Maryland State Arts Council Opens Emergency Grant Applications

$5 million will be distributed to artists and arts organizations

BALTIMORE, MD (March 5, 2021) – With the passage of the RELIEF Act of 2021 by the Maryland General Assembly, the Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC) will distribute $5 million through its Emergency Grant Program. Created in March 2020 in response to the COVID-19 State of Emergency, Emergency Grants provide funding to arts organizations and artists for losses sustained because of programming, operations, and events that have been modified or canceled.

This fourth round of MSAC Emergency Grant funding is available to independent artists, arts organizations, County Arts Agencies, and Arts & Entertainment District management entities. Per the legislation, MSAC will prioritize grants to organizations that have not received prior funding from MSAC or do not qualify for funding under other MSAC programs.

All applicants must complete an application through SmartSimple to request funding. Applications open March 5, 2021 and must be submitted by 5 p.m. on April 1, 2021 to be considered for funding. Click here to access the application.

An informational webinar will be held on Wednesday, March 10th, at 2 p.m. to provide an overview of the grant, its process, and how to apply. Click here to view details and register.

Since March 2020, MSAC has distributed $7 million in Emergency Grants across 332 grants to arts organizations and 349 grants to independent artists. Prior rounds have utilized funds from MSAC’s annual appropriation, the federal CARES Act via the National Endowment for the Arts, and Governor Larry Hogan’s Maryland Strong Economic Recovery Initiative. For more information about MSAC and Emergency Grants, visit


About the Maryland State Arts Council

Founded in 1967, MSAC is an agency of the State of Maryland Department of Commerce that plays an essential role, ensuring every person has access to the transformative power of the arts. MSAC advances the arts in our state by providing leadership that champions creative expression, diverse programming, equitable access, lifelong learning, and the arts as a celebrated contributor to the quality of life for all the people of Maryland. To do this, the agency awards grants to not-for-profit, tax-exempt organizations for ongoing arts programming and projects, awards grants to individual artists, and provides technical and advisory assistance to individuals and groups. MSAC receives its funds in an annual appropriation from the State of Maryland and from grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. The Council may also receive contributions from private, non-governmental sources. For more information, go to

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