Applications now open nationwide for 2023–2025 grant cycle to present a free concert series that activates underused public spaces and builds community through the power of free, live music
LOS ANGELES, April 18, 2022 — The Mortimer & Mimi Levitt Foundation, a social impact funder supporting nonprofits nationwide at the intersection of music and public space, announces the open application period for its Levitt AMP [Your City] Grant Awards, now through June 30, 2022.
The Levitt AMP [Your City] Grant Awards is an exciting, multi-year matching grant opportunity bringing the joy of free, live music to towns and cities with a population of up to 250,000 people. For the 2023–2025 grant cycle, the Levitt Foundation has expanded the Levitt AMP program from an annual matching grant of $25K into a three-year matching grant of $30K per year, for a total grant award of $90K. U.S.-based nonprofits are eligible to apply to the Levitt AMP [Your City] Grant Awards to present the Levitt AMP Music Series—10 free concerts that inject new life into underused public spaces, creating joyous, inclusive community destinations. Reflecting the Foundation’s commitment that all Levitt projects be community-driven, the Top 20 Levitt finalists will be selected through online public voting. Interested nonprofits can view the eligibility criteria and apply starting today at levitt.org/apply. Past grantees are eligible to reapply for the 2023–2025 Levitt AMP grant.
Since 2015, the Levitt Foundation has provided funding to 38 communities across America through the Levitt AMP program, activating underused outdoor public spaces, ensuring access to the arts and strengthening the social fabric of communities through creative placemaking, bringing people together of all ages and backgrounds through a free concert series featuring a diverse lineup of artists, music genres and cultural programming. The acronym “AMP” speaks to the goals of the program: Amplify community pride and a city’s unique character; enrich lives through the power of free, live Music; and illustrate the importance of vibrant public Places.
Today marks the first time in three years that Levitt AMP applications are open to the public. Due to the pandemic, all 2020 Levitt AMP grantees were also awarded Levitt AMP grants in 2021 and 2022.
“Since launching the Levitt AMP program in 2015, we’ve seen firsthand the tremendous positive impact of Levitt AMP concerts in building more equitable, healthy and thriving communities, creating pride of place and a sense of belonging within each hometown, and spurring additional investments supporting the local economy,” says Sharon Yazowski, executive director of the Levitt Foundation. “We are thrilled to once again open applications to new communities seeking to harness the power of music to connect us and bring joy to our lives, while realizing the incredible potential of towns and cities across our country.”
While the Levitt Foundation’s celebrated program of outdoor music venues, each presenting 40–50 free concerts annually, is tailored to large metro areas with populations of over 400,000 (due to financial sustainability and audience development considerations), the Levitt AMP [Your City] Grant Awards are specifically designed to meet the needs and capacity of small to mid-sized towns and cities, with each Levitt AMP grantee presenting 10 free outdoor concerts. The Levitt AMP program is open to nonprofits across sectors—past grantees have included nonprofits from the arts, Main Street, community development, affordable housing, universities, among others—while the Levitt venue program has a dedicated “Friends of Levitt” nonprofit partner, that manages, programs and supports the venue year-round.
As the Levitt AMP [Your City] Grant Awards are matching grants, each applicant must secure a dollar-for-dollar match of $30K each year from other sources such as foundations, businesses, municipalities and individual donors, among other entities. Up to half of the matching requirement may be in-kind, such as donated sound equipment, professional services or contributed marketing. In addition to the monetary award, Levitt AMP grant recipients receive the Levitt AMP Toolkit containing valuable resources to help them produce their concert series and access to peers within the national Levitt network of venues and concert sites. Also, applicants participating in the online public voting phase will receive a $1,500 mini-grant from the Levitt Foundation to support their efforts.
Levitt AMP concerts are intended to create inclusive experiences, where all members of the community are welcome to participate. The most competitive proposals will convey the following:
- The public space where the free concert series is to be presented is easily accessible to a range of demographic groups;
- A programming philosophy that is inclusive, family-friendly and represents a wide range of music genres;
- Proposals that are submitted by nonprofits that are BIPOC-led, and/or inclusive of all members of the community, particularly those who have been historically excluded and/or underrepresented due to race, ethnicity, national origin, immigration status, socioeconomic status, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation, age and disability;
- A proven track record of presenting professional quality concerts or community events or partnering with an individual or organization that has done so.
Online public voting will determine the Top 20 finalists between September 12–21, 2022. The Levitt Foundation will then review the applications and announce the 2023–2025 Levitt AMP [Your City] Grant Awards recipients on November 15, 2022.
From Soldotna, Alaska with a population of nearly 5,000 people to Trenton, New Jersey with more than 83,000 residents, the Levitt AMP program reaches a wide range of communities across America, presenting pop, rock, folk, World music, country, jazz, Latin, children’s shows, blues and more. To view the current Levitt AMP grantees presenting concert series this summer, please visit levitt.org/amp. To view past grantee communities, please visit levitt.org/past-grantees.
About the Mortimer & Mimi Levitt Foundation
The Mortimer & Mimi Levitt Foundation is a private family foundation that exists to strengthen the social fabric of America. Through its commitment to creative placemaking, the Levitt Foundation supports the activation of underused public spaces—such as neglected parks, vacant downtown lots, and former brownfields—into welcoming, inclusive destinations where the power of free, live music brings people together to create more equitable, healthy and thriving communities. The Foundation’s primary funding areas include Levitt venues and the Levitt AMP [Your City] Grant Awards. Both of these programs present free concerts in outdoor, open lawn settings featuring high-caliber talent in a broad array of music genres and cultural programming. Levitt venues and Levitt AMP concert sites attract people of all ages and backgrounds and reflect the character of their town or city, while benefitting from the framework and best practices of the Levitt program.
The Levitt Foundation invests in community-driven efforts that harness the power of partnerships and leverage community engagement. Levitt venue nonprofits and AMP grantees partner with other local nonprofits and community groups to inform programming, outreach and engagement, embodying the Foundation’s funding philosophy and core values to support projects that are inclusive, catalytic and dynamic, and create connectedness and joy. Reflecting its ongoing commitment to self-reflection and contributing to the creative placemaking field, the Levitt Foundation invests in research to evaluate the social impact of Levitt programs in communities, which in turn informs the Foundation’s evolving philanthropic practice. Learn more: levitt.org and follow us @levittfoundation on Facebook and Instagram and @levittfdn on Twitter.
SOURCE Levitt Foundation