A Life Saver | The AngelWing Project
The AngelWing Project (AWP) is a non-profit organization dedicated to using the performing arts to uplift the community both surrounding and at large. They are proudly the theatre in residence of the Chesapeake Arts Center in Brooklyn Park, and are dedicated to delivering quality performances and creating lasting relationships. Their community artists are committed, creative individuals who give unselfishly of themselves as they dedicate themselves to the dramatic arts through numerous rehearsals, learning scripts, teaching, and performing with their hearts. Their reputation reaches beyond their neighborhood, county, and region, as they have become known for excellent work, exceptional artistry, and a strong commitment to helping others.
When the pandemic struck, AWP re-scheduled a Spring 2020 stage production of August Wilson’s Fences for September, and then ultimately cancelled it completely. Two in-person workshops for Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 were projected to bring in substantial revenue but were cancelled, and the organization was unable to hold its annual fundraising event. Without any income, AWP wondered if they would be able to sustain themselves.
Using the Anne Arundel County Arts Organization GAP funding, AWP was able to produce an online Virtual Youth Poetry Showcase in December, and deliver an online five-week youth acting course. The grant also supported marketing, technology upgrades, and staffing a part-time administrative assistant who is getting the organization up to speed with the various technologies, overseeing social media platforms, and managing virtual learning courses. The GAP grant was “a lifesaver for our small non-profit.” said Executive Director Angela Wilson. “We are so appreciative of the county understanding the importance of our work and being willing to lend a hand so that we can continue to operate. This boost allowed us to be able to have a beautiful online poetry showcase and get up to speed with the technologies needed to operate in a virtual environment while still delivering the quality we are accustomed to.”
To connect and learn more about The AngelWing Project, visit theangelwingproject.org/
Keeping the Doors Open | Cameron Bach and Kristin Clevenger
Cameron Bach and Kristin Clevenger are ceramic artists and small business owners. They generate most of their income selling their work at Quirk-n-Bach Pottery, a storefront in Eastport, along with sales at juried craft shows and several wholesale accounts, as well as hosting summer workshops for kids and classes and events for adults. Early in 2020, it appeared they were going to have a really great year with new wholesale accounts, additional new show acceptances, and more store traffic, as the store was new and had been gaining momentum building traffic.
But when the pandemic hit last March, it all shut down. The retail store was closed for March, April, May, and part of June resulting in missed sales, especially in May for the normally profitable Naval Academy Commissioning Week. Clay Camp Children’s Summer Workshops were greatly modified with only four children per session instead of the usual 12, resulting in a blow to the projected summer income for 2020. No wholesale orders from ANY accounts during the shutdown and beyond, with some permanent loss in those accounts due to businesses not surviving COVID. Wholesale orders filled and delivered/ invoiced before the shutdown were not paid for months, and they are only just now catching up. No lessons or private studio classes during March, April, May, and part of June, and a year later are still limited in attendance due to social distancing measures.
The pair were forced to take drastic steps. They stopped paying themselves and buying supplies and used savings to stay current with studio rent and utilities. They did not qualify for PPP, and the resulting loss of income was a significant blow to their families. For Cameron and Kristin, the Anne Arundel County GAP Independent Artist came at a critical time: “We are so very thankful for this relief. It helped us to bridge the “GAP” so to speak! It also gave us the hope that we could continue with our vision for our business by having this cushion. We have put 25 years of our life, heart, and soul, into our business and we greatly appreciate the help.”
To connect and learn more about Cameron Bach and Kristin Clevenger, visit www.quirknbachpottery.com/
The COVID-19 Relief Grants for the Arts Program (GAP) funding made possible by County Executive Steuart Pittman and the Arts Council of Anne Arundel County.
Click here for information regarding the Anne Arundel County GAP Grant for Independent Artists
Click here for information regarding the Anne Arundel County GAP Grant for Arts Organizations