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Cleveland Orchestra receives more SBA support as Ohio funding tops $313M

The Cleveland Orchestra [Roger Mastroianni/ The Cleveland Orchestra]
The Cleveland Orchestra [Roger Mastroianni/ The Cleveland Orchestra]

Ohio arts and cultural businesses have received more than $313 million through the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program. 

More than $100 million of those federal dollars have been granted to Northeast Ohio venues and operators, shuttered in part or completely during the pandemic.  

The Small Business Administration is now providing supplemental dollars beyond the initial grants issued earlier this year. The Cleveland Metroparks will receive an additional $3 million beyond its initial grant of $6 million. The Musical Arts Association, which operates the Cleveland Orchestra, will receive an additional $2 million, bringing its total to $8 million. The orchestra returns to Severance for live audiences Thursday to open its season.

Other local recipients getting supplemental dollars include the Music Box Supper Club ($1,232,242), Beachland Ballroom ($476,394) and Karamu House ($196,136).

“To see $100 million coming both for non-profits and for-profit, small businesses like the Happy Dog and the Beachland and the Grog Shop is pretty amazing,” said Happy Dog owner Sean Watterson, who advocated for the federal support with the National Independent Venue Association. 

For comparison, Watterson pointed to public funding from Cuyahoga County cigarette-tax revenues that result in around $12 million in grants to area non-profits annually. 

The National Endowment for the Arts has an annual budget of $167.5 million, roughly half of what Ohio arts and cultural venues and operators have now received from the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program. 

See which other Ohio arts and entertainment organizations and businesses have received SBA awards through the searchable database below.

Note, awards are given to the operators of venues and businesses, which in many cases may differ from the location name. For instance, 58 Group, Inc. is the Happy Dog and KS KLUB LLC is the B Side Lounge.

Dave DeOreo is coordinating producer for Ideastream Public Media’s arts and culture team.