The Foundation for the Performing Arts Center has awarded $25,000 in grants to six local performing arts groups.

This is the Foundation’s fifth year of grant-giving through their Clifton Swanson PAC Community Access Fund. Every year, local performing arts companies are invited to apply for funding to help cover their event costs at the Performing Arts Center. With the upcoming 2020-21 season included, the Foundation will have awarded a total of over $130,000 to support San Luis Obispo County performing arts companies.

“The groups who perform at the PAC are fulfilling our mission of making the arts available and accessible for our community,” said Leann Standish, Executive Director of the Foundation. “We are all spellbound by the talented performers who discover and cultivate their craft at the PAC.”

foundation for the performing arts center

This year’s recipients include the Civic Ballet, the SLO Master Chorale, the San Luis Obispo Symphony and Youth Symphony, OPERASLO, and the Vocal Arts Ensemble. Grant awards will support the efforts of nearly 1,500 individual artists from our community who will perform on stage at the PAC during the 2020-21 season.

The Swanson Fund provides unique funding for technical and performance costs associated with theatrical productions. This can include lighting, rigging, sound design, and ranges anywhere from a few thousand to ten thousand dollars total. With limited funds available to resident companies, Swanson Fund grants have become a very important resource.

“The long-standing partnership between the Symphony and the Foundation for the Performing Arts Center is a vital element in our ability to share music with the community,” stated Anna James Miller, newly appointed Executive Director of the SLO Symphony. “it means so much that the Foundation works to continue that tradition. We are grateful for their support in this crucial upcoming season, during a time of such uncertainty for our artists and their artform.”

Local performing arts companies have been greatly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of the same Swanson Fund awardee companies have cancelled one if not more performances and events this year. Many arts groups rely nearly completely on income from performances to survive. The Foundation is continuing their work of supporting these companies financially, through collaboration, and in other innovative ways.

The Foundation thanks it’s donors and business partners for their continual support of the performing arts here in San Luis Obispo County, including their contribution to the Swanson Fund. To donate to the Foundation and help ensure that arts and culture continues to thrive in our region in the face of the pandemic, please visit

About the Foundation for the Performing Arts Center

Established in 1986, the Foundation provides and promotes an extraordinary and accessible center for the performing arts that elevates the arts in our community, in collaboration with our partners, California Polytechnic State University and the City of San Luis Obispo. For more information on the Foundation, its mission, values and programs, please visit: