Sarasota, FL – Sarasota Opera was ranked the #1 cultural institution among hundreds of art organizations by the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs receiving a grant of $18,386 for 2012 for general program support. Previously, Sarasota Opera received $7,448 for 2011 and was ranked #1 in their category.
“We are grateful for every award we receive but this one is extra special because it comes from our peers and serves as additional validation of our excellent program”, says Susan Danis, Executive Director of Sarasota Opera. “As funding for Arts and Cultural institutions have taken an almost fatal hit in recent years in Florida, it is crucial that not-for-profit organizations take this grant process as an opportunity to illustrate the value and quality of the creative industry to local communities both culturally and economically. I’ve never known of any funding that resulted from not being a part of the process.”
Currently, Florida only invests $.05 per Floridian in its Arts and Culture industry. Not ten years ago, state support of Arts and Culture programs reached over $48 million. That number has declined by over 95% in just five years. In 2010, the State of Florida only set aside $950,000 to be split amongst over 160 institutions statewide. Thanks to the efforts of our own Senator Mike Bennett and other Legislators, that amount was increased to $2 million for 2012.