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Santa Maria Arts Council
Encouraging and Supporting the Expansion of the Arts since 1965
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Left to right: MC Kitty Balay, Honoree, Alex Posada, Kaylee Kamiya, Gold Vang, Anna Miller, Donna Olivera, Manny Zaragoza, Charlotte Baldiviez, Holly Vander Hyde, Victoria Sanders, Brooke Johnson, Taylor Hart, Kevin Park
As of 2019, the Santa Maria Arts Council has awarded $319,800 to over 400 emerging artists in dance, drama, music, and visual arts since 1972.

2019 Individual Grants in the Arts Showcase

2019 Grants Honoree - Alex Posada

Grants Winners

Charlotte Bladiviez
Emmanuel Zaragoza

Brooke Johnson
Victoria Sanders

Nat D. Fast Memorial Performance Award
Holly Vander Hyde

Kevin Park
Taylor Hart

Visual Arts
Donna Olivera
Anna Miller

Valley Art Gallery Scholarship
Kaylee Kamiya

Ian M. Hassett Memorial Award
Gold Vang

View these helpful information pages
Visual Artists
Performing Artists

First Place $1,500
Second Place $1,000
in each category of
Dance - Drama - Music - Visual Arts

$1,000 Ian M. Hassett Memorial Art Grant
$1,000 Valley Art Gallery Scholarship
$1,100 Nat D. Fast Memorial Performance Grant

Watch Kate Burridge's Grants information video…



Edwin & Caroline Woods

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Welcome to the 2018 Individual Grants in the Arts competition from Kate Burridge.
Be sure to check out additional information

Visual Arts Audition Information

Performance Audition Information..
Tips for your audition
Grants application information…
Tips for Visual Artists
Individual Grants in the Arts

A $1,500 First Award and $1,000 Second Award will be presented to emerging artists in each category of Dance, Drama, Music, and Visual Arts.

The grants are based on artistic excellence and promise to grow in the Arts.

The Judges will select the two individuals in each category who demonstrate outstanding talent and have immediate goals that are attainable and consistent with the SMAC objectives. Artistic promise, potential to grow as an artist, and the ability to contribute to the arts in this region will be considered.

The Santa Maria Arts Council, Inc. is a non‑profit organization dedicated to supporting the arts and enriching cultural life on the Central Coast. The Council instituted the Grants in 1972 to help identify, encourage, and offer monetary support to local artists as they grow in their art. By offering public recognition and financial help to developing artists, the grants increase the pool of artists and invigorate the arts in our area. The grants may be used for artistic development, and cover expenses such as tuition, public transportation to school, private lessons, or the purchase of instruments, tools and supplies.

The Individual Grants support emerging individual artists. Established artists and groups may apply for the Lester B. Hayes Project and Performance Grants, or other competitions appropriate to their status.

You are ELIGIBILE if:
1. You are age 12 or older.
2. You lived in northern Santa Barbara County for at least two years -OR- you have completed at least one Fine Arts class or youth arts program during each of four semesters in the Santa Maria area. Current residency is not required.
If your home was within the geographic limits of the Allan Hancock College District (Buellton, Cuyama, Guadalupe, Lompoc, Orcutt, Santa Maria, Santa Ynez, and environs), you are eligible.
Verification of residence may be required.
Classes in Santa Maria/Orcutt public or private schools, youth arts programs at Allan Hancock College or the Santa Maria Recreation and Parks Department, or with area private teachers all qualify for consideration.
3. You may apply in one (1) category per competition cycle.
4. You may compete for the Grants Awards a lifetime total of three (3) times.
5. First place winners are ineligible in the following Grants cycle and must skip a year before competing again. If a First Award was split between two people, you do not have to skip a year. Second place winners are eligible to compete in the following Grants cycle.

Application available online early February


Applicants must ensure that the Arts Council receives the following materials by the deadline:
The completed application
Recommendation forms filed by three (3) mentors with people you which to recommend you.
Performing Artists only: One current head shot and mp3 files you need for auditioning
Visual Artists only: Upload - 6-10 digital images of your work for prescreening

• Be prepared for the rare possibility of a prescreening audition or portfolio review in late March if the number of eligible competitors exceeds a category limit.
• All applicants will be notified by mail with a follow-up email regarding acceptance and audition time.

If you submit an application but don’t receive audition information by March 28, contact Ms. Kate Burridge at 805/459.1503 or email:

• Eligible visual artists will set up displays the afternoon before the judging. See guidelines on this site.

• Eligible performing artists will audition for the Grants judges beginning at 10:00am.
Unavoidable morning or afternoon time constraints for performers or their accompanists should be included with the application to assist scheduling.

• Emergency phone for audition day: 805/268-2554

Monday, May 4

Rehearsal call 3pm • Event begins 5:30pm • Marian Theatre at Allan Hancock College, Santa Maria
All candidates chosen for awards MUST participate in the Awards Showcase or forfeit the grant.
Grant recipients also agree to participate in a future Arts Council event within the next five years (e.g. the annual Awards Performance Presentation or other Arts Council event).

Audition guidelines, photos of visual arts displays, and other information for performing and visual artists are available on the site.

Email questions to:

The 2018 Individual Grants in the Arts are proudly sponsored by

Maguire Investments • Allan Hancock College • City of Santa Maria • Santa Maria Sun
Make A Donation
  1. General Fund
  2. Showcase Event
  3. Grants Fund
  4. Student Art
  5. L.B. Hayes Fund
  6. Fundraiser
The Santa Maria Arts Council is a 501c3 non-profit. Your donations are tax deductible to the extent allowable by law.
Tax ID # 23-7011595

Santa Maria Arts Council
P.O. Box 5
Santa Maria, CA