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American Express Company Gives $1.5 Million To PAC's

American Express Company has given over $1-1/2 million in grant awards through its Performing Arts Fund to more than a dozen performing arts organizations nationwide. The 15 grant recipients located in Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, San Diego, Seattle and Washington, D.C. will use their grant awards to fund outreach initiatives designed to attract new audiences to the arts.

The American Express Performing Arts Fund was created in 1997 to assist performing arts organizations across the United States in developing and sustaining broader audiences. Since its inception, American Express has given more than $6 million to more than 60 arts organizations throughout the United States.

"We're thrilled to be able to support so many arts organizations across the country as they reach out to new segments of the population and celebrate the diverse traditions that make this country so rich. This program is one of the many ways in which American Express gives back to the community, and is part of our overall commitment to support the arts," said Mary Beth Salerno, vice president, American Express Philanthropic Program.

This year's Performing Arts Fund grants recipients include The Boston Lyric Opera, Center Theatre Group of Los Angeles, Charlotte Symphony, Chicago Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Denver Center, Detroit Symphony, Frederick R. Mann Center (Philadelphia metro area), Los Angeles Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Miami City Ballet, New York Philharmonic, Old Globe Theatre (San Diego), Seattle Symphony, and The Shakespeare Theatre (Washington, DC).

Last year's Performing Arts Fund grants totaling $1.5 million, have already produced positive results, affirming the value of this program. As a result of the 2001 American Express Performing Arts Fund grant, the following organizations realized these achievements:

The Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, located in Vienna,
VA, received a two-year Performing Arts Fund grant last year to help
launch its audience development outreach program, Bringing Latino
Audiences Center Stage. The grant enabled Wolf Trap to produce a
tailored, targeted marketing plan to broaden its appeal to the
Latino community. As a result of these efforts, ticket orders among
the Latino community for the summer Filene Center season jumped more
than 17% in 2001 versus 2000.

The American Express 2001 Performing Arts Fund grant to the Woodruff
Arts Center in Atlanta, GA, helped to fund their "Celebrate
Diversity Through the Arts" program that celebrates Atlanta's
diversity communities through their various forms of artistic
expression. Over the last year, The Woodruff Arts Center has held
more than 10 events through this program, including Dia de Muertos
(Day of the Dead) Festival, Chinese New Year Celebration, Black
Cinema Cafe, An Evening with Tina McElroy Ansa, and most recently,
Poetic Food for Thought. All of these events have been well
received by the community. The Day of the Dead Festival, for
instance, attracted over 6,000 attendees, many of them
Mexican-Americans visiting the Woodruff for the fist time