$750,000 Awarded for Arts Policy and Research

The Music Man Foundation awarded new grants to nonprofits advocating for the arts, and announced up to $600,000 in new funding opportunities

$750,000 Awarded for Arts Policy and Research

The Music Man Foundation awarded new grants to nonprofits advocating for the arts, and announced up to $600,000 in new funding opportunities

LOS ANGELES, May 18, 2023The Music Man Foundation today announced $750,000 in grants to four nonprofit organizations. Funds aim to nurture initiatives to secure increased funding for the arts, advocate for pro-arts and pro-artists policy changes, and raise awareness about the profound impact of arts on our health and well-being. 

The announcement comes on the 121st birthday of Meredith Willson, who wrote the musical “The Music Man” and in whose honor the Foundation was established.

“I can’t think of a better way to honor Meredith Willson’s birthday than by supporting the efforts of these changemaker organizations and the activists they are training,” said Sarah Lyding, executive director of The Music Man Foundation. “The efforts to increase funding for arts and music, and to help the public learn more about the incredible benefits of music to well-being, will help build communities that are healthier, happier, and more connected.”

Four nonprofits received grants. Arts For LA will train educators and arts leaders how to advocate to give every student access to arts education. 

Grantmakers in the Arts will partner with artists from oppressed communities to advocate for pro-arts public policies including access to the arts and support for workers. 

OPERA America is creating a national network of opera company board members and administrators to advocate for legislation at the federal, state and local levels, and to increase funding for opera and the performing arts.  

University of California San Francisco’s Sound Health Network is increasing awareness about the growing body of research about the importance of music for health and wellness across the lifespan. 

Applications for The Music Man Foundation’s next round of Strengthening the Sector grants are now open to nonprofits operating in Los Angeles County, in the state of California, or nationally, and are due September 15, 2023

There’s growing recognition of the importance of music for the health of communities and individuals. In 2019, the National Institutes of Health awarded $20 million for projects that bring together music therapy and neuroscience. Studies have shown that stronger social ties in our schools and communities, and increased tolerance for others, are among the benefits linked to participation in the arts. Children’s music education has been tied to improved reading and math skills, as well as stronger social skills and increased self-confidence. 

About The Music Man Foundation

The Music Man Foundation is named after the Tony-winning musical written by Meredith Willson. Meredith’s widow, Rosemary, started the Foundation in 1998 as the Meredith and Rosemary Willson Charitable Foundation and substantially increased the Foundation’s endowment upon her death in 2010.  The Foundation’s mission is to empower organizations using music to catalyze enduring change and to amplify our founders’ musical legacy. Over the last decade, the Foundation has awarded more than $22 million to 80 organizations. In addition to “The Music Man,” Meredith Willson wrote the musical, “The Unsinkable Molly Brown,” and beloved songs “It’s Beginning to Look Like Christmas” and the University of Iowa fight song. 

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Media Contact: Nerissa Silao, 310-874-9230, [email protected]

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