Press Release: Jack Kent Cooke Foundation grant

For Immediate Release
May 1, 2018
Jeanne Harrison

Traveling Players Awarded $10,000 for Scholarships by Jack Kent Cooke Foundation 

GREAT FALLS, VA – Traveling Players Ensemble is honored to announce its selection for the 2018 Jack Kent Cooke Foundation’s Good Neighbor Grant to support scholarships for its educational theatre programs. 

This is Traveling Players Ensemble’s second Good Neighbor Grant award, having first received it in 2016.

Traveling Players will invest the $10,000 grant award in scholarship students living in Loudoun County, who will thrive in their summer camps and academic year classes. 

Applications are still being accepted for Traveling Players’ need-based scholarships for summer camp 2018, and Loudoun County students are encouraged to apply.

Founded in 2003, Traveling Players Ensemble reflects the origins of theatre, when troupes of actors roamed the countryside, using minimal props and bold imagination to perform linguistically and physically challenging theatre.  All programs are educational, rehearsing a classical work from page to stage.  

Summer camp ensembles perform multiple times on tour, a nationally unique feature, to varied audiences in beautiful historic places like Shenandoah National Park and Colonial Williamsburg.  Intensive winter performance classes follow an identical formula, rehearsing on weekends.

The camp is in residence at The Madeira School in McLean, VA. 

Traveling Players is deeply committed to providing scholarships and financial aid to all members of its community for all of its programs, and since its founding has given out over $171,000 in scholarships with awards of up to 100% of tuition without an annual or lifetime cap, making it the most generous theatre scholarship program in the area. 

Many scholarship campers return year after year, and receive extensive training including individual coaching in preparation for college and professional auditions, many Traveling Players scholarship campers have received college scholarships, sometimes quadrupling Traveling Players’ initial investment in a student.

“I have so much respect for the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation and the opportunities that it provides for such deserving students by providing scholarships nationwide,” says Founder and Artistic Director Jeanne Harrison. “We are thrilled to receive the Foundation’s Good Neighbor Grant, especially to support more scholarships students, since the foundation is the leader in the country in this regard. Traveling Players has been leading locally with theatre scholarships, so being aligned with JKCF means the world to us. We are eager to make our already powerful scholarship program even more robust. We are extremely grateful.”

“Supporting high-quality educational projects in our region is a priority for the foundation,” said Harold O. Levy, executive director of the Cooke Foundation. “We are committed to ensuring that talented students who have financial need have access to programs that will help advance their educational goals. While the foundation is located in one of the most affluent areas in the country, there is a tremendous need for supporting organizations that are dedicated to opening opportunities for academic excellence for students with financial need.”

Since 2012, the Cooke Foundation has provided nearly $1.5 million dollars in Good Neighbor Grants to local youth-serving organizations. This year’s grantees will serve over 6,000 students through a wide variety of high-quality academic programs, college access initiatives, and arts education.

A detailed listing of all the 2018 Good Neighbor Grants recipients can be found here.

Featured in the 2015-16 Catalogue for Philanthropy, Traveling Players provides a transformative multi-year youth community that fosters critical thinking and a lifelong love of theatre, learning, and the outdoors.  The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) named the summer camp one of 25 model Summer Schools in the Arts for its comprehensive intensive curriculum.

Called “a little known summer gem for the budding actor” by The Washington Post, TPE was named the nation’s top arts camp by CampEasy in 2016 and Northern Virginia Magazine ’s #1 summer camp for 2017.  The Arts Council of Fairfax County granted Producing Artistic Director Jeanne Harrison the 2016 Strauss Artist Award and named her one of three Middle School Artists in Residence in 2015.

About the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation
The Cooke Foundation is dedicated to advancing the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need. Since 2000, the foundation has awarded $175 million in scholarships to more than 2,300 students from 8th grade through graduate school, along with comprehensive counseling and other support services. The foundation has also provided over $97 million in grants to organizations that serve such students.