December 1, 2021
The Butler School is proud to announce the 2021-22 Rainwater Grant winners. Students who were selected through a competitive process will receive funding to implement their proposed projects. Founded in 2017, the Rainwater Fund for American Music was established with a $5 million endowment created by the late UT Austin alumnus Richard E. Rainwater (B.A., Mathematics, 1966), a Fort Worth investor and fund adviser. The ambition of Mr. Rainwater’s fund is to advance the study of American music—from roots to jazz to film music to the concert hall—at this university. The gift significantly enhances the Butler School’s capacity to be a fulcrum of research, study and practice of American music past, present and future.
The Rainwater Innovation Grants have the most immediate impact on students. Successful proposals for this grant aim to challenge norms in music and reach unexpected audiences, thus ambitiously advancing the field of music. Below is a full list of this year’s winners and a brief description of each project.
Sarah Melissa Aldana Pamplona (AD), $5,000 grant: Fiesta!: A Celebration of Latino Folklore.
Goals: to present a community event with multigenerational performers in collaboration with Austin Soundwaves and Ballet Folklorico de Austin while creating a connection to the music, dance, and visual elements of a diverse Latinx community.
John Bimbiras (PhD), $5,000 grant: Dominican Musical Pioneers in the United States, 1916-1961.
Goals: to produce a recording to accompany Bimbiras’ dissertation on mid-Twentieth Century Dominican music.
Khalil Gray (MM), $5,000 grant: Soundgarden's Seed Sowing Project.
Goals: to provide community service, musical performance, and storytelling of Austin's citizens in collaboration with local community service organizations.
Collin Kemeny (DMA) & Kristen Osborn (MFA), $5,000 grant: A Recipe for Action: Courses Against Hunger in Austin.
Goals: to create an interactive art installation staged as a multi-course picnic that explores asymmetrical food access in Austin.
Dorothy Le (BA), $5,000 grant: Asian Memory Project Presents A Studio Ghibli Tribute.
Goals: to stage multimedia events that unite communities and amplify Asian representation in Austin through music, visual arts, poetry, and public outreach.
Jeongin Lee (DMA), $5,000 grant: Korean Music Concert Lecture Series.
Goals: to organize a traditional Korean music concert and lecture program.
Sohyun Park (DMA), $3,620 grant: Korean Art Song Recital.
Goals: to present Korean art song performances by singers of different nationalities and ethnicities.
Dominique Reilly (MM), $5,000 grant: Through the Staff Education Fund.
Goals: to partner with Through the Staff to provide low-income families with access to music education resources.
Jingchao (Ginny) Wang (DMA), $5,000 grant: Spread the Word.
Goals: to spread social justice issues through new songs commissioned by young composers, with the lyrics written by the Austin-based poet Todd Boss, and performed by the Boss Street Band and the Grammy winner soprano Hila Plitmann.