; the "I Have Marks to Make" exhibition of community artwork; a free admission to the Owen-Thomas House & Slave Quarters on select dates for City of Savannah residents; and a series of 6 international and regional artists’ exhibitions.