NEW YORK – The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts has received a $1 million gift to create an India Fund at the Kennedy Center which will produce and present Indian programming through 2025.
Those who were present at the signing of the agreement were Ranvir Trehan, a member of the Kennedy Center’s Board of Trustees, who provided the funding; his wife Adarsh Trehan; Deborah F. Rutter, the center’s president; Navtej Sarna, India’s Ambassador to the U.S.; Alicia Adams, vice president for international programming and Robert Van Leer, senior vice president of artistic planning.
“The Kennedy Center is a place, first, to be providing both programming that is well known and programming that is less well known, so that it becomes more well-known and it has a larger stage. Being the national cultural center, it is important for us to being international programming here for our audiences, both locally and nationally,” said Rutter.
“When you have individuals who are interested in a particular art form and they can help secure it financially, it means that we have greater liberty to be creative, and that’s exactly what you are helping us to do,” Rutter said.
Trehan is an entrepreneur and tech guru who has been one of Washington, D.C.’s leading philanthropists, both in America as well as internationally and has also emerged as a leading Indian-American patron of the arts.
“Our idea is that there is reinforced programming—that there is more of it, both well-known artists as well as experimental forms, fusion forms. Now I see in India, there is also comedy in the English language that is coming up and so, maybe there is something to tap up,” said Trehan, who hopes that the seed money he provided to the center would inspire others to do the same, especially his Indian-American colleagues on the board.