Saturday, February 20, 2016

Chicago Sinfonietta Receives Prestigious MacArthur Award for Extraordinary Creativity and Effectiveness

Chicago, Illinois, February 18, 2016 – Chicago Sinfonietta today was awarded the prestigious MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions. The Award recognizes exceptional nonprofit organizations who have demonstrated creativity and impact, and invests in their long-term sustainability with sizable one-time grants. 

“On behalf of our board of directors, staff, volunteers, and musicians, we are incredibly excited to share the news about of this award,” says Chicago Sinfonietta Executive Director Jim Hirsch.  “This award from the MacArthur Foundation will ensure that the country’s most diverse and innovative orchestra will continue to provide opportunities for under-served and under-represented individuals and communities, educate the next generation of musicians and concert-goers, and present stunning, one-of-a-kind symphonic experiences for all to enjoy.”

Chicago Sinfonietta will use its $625,000 MacArthur Award to establish an operating reserve and to underwrite critical technology upgrades.

The award has been presented annually since 2006 to organizations across the country and around the world that demonstrate exceptional creativity and effectiveness. This year’s 14 recipients are drawn exclusively from Chicago’s diverse arts and culture community in order to strengthen the city’s vibrant cultural life and underscore the Foundation’s commitment to its hometown. Each year, MacArthur supports more than 300 arts and culture group in Chicago, awarding more than $10 million in grants, mostly through general operating support.

“These superbly imaginative organizations exemplify Chicago’s thriving arts and culture community, which is vibrant and economically vital to the region,” said MacArthur President Julia Stasch. “Support for these diverse and leading organizations reflects our enduring commitment to Chicago and to its cultural life that enriches us all.”

According to MacArthur, the Award is not only recognition for past leadership and success but also an investment in the future. For these Awards, the Foundation does not seek or accept nominations. To qualify, organizations must demonstrate exceptional creativity and effectiveness; have reached a critical or strategic point in their development; show strong leadership and stable financial management; have previously received MacArthur support; and engage in work central to one of MacArthur’s core programs.

Additional information about this year’s MacArthur Awards is at
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In its 28th season, the Chicago Sinfonietta has pushed artistic and social boundaries to provide an alternative way of hearing, seeing and thinking about a symphony orchestra.  Each concert experience blends inventive new works with classical masterworks, each from a diverse array of voices, to entertain, transform and inspire. Learn more at

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