Archive for November, 2013

November 29, 2013

$3.6 million does not equal $6 million. Ten years later – still waiting.

This past Monday, the first draft of the City Budget was released. There is a $3.6m increase in arts funding, which, while good, it is still a far cry from the $6m that we asked for.

Despite early indications that the full next phase of funding was allocated, the current budget falls short of reaching our targets. This is yet another delay in reaching the $25 per capita target that was established way back in 2003.
Increasing the city’s investment in culture is a central part of the City’s strategic plan at the highest level, and was unanimously endorsed again in 2013. We need to build on the success of 2013 and keep that momentum going.

In particular, the areas in the 2014 budget that fall short of requested amounts are the granting programs – the Toronto Arts Council, the Local Arts Service Organizations, the Major Cultural Organizations program and CultureBuild.

While many councillors are supportive of our cause, not many are going to look through the budget detail specifically with the Arts in mind. So we need to let them know. Please email your Councillor, thank them for their support and ask them to follow-up with their colleagues, with Budget committee, with staff, and voice their support for getting that number back up to $6 million. Emails can be found HERE.

Plans in our sector were and are being made based on that $6 million. Jobs and productions were and are being created. Let’s not take one step forward, and 2.4 million backwards. Email your councillor. Please.

Budget notes pertaining to Culture and Ec-Dev are here.

November 28, 2013

All Up In Your Secret Santa

secret_santa_2_postcard-r0b279048ce5e43de80e2b94e1a0807aa_vgbaq_8byvr_324(Yes I know it’s the 28th but things get planned earlier and earlier and I wanted to tell you this so maybe you could do it.)

Secret Santa! Where a group of friends or colleagues or staff at an organization pull names out of a hat and then you buy something for the person whose name you drew and you all exchange gifts at the staff holiday party. There’s usually a price cap, like twenty bucks. And sometimes you get cool stuff and sometimes you think, “do you – know –  me?” or “Another mug-hairband-scarf-candy-etc.”  Point is – it’s more stuff that you may not want and quite possibly don’t need.  And Turtles, though delicious, do not require a lot of thought.

Better idea. And I know it’s a better idea because an org I was at did it years ago and it still makes me happy and I tell people they should do it too.

Traditional Secret Santa to start in that there was a price cap of twenty bucks and we did draw names. What made it different was each name came with a number next to it. Why the number? This is where it got cool. It was an age. So you were still going to get the person a gift, but you needed to get something they would have liked at that age.
Then at the staff party all the gifts were exchanged, Secret Santas were outed and then the next day, we took everything down to the toy drive. They were THRILLED.

RIGHT?? Let’s recap on the coolness of this:

1) do not need to think of something to buy a colleague that they might not want or need;
2) it is SO much more fun to shop for a toy or a cool teen gift then hemming around the gift basket section which is usually a disaster-y madhouse;
3) when is the last time you got to excitedly open a present that was a TOY, and be genuinely excited and wondery as to what it was?
4) giving to the toy drive. Feeling good that some folks will get something for Christmas.

I HIGHLY recommend this for any sort of Secret Santa-y things you might be doing, if you do one. Just writing this post made me smiley and happy and the event was four years ago. BTW I got a fantastic pink diary with an electronic password lock for all my writings. Perfect gift for Sue, aged 13.



November 26, 2013

Fringe Lottery Results, a place to make art, a different way to look at art

Fringe lottery party last night at the Tranzac and a rockin’ time was had by all – definitely yelling,  cheering, singing, cake and of course – the LOTTERY WINNERS! Results will be posted on the Fringe website by noon the 26th (that’s today! Maybe it’s right now!) Congrats to all. Up next – Next Stage of course – expect to hear more about this!

I always like hearing about more space for art, and here you go – from the newest member of the Artscape family.
Flex Studios is a new membership-based service that offers artists pay-as-you-go access to creative workspace at Artscape Youngplace. Members can book space quickly and easily online-24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Flex Studios opens for member use on November 30 after the official opening of Artscape Youngplace on November 19. Be there when the bell rings!

CaptureI think this is kind of cool – not in a “match the sofa” way, but another way of searching art.
The Addictive New Museum Website That Lets You Browse by Color
The part I thought was especially neat was the project this project was based on – the site of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam in that at first glimpse each item appears in close-up rather than in its entirety, an approach that encourages people to start with details to discover works of art and design, rather than zooming in after the fact.

Mostly I like the fact that you start out nose-close. That’s frowned upon in museums. Believe me. Speaking of museums, the winter class schedule is out for the AGO!


November 25, 2013

It’s the 2014 Fringe Lottery Party – live from the Tranzac!



This year, the Toronto Fringe is putting a little pizzazz in the Lottery Party. The nail-biting event that can make or break your summer is moving to a bar that is steeped in vintage Fringe history.

THE LOCATION: The Tranzac Club will play host to the evening’s festivities. Instead of waiting at home to hear your fate, be in the middle of all the action as numbers are called, careers are made and hearts are broken. Drown your sorrows or toast to your exciting summer with your peers. Be there for the cheers, the tears and the community.

THE EVENT: Hosted by Second City’s Jan Caruana, the evening will move along at a break-neck speed. And since you won’t be confined to your seats this year, you can feel free to mingle, grab a drink or even step into the Tiki Room if your category isn’t being called. And if you’re one of the unlucky ones, there will be CONSOLATION CAKE for all the companies who didn’t get drawn. Because we still love you.

IF YOU DO GET IN? You get to start marketing your show right away. If your number is called, you will be whisked away for a brief interview and photoshoot. You will be featured on the Fringe website and social media the next day.

Just the details:

Fringe Lottery Party
Monday November 25, 2013 at 7pm (doors at 6pm)
The Tranzac Club, 292 Brunswick Ave Click here for map.
Hosted by Jan Caruana
No admission fee, cash bar, free cake
Live Tweeting by Sue Edworthy
New Play Contest winners will also be announced

Why do we do it this way? Why leave it all to chance?
Because we believe that every story has a right to be told. Because we believe that everyone should be offered access to the creative opportunities at Fringe. No matter who you are – or who you know.

November 24, 2013

Sunday Roundup – November 24

Busy week last week. And last night I spent the evening at the wedding reception of two dear friends, one of whom I’ve known since I was fourteen. So much love to you both.

Short and sweet today!

Thank You – Arts Day At The City #artsdayTO

AntiSocial Media – most popular post this week.

owning photos and #yesidance

SnapChat and a World of Disappearing Media most commented on over all social mediums this week

November 21, 2013

SnapChat and a World of Disappearing Media

Snapchat_logoExcellent two part series on Snapchat from and its implications for marketing in the future

Why Snapchat Should Never Have Ads Conversations have typically been private. History should prove Facebook and Twitter to be exceptions to the rule. Marketers haven’t been able to insert ads in the middle of phone calls or water cooler conversations, and Snapchat users are taking an even more aggressive stance in favor of privacy and anonymity read more
(LOVE this metaphor – On the internet, no one knows you’re a dog, but on Snapchat, you’ll share with a few of your close friends that you’re a dog.)

Followup article

Marketers, Welcome to the World of Disappearing Media

The way most people think about social media is that anything worth sharing is worth saving. Facebook added a corollary: Anything worth sharing is worth sharing publicly. Twitter added its own corollary: Anything shared publicly is worthy of saving for posterity…Snapchat posits that anything worth sharing is worth consuming only immediately after it’s shared, and only by the select people who are most likely to appreciate it. read more

I find this fascinating. Good article. And now I’m thinking that advertising via Snapchat adds one more layer to the marketing plan – scarcity. We all say that your marketing needs to show up anywhere from three to seven times to stick in people’s memory regarding your product/so they’ll buy a ticket etc. Snapchat is the opposite of three to seven times.

So what’s the Snapchat campaign? I have some ideas. I’ll do some research. I’ll let you know if they pan out.


November 20, 2013

owning photos and #yesidance


Canadian Photogs Now Officially Own the Copyright to All of Their Photos

and from twitter:

Captureclick the tweet to access the survey.


November 19, 2013

AntiSocial Media

from socialmedia today

…4 in 5 people are seeing increased incivility on social media, and 2 in 5 have unfriended or blocked family, friends or coworkers as a result.

Additional findings include:

  • 76 percent of respondents have witnessed an argument on social media
  •  88 percent believe people are less polite on social media than in person
  • 1 in 5 reduced in-person contact with someone over a cyber fight read more


And at the same time: Weird Social Media Strategy

November 18, 2013

Thank You – Arts Day At The City #artsdayTO

November 8, 2013 was the 4th Arts Day at the City: an annual initiative led by TAPA that brings together members of the arts community at City Hall to champion our issues with Councillors. A tremendous amount of hard work, enthusiasm, and passion was put into this project by the organizers, and by people like you who care about the strength of our arts community. Thank you.

With all that’s going on at City Hall right now, it’s important that we share the good news happening in Toronto civic life. Your efforts have paid off!

This year, a record 29 Councillors took meetings with us, either on Arts Day or in the days preceding / following it.

·         Councillors committed to keeping up with the business the City has with its citizens

·         There was a lot to celebrate – like Council’s unanimous commitment to get our municipal arts funding up to $25 per capita by 2017

·         There was a lot to report – including incredible growth in arts activities in wards all over the city (you can read the full Arts Day message here)

·         Social media had real impact in spreading awareness of our cause, with 279 supporters contributing 629 tweets which had an estimated reach of over 400,000 Twitter accounts

·         And we had a clear message for Council: Commit to the second phase of funding promised for the 2014 budget

The response: it’s happening. An increase in funding is scheduled to be part of the 2014 budget (even budget chief Frank Di Giorgio said so!).

This is a huge victory for Toronto’s arts community. It’s an encouraging development in our relationship with municipal government. And it’s a sign of how strong Toronto’s arts community is. This kind of progress happens because:

·         Of your participation and civic engagement

·         Of critics within our community who have challenged how we advocate for our interests time and again, demanding we step up our collective game

·         Organizations like TAPA, TAC/F, Arts Etobicoke, Beautiful City, BfTA, East End Arts, Lakeshore Arts, North York Arts, Scarborough Arts, and Urban Arts rally for events like Arts Day

·         Our colleagues at the provincial and national levels are working hard to do the same.

·         Of grassroots activity like Theatre Passe Muraille’s ingenious EA Nights (EA’s of city councillors), which brings dozens of City staffers out to the theatre

·         People like you write to your government representatives and tell them what’s important to voters!

It’s easy to feel frustrated over the state of politics in Toronto, but remember: progress is possible regardless of how big the distractions are – we can see it happening right now. It’s worth celebrating. And it’s worth asking: what can we do next?

So please keep it up! Remember, This is Just the Beginning! 2014 is an election year, and ArtsVote will definitely be a part of it. We hope you will stay involved, and that you will help us continue to champion the things that make Toronto a great place to live, work, play and visit.

November 17, 2013

Sunday Roundup – November 17


I am assuming you are reading this just prior to purchasing tickets for Bound to Create’s dirty butterfly – last performance is today’s matinée.


Artscape Is Looking For Volunteers!


and also this: Date a girl who doesn’t read

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