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University Liggett School receives Michigan Arts & Culture Council grant for Liggett Shakespeare Project

University Liggett School has been awarded a grant of nearly $12,000 from the Michigan Arts and Culture Council (MACC). The grant was awarded through the MACC peer review process and was one of 639 applications competing for 2024 funding. ULS will use the grant to fund the Liggett Shakespeare Project, which will launch in January 2024 in partnership with Detroit Public Theatre. “This grant lets us go big in the first year of the program,” said Director of the Liggett Shakespeare Project Matthew Van Meter, who is directing the new program. “We'll be able to produce an ambitious version of Romeo and Juliet, entirely conceived and designed by students, at Detroit Public Theatre, a professional theater in Detroit.” With the grant, ULS students will also create a gallery exhibition in the lobby of Detroit Public Theatre, work with professional artists and technicians during the process, and engage with the theater community in metro Detroit through performances and workshops. “Those were all long-term goals of the Liggett Shakespeare Project, but they are now within reach in our first year,” said Van Meter. The Liggett Shakespeare Project comprises three main elements: a course in dramaturgy, a course in stagecraft, and a production of a full Shakespeare play in June. This year’s production will be Romeo and Juliet. Students may choose to participate in as many or as few of these elements as they wish. Seniors with an interest in theater may choose to turn their participation in the Liggett Shakespeare Project into their Academic Research Project and take ownership of a major role or aspect of design and production. Three seniors will take that route this year — one in acting, one in sound design, and one in dramaturgy. Organizations receiving MACC grant awards are required to match those funds with other public and private dollars. The MACC peer review process allows for each grant application to be competitively considered by a panel of in-state and out-of-state arts and culture professionals. This ensures that taxpayers who support this project through legislative appropriations, as well as all other visitors or residents in Michigan, will have access to the highest quality arts and cultural experiences. A complete list of grant awards around the state is available by contacting MACC at (517) 241-4011, or by visiting the MACC website at