Performing Arts


Jack Cullen was a passionate supporter of the performing arts and Cullen Foundation continues his legacy by advancing the theatre and performing arts sector for residents of Erie County, New York. 
Our local performing arts sector, which has a rich history and an exciting future, includes a robust and eclectic mix of organizations that contribute to making Western New York a vibrant place to live.
While Cullen Foundation believes in cultivating and strengthening a variety of performing arts groups, we prioritize support to those organizations where the primary focus and mission is community performances. Organizations we support span music, dance, singers, and theatre where we place particular emphasis on the American musical. 
The impact, reach, accessibility and sustainability of grantees is vital to Cullen Foundation. Additionally, we seek evidence that organizations are addressing a specific gap and that programming is responsive to community needs.
Cullen Foundation will not fund the following within either its performing arts or education focus areas:
Arts in education programs
Programs that benefit an individual school
Events with a performing arts component that are hosted by organizations that are not in the performing arts sector
Activities of organizations serving primarily their own membership 
From 2015 to 2017, Cullen Foundation awarded a total of $2.1 million through grants to 41 WNY-based performing arts organizations.
Erie County-based performing arts organizations are encouraged to apply for funding for the next grant cycle – click here for more details.