The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation Awards $1.4 Million in Community Partnership Grants

December 8, 2022 (New Orleans, LA) FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE –The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation is pleased to announce the 2022-2023 Community Partnership Grant awardees, on view now at

Since 1979, the Jazz & Heritage Foundation has invested proceeds from the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival presented by Shell directly into the community with grants to fund projects that support the foundation’s mission. Over the last ten years, over $12 million has been awarded in Community Partnership Grants. Grant categories include arts education programs (in-school and after-school), music and arts presenting organizations, cultural equity arts, and individual artists with media or documentation projects related to the Foundation’s mission. Over 500 applicants in the Community Partnership Grant program are receiving a total of $1.4 million in funding.

“We are honored to continue our annual tradition of distributing Community Partnership Grants in support of music, arts and cultural heritage in Louisiana,” said Don Marshall, Executive Director of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation. “These are your Jazz Fest dollars at work.”

For the 2022-2023 grant cycle, Community Partnership Grants were awarded in five categories:
● Jazz & Heritage Presenting grants, awarded to Louisiana-based non-profit arts organizations that present festivals, concerts and other cultural events that hire Louisiana performers
● Media & Documentation grants, for artists and others who create new artistic works or document the local culture
● Education In-School grants for Louisiana schools providing music and art classes as part of the school day
● Education After-School grants for nonprofits that present after-school and summer educational programs in the arts
● Louisiana Cultural Equity Arts grants were awarded to Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) creatives and BIPOC-led nonprofit organizations in Louisiana.

The applications are reviewed and scored by committees made up of members of the Jazz & Heritage Foundation’s Board of Directors and Advisory Council. The applications are then ranked by score. Those with the highest scores are awarded the largest percentage of the amount they requested.

“Because of the generosity of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Community Partnership Grant school program, St. Tammany Parish’s Talented Art’s program, which is rated as the best Talented Arts Program in Louisiana, has been able to enrich the creative juices of these artists, musicians, actresses, and actors. Every one of the over 36,000 students in all of the 55 public schools and the Northshore community have benefited from the grant awards,” said Northshore Talented Theatre teacher Stephen Cefalu, “I am proud to say that the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Community Partnership Grant program has made a significant difference in helping us promote the arts and their importance on the Northshore.”

“This grant supports our Upbeat Studios program, which we’ll be relaunching in the Summer. Upbeat Studios focuses on teaching young people music production skills that are used in hip-hop, rap, dance, and other popular genres. With the Jazz & Heritage Foundation’s support, we’re able to employ teaching artists to help us support youth in the community,” said Ashley Shabankareh, Director of Learning and Development at Upbeat Academy Foundation.

“Ever wonder how a creative spark becomes a flame, and a flame becomes a fire? Oxygen. That’s what the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation provides through its Community Partnership Grants. These grants celebrate ideas put into action that enhance the world’s understanding of the city and the city’s understanding of itself. The Community Partnership Grants help bathe the soul of New Orleans in light,” said Gwen Thompkins, Host of Music Inside Out.

By investing so much into the community and making a concerted effort to nurture local artists and organizations, the Foundation creates an environment in which arts and education projects can succeed over the long term, especially in the face of natural disasters such as hurricanes, and in the aftermath of the pandemic.

Grant recipients will be honored in award ceremonies that will take place at the George and Joyce Wein Jazz & Heritage Center next week. The grant checks will be presented in a ceremony-style event. Grant recipients will have a chance to talk about their projects.

The grant ceremonies will take place on the following dates and times:
Monday, December 12, 2022 from 10:30am to 11:30am – Presenting Grant Award Ceremony
Tuesday, December 13, 2022 from 10:30am to 11:30am – Media & Documentation Award Ceremony
Wednesday, December 14, 2022 from 10:30am to 11:30am – Education Grant Award Ceremony

Complete lists of the 2022-2023 grant recipients in each category are online at

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage & Heritage Foundation is the non-profit that owns the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival presented by Shell. The Foundation uses the proceeds from Jazz Fest – and other raised funds – for year-round programs in education, economic development and cultural enrichment. For more on the Foundation’s activities, see