I have been the lucky recipient of three grants from NYSCA, one of which was a huge asset to my career. The money I got to write my piece for string quartet and jazz quintet, “The Wheel”, allowed me to make a leap forward artistically, and this piece led to many more grants from various organizations. Now I hear that NYSCA has cut its staff in half and cut much funding. I know that we are in troubled times fiscally- I just hope that everyone remembers how important art is to our world. As I’ve often said art makes us more human, it ennobles us, it lights the world in ways seen and unseen. Let’s hope NYSCA funds are soon restored.