SAN FRANCISCO and MENLO PARK, Calif.— The Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation and The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation are pleased to announce a $300,000 fund for the creation and production of new dances by California choreographers. The works are to be commissioned and premiered by Bay Area nonprofit arts organizations that can apply for grants of $50,000 each.

These grants will support projects that encourage the creative endeavors and professional development of promising California choreographers. The resulting works will have their world premieres in Bay Area public performances between December 2015 and June 2017.

Proposed commissions in all dance forms will be considered. Applicant organizations must be nonprofit and based in the counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Monterey, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano, or Sonoma.

These choreography awards are part of a three-year $900,000 initiative by the Gerbode and Hewlett foundations to support the commissioning of individual artists and to invest in their creative vision. Other disciplines will be supported in 2015 and 2016.

“Our partnership with the Hewlett Foundation provides an opportunity to support a variety of dance forms. We view these commissions not only as supporting the very best choreographers working today, but also as an investment in the future vitality of the dance field,” said Stacie Ma’a, president of the Gerbode Foundation.

John E. McGuirk, director of the Hewlett Foundation’s Performing Arts Program, added, “Through this grants partnership, we will see the creation of innovative and diverse dance performances throughout the Bay Area.”

Applications for the 2014 Choreography Commissioning Awards are available online at Completed applications must be submitted to the Gerbode Foundation no later than 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, August 7, 2014. An advisory panel of dance experts from across the United States will review all the proposals, and final selections will be made by the Gerbode Foundation. Grantees will be announced in January 2015.

For questions regarding the program guidelines and application, please contact the Gerbode Foundation’s Manager of Special Awards, Olivia Malabuyo Tablante (77 Van Ness Avenue, Suite 200, San Francisco, CA 94102; 415-391-0911;

About The Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation
The Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation is interested in programs and projects offering potential for significant impact. The primary geographical focus is on the San Francisco Bay Area and Hawaii. The Foundation’s interests generally fall under the categories of arts and culture, environment, population, reproductive rights, citizen participation, building communities, inclusiveness, strength of the philanthropic process and the nonprofit sector, and Foundation-initiated special projects.

About the Special Awards in the Arts Program
Since 1987, the Gerbode Foundation has made innovative grants through its Special Awards Program to San Francisco Bay Area arts institutions to commission new works by gifted individual artists: playwrights (including Tony Kushner, author of the Pulitzer Prize–winning Angels in America), choreographers (such as Alonzo King and Amara Tabor-Smith), composers (John Adams, Anuradha Sridhar, and Marcus Shelby among them), as well as visual artists, poets, and multimedia artists.

In 2000, the Gerbode Foundation began its ongoing collaboration with the Hewlett Foundation to support the commissioning of new works by California performing artists for organizations based in eleven counties in the Bay Area. Since that time, four rounds of choreography commissions have been awarded to twenty-four Bay Area arts organizations.

In a time of cultural shifts and fiscal insecurity in the arts, these coveted, nationally respected awards have helped underwrite culturally and aesthetically diverse acclaimed new works by prominent artists and artists who are up-and-coming. The grants have supported artists at critical junctures in their careers, enabled local nonprofit arts organizations to develop and premiere substantial new works, and enriched Bay Area audiences, readers, and viewers by giving them first access to ambitious, original creations.

About The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation
The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation helps people build measurably better lives. The Foundation concentrates its resources on activities in education, the environment, global development and population, performing arts, and philanthropy, as well as grants to support disadvantaged communities in the San Francisco Bay Area. A full list of the Hewlett Foundation’s grants can be found online.

The Foundation’s Performing Arts Program is founded on the premise that the experience, understanding, and appreciation of artistic expression give value, meaning, and enjoyment to people’s lives. Its goal is to ensure continuity and innovation in the performing arts through the creation, performance, and appreciation of exceptional works that enrich the lives of individuals and benefit communities throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. The Program currently supports artistic expression and its enjoyment through grantmaking to a wide range of over 200 arts organizations throughout the Bay Area. Both the scale of funding and the singular nature of multiyear general operating support have made the Hewlett Foundation a key investor in the artistic life of one of the most culturally diverse regions in the country.