The Arts and Education Council has named Black Tulip Chorale and EBT Culture Card as winners of the third annual stARTup Creative Competition. The competition, supported by PNC Foundation, encourages the development of great ideas with art at their core that strengthen and enhance the St. Louis arts community.

Black Tulip Chorale, founded in April 2018 by Robert Stumpf, is St. Louis’s first and only free-standing all-inclusive choral organization supporting social consciousness. Membership is open to all genders, identities and sexual orientations.

EBT Culture Card, pitched by Jennifer Gartley, aims to radically expand arts access for low-income residents. Inspired by a statewide model in Massachusetts, EBT Culture Card will partner with local arts and culture organizations to provide free tickets to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program recipients in St. Louis City and St. Louis County.

“These two startups are based around ideas that could transform how we expand arts access and arts participation in St. Louis. We look forward to working closely with the founders over the next year to provide the resources, mentorship and connections needed to nurture these ideas,” said Cynthia A. Prost, Arts and Education Council president and CEO. 

Beginning July 1, the winners will each receive a $10,000 prize, one year of space and incubation support in the Arts and Education Council’s arts incubator, free performance and meeting space, access to technology and Wi-Fi, mentoring, idea-sharing and professional development opportunities.

“At PNC, we believe a thriving arts and culture scene plays a crucial role in the success, stability and growth of our local community, which is why we support competitions like stARTup,” said Michael Scully, PNC regional president for St. Louis. “We are looking forward to seeing how these two creative entrepreneurs inspire the arts community and make the arts accessible to the entire St. Louis community.”

Winners were selected by a panel of local arts and entrepreneurial experts, including: Cynthia A. Prost, Arts and Education Council; Debbie Marshall, PNC Bank; Kathleen Bauer, T-REX; Sheila Burkett, Spry Digital; Antionette Carroll, Creative Reaction Lab; Chris Dornfeld, Maritz; and Matt Homann, Filament.

The stARTup Creative Competition was launched in 2017 as a partnership between the Arts and Education Council and PNC Foundation to identify arts entrepreneurs with innovative ideas for the St. Louis arts community and provide the resources they need to further develop those ideas.

For more information about the stARTup Creative Competition, click here.