Eight Artists Awarded Fellowships and Nine Schools Receive Grants From Leonore Annenberg Funds

    A cellist who has performed for the President. A silk painter whose flags of American currency were exhibited on Wall Street. An actor who won raves at the Public Theater for an electrifying performance as the rebellious son of a TV preacher.

    These rising talents are among the eight early-career artists chosen this year to receive $50,000 fellowships from the Leonore Annenberg Fellowship Fund for the Performing and Visual Arts.

    In its 10th and final year, the program is awarding a total of $400,000 in fellowships to: mezzo-soprano Samantha Hankey; ballet dancer Cassandra Trenary; actors Ato Blankson-Wood and Ruibo Qian; visual artists Herman Aguirre and Emily Erb, and cellists Khari Joyner and Jia Kim.

    Leonore Annenberg arts fellows in 2017: Ruibo Qian, Ato Blankson-Wood, Jia Kim, Khari Joyner, Samantha Hankey, Cassandra Trenary, Herman Aguirre and Emily Erb.

    Leonore Annenberg arts fellows in 2017: Ruibo Qian, Ato Blankson-Wood, Jia Kim, Khari Joyner, Samantha Hankey, Cassandra Trenary, Herman Aguirre and Emily Erb.

    In addition, the Leonore Annenberg School Fund for Children, which provides resources to underfunded urban and rural public elementary schools, announced 2017 grants totaling $450,000 to nine schools in Florida, Tennessee and New York. The schools, selected in consultation with nonprofit regional partners, will use the funds for resources such as books and library upgrades, computers and technology, and theater and dance programs.

    Including this year’s awards, the Leonore Annenberg Funds have awarded a total of more than $22 million over the last decade, including $6 million in arts fellowships, $7 million to public schools for educational resources, and $9.4 million in four-year college scholarships.

    For more information on this year’s arts fellows, read the arts fellows release, and for more about the schools selected this year, read the school news release.

    News coverage of the program and the 2017 recipients includes: