Byron, Frisell and Iyer Among Doris Duke Honorees
Posted 4/27/2012

Clarinetist Don Byron, guitarist Bill Frisell, drummer John Hollenbeck, pianist Vijay Iyer, flutist Nicole Mitchell and vocalist/composer Meredith Monk are among 21 performers named Doris Duke Artists as part of a new initiative to expand artistic and personal freedom for creative leaders in the fields of jazz, contemporary dance and theater. Each artist will receive an unrestricted, multi-year cash grant of $225,000 plus as much as $50,000 more in targeted support for retirement savings and audience development.

Creative Capital—the primary partner to the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF) in the awards—will offer each artist the opportunity to take part in professional development activities, financial and legal counseling and grantee gatherings to help them maximize the use of their prizes.

“This first class of 21 Doris Duke Artists is known for creating work that inspires and challenges audiences across the country, and indeed around the globe,” said Rachel Ford, program director for the Doris Duke Performing Artists Awards. “Our program will give these incredible artists an opportunity to define their own needs on their own schedules—whether those needs include health insurance, project research or just time to sit down and think. At its heart, this award recognizes the important contributions of these performing artists to the dynamic cultural fabric of our nation.”

The first class of Doris Duke Artists will share a total of $5.775 million awarded in this new initiative. In the field of dance, the honorees include Wally Cardona and Deborah Hay, and the theater honorees include Elizabeth LeCompte and Richard Maxwell.

Provided to honorees through an anonymous process of peer review—no applications are accepted—the grants are not tied to any specific project but are made as investments in the artists’ personal and professional development and future work. To qualify for consideration by the review panels, all Doris Duke Artists must have won grants, prizes or awards on a national level for at least three different projects over the past 10 years, with at least one project having received support from a DDCF-funded program.

More information is at the Doris Duke Performing Artist Awards website. DB

Vijay Iyer (Photo: Hans Speekenbrink)






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