Dunamaise Arts Centre secures share of €130 million Arts Council investment

Leinster Express Reporter

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Leinster Express Reporter

Dunamaise Arts Centre secures share of €130 million Arts Council investment

The Portlaoise Musical Society on the Dunamaise Arts Centre Stage

The Dunamaise Arts Centre in Portlaoise has secured €125,000 in funding from the Arts Council's €130 million investment across Ireland in 2021.

With its exchequer grant increased to €130 million, the government agency for funding and developing the arts said that while the sector was suffering disproportionately in the health crisis, hundreds of artists and practitioners were planning and already making great art for the public to experience in the months ahead.

Due to COVID-19, Arts Centres throughout the country have suffered financially over the past year.

Welcoming the news, Minister of State Sean Fleming T.D said: 

"These centres are showing a great level of imagination and adaptability in their planning and I am confident that this funding will support Dunamaise Arts Centre in Portlaoise to build back better and to reach the widest possible audience.

"I wish to acknowledge the great addition the Dunamaise Arts Centre has been to the Arts community and all the people of Laois. 

"We all look forward to normal activities resuming when it is safe to do so," he concluded. 

Announcing its key Strategic Funding round, the Council said it would invest €46.1 million in 105 key arts organisations across the country, among them Dublin’s Abbey Theatre, the Irish Chamber Orchestra in Limerick, Macnas in Galway, Cork Midsummer Festival, Waterford’s Spraoi and Teaċ Daṁsa in Kerry.

A further €7.8 million will fund 43 arts centres in every region of the country.

The Council said that in addition in the weeks ahead, it would award around €10.7 million to arts organisations through its Arts Grant Funding programme; €2 million in smaller festivals in almost every county from its Festivals Investment Scheme; and a range of other supports for arts organisations struggling to survive the Covid-19 pandemic. 

For individual artists there will be some €10.5 million in bursaries; €5.6 million through a new Agility Award; as well increased funding for commissions and projects.

The council said it remained committed to prioritising the two policies it highlighted in 2020. These are Paying the Artist, designed to ensure fair remuneration for artists, and Equality, Human Rights and Diversity, which aims to make the arts sector fairer and more reflective of all of Irish society.