NEA Increases Award to City of Asylum’s Jazz Poetry Month by 50%

NEA Increases Award to City of Asylum’s Jazz Poetry Month by 50%


PITTSBURGH, PA — June 15th, 2017 — The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has announced that City of Asylum was selected as a Spring 2017 Art Works grant recipient. The NEA’s award of $30,000 supports City of Asylum’s upcoming Jazz Poetry Month.  Jazz Poetry Month 2017 takes place during September in City of Asylum @ Alphabet City on Pittsburgh’s Northside.

Jazz Poetry Month brings together U.S. and international jazz musicians and poets from around the world, performing both in collaboration and individually. The four-week festival commences on September 7th, 2017 and ends October 1. It will feature 10 unique programs.

This year’s festival will be launched with a public conversation by Charlie Hebdo survivor Zineb el Rhazoui, who will speak on issues of freedom of speech. The full program for Jazz Poetry Month will be announced later in June. As with all City of Asylum events, Jazz Poetry Month performances will be free and open to the public.

“Jazz Poetry Month has been growing year after year,” said City of Asylum Associate Director Silvia Duarte. “There is nothing like it anywhere in the world, and this support from the NEA will allow us to continue to grow Jazz Poetry and provide new opportunities for Pittsburgh’s audiences to hear a great diversity of international voices and jazz in many styles.”

National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu has approved more than $82 million to fund local arts projects across the country in the NEA’s second major funding announcement for fiscal year 2017. The NEA received 1,728 Art Works applications and will make 1,029 grants ranging from $10,000 to $100,000. The NEA’s Art Works program focuses on funding the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement with art, and the strengthening of communities through the arts.  

City of Asylum is in good company among other Pittsburgh recipients of NEA funding this spring.  Over $115,000 of NEA award money has been earmarked for arts projects in the greater Pittsburgh area. Other local recipients of NEA funding this fiscal year include the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, the New Hazlett Theater, and Bricolage. City of Asylum is proud to be among these other arts leaders as it continues to transform Pittsburgh into a global hub for arts and culture.

“The arts reflect the vision, energy, and talent of America’s artists and arts organizations,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to support organizations such as City of Asylum, in serving their communities by providing excellent and accessible arts experiences.”


About City of Asylum

Since 2004, City of Asylum has provided sanctuary for exiled writers endangered in their native lands. In a row of Northside homes, whose facades are covered with texts in many languages, City of Asylum provides the writers with stipends and the support to become self-sustaining and engaged members of the community.

Building on that mission, City of Asylum has grown into a dynamic arts organization that has showcased over 390 writers, artists and musicians from 70 different countries. In 2016, it presented over 70 programs to diverse audiences of over 5,000 people. City of Asylum’s hallmark is accessibility and diversity, and all performances are free to the public. City of Asylum is also the U.S. headquarters for the International Cities of Refuge Network.   


For more information, contact:


Ayne Terceira

City Of Asylum



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