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Grants will support new works at Britt, OSF and Rogue Valley Symphony

The Oregon Community Foundation has awarded a total of $138,000 in new Creative Heights grants to several Jackson County organizations.

The grants are among 20 totaling $966,890 announced this week.

Local grants are:

• The Peter Britt Gardens Music & Arts Festival Association received $13,000 to commission an Oregon composer for a new work to be announced.

• The Rogue Valley Symphony Association was awarded $25,000 to commission five new symphonic works premiering on each of five masterwork series concerts during the 2016-2017 season, its 50th anniversary.

• The Oregon Shakespeare Festival will use its $100,000 grant to premiere an adaption of Shakespeare's "Measure for Measure" called "Off the Rails." Written by Native American playwright Randy Reinholz, it is set on the American frontier and explores the topic of Indian boarding schools.

The grants are part of a four-year initiative (through 2017) to provide artists opportunities to stretch their creative practice and to enhance Oregon's cultural visibility and vitality, according to an OCF media release. Money for all three Southern Oregon grants came from the Fred W. Fields Fund of OCF. Established in 2012 with a $150 million bequest, the Fields Fund supports education and the arts throughout the state.

OCF sought proposals for the creation or presentation of new and innovative performances, exhibitions, programs and other works of art and culture, including visual, dance, folk and traditional arts, film/video/media, literary arts, museum exhibitions, humanities, music, theater and performance arts, history and heritage, and multidisciplinary or emerging fields, according to the release.