College of Arts and Humanities

Brooks Center for the Performing Arts earns $15,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts


The Brooks Center for the Performing Arts at Clemson University has been selected by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) for a Grants for Arts Projects award of $15,000. The grant will support a residency in April with Chloé Arnold’s Syncopated Ladies, an all-female tap dance band from Los Angeles.

The Syncopated Ladies have made their mark in the dance world, amassing over 100 million views on YouTube, collaborating with Beyoncé, winning So You Think You Can Dance, and performing sold-out shows all over the world. In total, the NEA will award 958 Grants for Arts Projects totaling more than $27.1 million.

“The NEA is delighted to announce this grant to the Brooks Center at Clemson University, which is helping contribute to the strength and well-being of the arts sector and local community,” said National Endowment for the Arts Chair Maria Rosario Jackson. “We are pleased to be able to support this community and help create an environment where all people have the opportunity to live artful lives.”  

“An endorsement from the National Endowment of the Arts illustrates that the Brooks Center continues to be recognized at the highest level for our artistic, educational, and community-centered programs,” said Janice Crews, Executive Director of the Brooks Center.

Syncopated Ladies’ residency

The Syncopated Ladies’ Brooks Center residency is modeled after last year’s highly successful visit by Step Afrika, with workshops for students, free educational performances, and a community event co-sponsored by the Clemson Area African American Museum. There will also be a must-see evening show on April 4 at 7:30 p.m. that is open to the public and sponsored by Elizabeth Branstead. Tickets for this performance are $35 and can be purchased at

Despite this being the Syncopated Ladies’ first visit to Clemson, there are already connections between “the Ladies” and the Brooks Center. Founder, Chloé Arnold, was the protégé of the famed dancer, actor and choreographer, Debbie Allen.

Allen is the sister of award-winning actress and arts college dean, Phylicia Rashad. Rashad visited the Brooks Center in October for a reading of Hawk, a long-form poem by her and Allen’s mother, Vivian Ayers Allen.  In a full-circle moment, the Syncopated Ladies’ performance will include a newly choreographed piece by Arnold that incorporates excerpts from Hawk, to be premiered at the Brooks Center. To learn more, visit

About the Brooks Center

The Brooks Center, located on Clemson University’s campus at 141 Jersey Lane, is an 87,000-square-foot performing arts facility that has hosted world-class professional music, theatre and dance performances since 1994. In addition to professional productions, the Brooks Center is home to Clemson’s Department of Performing Arts. For more information on the Brooks Center, please visit

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