Ovation Grant Recipients

  • American Jazz Museum

  • Coterie Theatre

  • Folly Theater

  • Friends of Chamber Music

  • Harriman-Jewell Series

  • Heart of America Shakespeare Festival

  • Heartland Men’s Chorus

  • Johnson County Community College – Carlsen Center

  • Kansas City Art Institute

  • Kansas City Ballet

  • Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey

  • Kansas City Repertory Theatre

  • Kansas City Symphony

  • Kansas City Young Audiences

  • Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art

  • Lyric Opera of Kansas City

  • Mesner Puppet Theater

  • Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

  • Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art

  • Starlight Theatre

  • UMKC Conservatory of Music & Dance

  • Unicorn Theatre

Ovation Grants are awarded to firmly established not-for-profit arts organizations that have a broad reach and impact throughout the metropolitan area. Current Ovation recipients serve a regional audience with performances, programs, and exhibitions that have a combined attendance of over 2 million annually.

Applications for ArtsKC Ovation Grants are invitation-only.

Organizations approved for Ovation funding in 2019-2020 will receive support for their operations and programs during the one-year period beginning July 1, 2018.

For questions about Ovation funding, please contact Heather Beffa:  Beffa@ArtsKC.org.

ArtsKC 2019-2020 Ovation Grant Recipients

American Jazz Museum
To celebrate and exhibit the experience of jazz as an original American art form through research, exhibition, education, and performance at one of the country’s jazz crossroads – 18th & Vine.

Coterie Theatre
The Coterie exists to provide professional classic and contemporary theatre which challenges audience and artist, and to provide educational, dramatic outreach programs in the community. We seek to open lines of communication between races, sexes and generations in redefining children’s theatre to include families and diverse audiences.

Folly Theater
To preserve Kansas City’s oldest historic theater as a premier performance venue by presenting, producing, and hosting a wide range of quality events for the community.

Friends of Chamber Music
People need beauty, inspiration and spiritual sustenance to lead fulfilled lives. Chamber music speaks to us with an intimate and poetic voice, which can be transformative and life affirming. We provide our community with the joys and rewards of the world’s greatest chamber music.

Harriman-Jewell Series
Our mission is to bring the best of the performing arts to Kansas City audiences, and to inspire area youth and lifelong learners through superior educational programs.

Heart of America Shakespeare Festival
To make Shakespeare’s works accessible to a diverse audience through free professional theater and educational programs.

Heartland Men’s Chorus
Heartland Men’s Chorus provides excellence in performance while advancing men’s choral music, building community, and reaching out to diverse audiences.

Johnson County Community College – Carlsen Center
The Performing Arts Series at Johnson County Community College connects and enriches the community by: serving as a national and community leader for the performing arts, presenting professional performing arts programming, providing a comprehensive arts education program, commissioning and presenting new artistic work and advancing and assisting in the development of new artistic work and the careers of young and gifted artists.

Kansas City Art Institute
The mission of the Kansas City Art Institute is to be a leader in visual arts and design education by preparing gifted students for lifelong creativity through intensive interaction with preeminent faculty and facilities and by stimulating active public awareness, support and participation in the visual arts and design.

Kansas City Ballet
Our mission is to establish Kansas City Ballet as an indispensable asset of the Kansas City community through exceptional performances, excellence in dance training, and community education for all ages. The vision of Kansas City Ballet is to make Kansas City a dance destination.

Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey
The mission of Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey (KCFAA) is making dance accessible to all people by presenting the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and Ailey II, teaching young people critical life skills through dance, and modeling interracial and multi-cultural community partnerships.

Kansas City Repertory Theatre
Kansas City Repertory Theatre’s mission is to serve the greater Kansas City area as one of the nation’s leading regional professional theatres by producing innovative works that are diverse, literate, and timely, and by providing transformative educational and community services.

Kansas City Symphony
To transform hearts, minds and communities through the power of symphonic music, accomplished by great performances for greater audiences.

Kansas City Young Audiences
The mission of KCYA is to engage all youth in the arts, promote creativity and inspire success in education.

Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art
Founded in 1994, the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art presents modern and contemporary art of the highest quality and significance. It collects, preserves, documents, interprets, and exhibits a growing permanent collection; develops and presents special exhibitions; and offers a variety of educational programs. Admission is free, and the Kemper Museum serves a diverse and inclusive public population.

Lyric Opera of Kansas City
The Lyric Opera of Kansas City exists to enrich the lives of people of all ages and backgrounds throughout the region by offering a broad repertoire of professional operatic experiences.

Mesner Puppet Theater
The mission of Mesner Puppet Theater is to perform quality, humorous, honest, and entertaining productions of classic and contemporary stories that stir the creativity and imagination within each person; educating children, families and educators in the art of live puppetry.

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art is dedicated to the enjoyment and understanding of the visual arts and the varied cultures they represent. It is committed through its collections and programs to being a vital partner in the educational and cultural life of Kansas City and a preeminent institution both nationally and internationally. It strives to achieve this goal by adherence to the highest professional standards in the collection, preservation, exhibition, and interpretation of works of art.

Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art
The mission of the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art and its campus-wide art installation program is to be an interdisciplinary academic resource for students and faculty, and a cultural center for exhibiting, interpreting, collecting and preserving works of contemporary art in a wide range of media.

Starlight Theatre
The mission of the Starlight Theatre Association of Kansas City, Inc., a not-for-profit organization, is to present first-quality professional entertainment and arts education to diverse audiences, while building an appreciation for the performing arts and preserving and enhancing the Starlight venue for future generations. As it carries out this mission, Starlight will remain committed to family-oriented entertainment at affordable prices, with a focus on musical theatre.

UMKC Conservatory
On the designated performing arts campus at the University of Missouri – Kansas City, the Conservatory is a community that advances creativity, performance, scholarship, and learning in the arts. We are a vital partner in Kansas City’s rich cultural environment, providing the highest level of professional instruction and an extensive array of performances. As a community we collaborate to balance tradition and innovation, diversity and unity, as we seek to serve art and humanity.

Unicorn Theatre
Unicorn Theatre enhances Kansas City by developing and producing professional, provocative, new plays. We create opportunities for the advancement of emerging and established actors, directors, playwrights, designers, technicians, and administrative staff.

Ovation Grant Committee Bios

Kanon Cozad
An accomplished executive leader and strategic thinker with more than 30 years of diverse technology experience, Kanon Cozad is the Managing Principal of Pianosa Technology Partners, a technology management consultancy focused on offering virtual-CIO and Big Data Analytics services to business around the globe.  Prior to starting Pianosa, Kanon spent several decades in various technical and senior management roles in a number of industries and locations.  He is a regular speaker at conferences on various industry, management, and technology topics. Kanon has been involved in the Kansas City arts scene for years, as both an engaged participant and in Board roles with the Business Committee for the Arts, the KC Ballet, Studios Inc, and now with ArtsKC (as Board Chair).  He and his wife, Rachael Blackburn Cozad, also host numerous arts community events at their home, and he takes immense pride in playing a small role in the diverse fabric of such a robust arts community as Kansas City’s.  He’s also a partners in two arts-related businesses:  Madison Group Fine Art Appraisals and Rachael Cozad Fine Art. Kanon holds a degree in English Literature from William Jewell College.  When not wrangling technology or rooting for the KU Jayhawks and Kansas City Royals, he can be found blogging about cars (KanonOnCars.com), zooming around the countryside on one of his Italian motorcycles, or wrangling his beloved German Shorthaired Pointer, Ruscha, and precocious Doberman Pinscher, Stella.  He and Rachael live in Kansas City, MO, in the Union Hill neighborhood.

Loretta M. Britton, MD, MPH, MS is a retired Vice President and Medical Director of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City. Prior to her 18 years of corporate experience with BCBSKC she was a practicing community physician (pediatrician) in Kansas City, Missouri, St. Louis, Missouri, and Washington DC.

Dr. Britton obtained her Masters Degree in Public Health (Epidemiology and Biostatistics) from the University of California, Berkeley; her Masters of Science Degree (Genetics and Natural Selection Mechanisms) from Washington University; and her Medical Degree from Howard University. She is a patron of the arts and sciences and currently has served or is serving on the boards and committees of the Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey Board of Directors, the Women’s Public Service Network, the UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance, the Harriman-Jewell Council, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art’s Committee on Collections, the Truman Medical Center Charitable Board Foundation, the Hospital Hill Economic Development Council, and the board of the Lyric Opera. She was the Honorary Co-Chair of the 2015 Awards Luncheon for the ArtsKC Regional Arts Council and was an ArtsKC Virtuoso Awards Finalist in 2017.  Dr. Britton was the Chairperson of the 2016 Prelude Gala of the Harriman-Jewell Series. She is a community outreach and educational advisor and currently serves on the Regional Advisory Council’s Affiliate Board of the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation. Dr. Britton is a collector of fine art with special interests in the contributions of people of color. She is currently enjoying retirement while expanding her appreciation of the visual and performing arts, international travel, and a re-acquaintance with her piano.

Chelan David is Director of Development for Youth Volunteer Corps, a nonprofit established in 1987 that creates volunteer opportunities for youth while addressing community needs. He currently holds board of director positions at the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Wonderscope Children’s Museum of Kansas City, Shawnee Mission Education Foundation, the International Relations Council, and KU Advancement Board. Chelan graduated from the University of Kansas with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism. His writings have appeared in The Seattle Times, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Spin, CNN.com, Writer’s Digest, Smart Business, Entrepreneur, and the Kansas City Business Journal.

Archie Scott Gobber is a painter, sculptor and native Missourian working in Kansas City, Missouri. Gobber’s work has been shown in numerous solo and group exhibitions locally, nationally and internationally, and resides in many museum, public and private collections – most recently his painting “Piece” was acquired by the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. In 1998 he received a Charlotte Street Award and more recently, in 2011, an American Institute of Architects Allied Arts and Craftsmanship Honor Award for his public sculpture titled “Dream” for Missouri Bank and Trust Company. Gobber has been an instructor at the Kansas City Art Institute and served as a mentor for the Charlotte Street Studio Recipients’ program. He received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting from the Kansas City Art Institute in 1988.

Ed Peterson has been engaged as an advocate for public arts programs for more than two decades.  He was an early advocate in Kansas and leader of the effort to obtain passage of the legislation creating the Bi-state taxing authority for arts and culture that became the vehicle for restoration of Union Station. Mr. Peterson has served as a commissioner on the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners from 2003 – 2015.   He led the creation of a 1% for Art policy applicable to construction of Johnson County facilities.  He also led creation of the employee arts fair. Mr. Peterson has served on the Board of Directors of the ArtsKC and of the Johnson County Arts Commission and currently serves on the Board of the InterUrban ArtHouse in Overland Park.

Madeline Romious, Regional Vice President – External Affairs, AT&T Missouri, has been with AT&T since 1988.   Since 2004 she has been responsible for legislative affairs, community, civic and external affairs activities in the Kansas City, Missouri region.  Romious serves on the boards of the Kansas City Police Foundation, Kansas City Economic Development Council, The Partnership for Regional Education Preparation Kansas City (PREPKC), Greater Kansas City YMCA, Children’s Center for the Visually Impaired (CCVI), Associated Industries of Missouri, Grandview Chamber of Commerce, Rockhurst University Board of Trustees, Greater Kansas City Links, Incorporated – Arts Facet Committee Member.  She attended Northwestern University and received a B.S. Degree in Electrical Engineering and Rockhurst University where she received an MBA.  She attends Friendship Baptist Church, has a senior at MU and a Beagle (Shannon) and a Lab Shepard mix (Winnie).

Dawn Taylor, Executive Director, American Institute of Architects
Dawn joined American Institute of Architects Kansas City as Executive Director in June 2010. Previously, she spent 17 years in fund raising for The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art and Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art. During Dawn’s tenure at AIA Kansas City, the chapter has won two national AIA awards and reached its highest membership numbers in the chapter’s history. Dawn has developed partnerships with economic development agencies, arts organizations, elected officials, and other civic leadership groups. Her leadership accomplishments include the launch of Center for Architecture & Design in 2014, along with the rapid expansion of KC Design Week since its inception in 2010. Dawn graduated with honors from Duke University. She served on the national board of the Duke Alumni Association for four years and has served at the local level for more than 28 years. In Kansas City, she is a founding member of the Executive Council of Rightfully Sewn. She has traveled to Kajjansi, Uganda four times in recent years to volunteer at St. Mary Kevin Children’s Home. In 2014, she was named a “Rising Star of Philanthropy” by Nonprofit Connect. She is the mother of two daughters.

Qiana Thomason is the Vice President, Population Health Solutions for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City (Blue KC). She oversees population health strategies for Blue KC’s care and utilization management programs and alternative payment and care delivery partnerships with healthcare providers. Qiana and her team are focused on improving the health and wellness of Blue KC members and the Kansas City community and facilitating smarter spending on behalf of the healthcare system at large. Qiana provides thought leadership in care delivery transformation including behavioral health and socioeconomic factors that influence health outcomes. Qiana is also committed to serving the Kansas City community. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for ArtsKC and William Jewell College, is the immediate past Board Chair of Kansas City Young Audiences and was an appointee of Kansas City Mayor Sly James’ Blue Ribbon Airport Terminal Advisory Group. Qiana’s commitment to public service extends to her personal time, volunteering regularly with Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Incorporated, and the Jackson County (MO) Chapter of The Links, Incorporated. Qiana received a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Kansas and a Bachelor of Social Work from Florida A&M University, graduating from both institutions Summa Cum Laude.