Cut Your Tax Bill And Help An Arts Organization Via Last-Minute Donations

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Support a local arts organization and knock a few bucks off your IRS bill while you still have time -- make a tax deductible donation today. Dozens of museums, theater and dance companies have online options to make donations or are happy to take your credit card number over the phone. Funds are used for everything from actors' salaries, commissioning new works, supporting tours, or (and we thank them for this) buying ads in local papers. Here are a few organizations that would welcome your financial, and remember tax deductible, donation.

Dance Source Houston -- a collective with 22 presenting member companies, DSH accomplished plenty in 2009. It hosted a national dance conference to explore cutting-edge techniques in performance, training, and company management. The annual Weekend of Texas Contemporary Dance at Miller Outdoor Theater broke its previous attendance records and the group cooperated to produce a weekly e-newsletter that reached thousands. Among its most innovative works is the Dance Writings program, which trains new dance critics, under the direction of nationally recognized writer Nancy Wozny.

In her plea for support, DSH Executive Director Christina Giannelli says, "I can assure you that your gift to Dance Source Houston will make a positive impact on Houston's cultural life in 2010. In short, you will make all the difference."

To make a donation to DSH today, call 713-224-3262 or visit www.houstondance.org and look for the Paypal button.

Wordsmyth Theater Company is unique in its purpose locally. The troupe gives adventurous new plays staged readings, allowing for significant involvement by the playwright. The numbers tell the story: Over 2009, Wordsmyth received more than 100 scripts to its last open call. It worked with seven playwrights and six directors from Houston, New York, and San Francisco, and almost thirty local actors to produced six readings for some 1,000 audience members. Talks with playwrights, directors, actors, and dramaturgs were part of each reading.

Through press materials regarding last minute donations, Elizabeth Ann Earle, president of Wordsmyth Theater Company, said, "To continue to move forward, we need funds ... We'd like to raise $3,000 by the end of January. That's not so much money -- that's 30 people giving $100." Earle's plea for such as small amount is an excellent example of how little it takes to finance a season for a small arts organization.

To make a donation to Wordsmyth Theater Company, visit wordsmyththeater.org

Read about more arts organizations that are happy to accept your last minute tax deductible donation after the jump ...

This year Theatre Under the Stars initiated a new educational program, S.T.A.R.S. (the initials stand for Sharing Theatre and Reaching Students), which allows donors to see the impact of their contribution almost immediately. TUTS says, "For $25, donors can provide a local child from an underserved school with a tickets to TUTS' student matinee of The Phantom Tollbooth [later this spring], and their own copy of the book that inspired the musical. For many of these students, a theatre experience would be otherwise out of reach." TUTS Director of Development Marcia Hovious adds, "It's our goal to make theatre more accessible to Houston's children." 

To make a donation to TUTS's S.T.A.R.S. program, visit www.tuts.com

The Holocaust Museum Houston has a four-word philosophy: Stop hate. Starting here. What else do you need to know? HMH works toward that goal with a variety of permanent and visiting art exhibits, appearances by Holocaust survivors, lectures, films, school presentations, conferences, and a well-stocked shop with hundreds of books, DVDs, and gifts, often created by peoples from countries currently facing the threat of genocide, such as Rwanda. 

To make a donation to HMH, call 713-527-1640 or visit www.hmh.org. 

Visit more non-profit arts organizations and museums that welcome your donations here: 

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