Artist Resources

Many thanks to Playwrights Horizons, The Drama League, and others for the resources listed on this page. Playwrights Horizons’ full list of artist resources can be found here. A full directory of resources can be found at The National Endowment for the Arts.

During the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, Ma-Yi Theater Company is actively pursuing new and safe ways of presenting new work by Asian American playwrights – with a full living wage for all those who participate. In the meantime, we are partnering with Trickle Up NYC to help raise funds for artists, who face financial and professional uncertainty during this time – more info on that can be found here. Ma-Yi Theater Company staff will be reachable via and are actively working to expand this list of resources for our community.

The New York City Department of Education is providing three meals per day for any New Yorker. Children and families will be able to pick up meals from 7:30-11:30AM and adults can pick up from 11:30AM-1:30PM. No registration or ID is required. Vegetarian and halal options are available at all sites.

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NYS is waiving the seven-day waiting period for Unemployment Insurance benefits for people who are out of work due to Coronavirus (COVID-19) closures or quarantines. If you are filing a new unemployment insurance claim, the day you should file is based on the first letter of your last name. If your last name starts with A – F, file your claim on Monday. For last names starting with G – N, file your claim on Tuesday. For last names starting with O – Z, file your claim on Wednesday. If you missed your filing day, file your claim on Thursday, Friday, or Saturday.

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Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts is a legal aid and education service for New York artists and arts cultural organizations.

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The Actors’ Fund

The Arts and Culture Leaders of Color Emergency Fund

The Dramatists Guild Foundation

The New York City Office of Small Business Services

New York City Low-Income Artist and Freelancer Fund


Thank you to Playwrights Horizons for this listing of emergency grants in the city.

Bret Adams & Paul Reisch Foundation
Accepting applications through April 14. Artists will be randomly selected, and may submit only one time. Offering up to 40 emergency grants of $2500, but this is subject to change.
You are eligible to enter the lottery for a grant of $2500 from the Bret Adams & Paul Reisch Foundation if you are:
1) A playwright, composer, lyricist, or librettist
2) Have had a full professional production (defined for these purposes as a LORT, Off-Broadway, or Broadway full production, not a reading or workshop) of which you are a writer that was cancelled, closed, or indefinitely postponed due to the COVID-19 closures.

Includes grants and/or brokered assistance, such as booth fee waivers and discounts or donations on supplies and equipment, after a career-threatening emergency such as illness. Artists interested in CERF+ emergency assistance must first complete an inquiry form. If it is determined that you may be eligible for assistance, you will be invited to apply for assistance. Before filling out an emergency assistance inquiry form, carefully read through the eligibility criteria and supporting documentation requirements.

Dramatists Guild 
The Dramatists Guild is providing a number of members-only resources to the entire community for free. Artists will be able to use their new online Resource Directory, and Resource Calendar, and have access to past issues of The Dramatist. If you are in need of assistance, and wish to join the Guild as a theatre writer, but do not have the financial resources to do so, please contact them at They will find a way to help you.

Foundation for Contemporary Arts
Created a temporary fund to meet the needs of artists who have been impacted by the economic fallout from postponed or canceled performances and exhibitions. For as long as our Board of Directors determines it is necessary and prudent to do so, the Foundation will disburse $1,000 grants to artists who have had performances or exhibitions canceled or postponed because of the COVID-19 virus.

Indie Theater Fund Covid19 Emergency Grant
Unrestricted rapid relief grants to indie theater companies and individual artists in need due to the financial strain of closings etc related to Covid19. Grants of up to $500 on an on-going basis until funds run out.

Rauschenberg Emergency Grants
Provides one-time grants of up to $5,000 for unexpected medical emergencies. The grants are available to visual and media artists and choreographers who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents in the United States, District of Columbia, or U.S. Territories.

Authors League Fund
Since 1917, the Authors League Fund has helped professional authors, journalists, poets, and dramatists who find themselves in financial need because of medical or health-related problems, temporary loss of income, or other misfortune. The Fund exists to help professional writers continue their careers with dignity by providing no-strings-attached “loans” to pay for pressing expenses. Repayment of this emergency support is not required.

PEN America Writers’ Emergency Fund
The PEN America Writers’ Emergency Fund is a small grants program for professional— published or produced—writers in acute or unexpected financial crisis. Depending on the situation and level of need, grants are in the range of $2,000.

Mayer Foundation
For residents of New York City. Economic relief grants to needy individuals who are distressed or suffering as a result of poverty, low income or lack of financial resources, including as a result of natural or civil disasters, or from temporary impoverishment, loss of employment, death or incapacity of a family wage earner or damage to home and property; to provide health care to those who cannot afford health care or whose health insurance or financial resources are insufficient to cover medical needs.

Actors Fund Entertainment Assistance Program
The Actors Fund provides services and financial support to entertainment professionals facing personal or work-related problems. It is also a conduit for emergency financial assistance in times of pressing need or in response to catastrophic events.

Actors Fund Entertainment Assistance Program
The Actors Fund provides services and financial support to entertainment professionals facing personal or work-related problems. It is also a conduit for emergency financial assistance in times of pressing need or in response to catastrophic events.

Musicians Foundation
The Musicians Foundation provides grants to U.S. musicians in any genre in a time of acute need due to personal, medical, dental, or family crisis, natural disaster, or other emergency situation.

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and Arison Arts Foundation Artists’ Relief Fund
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Arison Arts Foundation have joined with over a dozen arts funders to create Artist Relief, a $10 million national fund to support individual artists. Artist Relief—a coalition organized by Academy of American Poets, Artadia, Creative Capital, Foundation for Contemporary Arts, MAP Fund, National YoungArts Foundation, and United States Artists—will make 100 grants of $5,000 each to individual artists every week between now and September. These funds are intended to be used flexibly by the artists who receive them to meet their most pressing financial needs and to enable their continued creative practice. 

For even more resources…
Creative Capital List of Artist Resources
NYFA Performing Arts Resources

List compiled by The New York State Youth Leadership Council.

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The Performing Arts Alliance put together an easy way to contact and lobby your representative online.

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For millions of artists and freelancers, many of whom now face long-term unemployment, making rent payments on top of other costs of living will be nearly impossible to do. The New York Times estimated that 40% of New Yorkers may not pay be able to pay rent this month. We must ensure that our community members do not face homelessness during this crisis for any reason. Queens State Senator Mike Gianaris has introduced a bill to suspend rents for 90 days. Call your State Senator and Assemblyperson in support of this bill.

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Your contributions allow us to continue to produce and develop innovative, exciting new work by Asian American playwrights and to keep theater tickets affordable.