First Jazz Road Tours grants awarded for 2020

South Arts announces the first series of artists to receive Jazz Road Tours grants since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Jazz Road Tours grant program offers up to $15,000 directly to artists so they can develop tours into communities across the country.

The newest Jazz Road Tours grant recipients are:

  • Svetlana / New York Collective from Pound Ridge, New York received $14,946 to tour the Southeastern U.S. from Feb. 9-19, 2021.
  • Philippe Lemm Trio from New York City received $6,250 to tour from upstate New York through Florida from Feb. 11-21, 2021.
  • Allan Harris: Kate’s Soulfood from New York City received $15,000 to tour through North Carolina, South Carolina, and Florida from Feb. 13-20, 2021.
  • Oscar Peñas from New York City received $15,000 to tour through California, Arizona, and New Mexico from March 3-6, 2021.
  • Lucy Yeghiazaryan from The Bronx, New York received $8,400 to tour from Pennsylvania through Massachusetts from March 5-13, 2021.
  • Brenda Nicole Moorer from Atlanta received $14,480 to tour from Louisiana through New York from March 20-28, 2021.
  • The Jon Irabagon Quartet from Brooklyn, New York received $14,200 to tour through Maryland, Pennsylvania, New York, and Massachusetts from April 7-18, 2021.

“The past eight months have been exceptionally challenging for jazz artists,” said Sara Donnelly, program director for Jazz Road at South Arts. “We are optimistic that some artists are proactively laying the groundwork to share their work with audiences in-person soon.”

While the dates and details of the funded tours are subject to change, they represent a solid commitment and dedicated plan between the artists and venues to bring jazz to their communities. “We are hopeful that the proposed dates will occur,” continued Donnelly, “but it is vital that the health, safety, and well-being of everyone involved is front-and-center. The artists and venues have communicated terms if dates need to be postponed.”

Applications are open

Jazz Road Tours, launched in 2018, is accepting applications on a rolling basis from artists across the country interested in taking their work on the road. “Artists, as soon as you are able to safely begin planning tours, we are here to support your work and help make your gigs financially feasible,” continued Donnelly. “There is no need to rush applications for this program, and submissions will be open until at least 2022.”

Jazz Road, a national program funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation with additional support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, is led by South Arts in partnership with the five other U.S. Regional Arts Organizations (Arts Midwest, Mid-America Arts Alliance, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, New England Foundation for the Arts, and Western Arts Alliance/WESTAF).

Through Jazz Road and the flagship Jazz Road Tours grant program, artists can apply for support to build small tours and further explore their work while receiving equitable fees. Artists may apply on a rolling basis for up to $15,000 to tour their work through Jazz Road Tours. Additionally, a Creative Residency program will launch later this year. Further details about South Arts and Jazz Road are available by visiting

About South Arts

South Arts advances Southern vitality through the arts. The nonprofit regional arts organization was founded in 1975 to build on the South’s unique heritage and enhance the public value of the arts. South Arts’ work responds to the arts environment and cultural trends with a regional perspective. South Arts offers an annual portfolio of activities designed to support the success of artists and arts providers in the South, address the needs of Southern communities through impactful arts-based programs, and celebrate the excellence, innovation, value and power of the arts of the South. For more information, visit