Fox Theatre launches Fox Gives: Historic venue awards $500K to community theater

The historic Fox Theatre in Midtown Atlanta unveiled its expanded community partnership program, Fox Gives, during an event on Tuesday night, kicking things off with a substantial grant to a community theater in Hart County.

Fox Gives was formerly known as Fox Theatre Institute, which was established in 2008 and has been a key player in supporting performing arts venues and cultural institutions in Georgia and the southeast region through single-year grants, awarding more than $3.2 million in grants to date, benefiting more than 70 theaters. Notable recipients include the Plaza Theatre on Ponce de Leon Avenue, Atlanta's longest continuously operating independent movie theater, which opened its doors in 1939.

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Now, the Fox Theatre is taking a significant step by more than doubling its financial commitment to the restoration of historic theaters and creating new vocational opportunities for young individuals passionate about the arts.

Allan Vella, President and CEO of the Fox Theatre, commented on the evolution of Fox Gives, stating, "The evolution of Fox Theatre Institute to Fox Gives marks a significant milestone in our longstanding desire to give back and make an impact. From our humble beginnings as a struggling non-profit theater, we've channeled our preservation mission into a beacon of hope for other historic venues throughout Georgia and nationally. Now, through Fox Gives, we've deepened our impact and introduced new programming to empower the next generation of students to discover a career in entertainment."

A portion of every ticket sold for performances at the Fox Theatre will contribute to Fox Gives, supporting four key components:

Fox in a Box: An interactive elementary school program intertwining significant events in the Fox Theatre’s history with key classroom lessons, launching in the summer of 2024 and continuing through the 2024/2025 academic year.

All-Access Pass Program: Aimed at high school students interested in the arts, providing a behind-the-scenes look at various careers in the entertainment field. After the initial year, the initiative will benefit students from two schools selected through an annual application process and one from the community associated with the Fox Theatre’s new Multiyear Grant Program.

Single-Year Grant Program: Continuing to address theaters' urgent/emergency needs, historic structure studies, planning and technical assistance, service, and preservation grants.

Multiyear Grant Program: Starting July 1, fostering economic and community development through arts and culture by supporting a single organization over a two-to-four-year period.

The first grantee under the new multiyear grant program is the Hart Community Theatre in Hartwell, receiving $500,000 to aid in the restoration of their century-old venue, building on a previous emergency grant of $23,000 awarded in the 2022/2023 fiscal year.