Skip to main content

The Saints Award Grants to Metro Chicago Performing Arts Groups for 2020-21

The Saints, Chicago’s own Volunteers for the Performing Arts, announce the awarding of nearly $71,000
in grants to 19 performing arts organizations in the Chicago metropolitan area for the 2020-21 season.
The 2020 grants will fund: enhancement of performance space, the crafting of unique costumes & props,
musical instruments, puppet workshop tools, the purchase of various kinds of technical equipment and
more. Awardees, expressing their cultural and ethnic diversity, addressing underrepresented or physically
challenged audiences/performers and their dedication to the creative, span the metro Chicago area.
The all-volunteer grants commission evaluated proposals totaling more than $350,000 in monetary
requests. Funding for the grants comes almost exclusively from the annual dues and donations of the
nearly 1,300 members of the Saints. All donations are welcomed.
Over the last twenty-eight years, the Saints have given over $1,100,000 to many deserving performing
arts groups. This year’s grants, ranging in amounts from $960 to $4,400, recognize the amazing artistry of
our performing arts community including theater, dance and music projects are listed here
The Saints celebrated our grant recipients via Zoom on Tuesday, October 13

Another Way to Support Our Performing Arts Community!

Announcing the 2020 Saints MatchGrants Program


Beginning September 1st all forms for the 2020 Saints MatchGrants Program are available on the Saints website home page under the GRANTS tab.  Saints

members who make voluntary donations to members organizations can request matching funds for the organization. Based upon the extreme need that the

Chicagoland performing arts community is experiencing we acknowledge that

Saints members may have supplemented their normal annual giving to member organizations through an earlier donation.  To that end, the donation period for

the 2020 program is June 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020 and continues to be subject to the program’s rules and availability of funds.

2020 Saints MatchGrants Program


Files to explain and guide you through MatchGrants


For Saints members who make a voluntary donation to eligible organizations, this tells you how to request that the Saints make a matching donation.

2020 Saints MatchGrants In Brief and Q A


For organizations who receive voluntary donations from Saints members, this tells you what to do to receive a matching donation from the Saints.

2020 MatchGrants Info for Organizations

This is the form to use, by members and organizations, when making a donation. Note that it will ask the member and the organization to provide a digital signature.
2020 Saints MatchGrants Fillable Form


Here are step-by-step instructions on how to digitally sign the MatchGrants fillable form. You may want to open it in a separate window while you're filling out the form.

2020 Digitally Signing Your Saints MatchGrants Form

Here's the list of organizations eligible to receive a matching grant.

2020 Saints MatchGrants Eligible Organizations



Thank you for participating!


Saints Talk
Mark Larson
October 27, 2020


The featured speaker was Mark Larson, author of Ensemble: An Oral History of Chicago Theater. His talk focused on the legendary St. Nicholas Theater, where the likes of David Mamet and William H Macy could be found and American Buffalo “roamed.” The Saints got their start and their name at this theater 40 years ago.
View the talk on you tube here

Saints Talk

Deb Clapp and Chris Jones

July 28, 2020

The premiere of the Saints Talk series is now available on the website. This featured Deb Clapp, head of the League of Chicago Theatres, and Chris Jones, principal critic of the Chicago Tribune, discussing the state of Chicago theater in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and what it may mean for the future. The original video ran 60+ minutes, too large to upload in one file. There are two video files available, and one audio-only file, suitable for listening as a podcast format.

You will need to download and save the file to your computer. You may then play it from that location.


Video Part 1

Video Part 2

Audio-only file


Here's a list of the 2020-2021 Board of Directors and other positions:


  Frank Lackner – President (Usher Module Chair)

 Marvin Levin – Vice-President

Hedda Lubin – Secretary

  Marc LeClere – Treasurer


Other Board Members:

Ruth Johnston - Grants Administrator 
Cate Brecht -  Marketing Chair
  Laurie Hillman - Webmaster
     Trudy Meltzer - Membership Chair

  Richard Scire - Publisher

Non-Board Personnel:

    Terry Kinsey - Shoppe
    Alan Pieczynski - Venue/Coordinator Liaison
Rosemary Devlin - Chair of Appeals Commission

If you've been writing to some of us, be aware that the recipients of some of the addresses may have changed, but many email programs may have "remembered" the old name, so messages might be sent to the new person but show the old name.



The Board of Directors of The Saints has passed the following statement:
To be silent is to be complicit.

One of the most powerful aspects of theater is to bring injustice center stage and cast a strong light on it, in the shared experience of audience, writers, and actors. We are currently experiencing a collective trauma and heartbreak in our society. We mourn the loss of the many Black lives that have been taken. We say their names: George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, those names being just the most recent victims of the systemic racism that has long plagued our country. We stand with the Black Lives Matter movement. We will do what we can to make our organization one that is a safe and welcoming space for all of our members and for all theater patrons. We promise to listen to the voices of the oppressed to see how we can continue growing and improving. As we look to the future, we will be here for all members of our community.


Here's a message from the League of Chicago Theatres:

During this national emergency most of the Chicago area theatres have suspended operations. You will find a few shows with future performances. They hope to be back in full force soon. In the meantime if you want to support theatre in Chicago any of the following would be greatly appreciated:

  • Make a donation to the Chicago Theatre Workers Relief Fund
  • Buy a season subscription for next season to your favorite theatre.
  • Buy a ticket for a future production.
  • Make a donation in any amount to your favorite non-profit theatre.

Please stay safe and healthy and we look forward to seeing you at the theatre soon.


Theatre In Chicago - Streaming Shows in Chicago Due to COVID-19

Streaming shows


The Saints are volunteers for the performing arts.  At the present time our 2000+ members serve well over one hundred Chicago and suburban theater, dance and music organizations, ranging in size from storefronts to world-class theaters, from seasonal musical groups to world-trotting dance companies.

The Saints members provide help to these groups for a variety of activities including ushering at performances and in return are allowed to attend these activities and performances at no charge.  Members choose the venues and performances where they want to volunteer, as often as they like.

The Saints also awards financial grants to not-for-profit performing arts organizations located in Chicago and the surrounding area. In 2018 the Saints donated nearly $53,000 in grants to sixteen different performing arts organizations. We also matched over $15,000 of our members' donations to such organizations.

Victory Gardens Biograph Theatre The Saints hold General Membership Meetings several times a year.  These meetings offer members the opportunity to learn more about the organization and its affairs, meet and socialize with other members and to participate in interesting presentations given by famous personalities from the performing arts community. The Saints members also receive a twice weekly "Cyberline" via email which lists the available volunteering opportunities. Usher sign-ups are managed using the online "Usher Module" accessed on the Saints website.  

The Saints is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable corporation and donations to The Saints are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.
In short, The Saints allow you to be part of the vibrant Chicago arts scene and see many fine performances, all for the cost of a nominal yearly membership fee.  Join us!
Photos by Merle Branner and Jim Venskus


Click on the map below to see a map of our venues where we offer ushering opportunities.

Map of Ushering Venues

Trouble logging in? ... or other problem with this website?

Please call the ClubExpress Help Desk
1-866-HLP-CLUB (1-866-457-2582)   Monday - Friday, 6:30 A.M. - 9:00 P.M.