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GAP Grant Impact Stories

There’s ART in every heART Scott Clarke  

This past fall, cartoonist and arts instructor Scott Clarke received an Anne Arundel County COVID-19 Relief GAP Independent Artist grant from the Arts CouncilIn 2020, Scott lost much of his income due to the pandemic. The art classes he normally teaches at local venues that include Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, Anne Arundel Community College, and Anne Arundel County Department of Aging were all cancelled. Scott also lost the opportunity to sell his artwork at shows including Awesomecon, Mid Atlantic Nostalgia Convention, Annapolis Pride, Annapolis Comicon, and more. 

For Scott, the GAP grant was a lifeline to help him weather the crisis, as it was for many of our local artists. shared with us the news that this grant truly made a difference for him, as it did for so many artists. He expressed his gratitude, telling us, I’d like to convey how incredibly grateful I am for grant I received. This grant has given me the opportunity to continue my work by teaching online, covering such costs as competent computer equipment (computer, webcam, etc.), program fees (Zoom contract, etc.), and art supplies. It also enabled me to acquire space for the rescheduled dates of art shows I lost during the height of the pandemic. This grant is truly a blessing in a dark time, giving artists like myself hope for our future creative endeavors, gratitude for the respect and generosity of the Arts Council and Anne Arundel County. There’s ART in every heART. Thank you again! 

To connect and learn more about Scott, visit


The Show DID go on!The Talent Machine Co. 

The Talent Machine Co. (TMC) offers youth ages 7-18 the opportunity to study the performing arts, present their product publicly in a community setting, to teach as well as to learn, and to serve as positive role models for their peers. Being part of a TMC production teaches children the value of teamwork, organizational skills, and responsibility, and of course, develops their creative skills. Many Talent Machine alumni have gone on to professional careers as directors, choreographers, composers, and Broadway dancers and actors. 

In a normal year, TMC produces an Easter breakfast show and youth and teen summer shows, all of which provide ticket sales revenue to support the staging of a much larger and more expensive holiday show production. With a cast of 65+ children, this show has become holiday tradition for many Marylanders. However, in 2020, with live performances cancelled and TMC’s operating budget decimated, the beloved holiday show – for the first time in more than 30 years – was in jeopardy. 

Despite these challenges, TMC was determined to go on with the show, and using Anne Arundel County GAP Arts Organization grant funding, they did! Putting the safety of the children first, TMC got creative  holding auditions via Zoom and conducting rehearsals outdoors, and when the weather turned cooler, renting much larger than normal rehearsal locations to accommodate safe social distancing.  Each day, prior to rehearsal, parents were required to complete a COVID-19 survey. Stations were in place to take each child’s temperature prior to rehearsal. Lots of hand sanitizer was available and cast members were required to wear masks and gloves. The production was filmed and released on an on-demand video platform, enabling the audience to enjoy the show from the safety of their homes. 

Being part of TMC’s holiday show is always an extraordinary experience for a child, and this year, that experience was more important than ever. Since so many schools were conducting exclusively virtual learning, TMC gave kids a safe environment to be social and practice their craftHaving public health compliant protocols in place offered parents the peace of mind to allow their children to participate, and enabled kids to engage in the social interaction they need to navigate these unprecedented times. When many young theater groups ceased production of their holiday shows, TMC was, with the support of a GAP Arts Organization grant, able to go on with the show! 

To connect and learn more about The Talent Machine, Co., visit


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 Arts Organizations

Click here for information regarding the Anne Arundel County GAP Grant for Independent Aritsts 


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