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NEA Welcomes New Director of Presenting and Artist Communities

"Michael has been at the helm making sure that art happens successfully. We are thrilled to have him join the NEA and to help make art work across the country." - Rocco Landesman

Washington, DC -- The National Endowment for the Arts is pleased to welcome Michael Orlove as its new director of presenting and artist communities. Orlove has extensive experience organizing performing arts events, most recently as the director of music programs for the Chicago Office of Tourism and Culture. Previously, he spent 18 years as senior program director for the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs. He will join the NEA staff on May 7, 2012.

"Michael Orlove is a dynamic cultural leader in a city known for an impressive roster of public art events and festivals," said NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman. "From Chicago SummerDance to the year-round schedule of events at the Chicago Cultural Center, Michael has been at the helm making sure that art happens successfully. We are thrilled to have him join the NEA and to help make art work across the country."

Through its presenting program, the NEA supports projects in multiple disciplines for every stage of the artistic process -- including artist residencies, commissioning of original work, exhibitions, performances, and preservation -- as well as services to the field. The artist communities program supports projects and organizations that provide artistic residencies as their primary mission. Orlove will be responsible for managing all stages of the grantmaking process including convening the panels that review applications and serving as the spokesperson for his field at the federal level.

In a testament to his international expertise, Orlove was named one of the 'Seven Samurai’ at the prestigious WOMEX (World Music Expo) 2009 Conference in Copenhagen, Denmark. In addition, he has been a guest speaker at many international conferences such as the 2010 Performing Arts Market in Seoul, South Korea, and the 2003 Sacred Music Festival and Conference in Fez, Morocco. He was named one of the Chicagoans of the Year in music by the Chicago Tribune in both 1999 and 2009 and one of Chicago's Global Visionaries by Chicago Public Radio WBEZ and the Beyond Burnham: Chicago Matters series.

"Throughout my professional career, I have initiated and presented cultural events that celebrated the diversity and creativity of artists throughout the world," Orlove said. "I promise to bring that same dedication, experience and passion to the NEA to provide opportunities for artists in all disciplines to enhance their work and reach a wider audience."

Michael Orlove replaces Mario Garcia Durham who left the NEA in September 2011 after serving eight years in the position. Durham joined the Association of Performing Arts Presenters as president and CEO.