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RBG Quote

An Invitation to Support the Ruth Bader Ginsburg Fund from our
President & CEO and our President Emeritus

Dear Friend,

Jenny Bilfield, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Doug Wheeler

March 15 would have been Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s 89th birthday, and it is fitting that on this day Washington Performing Arts announces the creation of the Ruth Bader Ginsburg Fund to remember our adored friend and to honor Justice Ginsburg's legacy with an annual award and recital in her name.

Justice Ginsburg found resonance in Washington Performing Arts’s concerts and arts education programs. She championed the presentations of the world’s greatest artists and was especially supportive of our commitment to emerging artists. In honor of her lifelong love of the performing arts, we are creating the Ruth Bader Ginsburg Fund and invite your support.

Our goal is to raise $500,000 to establish an endowed fund that will enable us to present an annual award and recital in her memory. We are very grateful to have received more than $365,000 in early commitments from pacesetting supporters.

Read on below to learn more about the Award and Recital. If you share our admiration for Justice Ginsburg, our commitment to creating a lasting legacy, or our mission to champion the arts, please make a gift or pledge your support today to help us reach our goal.

Thank you for your friendship and generosity.


Jenny Bilfield
President & CEO
Washington Performing Arts

Douglas Wheeler
President Emeritus, Washington Performing Arts
Chair, Friends of Music at the Supreme Court


 About the Award and Recital

The Ruth Bader Ginsburg Memorial Award and Recital will be an ongoing celebration of the late Supreme Court Justice’s life, legacy, and passion for music. Washington Performing Arts will honor its friend, patron, and collaborator, Justice Ginsburg, by awarding a distinguished artist the opportunity to choose a musical talent deserving of wider recognition, to be presented in recital here in the nation’s capital.

The Award will go to an artist of stature (the Awardee) who exemplifies both the musical excellence Justice Ginsburg cherished and the principles to which she was dedicated—in the words of our Board Chair, Tom Gallagher, “her belief in the arts as a unifying force, a belief that’s echoed in the mission of Washington Performing Arts, and in the mantra of our founder, Patrick Hayes—‘Everybody in, nobody out.’”

The Recital is inspired by Justice Ginsburg herself, who reveled in presenting musicales at the Supreme Court, and who co-curated a vocal recital on our season in 2016 after being honored with the Washington Performing Arts Ambassador
of the Arts Award. Thus, the Recital will establish a continuous, creative lineage between Justice Ginsburg’s love of music, the recognized artists she championed and befriended, and the future of the vocal and instrumental arts in which she took such delight. The Awardee will serve as a co-curator with Washington Performing Arts, and select and present an emerging talent—the Featured Artist—in a recital in Washington, D.C. The Recital will be hosted by the Awardee, with any number of possible added features: an artist-to-artist conversation; an educational component, such as a masterclass, listening party, or in-school appearance; a new commission; a performance collaboration; or a combination of any of the above. To design and enable these or other creative endeavors, an artistic enhancement reserve will be made available to the Featured Artist, in addition to their performance fee, with an honorarium to the Awardee.

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About the Relationship between Justice Ginsburg and Washington Performing Arts

Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Washington Performing Arts shared the values of excellence, access to the arts for all, and the importance of art in the education of young people. Fittingly, each Recital will invite wide public participation, with special ticket programs and outreach to students. In addition to those attending the live event, a broader audience will have access to the Recitals through publicly available video recordings and even television and radio broadcasts, if possible.

For more on our long-running relationship with Justice Ginsburg, including a photo gallery and our memorial video, The Muse and the Musicale, visit our "Remembering Ruth Bader Ginsburg" page.

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About the Fund

To support the Award, Recital, and their associated programs, Washington Performing Arts has established the RBG Fund. Lead gifts of more than $365,000, secured from Spring to Fall 2021, lay the foundation for the campaign. Washington Performing Arts’s RBG Fund is a living memorial to one of the most beloved, influential, and exemplary figures in recent American History.

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Introducing the Award and Recital

The creation of this Award and information regarding the Inaugural Recital will be announced in connection with Washington Performing Arts’s 2022/23 season announcement.

All supporters of the fund will be acknowledged at the introduction of the Fund, which will be celebrated in connection with the Inaugural Recital in Fall 2022. Pacesetting supporters and contributions of $2,500 or more to the Fund will be listed alongside other donors to Washington Performing Arts’s endowed funds in program listings.

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Make Your Gift Today

Contributions to the RBG Fund can be made online, through regular mail (please include RBG Fund on the memo line), or by contacting Meiyu Tsung, Director of Individual Giving at 202-533-1880 or MTsung@WashingtonPerformingArts.org.

Give Now

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Pledge Your Support

Please click below to access our Pledge Form (PDF). After filling out and signing the form, please return it to our office in one of these two ways:

Washington Performing Arts Advancement Office
1400 K Street, Suite 500
Washington, D.C. 20005

Pledge Form (PDF)

Thank you!

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Washington Performing Arts is grateful for the instrumental support from the following founding members of the Ruth Bader Ginsburg Memorial Fund (as of March 15, 2022):

Linda Fienberg and Jeffrey Bauman
Ms. Jenny Bilfield and Dr. Joel Phillip Friedman
Mr. and Mrs. Calvin Cafritz
Robin Clarke
Frank and Sondra Cook
Robert and Jamie Craft
Anthony DiResta and Terrance Mason
Anne and Burton Fishman
Marian and Milton Carr Ferquson
Norma Lee and Morton Funger
Tom Gallagher and Barbara Myers
Hannah Grove-DeJarnett
Sarah Haft
Jo Ann Hearld
Betsy Hegg
Herman and Janet Helgert
Stanley and Harryette Helsel
Beth and Stephen Hess
Michelle Hoffmann
Judith Richards Hope, Family Partners Fund
Murray Horwitz and Lisa Miller
Kathryn and J. Stephen Jones, MD
Ineke and Peter Kreeger
June and Jerry Libin
The Honorable Jan M. and Elizabeth Lodal
Jacqueline Badger Mars
Dr. and Mrs. Robert Martin
Dr. Gary Mather and Ms. Christina Co Mather
Tom Kim and John Olson
W. Stephen and Diane Piper
Samantha Pollack
Elizabeth Racheva and Danail Rachev
Catherine B. Reynolds Foundation
James J. Sandman and Elizabeth D. Mullin
Kathleen Shurtleff
Peter Shields and Ace Werner
Hector J. Torres and Jay Haddock Ortiz
Nina Totenberg and David Reines
Meiyu Tsung and Curtis Chang
Mary Jo Veverka
Christie-Anne and Jeffrey P. Weiss
Phil West and Barbara Yellen
Douglas and Catherine Wheeler

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