The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts is planning for the future, and not just one or two seasons ahead. Last week, the Beverly Hills venue unveiled a new base of support for its education and outreach programs: a pair of donations totaling $1 million. These are the first endowment gifts The Wallis has received since before its opening in 2013.
One gift, under The Walter and Peggy Grauman Endowment Fund, establishes a yearly fellowship program. Each season, The Wallis will welcome a young pianist or string player on the path to a professional career. Along with a $15,000 award, the Grauman Fellow will have opportunities to perform and will work on a community project that brings new audiences in Los Angeles to classical music.
Walter Grauman, who died in 2015, founded another arts scholarship program in the area, The Music Center’s annual Spotlight Awards, in 1988. His wife, Peggy Parker Grauman, who serves as a Wallis Ambassador, says they have made “a special effort over the last 50 years” to champion “outstanding young musicians here in Los Angeles County.”
The second endowment gift has more Wallis history behind it. The Steven D. Cochran Memorial Fund remembers a former board member. Cochran’s husband, Dan Clivner, also a Wallis Ambassador, brought friends and family together to make the gift. The fund will support GRoW @ The Wallis, the organization’s education and outreach offerings.
Executive Director and CEO Rachel Fine says, “During the pandemic and the extended closure of our campus and theaters, our GRoW @ The Wallis programs have proved indispensable. … We are exceedingly grateful for and inspired by the generosity of Peggy Grauman and Dan Clivner.”