“Chicago Takes 10” Launches One Year After Chicago’s Shut Down to Support Artists Still Impacted by the Pandemic
While the City begins to lift restrictions, Walder Foundation funds a new initiative to support performing arts organizations that will be among the last to fully reopen
Walder Foundation recently announced a new virtual performance series called “Chicago Takes 10,” curated by a diverse set of performing arts organizations. Grantee organizations will identify artists to feature in bi-weekly performances that will stream live at www.chicagotakes10.org. The series kicks off on Thursday, March 18 at 6 p.m. All performances will include live chats where viewers can interact with the artists.
“Performing arts organizations were the first to shut down and will be the last to fully reopen with in-person performances and yet, the arts community is so vital to Chicago,” said Elizabeth Walder, president and executive director of the Walder Foundation. “Chicago Takes 10 is designed to fuel the creative sector with performances that reflect the bold and expansive artistic and cultural vigor of Chicago.”
Walder Foundation is providing $250,000 in grants to 10 nonprofit curating organizations of which $100,000 is restricted for direct support to individual artists. Grantee organizations are encouraged to curate diverse performances, including musicians, dancemakers and performers with different styles and aesthetics.
Throughout the pandemic, Walder Foundation has supported various arts-related COVID relief funds including the Arts for Illinois Relief Fund. “The need is so extreme right now and we wanted to find a way to directly support those struggling the most. In addition to the financial support, our hope is that Chicago Takes 10 will also provide artists with renewed energy as the sector navigates its return,” said Meg Leary, senior program director for performing arts at the Walder Foundation.
The Foundation will also support professional video and audio recordings of each performance at Links Hall and Constellation Performing Arts.
“When the pandemic forced performing arts centers to shut-down, our team reimagined ways in which the show could go on. As we navigated new directives from public health officials, we used some of our empty space as a recording studio allowing artists to perform virtually or in- person based on their comfort level,” said Mike Reed, board president of Constellation Performing Arts. “Since the beginning of the pandemic, Walder Foundation has been very impactful in providing support for the arts community in Chicagoland. We’re excited to be recognized for our art and to partner with Links Hall to record all the Chicago Takes 10 performances.”
Chicago’s creative community is not limited to downtown, but rather is found in every neighborhood. Through Chicago Takes 10, Walder Foundation hopes that viewers will discover new types of performances from their homes and choose to support these community organizations in person in the future.
“Arts + Public Life supports the continuing artistic and cultural legacy of Washington Park and Chicago’s South Side. We’re excited to be part of Chicago Takes 10 because it shows off a wide range of the talented artists we collaborate with and strengthens our relationship with Walder Foundation. For us, this opportunity also expands our celebrations around Arts + Public Life first decade of work,” said Tony Santiago, Theater and Programs Manager, Arts+Public Life. “With the important support from Walder Foundation, we’re making direct and positive impacts to artists while connecting new and current audiences to the art they care about.”
To learn more about Chicago takes 10
Photos: Courtesy of “Chicago Takes 10”