The National Endowment for the Arts (Preston Francis)

The arts and theater in general were changed forever when President Johnson passed the bill that created the National Endowment for the Arts.

There are few organizations that have contributed more to the arts and to theater in general than the National Endowment for the Arts. The NEA has began in 1965 by President Lyndon B. Johnson. The NEA was said that it was, “not intended to solve a problem, but rather to embody hope.”

Since it’s beginning in 1965 the National Endowment for the Arts has awarded more than 128,000 grants totaling more than 4 billion dollars. The arts have been greatly influenced from this. Thousands and thousands have been able to participate and excel in the arts due to the grants that have been received.

Theater in particular has benefited greatly from the creation of the NEA. A huge step was made in may of 1966 when the NEA council declared that one of their biggest goals was to support “the development of a larger and more appreciative audience for the theatre.” The NEA has done this over and over and has changed theater was we know it.

Sources

National Endowment for the Arts, A History, 1965-2008, Mark Bauerlein, Ellen Grantham

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