Shout Syndicate awards $200,000 in pilot round of arts grantmaking

The Shout Syndicate, an innovative collaboration of Boston music and arts industry professionals in partnership with The Boston Foundation and the Mayor’s Office of Arts & Culture, today announced it has awarded $200,000 in its pilot round of grantmaking to 10 Greater Boston nonprofit arts organizations that focus on creative youth development. The grants were announced at a celebration Thursday afternoon at the Foundation Room/House of Blues Boston, where The Shout Syndicate also announced two new major donors: concert promoters The Bowery Presents and theatre/entertainment company The Emerson Colonial Theatre/The Ambassador Theatre Group. 

The 10 grantees, chosen for their proven work with youth arts in Greater Boston, include:

  • 826 Boston
  • Cambridge Community Center
  • Hyde Square Task Force
  • OrigiNation Cultural Arts Center
  • Raw Art Works
  • Sociedad Latina
  • The Theater Offensive
  • Transformative Culture Project
  • Urbano Project

The pilot round of grants were made possible in part by donations from early backers Don Law/Live Nation New England, film/TV writer/producer Judd Apatow, and international recording artists The Mighty Mighty Bosstones.

“Congratulations to this first group of grantees, and thank you for your dedication to enhancing creative youth development in Boston,” said Mayor Martin J. Walsh. “The Shout Syndicate has already become a central part of our arts strategy in the City of Boston. Together we’re making progress in improving access to the arts in and out of schools, and I’m grateful to everyone who helped us make it a reality.”

Each of the 10 nonprofit organizations will receive $20,000 to produce youth-led arts programs in disciplines including music, dance, theatre, and visual/media/literary arts during the 2019-2020 school year. The grants also cover stipends for participating youth to receive hourly wages, so they don’t need to choose between an after-school job or an arts program. The ten organizations, known leaders in their fields, operate in Boston neighborhoods including Roxbury, Mission Hill, Jamaica Plain, and Dorchester, as well as in Cambridge and Lynn, Massachusetts.

“The Boston Foundation is proud to support and partner with The Shout Syndicate on this new funding opportunity,” said Paul S. Grogan, President & CEO of The Boston Foundation. “These ten grantees are among the very best organizations in youth arts in our region. We applaud Mayor Walsh for noting the need for a new fund in this sector, and we look forward to seeing the outstanding projects that will come from these grants.”

“We at Urbano Project are thrilled to be a Shout Syndicate grantee,” shared Stella Aguirre McGregor, Executive Artistic Director. “We’re proud to be part of this pilot cohort and excited to start our work.”

Since the initial donors established The Shout Syndicate in 2017, other generous producers and performers have stepped up, including theatre presenter Broadway in Boston, recording artists Frank Turner and Letters to Cleo, and fellow philanthropists, Theo and Paul Epstein’s Foundation To Be Named Later and The Boston Foundation.

“We’re glad to join our fellow colleagues in the arts community and support The Shout Syndicate,” said Josh Bhatti, Vice President of concert promoter, The Bowery Presents. “We feel it’s important to do our part in the community, and support arts opportunities for Greater Boston youth.”

The slate of planned projects for 2019-2020 includes a city-wide youth publication in Boston, public art murals in Lynn, original dance choreography, a history of hip hop in Cambridge, original music recordings in East Boston and Roxbury, original LGBTQ theatre, and more. Teens will create their projects with support from arts leaders and teaching artists, and in the spring of 2020 each grantee will share their cumulative work with the public.

“We are grateful that Boston now has The Shout Syndicate as an advocate and resource for young people exploring the arts,” shared Erica Lynn Schwartz, General Manager of The Emerson Colonial Theatre/Ambassador Theatre Group. “We’re grateful for the opportunity to come aboard as a new partner to assist in this effort.”