Archive for June, 2011

June 17, 2011

Impatiently Crunching Numbers

Many of us have read Louis Laberge-Cote’s excellent rebuttal letter regarding Margie Gillis and the grant money she receives and the value of that money in a bigger picture context, An excerpt:

In 2007, The Conference Board estimated that the economic footprint of Canadaʼs culture sector was $84.6 billion, or 7.4 per cent of Canadaʼs total real GDP, including direct, indirect, and induced contributions. Culture sector employment exceeded 1.1 million jobs in 2007. And by the way, culture sector workers (including artists) are taxpayers just like any other worker in Canada, something Miss Erickson seems to easily forget. Furthermore, according to The Conference Board, the “Arts and culture industries play a vital role in attracting people, business, and investment, and in distinguishing Canada as a dynamic and exciting place to live and work… The culture sector bridges geographical distances and creates greatly expanded social networks.” (Valuing Culture: Measuring and Understanding Canadaʼs Creative Economy. 2008.)
Each time an artist like Margie Gillis receives a grant, Canadians are hired: dancers, actors, musicians, composers, rehearsal directors, lighting/costume/set designers, photographers, administrative and marketing staff, to name a few. Rehearsal and performing space are rented. Eventually, posters, flyers, ads and programs are designed, printed and distributed. Many audience members go to a restaurant before or after the performance traveling by car, taxi, or public transportation. Previews and reviews are written in newspapers and magazines. Tourists come to a city or decide to stay longer to see a specific show or exhibition.

A friend sent me a link to an article in the Guardian entitled Counting the true cost of the arts cuts – Unions launch ‘Lost Arts’ website to record in detail everything we’re losing because of the arts cuts. The Lost Arts website, was launched on Thursday in Westminster with the aim of recording all the organisations, initiatives, projects, commissions, tours and more that will be lost due to cuts in public spending on the arts.It will also keep a running total of money lost to the arts and the money lost to the Treasury as a consequence.

And today the Globe and Mail informed us that despite many thinking the CBC is a waste of money, a cash grab, and should be privatized, that if it were, Canada would lose at least $1.3-billion in economic activity. You can read the article on the report here. It’s by Deloitte and Touche in case you wondered just who wrote this report.

So there are some more numbers. There are some MORE facts for those who cannot or will not see the value of arts and culture in our society.

I don’t really want to talk about the Cup, or Vancouver, or what happened the other night on many levels. But a dear writer friend of mine summed it up nicely in her Facebook status update, and it seems to tie my three thoughts together:

Headlines we likely will never see: soprano hits 3 sour notes, city erupts in riot; sonnet goes wonky, villagers set fire to local sonnet-making pub; woman reads book, dislikes ending, calls for mass mayhem. It’s not Vancouver that is the problem. #victimculture

June 15, 2011

Coffee and Engagement FollowUp

I’m out and about today so this is a short post, but remember a few weeks back when I had coffee with the superawesome Sean Howard? We were talking about  a presentation he was working on  for an international arts and culture group  – ISPA, the International Society for the Performing Arts.  The presentation was yesterday during their pre-conference academy.  In what could be only described as fortuitous, I attended a cocktail meet and greet at the very same conference last night, courtesy of EAP, The Emerging Arts Professional Network, and was met several times with, “hey you were in the presentation this afternoon!” and a a result, already had my icebreaker in place. A great evening of networking, seeing old friends from the conference circuit, and meeting new ones.

A small note: If the invitation says “business attire” – please wear it, or try to. Tevas, Birkenstocks and cargo shorts are NOT business attire.  And please try not to bring your knapsack.

Through the power of the internet – Sean said I could share the presentation with you – and here it is.

 

June 14, 2011

Data, Audiences, and my Thoughts on Margie

Excellent newsletter in my inbox today from my friends at Creative Trust on the art of data collection and what the heck to do with it. I’m a data and stats geek myself, so naturally I had to repost.

We all know that collecting data – about our audiences, our donors, our neighbourhood and partners – serves no purpose unless we know how to find it and what to do with it.

We realized, early in our Audiences Project, that our members’ outdated systems and databases were holding them back from applying what they learned. While our companies understood the benefits of  segmenting their lists, tracking buying preferences and linking donation history to ticket buying history, many of their systems made such practices impossible.

Click here to find out how Creative Trust approached this, as well as a link to a very cool manual published by the fine folks at the Australian Government.

Little bit of Facebook love for some of my favourite people – Expect Theatre, Theatre 20 and Mighty Brave – as I mentioned in a previous post with the Facebook group phasing and archiving and yadda yadda everyone’s have to make new groups.  If we want to run awesome contests, share info and communicate, we need people, so feel free to wander over and give it a like.

SIDE NOTE

Some folks have asked me why I haven’t said anything about the ridiculous “interview” of modern dancer Margie Gillis on Sun TV. I will not link to the interview or their website.  I will not add to the Sun’s coffers by doing so. I will say I’ve never seen such a disgraceful piece of alleged journalism.  I sincerely think it would be interesting to see how Miss Erickson would have spoken to someone of Margie`s calibre in the auto industry, or science, or R&D, all of which receive grants equal to if not probably more than Margie and many others dream of. Miss Erickson knew nothing about the subject matter, readily admitted it and proceeded to bulldoze her way through. So instead I will link to Louis Laberge-Cote’s stunning rebuttal, published in the Calgary Beacon, and making the internet rounds as of late..

Something interesting to note – my blog posts create automatic links to items that it has ‘heard of’. I’d like to point out  – it’s heard of Margie Gillis, Laureate of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards. It’s never heard of Krista Erikson.

June 13, 2011

What You Think You Want

Hello!

Something that’s been floating around in my head are things like, “it’s what the client wants“, “whatever the client wants“, and that’s what you give them. I don’t think that’s necessarily the case.

A friend of the family called me last week, and wanted to know if I knew how to make a playlist and burn it to a CD. Yes. Yes I do. What kind of music was she talking about? She’s having a charity party with a Hawaiian theme, so she wanted Hawaiian music.

Hawaiian music? Somehow I didn’t think so.

This is where you need to do a couple of things. Basically you need to figure out what your client actually wants when they say what they want. And do it in a way that leaves them happy – because really, who wants or likes to be told they don’t actually know what they want?

How do we do this? I had an edge this time – I already knew the person quite well, and the types of charity gatherings she threw. But I still started with getting more information, and sometimes it’s as simple as a few questions. And the first one I asked was,

Is it an actual Hawaiian themed party, or is it more of a luau- themed party?” (because there’s a difference)
Do you have any types of Hawaiian music, or musicians in mind?” (because if she did, it might actually be Hawaiian themed)
Did you want something with vocals, did you want something upbeat?” (which again indicates knowledge of the type of music she was asking for)

You get the picture.  So we went from the client saying they wanted “traditional Hawaiian music” to “you know – Hawaiian music, ukeleles, things people want to dance to, things people know. And one of the committee members would like to have Elvis Presley’s “Blue Hawaii” in the mix somewhere.” And there we have it.

CLIENT SAYS THEY WANT: traditional Hawaiian music.
CLIENT ACTUALLY WANTS: what a certain demographic thinks of when they think of Hawaiian music

Armed with that sentence alone, I put together a very tiki-kitschy playlist, burned it to a CD and sent it off with an invoice for parts and labour. She’s very happy – it’s exactly what she wanted.

This is what I do with all my clients. So should everyone. Even if it is “just” a CD for a family friend, it’s the type of care that needs to be taken with all clients – they are hiring you for your thoughts, ideas and creativity. They are hiring you to make what they want not only happen, but happen better than they thought it would. My job is to give them something they never knew they wanted. (That, BTW is half of an advertising slogan – the first half is about “creating the need”). Not in this instance – the need is already there – but my job is to figure out what it actually is – and go forward with them as a team.

Enjoy your day! Game Six tonight @Bruins! Go Canucks!

June 12, 2011

Sunday Roundup – June 12

An excellent week of lovely weather, successful client meetings and work for art and seeing art and experiencing art. What went on?

Sunday Roundup – June 5 EXTRA: TO Services Review Roundtable – it’s unusual for me to put a roundup in a roundup but this one contains my experiences at the TO Services review at City Hall last Saturday.
It’s the Dora Nominees Press Conference Today! – congratulations to this year’s nominees. I was on the jury for Independent Theatre which adds up to a lot of theatre, and am very pleased and proud of my fellow juror members and the theatre community at large.
I Head East. – a posting about a gallery in Leslieville I’ve recently fallen in love with, and an intro to a show I was planning on seeing, which proved so fantastic it led to the next day’s piece –
The Magi Were Right – a longer discussion about the (amazing) art show I saw, and why I liked it.

No cartoon today –  I couldn’t find one that I liked. But I’ve got a toy for you.  I was reading a website the other day about the launch of a new company and their services. I genuinely couldn’t figure out what it is they DO. I know it’s obviously consultant based, and part of the knowledge economy in that they don’t build bookshelves or cars or anything, but their organizational descriptor was so full of jargon and buzzwords that I couldn’t tell what they do. An artist friend of mine was once working on a series of paintings, and looking for inspiration posed the question, “how would you explain your job to a five-year old?” Forcing you to think about what you do in those terms brings it back to a level of reality that I respect. In the meantime, click on the image and you’ll be taken to the laughing buddha’s mission statement generator. If you get a good one, feel free to post it.

Side Notes

Am mighty pleased to add Mighty Brave Productions to my list of folks I do stuff with – Lisa Wegner is a very talented artist, writer and filmmaker who is coming back from a tragedy that occurred on the red carpet at Cannes in 2008. Her work will be shown at The Phoenix Art Museum,  at the  Art Not Violence Gallery of Women’s College Hospital  and the Toronto Revue Cinema and we are working together  to weave a ribbon to tie all of this together. Look for lisaismightybrave.com to launch in the next couple of weeks.

In a week tomorrow Theatre 20 will be performing the second of a three-part series of concerts – Driven to Score features the work of Canadian composers and a stellar cast including some recent Dora nominees (Sterling Jarvis, Louise Pitre, Ma-Anne Dionisio). Panasonic Theatre at 8 pm and tickets are available through TicketKing.

Rehearsals for Expect Theatre‘s Awake are continuing, I’m seeing posts about dancehall choreography and amazing original music. I’m going to stop by this week to watch for a bit and show them the marketing materials I’ve made that go beyond posters and postcards.

Game Six is Monday night @Boston. Go Canucks!

June 10, 2011

The Magi Were Right

Yesterday I headed east to see a show at the Pentimento Gallery on Queen. I was very excited to see the show, and the gallery, and John Rait, and my trip was well worth it. Please note I have shamelessly borrowed some images of the opening night from the Pentimento blog to better illustrate my points.

My companion (gal pal Colette Stevenson) and I went to see Brotherhood – an exhibit by G Elliott Simpson, and got to spend some time with the fantastic John Rait, who I like more every time I meet him.

About the exhibit – my God it was fantastic. Like a good art patron I read the statement about the work – it  discussed the idea that although we claim we are becoming an even more open society, we are becoming even further enmeshed in the concepts of groups and tribes. Where do you belong?
Geoff has some extremely beautiful men (and one woman) posing for him. Each piece was a photograph of a person posed – they were photographed in body paint – the example is next to this paragraph. I was immediately drawn to the eyes of each subject – see how the paint is lessened around them? It completely draws you in, making you wonder who is behind both the creation and the pose. All pieces were named things that seemed to have a religious bent, my favourite being “Sacrament“.

At first view of this photo you may think, “My God, can’t people stop texting long enough to even enjoy art??”  Here’s the best part – they ARE enjoying the art. Each piece in the show has a QR code below it., and each code takes you to a different weblink about a type of cult, a religious experience etc. It was fantastic. Just as you thought you’d “gotten everything” about the piece, it allowed you to take a step further into it with a bit more information. It was a fantastic experience, allowing you an even deeper glimpse into the work itself, generating more conversation about it. Marvelous.

John was telling me that some folks at the opening immediately viewed the show as “pornographic” – not based on the subject matter, but on the subjects themselves. I disagree. I could see how one might go that way, with photos of beautiful barely dressed men, but the show is so much more than that – it’s a shame that anyone would stop at that point and refuse to go further. The Catholic imagery takes that a step further – I think depending on how “good” a Catholic you are, it might come across as offensive. (Given that I was delighted with being right about “which” Sacrament it was, jumping up and down yelling, “I was right!!’ you can tell just how “good” I am…) I told John it was like being on a big art game show, trying to figure out where the QR codes would take you – down the rabbit hole indeed. Good art creates controversy.

While we were there the artist stopped by to take some shots of the work (Item: Thing #54424 I love about Toronto – the artist stops by.) and we had a LOVELY chat. Geoff is a warm gracious person, and it’s always great fun to be able to converse with an artist about his work when it’s not opening night and they’re not being pulled to and fro. I will be watching for his work again, and now we’re Facebook friends so that should be easy to do.

Before Geoff stopped by, we were having a lovely conversation with John – about art, art students, the idea of art in a global marketplace, broad far-reaching ideas that funnelled right down to his neighbourhood. It’s always a delight to find someone so supportive to students of art, who wants them to succeed and more importantly is helping them do so, whether it’s through contacts, or school lectures or just plain helping. Even moreso – he just does it. We had a great chat about some of the characters in he neighbourhood, what goes on around his gallery and who he loves Leslieville.

All in all it was a marvelous afternoon of art and ideas and interesting people. I highly recommend you check out Geoff’s work and of course – the gallery.

You may recall that yesterday I supplied a textbook (well, Wikipedia) definition of the word pentimento. Based on that definition, I thought I had a good handle on why the gallery is named that. John zipped upstairs to find a book by Lillian HellmanPentimento – in which she looks back at some of the people who, wittingly or unwittingly, exerted profound influence on her development as a woman and a writer. The reason for the gallery’s name is right on the first page. And here you go. Have a lovely day.

June 9, 2011

I Head East.

I have been a West End Girl for the better part of my Toronto existence, teasing friends about “east of Yonge? What’s that?” and bringing books and water and a snack whenever I go to visit those who live in places with exotic names such as Donlands, Danforth and Pape.

Recently a couple things in the East have piqued my interest, so I thought I’d tell you about one that I’m going to today – the Pentimento Fine Art Gallery. (1164 Queen Street East).  I went there a few weeks ago to see a fantastic show by R. Kelly Clipperton  called Top 30 –  an absolutely stunning array of photos based on  album titles.

It was fantastic and thought provoking and my companion and I argued over which piece we thought was the absolutely best, darting all over the gallery to compare and choose – click here to see some of them. You were also invited to choose your top ten favourites for an upcoming exhibition. I like interactive art like that. And I am very pleased that some of my choices made it into the top 10.

Today I’m going back to see G. Elliot Simpson’s Brotherhood. His artist statement says, “I’m intrigued by how people transform themselves, and how others experience that transformation. And it seems to me such transformation involves as much a self-deception as it does any expression of faith. People think themselves capable of all sorts of acts that are not necessarily possible. Perhaps it’s because there is only so much that a person can experience in the immediacy of one’s existing body. It seems that any further awareness there is to gain must come through distortions to, and at the expense of, the regular public order of ourselves – so that to break out of yourself, you must be willing to break yourself.

I think this sounds fascinating and am looking forward to seeing his work.

I’d never heard of Pentimento until quite recently. When I went I was really delighted with a cool little space, and I wondered what Pentimento meant – it’s “An underlying image in a painting, as an earlier painting, part of a painting, or original draft,  that shows through, usually when the top layer of paint has become transparent with age.” I think this is a perfect name for this space, it’s modern and cool yet full of history from the floorboards to the fantastic little courtyard our back. It’s the type of place that makes you want to have an event just because.

My absolutely favourite thing about the gallery, was one of the gallery owners John S. Rait. John was many people before opening this art gallery, so naturally we had about fifty people in common, but we had never met. He is a lovely, lovely man, funny and friendly and I was glad to meet him.

I highly suggest you check out the exhibition, and most definitely the gallery itself. I love its feel, its character and that quite honestly, it’s an extra work of art on its own with every exhibition that comes through.

June 7, 2011

it’s the Dora Nominees Press Conference Today!

I’m off to the Press Conference this morning, and very excited to hear the nominees. I was a member of the Indie Theatre Jury this year – I saw a heck of a lot of theatre this year with a group of really fantastic jurors. I can’t wait to hear who was nominated.  It’s at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts in the Distillery, doors open at 9:30am, announcements will begin promptly at 10:00am will be made by Diana Leblanc and Guy Mignault

The 2011 Recipients for the Barbara Hamilton Memorial Award, the George Luscombe Award and the Leonard McHardy and John Harvey Award will also be announced. I’ll be back later to let you know the results.
(3:09 pm – am back, results are below)

Side Note – I just found out that Philip Akin, Artistic Director of Obsidian Theatre Company is this year’s recipient of the Mallory Gilbert Award. He is incredibly deserving. Congratulations, Philip!

This in an amazing list of talent. Congratulations to all the nominees!

Barbara Hamilton Award goes to David Ferry!
George Luscombe Award goes to Yvette Nolan!
John Harvey and Leonard McHardy Award goes to Ghislain Caron!

Enjoy – if you’d like a pdf of it, visit the TAPA website. And a HUGE congratulations to the entire TAPA team for the the amazing job they did on the press conference today, and the amazing job they do every day. I am looking forward to the Doras.

GENERAL THEATRE PRODUCTION DIVISION

OUTSTANDING PRODUCTION
The Railway Children Matthew Gale and Jenny King for The Touring Consortium (RC) International
and Robert Richardson for Marquis Entertainment
Ruined Obsidian Theatre Company in association with Nightwood Theatre
Peggy Pickit Sees the Face of God – The Africa Trilogy Produced by Volcano Theatre, presented by Luminato
Brothel #9 Factory Theatre
Blasted Buddies In Bad Times Theatre
OUTSTANDING TOURING PRODUCTION
The Andersen Project Canadian Stage presents Ex Machina
Studies in Motion – The Hauntings of Eadweard Muybridge Canadian Stage presents the Electric Company Theatre
South Pacific Dancap Productions Inc.
L’Orchestre D’Hommes-Orchestres Performs Tom Waits The Theatre Centre
Jake’s Gift Factory Theatre presents Juno Productions
OUTSTANDING NEW PLAY
Roland Schimmelpfennig Peggy Pickit Sees the Face of God – The Africa Trilogy Produced by Volcano Theatre, presented by Luminato
Maja Ardal The Cure for Everything Theatre Passe Muraille
Brendan Gall Wide Awake Hearts Tarragon Theatre
Anusree Roy Brothel #9 Factory Theatre
Andrew Kushnir The Middle Place Canadian Stage and Theatre Passe Muraille collaborate to produce
OUTSTANDING DIRECTION OF A PLAY / MUSICAL
Philip Akin Ruined Obsidian Theatre Company in association with Nightwood Theatre
Nigel Shawn Williams Brothel #9 Factory Theatre
Gina Wilkinson Wide Awake Hearts Tarragon Theatre
Brendan Healy Blasted Buddies In Bad Times Theatre
Allen MacInnis A Year With Frog and Toad Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE BY A MALE IN A PRINCIPAL ROLE
Sterling Jarvis Ruined Obsidian Theatre Company in association with Nightwood Theatre
Joseph Ziegler Death of a Salesman Soulpepper Theatre Company
Diego Matamoros Oleanna Soulpepper Theatre Company
David Ferry Blasted Buddies In Bad Times Theatre
Ash Knight Brothel #9 Factory Theatre
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE BY A FEMALE IN A PRINCIPAL ROLE
Yanna McIntosh Ruined Obsidian Theatre Company in association with Nightwood Theatre
Pamela Sinha Brothel #9 Factory Theatre
Michelle Monteith Blasted Buddies In Bad Times Theatre
Jane Spidell Peggy Pickit Sees the Face of God – The Africa Trilogy
Produced by Volcano Theatre, presented by Luminato
Anusree Roy Brothel #9 Factory Theatre
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE IN A FEATURED ROLE / ENSEMBLE
The Ensemble Our Class Studio 180 Theatre in association with Canadian Stage
Oliver Dennis Jitters Soulpepper Theatre Company
Jane Spidell Doc Soulpepper Theatre Company
Ari Cohen Death of a Salesman Soulpepper Theatre Company
OUTSTANDING SET DESIGN
Scott Reid The Clockmaker Tarragon Theatre
Robin Fisher A Year With Frog and Toad Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People
Julie Fox Blasted Buddies In Bad Times Theatre
Joanna Scotcher The Railway Children Matthew Gale and Jenny King for The Touring Consortium (RC)
International and Robert Richardson for Marquis Entertainment
Glen Charles Landry À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou Théâtre français de Toronto
OUTSTANDING COSTUME DESIGN
Tim Chappel & Lizzy Gardiner PRISCILLA QUEEN OF THE DESERT The Musical (Mirvish and orthers)
Shawn Kerwin Brothel #9 Factory Theatre
Robin Fisher A Year With Frog and Toad Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People
Joanna Scotcher The Railway Children Matthew Gale and Jenny King for The Touring Consortium (RC)
International and Robert Richardson for Marquis Entertainment
Charlotte Dean The Misanthrope Tarragon Theatre
OUTSTANDING LIGHTING DESIGN
Thomas Hase Prima Donna Luminato
Richard G. Jones The Railway Children Matthew Gale and Jenny King for The Touring Consortium (RC)
International and Robert Richardson for Marquis Entertainment
Lorenzo Savoini A Midsummer Night’s Dream Soulpepper Theatre Company
Kimberly Purtell Blasted Buddies In Bad Times Theatre
Ken MacKenzie (Re)Birth: E.E. Cummings In Song Soulpepper Theatre Company
OUTSTANDING ORIGINAL SOUND DESIGN/COMPOSITION
Richard Feren Blasted Buddies In Bad Times Theatre
Mike Ross (Re)Birth: E.E. Cummings In Song Soulpepper Theatre Company
Mike Ross A Midsummer Night’s Dream Soulpepper Theatre Company
Debashis Sinha The Post Office Pleiades Theatre
Craig Vear / Christopher Madin The Railway Children Matthew Gale and Jenny King for The Touring Consortium(RC) International and Robert Richardson for Marquis Entertainment
OUTSTANDING CHOREOGRAPHY
Tim French [title of show] Angelwalk Theatre
Teddy Masuku /
Heidi Strauss
Shine Your Eye – The Africa Trilogy Produced by Volcano Theatre, presented by Luminato
Ross Coleman PRISCILLA QUEEN OF THE DESERT The Musical David Mirvish
Peter Darling BILLY ELLIOT The Musical David Mirvish presents
Jen Shuber A Year With Frog and Toad Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People
OUTSTANDING MUSICAL DIRECTION
Steuart Bedford Death in Venice Canadian Opera Company
Nixon in China Canadian Opera Company
Harry Bicket Orfeo ed Euridice Canadian Opera Company
Diane Leah A Year With Frog and Toad Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People
Anthony Bastianon [title of show] Angelwalk Theatre

OPERA DIVISION
OUTSTANDING PRODUCTION
Prima Donna Luminato
Orfeo ed Euridice Canadian Opera Company
Nixon in China Canadian Opera Company
La Cenerentola Canadian Opera Company
Death in Venice Canadian Opera Company
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE
Sondra Radvanovsky Aida Canadian Opera Company
Lawrence Zazzo Orfeo ed Euridice Canadian Opera Company
Alan Oke Death in Venice Canadian Opera Company

MUSICAL THEATRE PRODUCTION DIVISION
OUTSTANDING PRODUCTION
PRISCILLA QUEEN OF THE DESERT The Musical David Mirvish
Parade Acting Up Stage & Studio 180 Theatre
BILLY ELLIOT The Musical David Mirvish presents
A Year With Frog and Toad Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People
[title of show] Angelwalk Theatre
OUTSTANDING NEW MUSICAL/OPERA
Conceived by Timothy French and Avery Saltzman To Life Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company
Rufus Wainwright Prima Donna Luminato
The Ensemble (Re)Birth: E.E. Cummings In Song Soulpepper Theatre Company
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE BY A MALE
Will Swenson PRISCILLA QUEEN OF THE DESERT The Musical David Mirvish
Tony Sheldon PRISCILLA QUEEN OF THE DESERT The Musical David Mirvish
Justin Bott [title of show] Angelwalk Theatre
Darren A. Herbert Parade Acting Up Stage & Studio 180 Theatre
Allen MacInnis A Year With Frog and Toad Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE BY A FEMALE
Shelley Simester [title of show] Angelwalk Theatre
Ma-Anne Dionisio Miss Saigon Dancap Productions Inc.
Louise Pitre A Year With Frog and Toad Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People
Kate Hennig BILLY ELLIOT The Musical David Mirvish presents
Gabi Epstein To Life Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company

INDEPENDENT THEATRE PRODUCTION DIVISION
OUTSTANDING PRODUCTION
The Company Theatre Through the Leaves
Eldritch Theatre Madhouse Variations
Doghouse Riley Productions Blood
Cahoots Theatre Company in association with The Young Centre for the Performing Arts paper SERIES
Cahoots Theatre Company A Taste of Empire
OUTSTANDING NEW PLAY OR NEW MUSICAL
Sky Gilbert The Situationists Cabaret Company
Maev Beatty and Erin Shields, with Andrea Donaldson Montparnasse Groundwater Productions in associationwith Theatre Passe Muraille
Jovanni Sy A Taste of Empire Cahoots Theatre Company
Eric Woolfe Madhouse Variations Eldritch Theatre
Darrah Teitel The Apology Rabiayshna
OUTSTANDING DIRECTION
Trevor Schwellnus Nohayquiensepa (No one knows) Aluna Theatre
Philip Riccio Through the Leaves The Company Theatre
Peter Pasyk Blood Doghouse Riley Productions
Nina Lee Aquino paper SERIES Cahoots Theatre Company in association with The
Young Centre for the Performing Arts
Audrey Dwyer The Apology Rabiayshna
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE BY A MALE IN A PRINCIPAL ROLE
Nicholas Campbell Through the Leaves The Company Theatre
Matthew MacFadzean Tom’s A-Cold Starving Artists / Nextstage Festival
Gavin Crawford The Situationists Cabaret Company
Eric Woolfe Madhouse Variations Eldritch Theatre
Cyrus Faird Mojo Ezra’s Atlantic Co-op
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE BY A FEMALE IN A PRINCIPAL ROLE
Sandy Duarte Blood Doghouse Riley Productions
Rosemary Dunsmore The New Electric Ballroom MacKenzieRo: The Irish Repertory Theatre Company of Canada
Peggy Baker Are You Okay Peggy Baker Dance Projects in association with Necessary Angel Theatre
Company
Maria Vacratsis Through the Leaves The Company Theatre
Kyra Harper Vincent River Cart/Horse Theatre
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE IN A FEATURED ROLE / ENSEMBLE
The Ensemble The Apology Rabiayshna
The Ensemble paper SERIES Cahoots Theatre Company in association with The Young Centre for the
Performing Arts
The Ensemble MontparnasseGroundwater Productions in association with Theatre Passe Muraille
The Ensemble Nohayquiensepa (No one knows) Aluna Theatre
Christopher Stanton The New Electric Ballroom MacKenzieRo: The Irish Repertory Theatre Company of Canada
OUTSTANDING SET DESIGN
Steve Lucas The Situationists Cabaret Company
Lindsay Anne Black The Atomic Weight of Happiness Stand Up Dance
John Thompson Through the Leaves The Company Theatre
Jackie Chau Brown Balls fu-GEN Theatre Company
Camellia Koo paper SERIES Cahoots Theatre Company in association with The Young
Centre for the Performing Arts
OUTSTANDING COSTUME DESIGN
Rosemarie Umetsu The New Electric Ballroom MacKenzieRo: The Irish Repertory Theatre Company of Canada
Melanie McNeill Madhouse Variations Eldritch Theatre
Jung-Hye Kim Montparnasse Groundwater Productions in association with Theatre Passe Muraille
Jessica Botelho Paradise By The River Shadowpath
Camellia Koo paper SERIES Cahoots Theatre Company in association with The Young Centre for
the Performing Arts
OUTSTANDING LIGHTING DESIGN
Trevor Schwellnus Nohayquiensepa (No one knows) Aluna Theatre
Michelle Ramsay paper SERIES Cahoots Theatre Company in association with The Young Centre for the
Performing Arts
Michelle Ramsay The Atomic Weight of Happiness Stand Up Dance
Kevin Hutson Hard Times Puppetmongers in association with the night kitchen and Theatre Passe Muraille
Gareth Crew Madhouse Variations Eldritch Theatre
OUTSTANDING SOUND DESIGN/COMPOSITION
Thomas Ryder-Payne Nohayquiensepa (No one knows) Aluna Theatre
Richard Lee paper SERIES Cahoots Theatre Company in association with The Young Centre
for the Performing Arts
Mike Filippov Madhouse Variations Eldritch Theatre
Christopher Stanton The New Electric Ballroom MacKenzieRo: The Irish Repertory Theatre Company of Canada
Anna Fritz 300 TAPES The Theatre Centre/Public Recordings Co-production

THEATRE FOR YOUNG AUDIENCES DIVISION
OUTSTANDING PRODUCTION
The Grace Project: SICK The Sick Collective / Jack Grinhaus and Sarah Miller-Garvin / Next Stage Festival
Routes Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People presents Concrete Theatre
Offensive Fouls Hustle N’ Bustle Theatre in association with Roseneath Theatre
Head à Tête Theatre Direct
DISS – An interactive presentation
about the risks of gang involvement Mixed Company Theatre, a division of Maple Leaf Theatre for Social Responsibility
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE
The Ensemble DISS – An interactive presentation about the risks of gang involvement
Mixed Company Theatre, a division of Maple Leaf Theatre forSocial Responsibility
The Ensemble The Grace Project: SICK The Sick Collective / Jack Grinhaus and Sarah Miller-Garvin /
Next Stage Festival
Olaf Sham Edward The “Crazy Man” Workman Arts Project of Ontario
John Cleland Edward The “Crazy Man” Workman Arts Project of Ontario
Colin Doyle Offensive Fouls Hustle N’ Bustle Theatre in association with Roseneath Theatre

DANCE DIVISION
OUTSTANDING PRODUCTION
Harbourfront Centre’s World Stage presents Dave St-Pierre
Un peu de tendresse bordel de merde! (A little tenderness for crying out loud!)
The National Ballet of Canada Chroma
ProArteDanza …in between…
Luminato presents Chunky Move Two Faced Bastard
Harbourfront Centre’s World Stage presents Alain Platel/Les Ballets C. de la B. Out of Context – for Pina
OUTSTANDING CHOREOGRAPHY
Wayne McGregor Chroma The National Ballet of Canada
Tedd Robinson Sticks DanceWorks presents tiger princess dance projects
Sharon B. Moore The Great Farini Project Sharon B.Moore/ Derek Aasland productions
Roberto Campanella & Robert Glumbek …in between… ProArteDanza
Andrea Nann & Brendan Wyatt Beside Each Other Young Centre for the Performing Arts presents
Dreamwalker Dance Company
OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE
The Ensemble Chroma The National Ballet of Canada
The Ensemble …in between… ProArteDanza
Peter Chin Sriwijaya CanAsian Dance Festival
Juan Ogalla Espejo de Oro / Mirror of Gold Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company
Brian Solomon The Great Farini Project Sharon B.Moore/ Derek Aasland productions
OUTSTANDING SOUND DESIGN/COMPOSITION
Nicolás Hernández, José Valle Espejo de Oro / Mirror of Gold Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company
Lorenzo A. Castelli Homeland Godot Art Productions
Joby Talbot Chroma The National Ballet of Canada
Gord Downie Beside Each Other Young Centre for the Performing Arts presents
Dreamwalker Dance Company
Charles Quevillon Sticks DanceWorks presents tiger princess dance projects

June 5, 2011

Sunday Roundup – June 5 EXTRA: TO Services Review Roundtable

Busy week behind me, busy week ahead. There is a supplemental section for Sunday this week – I attended the Toronto City Services Review at Toronto City Hall yesterday, so here’s the round-up first, and you can scroll down for my review of the Toronto City Services Review.
Item: I wrote this while watching the VancouverBoston game, and nearly fell over when Ron MacLean referenced “honey badger”. Thumbs up for being all up on your memes, Ron. He don’t care about no bees indeed.

So! This week – what happened?

So What Do You DO All Day? – If it’s not happening from nine to five, then is anything getting done? In a word – yes.
Art and Potholes – a bit of info about Artsvote, about the Toronto City Services Review, and a very cool answer to the question, “is your art more important than potholes?”.
The Quality of Relationship Is Not Strain’d  – a couple of real life examples of the relationship building properties of social media.
Making Art, Painting Over Art – bit of a shoutout to Manifesto and the amazing work they do, along with a bit of a confused shoutdown about the city’s policies on painting over murals.
What Are We Reading These Days?  – love letter to the Toronto Public Library, and a few book recommendations.

Cartoon for the week is from 3eanuts again. I love them.

As I mentioned earlier in this post, earlier Saturday and a few times this week, I attended a Toronto City Services Review (TCSR) Roundtable today from 2:00 – 4:00 pm today at City Hall. The following is a composite of thoughts, notes and photos from the day. It’s not comprehensive, it might not even be cohesive, but it was my experience.

I am welcomed.  And immediately am curious as to  what Our Toronto Is according to the five circle images shown. On closer inspection, our Toronto is traffic lights, soccer, recycling, 24/7 and a streetcar.

In I go, where I signed in by saying the name my registration is under. Off I went to sit at Table 7 – my goal was to be at a table of NOT like-minded people (in other words, people I do not already know) so as to get a good sense of what the issues are to many people. I look around the room and wonder who is there about childcare, about infrastructure, about art, about potholes and police and parks.

We each receive a consultation kit which contains cards printed on paper, with each one representing a service. It seems like we will be playing a large game of solitaire, or maybe euchre. We will see what is trump. I also have a paper copy of the online survey, which i filled out online a while back. The paper version has all the same information, in the same order, yet seems somehow better laid out. I also pass a note to Chris our awesome facilitator, pointing out that perhaps it would have been better to alphabetize the services on the survey, rather than to seemingly assign value to them through arbitrary listings. If it’s listed first, it’s most important, right? Bad optics. My note will be submitted with the comments. (photo by Yvonne Bambrick)

Onward. We are a table of four Caucasian women, all over the age of 35, and so is the facilitator. This was not the cross-section of Toronto I’d hoped for, but we shall persevere. One woman points out very quickly that 38% of the budget comes from property tax and that is TOO MUCH. Another asks, “what DO the Feds do with all our money? Oh right – they sent it to Af-ghan-is-tan.”

We begin our giant card game – we’re putting the services in three categories – Must Have, Nice To Have, Not Really Important. After we spend some time discussing exactly what those categories mean, i.e. Not Really Important might mean “Someone Else Should Fund It“, the woman who mentioned property taxes picks up the cards labelled “City Run Theatres” as well as “Arts, Culture and Heritage Programs. I hold my breath.

“I know EXACTLY where these should go…” she says…and places them firmly in the “Must Have” category. The woman next to her says, “here – this too.” – public libraries. Despite my efforts, I am among like-minded people. And as it turns out – we all live in the same Ward.

We spend the next half hour sorting cards, asking what we think is important, (childcare, senior care) what we think is not so much (311 services). Although the point of the exercise is not to reach consensus at the table, we seem to find it on many things. If we have a question, our facilitator tries to answer, and if it’s specific, she holds up one of five coloured cards, indicating “budget” or another category, and we continue moving the cards around. The fourth woman at the table tries to move “City Run Theatres” out of the must have category and I ask her why, and explain to her why they are important. She says she thought she would move it as she “doesn’t use or know anything about theatre,” and I counteract with, “and I make my living from it,” – and we both start to genuinely laugh.

City Manager Joe Pennachetti stops by our table, and comments that we are a table that is really thinking about it, he can tell from our cards. I think he also heard our conversation about one service that we thought should be half funded by the city, and half by the province, and could we tear the card in half to represent our opinion? No, we could not, but our concern was written down. In fact, our facilitator wrote down all comments that we wanted made note of, and they were collected. All this was happening at all the tables as well, with comment cards being collected and ferried to the front of the room.

A lot of our discussion involved the feeling of either-or that the survey indicated, that there didn’t seem to be much room to have a little of each. That the categories were limiting by the way they were labelled. We agreed on a few items once we discovered they were downloaded expenses from back in the days of downloading from the province (overheard: unless we’re getting a percentage from the fines we collect for the Provincial Offenses Act, the Province should pay for it.)

I showed the fourth woman this graph that being outlines by Mr. Pennachetti. I explain that the cost of the arts to Toronto is at the very bottom, such a small investment that it’s lumped in with another expenditure, and if she looks closely, she’ll see that unlike the other expenses, the arts make more money for the city than they cost it. She says, ‘well, I’m convinced,” and she says it in a good way, not in a please stop talking way.
Item: I gave her my contact info – I am absolutely bringing her to see a show. I feel there was a sharing of knowledge between us today, and I’m determined she should experience what we talked about. If anyone has comps to something good and non-threatening, I’d appreciate it.

People are really angry about garbage.Many opinions on how it should be dealt with, but bottom line is it must be dealt with. It is an excellent opportunity to educate about green bins, and the person giving the education is Councillor Sarah Doucette, who I had not yet met. From the time spent at our table, I think I really like her. We also talk about things like why a fire engine, ambulance and police show up at every 911 call, and a few other I did not know that! kind of items.

People are really angry about the G20.

Interesting item –  only 5000 people have filled out the survey online. I find that disheartening. Once all the roundtables have happened, all the raw data collected will be going online in a report.  A final summation of the conversations overheard at the various tables (20 tables of 8 people each) was projected onscreen – I pasted some of them below and apologize in advance  – but it’s a phone camera shot of a Powerpoint slide from across a rotunda.  From the statements made, the majority of the people attending want a good city, a livable city – they seem  to genuinely care about it. Granted, this was a ‘downtown’ session, and so your demographics will skew.  I said goodbye to Mr Pennechetti when I was leaving, and he asked me what I’d thought. I said I wished it was longer, although  I’m sure he knew it wasn’t a two-hour task, and that although I was glad citizens had the opportunity to be consulted, I wished we weren’t in this position. But at the same time, based on some of the conversations I had, conversations I overheard, and the snapshot provided of those conversations, I am hopeful for our city, the people who live here and want to see it work, and more importantly –  what makes it great.

June 4, 2011

Saturday Supplement

I don’t usually post on Saturdays, but two quick things:

1) Am off to the City Services Review roundtable today at Toronto City Hall. Tomorrow I’ll be posting my findings along with the usual Sunday Roundup. Here’s an article by Marcus Gee that describes what the roundtable at the Reference Library was like.

2) Along those same lines of things that are important to the city, there’s a great article in the Globe and Mail  – Building The Business of Art. Fits in nicely with my to do list today.

%d bloggers like this: