The Columbus Indiana Philharmonic has announced a public campaign for its planned Helen Haddad Music, Arts & Event Center downtown with a $50,000 matching grant opportunity through the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority’s CreatINg Places program.
Using a crowdfunding approach, the goal is to raise $50,000 by May 31 to be eligible for the matching funds, according to the Philharmonic’s leaders.
The center will be an 80- to 100-seat venue connected to the Philharmonic office at 315 Franklin St. Currently, that space is a conference room at the back of the building and faces a parking lot.
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Besides expanding the opportunities for uses for things such as music lessons and performances, the space will be available for use by local organizations presenting everything from dance to theater to recitals.
By raising $50,000 from donors in the south central Indiana area served by the Philharmonic, the CreatINg Places matching grant will double that amount so that a total of $100,000 is raised.
The Linden Project and improvements to the Jolie Crider Skate Park are other projects in Columbus that have been funded in this manner.
In June 2018, longtime Columbus supporters and philanthropists Bob and Helen Haddad announced their decision to donate $1 million toward the Philharmonic’s Building for the Arts Capital Campaign.
The Haddad’s gift, made in two parts, included an outright gift of $500,000 and $500,000 in matching funds. Members of the community stepped up and met that challenge within six weeks.
With those funds, plus contributions by The Heritage Fund — the Community Foundation of Bartholomew County, the Custer and Nugent foundations and other foundations that support the arts, the Philharmonic has now raised more than $2.3 million of the needed $2.5 million needed for the project.
“I continue to be inspired and humbled by the generosity of Bob and Helen Haddad,” Philharmonic Board President Barry Turner said. “Their support of the arts over the years, and specifically this new performance venue, will be a community builder that will touch people for generations to come.”
The Haddads donated the Franklin Street office building to the Philharmonic in early 2016, providing a home base for offices and music education programs. In the same year, Enkei America donated a Shigeru Kawai Concert Grand Piano to the Philharmonic, with the intent that it be made available to piano students as well as being available for the enjoyment of others throughout the community.
Since that time, the piano is being used for concerts, for the Brown Music Competition just recently completed, and for student lessons at the Philharmonic office. It was the combination of these two gifts that led to the Philharmonic’s idea to expand the conference room.
“We are truly excited about how far we’ve come in raising the funds needed to bring this project to the community,” said executive director Margaret Powers. “It’s phenomenal. With the CreatINg Places matching grant opportunity that doubles every donation, we’ll reach the point that we can break ground in the very near future.”
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To donate to the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic’s matching grant campaign: thecip.org.