FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE



ACIT Seattle Awarded $10,000 

National Endowment for the Arts Grant


Seattle, WA, January 2016 – The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) recently announced a $10,000 Art Works award to the Anindo Chatterjee Institute of Tabla Seattle (ACIT Seattle), a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting tabla drumming and Hindustani music through educational programs, concerts and classes.

The funding will help to support ACIT’s 2016 Access to Ustads Project, an effort to bring four Indian maestros to western Washington for public performances and to provide accompanying educational workshops and lectures. 

 

"This means more music education, especially for kids, young people and local musicians in King County,” said ACIT Seattle Board President Priya Marita Diaz. “It’s a chance for performing artists and the public to study one of the world’s greatest musical traditions, and offers opportunities to learn that are rarely seen in the United States, thanks to the support of the NEA."

ACIT Seattle is one of a 64 recipients nationwide who were awarded $1.3 million in Art Works grants in the Folk and Traditional category by the NEA. These awards were part of $27.7 million awarded by the NEA in its first 2016 funding round. The Challenge America category supports projects that extend the reach of the arts to underserved populations whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics or disability. Challenge America grants are comparatively small investments that have a big impact in their communities.

 

“The arts are part of our everyday lives – no matter who you are or where you live – they have the power to transform individuals, spark economic vibrancy in communities, and transcend the boundaries across diverse sectors of society,” commented NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “Supporting projects like the one from ACIT Seattle offers more opportunities to engage in the arts every day.”

 

The Access to Ustads Project will take place in between April and November 2016, in King County. Four master guest musicians – including ACIT Seattle and master tabla player Anindo Chatterjee – will demonstrate, engage and share techniques of their art form in the oral tradition with the public, including student and professional musicians of all ages. Each performance will feature one of the artists on a traditional Southeast Asian instrument: bansuri, sarod, sitar and tabla. In addition, each master will also give a lecture and interactive workshop to engage children, musicians and the general public. 

 

“It is a significant opportunity to have musicians of this caliber presenting and teaching in this area,” said ACIT Executive Director and Co-founder Ravi Albright, who is also a professional tabla player and percussionist. “In presenting these community programs, there is value both for those familiar with, and new to, the melodic beauty and rhythm of Hindustani music.

   

“ACIT will collaborate with many local community organizations and partners to promote and produce the concerts,” he added. “Each of these talented musicians will engage in lecture demonstrations and performance workshops. In the demonstrations, music students, professional musicians and the general public will have a chance to observe and learn about the history and evolution of the music from the master musicians. Subjects will include the tala (rhythmic) and the raga (melodic) systems. The workshops and master classes will include student performances with a live public audience, including discussion and feedback sessions with the master musician, assisted by a panel of volunteer professional music instructors and academics."

 

For more information on the Access to Ustads Project and other upcoming ACIT Seattle events contact ACIT Seattle at (206) 423-3737 or info@acitseattle.org or visit www.ACITSeattle.org.

 

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PHOTOS ATTACHED – Please credit “Photo Courtesy of ACIT Seattle”

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Founded in 2010, the Anindo Chatterjee Institute of Tabla Seattle (ACIT Seattle) works to support and promote and support the art of classical Hindustani music and tabla drumming through educational concerts, programs and classes in western Washington. It was founded by a small group of tabla students, teachers, musicians and tabla enthusiasts who came together in 2009 with the idea of creating a learning community in Seattle. In 2010 ACIT launched its website, held its first workshops, tabla solo performance and master class at the University of Washington. The majority of its activities, including its website, are organized and produced entirely through volunteer hours and other donations. For more information, visit www.ACITSeattle.org


Established by Congress in 1965, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) is the independent federal agency whose funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the NEA supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America. For more information, visit www.arts.gov