George Mason University’s Young Alumni Commissioning Project

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Provided by George Mason University

George Mason University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA) released a request for proposals for the Young Alumni Commissioning Project, which provides crucial support for the artistic development of recent alumni. This is the third year of the program, which issues grants to up to three CVPA alumni for the creation of original work to be presented by the College at a George Mason University venue during the 2021-22 season. The deadline to apply is Friday, Feb. 5, 2021, 11:59 p.m.  The commission recipients will be announced in April 2021.

“It’s never been more important to support the work of individual artists, and so we are thrilled to extend the Young Alumni Commission Project for a third round,” said Dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts Rick Davis. “The first two years of the program proved that Mason arts alumni are ready, willing, and able to create meaning across a broad spectrum of disciplines and interests. Now, just when artists are bursting with things to say, opportunities are few and far between. We’re happy to be able to do a little something about that for our alumni community.”

In the 2020-21 season, Leila Mire (’18) received the Young Alumni Commissioning Award and $5,000 in commissioning support for the evening-length dance work, Scheherazade RetoldKevin Elam (’14) and Donovan Jones (’18) received the Young Alumni Creative Development Award with $2,500 each in commissioning support. Kevin’s award underwrote his recording of a full-length album of Irish traditional music: Roots and Beginnings, and Donovan’s allowed for him to direct and produce a music video for DMV recording artist Hakeem’s Do Better.

The Young Alumni Commissioning Project is made possible by a generous bequest from the estate of Linda E. Gramlich for the support of young artists and by donors to Mason’s Giving Day, including Shugoll Research. Award recipients may receive up to $5,000 in commissioning funds, as well as venue, production, and marketing support for a public showing of their work.

To be eligible, applicants must be a graduate of the College of Visual and Performing Arts from the class of 2010 and after. Proposals should be for an original new work in any art form suitable for performance, exhibition, or screening in a Mason venue. The size, length, duration, magnitude, and content are at the artist’s discretion. Potential venues include Mason’s traditional theater spaces, galleries, and cinemas, but proposals for non-traditional venues will also be considered.

All applicants are invited to participate in an online informational session on Thursday, Jan. 21, 2021 from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. CVPA staff will review the application process, provide basic grant-writing tips, and answer questions. Further details about this session will be available after Jan. 4, 2021.

 To view complete details for submitting a proposal and how to apply, visit


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