Arts Council
Kentucky Arts Council awards fellowships to writers, choreographers and composers

Press Release Date:  Friday, July 16, 2010  
Contact Information:  Ed Lawrence
Communications Director
502-564-3757, ext. 473

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Ten of Kentucky's professional writers, choreographers and composers will receive Al Smith Individual Artist Fellowships of $7,500 each for their achievements and the high level of excellence and creativity in their work. The Kentucky Arts Council is also awarding Emerging Artist Awards, of $1,000 each, to six artists who have also demonstrated a high level of excellence and creativity, but are in the early stages of their career.

The artists selected to receive Al Smith Fellowships are: Dan Bernitt, literary – playwriting, Fayette County; Kimberly Cox, choreography, Jefferson County; Jessica Leader, literary – fiction, Jefferson County; Clint Morehead, literary – creative nonfiction, Jefferson County; C E Morgan, literary - fiction, Madison County; Gerald Plain, music composition, Henry County; Norbe Risco, choreography, Fayette County; Amy Tudor, literary – poetry, Jefferson County; Julie Wade, literary – creative nonfiction, Jefferson County; and Lisa Williams, literary – poetry, Boyle County.

The artists selected to receive Emerging Artist Awards are: Daniel Cherry, literary –fiction, Pulaski County; Amelia Martens, literary – poetry, McCracken County; Britton Shurley, literary – poetry, McCracken County; Eric Stem, musical composition, Jefferson County; Brian Walker, literary – playwriting, Jefferson County; and Mariam Williams, literary – creative nonfiction, Jefferson County.

There were a total of 89 applicants for the program. An independent panel of jurors from outside Kentucky, all arts professionals in the relevant arts disciplines, selected the winners using a blind-jury process. The reviewers do not know the identity of the applicants as they judge their work.

The Al Smith Individual Artist Fellowship supports the advancement of Kentucky artists' careers and publicly acclaims artists creating work of high merit. The fellowships are named after retired Kentucky journalist and past Kentucky Arts Council board chairman, Al Smith.

In alternate years, the Al Smith Individual Artist Fellowships and Emerging Artist Awards are available to visual and media artists.

The Kentucky Arts Council, the state arts agency, creates opportunities for Kentuckians to value, participate in and benefit from the arts. Kentucky Arts Council funding is provided by the Kentucky General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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