2021 Recipients

August 2021

Henry Threadgill

$20,000 Project Grant

Support for “Migration and the Return of the Cheap Suit,” a multi-media project. Premieres at Roulette, May 2022.

Website: Henry Threadgill


August 2021

Artists Space

$10,000 Exhibition/Performance Grant

Support for “Milford Graves: Fundamental Frequency” Exhibition and Performance Series. Premieres at Artists Space, October 2021.

Website: Artists Space / Milford Graves: Fundamental Frequency
Website: Milford Graves


August 2021

Avreeayl Ra

$5,000 Unrestricted Grant

Avreeayl’s history is steeped in the Chicago jazz culture — his father, Arthur ‘Swinglee’ O’Neil, was a prominent tenor saxophone player in Chicago. Avreeayl is considered to be one of the foremost torchbearers of the Chicago improvised jazz tradition. In 2018, Avreeayl was chosen to be the first ever recipient of the Elastic Arts Foundation Achievement Award, honoring his lifetime dedication to music in Chicago as a practitioner and mentor.


August 2021

Sun Ra House Part 2

$4,000 Additional Repairs / Restoration

This second restoration grant on the Sun Ra House builds on the foundation’s April gift. See story in earlier grant below.


August 2021

Nick Mazzarella, Ingebrigt Håker Flaten and Avreeayl Ra

$1,000 Recording Grant

Support for a forthcoming recording on Astral Spirits.

Website: Astral Spirits


August 2021

Phyllis Chen

$500 Composition Commission

Support for “Tone Grove,” a piece for two music boxes based on the weavings of Bauhaus artist Anni Albers (in collaboration with LigoranoReese).

Website: Phyllis Chen
Website: LigoranoReese Editions


August 2021

Jazz Gallery

$1,000 Concert Sponsorship

Support for The Unknowable: Dave Liebman, Adam Rudolph, Tyshawn Sorey at the Jazz Gallery on September 30th, 2021.

Previous sponsorships include Angelica Sanchez (June 18), Fujiwara/Halvorson/Bynum (June 19), Peter Evans’ Being & Becoming (June 24), Kris Davis (June 25)

Website: Jazz Gallery / The Unknowable


April 2021

Ingrid Laubrock

$10,000 Composition Commission / Tuition Assistance

Toward a masters degree in music composition from the Vermont College of Fine Arts.

Website: Ingrid Laubrock


April 2021

Sun Ra House

$6,500 Repairs / Restoration

The Sun Ra Arkestra house in Philadelphia is getting a second life after partially collapsing. The Robert D. Bielecki Foundation’s support (in conjunction with Ars Nova Workshop, PA) is helping to save the house as well as the Sun Ra legacy. Read the story.

“It is sad and outrageous that Marshall Allen and some Arkestra members are living in these conditions. Sun Ra’s legacy, the Arkestra, and the house are American Treasures and deserve to be treated as such.”

— Robert D. Bielecki


April 2021

Bang on a Can

$8,000 in Commissions to Bang on a Can

• Matana Roberts
• Rudresh Mahanthappa
• Fred Frith (2 compositions 2021/2022)

Website: Bang on a Can Marathon


April 2021

Yarn / Wire

$7,000 Recording and Performance Fees

Support for the forthcoming Black Truffle release of Annea Lockwood’s “Into the Vanishing Point” / Nate Wooley’s “Becoming Air.”

Website: Yarn / Wire


April 2021

Louth Contemporary Music Society

$5,250 Underwriting Support

In support of the forthcoming release:
Jürg Frey’s I Listened to the Wind Again (2016/2017)
Soprano, clarinet, string trio, percussion
Hélène Fauchère, Carol Robinson, Sylvian Lemêtre, Agnès Vesterman, Garth Knox

Website: Louth Contemporary Music Society
Website: Jürg Frey


April 2021

Covid Grants

$1,000 Unrestricted Grant to Birdland

Save Birdland, “The Jazz Corner of the World.’ Part of RDBF support to organizations and individuals in the time of Covid.