Cultural Diplomacy Program Open Call

Posted by The New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA) ; Posted on 
Call for Artists - DEADLINE :  
Cultural Diplomacy Program Open Call


The New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA) is pleased to announce the sixth season of Center Stage with a call for nominations of performing arts ensembles from Argentina, Armenia, and Taiwan. Through a merit-based selection process, seven ensembles total will be invited to tour the U.S. from July 2022 to May 2023.

Center Stage is a public diplomacy initiative of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Center Stage creates opportunities for exchange among artists, presenters, and the public, creating alliances for exploration – and mutual understanding. Since 2012, 29 performing arts ensembles from nine nations –-  Algeria, Egypt, Haiti, Indonesia, Morocco, Pakistan, Tanzania, Ukraine, and Vietnam –- have visited 100 different communities in 35 states and Washington, D.C. Five ensembles from Colombia and Perú will tour the U.S. during the 2021-22 presenting season. As hosted by colleges and universities, festivals, music clubs, and cultural centers, tours travel to large cities and small towns, and feature a range of activities from performances, workshops, and discussions, to artist-to-artist exchanges, masterclasses, and community gatherings.

Nominations of professional performing arts ensembles may be submitted by anyone, including presenters, artists and their representatives, U.S. Embassy personnel, regional arts organizations, state arts agencies, international institutions, and individuals in the U.S. and abroad knowledgeable about performing arts in the identified countries/regions. Artists interested in participating may submit a nomination on behalf of their own ensemble. Multiple nominations for ensembles are accepted.



  • Demonstrate high artistic quality and accomplishment.
  • Have an interest in engaging with U.S. communities, including youth, through public and in-school performances, workshops, discussions, artist-to-artist exchanges, and social events.
  • Be comprised of two to nine ensemble members (artists and staff) who are citizens and residents of the selected countries/regions, and 21 years or older at the time of a Center Stage tour.
  • Have previous touring experience but have rarely been seen in the U.S.
  • Have an ability to communicate electronically via email and Zoom in English.
  • Have an interest and agree to actively share their experiences through traditional press outreach, social media channels, and other virtual means.
  • Be available to tour in the U.S. for approximately one month during the period of July 2022 – May 2023.
  • Center Stage is particularly interested in professional artists creating contemporary work.