Kentucky Arts Council Honors Writers, Composers and Choreographers with Al Smith Fellowship Awards
FRANKFORT, Ky. – The Kentucky Arts Council has awarded eight Al Smith Individual Artist Fellowships Awards of $7,500 to support the advancement and continuation of Kentucky artists' careers, and recognize the creative excellence of their work. The fellowship awards are named after retired Kentucky journalist and past Arts Council board chair, Al Smith.
This year's awards are in the artistic disciplines of literature, music composition and dance choreography. In alternate years, the Kentucky Arts Council's fellowships are awarded to visual and media artists.
In addition to the Fellowship Awards, 15 artists were selected from the pool of applicants to receive Professional Assistance Awards of $1,000 each, to encourage continuation of professional careers in the arts.
The recipients of the highly competitive Fellowship Awards in literature are: Nancy Bowden, fiction, Whitley City; Dianne Aprile, creative non-fiction, Louisville; Kenneth King, creative non-fiction, Somerset; Thomas Southerland, playwriting, Lexington; David Cazden, poetry, Lexington and Marianne Worthington, poetry, Williamsburg.
Joseph Cox of Louisville was selected for a Fellowship Award in dance choreography and Jeremy Beck, also of Louisville, a Fellowship Award in music composition.
Artists selected for the Professional Assistance Awards are: Dionne Griffiths, dance choreography, Louisville; Bev Olert, literature - fiction, Paris; Paul Prather, literature – fiction, Mount Sterling; Merle Bachman, literature – creative non-fiction, Louisville; Olga-Maria Cruz Smock, literature – creative non-fiction, Louisville; Denise McKinney, literature - playwriting, Berea; Elizabeth Orndorff, literature – playwriting, Danville; Lorraine Nickole Brown, literature - poetry, Louisville; Adam Day, literature - poetry, Louisville; Kathleen Driskell, literature - poetry, Louisville; Tom Hunley, literature - poetry, Bowling Green; Jeffrey Skinner, literature - poetry, Prospect; Harry Pickens, music composition, Louisville; Raleigh Dailey, music composition, Lexington and Charles Smith, music composition, Bowling Green.
The Individual Artist Fellowship Program utilizes a 'blind jury' process by an independent panel of judges with expertise in the artistic discipline of the applicants. The process does not disclose an applicant's name; the panel reviews the work samples and applications according to application numbers only. Criteria for the prestigious awards include artistic excellence, professional achievement and the potential of the fellowship award to enhance the artist's development.
The Kentucky Arts Council is a state agency in the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet that creates opportunities for Kentuckians to value, participate in and benefit from the arts. Kentucky Arts Council funding is provided by the Kentucky State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art.
NOTE TO EDITORS: Contact information for fellowship and professional assistance award recipients is available upon request to Ed Lawrence.
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