The arts make an enormous contribution to the Island's prosperity, quality of life and cultural identity.
That's the message from Geoff Corkish MBE, MLC as he confirms the Isle of Man Arts Council is providing underwriting, grants, bursaries and loans worth more than £140,000 to 34 organisations and individuals in its 2016/17 funding round.
'A wide variety of arts activities are only enabled by support from the Arts Council,'
Mr Corkish said.
'Funding allows organisations to maintain venues, employ staff and run projects that are enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.
'We enjoy a huge range of arts activity here, be they one-off performances, festivals, community events, competitions and the like.
'Our evaluation of Island of Culture 2014 showed the arts and creative industries contribute £6.4 million a year to our economy.
'They boost our quality of life and wellbeing and enhance our unique cultural identity.'
Emma Callin, Arts Development Manager with the Department of Education and Children, said:
'At the Gaiety Theatre, for example, we subsidise the amateur hire rate, without which the many talented amateur groups and artists we all enjoy would pay professional rates. That would price many of them out of the theatre and reduce participation in, and enjoyment of, the arts.
'The creative industries is a growth sector for the Isle of Man and exposure to, and participation in, the arts is leading to more people opting for it as a career, which is also good for the economy.'
Although announcing the bulk of its funding now, the Arts Council continues to consider applications throughout the year.
Visit http://www.iomarts.com/ or ring for more information.