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What’s Online (Calgary): Student Writers Group Showcase – Alberta Theatre Projects

Student Writers Group Showcase
SATURDAY, MAY 15, 2021 | 7:00PM MDT

Join us for the Student Writers Group Showcase and experience new work from emerging young playwrights!

For this annual showcase, each member of the Student Writers Group has developed an original 10-minute play, and has been paired with a professional director/dramaturg and a team of some of Calgary’s finest actors.

We hope you’ll join us on Zoom on Saturday, May 15 at 7:00pm – tickets are by donation! We can’t wait to share what these brilliantly creative young minds have come up with!

About the Student Writers Group

The Alberta Theatre Projects Student Writers Group is a unique opportunity for high school students to explore the craft of playwriting with professional playwrights and guest artists from across Canada. During this 8-month course, the students meet weekly (this year, online) with a playwright mentor to cultivate their playwriting skills, have conversations with our guest artists (including season artists and members of the Playwrights Unit), and build social connections with their peers.

This year, the Group has been facilitated by professional playwright and actor Camille Pavlenko (currently Alberta Theatre Projects’ Playwright in Residence and member of the Playwrights Unit).

GET TICKETS HERE

What’s Online (Calgary): The Gig by Mark Crawford – Alberta Theatre Projects

Up Next for Playwrights Projects 2021…
THE GIG BY MARK CRAWFORD
FRIDAY, MAY 7 AT 7:30PM MDT

Three drag queens have been hired to perform at a private function. The catch? Tonight’s event is a campaign fundraiser for a Conservative politician. As the queens struggle to agree on how to proceed, the campaign manager and rookie candidate attempt to send a message of inclusivity and hope to their voters. Throw in an unimpressed venue technician and a long-standing MP who’s been forced into retirement and honey, this gig will have you “gagging!” Politics! Sibling rivalry! Wigs! The Gig is a contemporary comedy that asks: what do we do when we don’t see eye-to-eye?

Mark Crawford is also the playwright of The New Canadian Curling Club, produced at Alberta Theatre Projects in 2019.

Featuring: Thom Allison, Mark Bellamy, Natascha Girgis, Stephen Hair, Karen Johnson-Diamond, Laura Parken & Marshall Vielle
Director & Dramaturg: Trevor Rueger
Stage Manager: Ruby Dawn Eustaquio
Playwrights Unit Director: Trevor Rueger

GET TICKETS HERE

Job (Calgary): Summer Camp Assistant Coordinator – Quest Theatre

Job- Summer Camp Assistant Coordinator (Full-time, 8 weeks)

Quest Theatre is looking for several assistants aged 18-30 to ensure the smooth operation of Drama Camps for young people aged 6-15 in summer 2021. The intention is for these camps to be delivered both in-person and online, with the coordinators involved in supporting the Head Camp Coordinator, Camp Instructors, and students.

Responsibilities

  • Camp preparations such as compiling documentation & supplies, registration info, class lists, gathering & maintaining waivers and permissions
  • Assist in preparation of physical spaces – office, rehearsal halls, theatre
  • Assisting with daily operations of the Summer Camp including:
  • welcoming campers and parents
  • health screening
  • camper supervision
  • working with instructors
  • Assisting with final camp performances including technical aspects such as sound and lighting, props and costumes, plus filming/recording/streaming as needed
  • Maintaining COVID-19 protocols such as signage and reminding campers about physical distancing, mask-wearing and hand sanitization
  • Cleaning and sanitization as per COVID-19 protocols
  • Technical and admin support for online instructors and students
  • Other duties as mutually agreed upon with their supervisor.

The ideal candidate…

  • You are a highly organised and computer literate emerging theatre artist, likely with or working towards a drama degree (or have equivalent experience, which may include volunteering, in the creative theatre process). You enjoy and have experience of supervising and/or working with young people. You are a strong communicator committed to the creative development and theatrical education of young people.
  • You are a team player and know how to have fun and be silly in a responsible way and model this behaviour for others. Some experience with the creative use/construction of props, costumes and sets would be an asset.
  • Security check (paid by Quest Theatre) is a requirement. A valid driver’s license and comfort driving our small fleet of touring vans is essential.
  • Candidates must be aged between 18 and 30, as this job is funded through the Canada Summer Jobs program.

Contract Details

This is an employment role for 8 weeks for 35 hours per week / 7 hours per day. Dates and times to be mutually agreed between June 21 and August 31, 2021

Remuneration is $18.00 per hour plus 4% vacation pay, MERCs and a bring your own device allowance to cover personal laptop/cell phone use.

Location: The assistants will work primarily at cSPACE King Edward in Calgary, but may also have opportunities to work from home when assisting online camps.

This role is largely Mon-Fri 8.15am-4.15pm (camps run 9am-3.30pm) with a 1 hr unpaid meal break. On the job training, support and supervision will be provided by our small and dedicated team.

Apply Now

Apply by Friday, May 21, 2021 at 4pm to admin@questtheatre.org. Please use Camp Assistant Application in the email subject line.

Include the following in your email:

  • Cover letter
  • Resume
  • Link to a Short Video:
    • Create a 30 second to 2 minute video that teaches something to young people.
    • Choose a drama activity for young people between the ages of 6 and 15 (please identify what ages it would be best for).
    • Introduce the activity and give clear instructions.
    • Conduct the activity. We recognize this assignment is somewhat artificial, but see if you can demonstrate how you would inspire young people to participate in your activity (i.e. imagine young people are watching you and you are leading them in the activity).
    • Videos can be shot on your phone or computer and uploaded to the platform of your choice.
    • This assignment is for internal purposes only and will not be shared outside of the Quest staff.

If you require special access needs (no access to equipment, deaf, or blind ESL, please let us know).

We respectfully invite and encourage (but do not require) candidates to let us know in their cover letter if they belong to one or more equity-seeking groups such as Indigenous (First Nations, Metis and/or Inuit), Black, People of Color, LGBTQ2SIA+, newcomers to Canada, those living with disabilities and/or caregivers. We would be happy to discuss accommodating your specific access and other needs.

We thank all those who apply, and regret that we will only be able to contact those shortlisted for the role.

This position is made possible thanks to funding from Canada Summer Jobs as well as Quest Theatre’s operational funders, Calgary Arts Development, Alberta Foundation for the Arts, and Canada Council for the Arts.

Background Information

Quest Theatre is located at cSPACE King Edward, 1721 29 Avenue S.W. Calgary, Alberta in Suite #325. Please visit www.questtheatre.org for more information on the organisation.

For over 35 years Quest Theatre has nurtured young people through exceptional adventures in theatre, creating intelligent and whimsical work that encourages young people to explore who they are, discover what is important, and build the kind of world they want to live in. We do theatre WITH young people and FOR young people with the knowledge that exposure to the arts is vital for their personal growth, character development, and sense of belonging in society.

Job (Alberta): Script Workshop Actors – Tiger’s Hearts Collective

Tiger’s Hearts Logo by K. Rose

Tiger’s Hearts Collective Script Workshop
Call for Indigenous Artists, Black Artists, and Artists of Colour

The Tiger’s Hearts Collective are looking to engage 2-3 actors to join our team for a 3-day script workshop at the end of May. This is a paid position for Indigenous Artists, Black Artists, and Artists of Colour who identify as women, or non-binary folks who want to create in a space that centres female experiences. The script workshop will be held over Zoom and all actors will be paid a $300.00 fee for participation in this stage of the project.

Exact dates are TBA, depending on availability, but will occur over three 5-hour days in the last week of May (Monday May 24th to Friday May 28th). Workshop days will be either 2 hours morning-1 hour break-2 hours afternoon, OR 2 hours afternoon-1 hour break-2 hours evening. Please indicate your availability when you get in touch.

tigersheartscollective@gmail.com

WHO WE ARE

The Tiger’s Hearts Collective is a group of artists who work to reclaim space for women in “the classics” and reinvent the classical tradition to be more inclusive, equitable, and accessible. We are passionate about confronting the harmful structures that have hitherto dominated the genre, and we believe that everyone deserves to participate and see themselves represented in the classical canon.

We acknowledge and offer deep gratitude to the many generations of Indigenous peoples of Treaty 6 and Treaty 7 territories. We are honoured to be creating this project together on these lands in service of our community.

We are also grateful for the support of the Edmonton Arts Council and the Alberta Playwrights’ Network who have made this project possible.

You can learn more about us at www.tigershearts.com.

PROJECT OVERVIEW

We are currently developing a NEW classical play which aims to reinvent classical theatre that is by women for women. The Amazonomachy follows the epic story of an intersectional matriarchy; a society of warrior women inspired by the Amazons of myth, the real-live warrior women of ancient history, and the incredible matriarchs in our own communities.

We’re eager to connect with artists of all ages and experience levels, and there is no requirement for applicants to have any “classical training!” We recognize that gatekeeping, racism, and misogyny have purposefully made classical materials extremely unwelcoming and actively harmful for so many people. We hope to confront that harm by creating new inclusive content and investing in a creative process that is supportive and exciting!

If you’re up for connecting with other diverse women artists, delving into some beautiful NEW classical text, and exploring some bad-ass female characters, we’d love to hear from you.

HOW TO SUBMIT

Please email your submission to tigersheartscollective@gmail.com before MIDNIGHT on Thursday May 13th with subject title YOUR NAME- AMAZONOMACHY ACTOR SUBMISSION, and include the following:

  • Brief Expression of Interest: This could be in the form of a letter (1-2 pages), video, audio file, or any creative means through which you’d like us to encounter you and your work.
  • Artist Resumé if available;
  • Availability for the week beginning May 24th.

We’re happy to answer any questions you may have about our work or the project, so don’t hesitate to get in touch! We look forward to getting to know you.

 

Survey (Calgary): Creative Calgary Arts Sector Survey

Creative Calgary is conducting research to gather valuable insight into what challenges the Calgary arts sector is facing, identify supports that are missing in the community, and determine what actions can be taken to strengthen success. This survey will also provide us with information on who we are serving, from both individual and organizational perspectives.

The survey takes approximately 15 minutes to complete, and all responses are being collected anonymously and no identifying information is being solicited. The information gathered will directly impact the strategy development process and determining what programs and services Creative Calgary will offer.

About Creative Calgary:

Creative Calgary is a non-partisan group of artists, arts organizations and citizens at large who are committed to and advocate for a thriving arts sector with a positive public profile.

Creative Calgary started in 2017 ahead of the Calgary municipal election, where our collective advocated for increased municipal investment in the local arts sector and aimed to raise awareness about the economic contributions, and intrinsic value, artists and arts organizations bring to the City of Calgary. Our overall efforts resulted in Calgary Arts Development’s (CADA) funding increasing from $6.4M to $12.4M in 2019 and up to $15.9M by 2022.

Event (National): IBPOC Theatre Grad Fair

A chance for IBPOC Theatre students from across Canada to meet one another and receive advice from experienced IBPOC artists!

ABOUT THIS EVENT

Calling all IBPOC recent theatre graduates, students graduating this year and those entering their final year of study! You’re invited to an (online) IBPOC Theatre Grad Fair from 1:00-3:00 pm EDT on May 3!  You will have the chance to meet with other IBPOC students from across the country and hear from experienced IBPOC artists on the transition from post-secondary theatre education to the professional realm.

The event will open with a round-table conversation with four artists, hosted by an IBPOC theatre leader, after which you’ll be invited to move into smaller break-out rooms for more focused conversations about specific career paths. Break-out rooms will be led by two artists with experience in a particular discipline, e.g. playwriting, directing, acting, producing, dramaturgy/criticism, production/design, and PR/publicity. One of the rooms will focus on the first year after leaving a post-secondary theatre program.

Artists include: Nina Lee Aquino, Lisa Karen Cox, Miriam Fernandes, Jeff Ho, Shaista Latif, Owais Lightwala, Omari Newton, Matthew MacKenzie, Davinder Mahli, Sanskruti Marathe, Aidan Morishita-Miki, Marilo Nuñez, Tarndeep Pannu, Malina Patel, Luke Reece, Jamie Robinson, Quelemia Sparrow, and Tanisha Taitt

WHEN: MAY 3, 2021, 1:00-3:00 EDT
COST: FREE
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER VIA EVENTBRITE

 

Jobs (Edmonton): Social Media Community Manager – Edmonton Musical Theatre

Position: Social Media Community Manager
Organization: Edmonton Musical Theatre

This position is funded by the Canada Summer Jobs with Service Canada for those aged 15 to 30 years.
Please forward resume and interest letter to edmmusth@telus.net by May 12, 2021. Only those selected for consideration may be contacted for an interview.

Edmonton Musical Theatre is dedicated to educating our students to the highest degree of professionalism in the area of musical theatre performance techniques. We nurture our students from Edmonton and surrounding area, and help them reach their fullest potential. The Social Media Community Manager will play a key role in assisting the organization in maintaining and developing social media platforms. The position will start May 17, 2021 and will commence October 22, 2021 for a total of 23 weeks. The position will perform 12 hours per week at the rate of $16.00 an hour.

Skills/Qualifications:

  • Experience in communications planning, media relations and social media management
  • Knowledge of ‘best practices’ and current innovations as it relates to the Communications, Marketing and Digital Media Field(s)
  • Strong familiarity with the business applications of social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, etc.)
  • Understanding of social media metrics; able to interpret the results and take action to increase effectiveness of social media campaigns
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills

Job Duties:

  • Create and implement social media strategy through research, benchmarking, messaging, and audience identification
  • Moderate user-generated content and messages appropriately, based on company and community policies
  • Regularly generate, edit, publish and share content (original text, images, video or HTML) that builds meaningful connections and engage with community members
  • Generate, edit, publish, and share content 3 times per week and/or as needed.
  • Monitor social media platforms to interact with questions, comments and content
  • Document projects and rehearsals with video, to include in messaging
  • Maintain company social media pages and profiles
  • Scan the media marketplace to keep up-to-date on the latest media trends
  • Track and analyze analytics reports to gain insight on traffic, demographics, and effectiveness; utilize this information to positively affect future outcomes
  • Collaborate with General Manager and PR Committee to manage company reputation, coordinate promotions, and increase reach

Who Are We Now? Essays From a New World – Luay Eljamal

Who Are We Now? Essays From A New World is an initiative from Theatre Alberta that brings you editorial perspectives from a variety of Albertan artists about the rapidly changing world we live and work in. We hope you’ll find them useful as you process your own evolving reality.


LOOKING TO THE PAST TO SEE THE FUTURE: A LEBANESE-CANADIAN MANIFESTO – Luay Eljamal | April, 2021

The following essay pulls from research I conducted in 2016 for a paper entitled “The Manipulation of Collective Memory Through Art in Post-Civil War Lebanon”, which can be read in its entirety here.

When I first left home for university ten years ago, I remember having to learn a number of new skills in a passionate attempt to gain my own independence. Things I had taken for granted—like knowing how to cook my own meals—suddenly had to be mastered as efficiently as possible. In those desperate moments, I found myself turning to my Middle Eastern heritage for guidance. I learned to cook, for example, by replicating Lebanese recipes, which both built-up my “adulting” arsenal and satiated my need for independence through delicious garlic-infused comforts (chicken shawarma, anyone?) Today, I find myself employing similar tactics to solve new challenges that I come across every day as the Programs Manager for Arts Council Wood Buffalo and Artistic Director of Symmetree Theatre in Fort McMurray, Alberta.

Where casual audiences may once have had the mental and emotional capacities to consume theatre as a form of challenging their minds and exposing themselves to new perspectives, they now mostly turn to theatre as a source of escapism, if they turn to us at all.

There’s no denying that the pandemic has changed the way in which theatre and the arts are being consumed. It has also changed the kinds of things that people are turning to the arts for. Where casual audiences may once have had the mental and emotional capacities to consume theatre as a form of challenging their minds and exposing themselves to new perspectives, they now mostly turn to theatre as a source of escapism, if they turn to us at all. While it’s important to give audiences what they need today, being a leader in the arts community means it is also my duty to look to the future and prepare for what artists and audiences will need tomorrow.

I’ve always believed that the arts play a critical role in helping society articulate and commemorate the cultural shifts that propel humanity forward. Naturally, I now find myself asking: how are the arts going to lead audiences through the emotional, physical and mental healing that will be needed once COVID-19 becomes a thing of the past?

In an attempt to answer this, I turn to my Lebanese heritage for clarity, once more.

It has been over twenty years since the Lebanese civil war came to an end, and there is so much that Lebanese artists have done since then to catalyze discussions and support people in processing the war’s traumatic effects. I believe that learning from and adapting what some of these artists have done just might be the crystal-ball equivalent to understanding how we can make relevant art in a post-COVID world.

In my search for answers, I turned to three Lebanese artists, as case-study examples, to explore how this can be achieved. They are:

  1. Installation Artist Nada Sehnaoui — (@nadasehnaoui)
  2. Theatre Artist Rabih Mroué — (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rabih_Mroué)
  3. Street-Graffiti Artist Yazan Halwani — (@yazanhalwani)

All three of these artists have produced vastly different works which attempted to provoke movements towards unity, peace and self-healing in post-civil-war Lebanon.

Nada Sehnaoui — Installation Art: Haven’t 15 Years of Hiding in the Toilets Been Enough?

Left image: A series of 600 toilets are installed in downtown Beirut. (Photo Credit: Atelier Nada Sehnaoui). Right image: A still from Sehnaoui’s YouTube documentary in which a Lebanese doctor who worked during the Civil War recounts his experiences (Photo Credit: Atelier Nada Sehnaoui).

In 2008, Sehnaoui produced an art installation project called Haven’t 15 Years of Hiding in the Toilets Been Enough?, which involved installing a series of 600 toilet seats arranged in a grid in downtown Beirut. Over the course of her installation, passersby were encouraged to sit on the seats and reflect with one another, through a microphone, about the hardships that they had experienced during the war. The toilet seats stood as a symbol for a time when Lebanese families would retreat to their bathrooms—commonly the innermost room of a house with no windows— in order to stay safe from bombs and other attacks of war. By drawing on the Lebanese people’s raw post-traumatic memories of the war, Sehnaoui questioned whether war experiences, such as locking oneself in a bathroom, were worth revisiting in 2008, when Lebanon was under threat of more sectarian violence.

Rabih Mroué — Play: Riding on a Cloud

Mroué highlights the harms of deliberately ignoring the past in favour of rebuilding a new life…

Mroué’s play, Riding on a Cloud, features Mroué’s youngest brother, Yasser, recounting the real story of his aphasia, which he developed as a result of being shot by a sniper toward the end of the Lebanese civil war. Yasser is left being unable to understand or produce speech, complicating his ability to recount the past. Through the story of his brother, Mroué highlights the harms of deliberately ignoring the past in favour of rebuilding a new life, and also echoes the practices of many Lebanese people who have chosen to move on from the trauma of the war through a deliberate willingness to forget the past. Mroué argues that numbing oneself to the pain of the past puts the Lebanese people in danger of repeating their needlessly violent history again in the future.

Yazan Halwani — Street-Graffiti Artist

Left image: Painted mural by Halwani of Fairuz, celebrated Lebanese singer (Photo Credit: Yazan Halwani). Right image: Public mural of Ali Abdallah, a homeless man Halwani knew who lived on Bliss street and passed away during a harsh Lebanese winter (Photo Credit: Yazan Halwani).

Halwani’s art manifests itself in the form of public murals, which are often painted in the place of political propaganda that he has stripped off from various city walls—some of which had been left over from civil war times (Elkamel and Halwani 2015). ‘“What I try to do […] is write the stories of the city on its own walls – creating a memory for the city”’ Halwani explains to a journalist in an article for The Guardian (Bramley and Halwani 2015). The memory that he creates for the city is rooted in stories of unity, as he chooses to paint portraits of well-known public figures who represent all of Lebanon’s history and culture regardless of the faction that a Lebanese person may belong to. His murals seek to exemplify the ways in which all Lebanese people are alike on the facades of destruction that would otherwise stand as reminders of Lebanon’s war-torn past.

They all did this with the goal of preventing history from repeating itself and encouraging audiences to reflect on their traumas in a healing and clarity-defining way.

All three of these artists have chosen to manipulate the collective memories of Lebanese citizens, in an attempt to promote unity and healing. Sehnaoui resurrects and reminds her audiences of the traumatic memories they all experienced in the past. Mroué highlights the dangers of choosing to forget memories in order to promote healing. And Halwani promotes unity and healing by converting difficult memories into bittersweet, beautiful ones. They all did this with the goal of preventing history from repeating itself and encouraging audiences to reflect on their traumas in a healing and clarity-defining way. It’s worth noting that their approaches likely varied due to their different lived experiences, as well. Sehnaoui, for example, spent some of the Lebanese civil war-time in Boston and Paris pursuing diplomas in higher studies, while other Lebanese people suffered the war at home. One may argue that this distance allowed her to objectively examine what happened to the Lebanese people without being directly affected by the trauma of war. Contrastingly, Mroué was directly impacted by the war through his brothers aphasia, and Halwani, was born three years after the end of the Lebanese civil war; perhaps what allowed him to neutrally assess how to promote progression towards peace, without being held back by direct traumas of the war. Each artist was extremely effective in their own way.

The pandemic (and the various civil rights movements that continue to arise within it) has created numerous sectarian divides across the world, similar to the sectarian divides that exist within Lebanon.

Okay, but how closely can this resemble the progression of the arts in a post-COVID world? I would argue: very closely! The pandemic (and the various civil rights movements that continue to arise within it) has created numerous sectarian divides across the world, similar to the sectarian divides that exist within Lebanon. We have maskers and anti-maskers, left-wing and right-wing, BIPOC and Caucasians; with new movements gaining traction every day. Similarly, the lived experiences that artists have through the pandemic have varied greatly. Imagine the multitudes of ways in which the pandemic could be documented by an artist who did not contract COVID-19. Now imagine an artist who did contract it. What about an artist who had to be put on a ventilator? An artist who lost a loved one? Now add racial identities into the mix. One artist might have the capacity to critique the pandemic without having to first process the harsh traumas that it put on them, while another might have to heal themselves first or else viscerally express their traumas wholly and fully through their art.

As leaders in the arts, we need to prepare ourselves to support the full magnitude of stories, and initiatives that start to pour out of our artists’ hearts and minds, when the time is right.

How do we do that?

This would be my manifesto:

  1. SUPPORT ARTISTS’ HEALING FIRST — Provide artists with the time and resources needed to mentally, emotionally and physically heal themselves first, before asking them to engage in creating work that is designed to heal others.
  2. SUPPORT ARTS RECOVERY — Prioritize the funding, capacity-building and support of artists whose projects and initiatives promote arts recovery and healing through the arts.
  3. EMBRACE ALL VOICES — Ensure that we are aware of the different voices (and the privileges and barriers that come with), which can contribute to the artistic and historic documentation of the pandemic and the movements within it. Acknowledge that in the right contexts, there is enough space for them all to be heard. Ensure that this is done in a way that promotes the diversity of all people equally; marginalized and majority alike.
  4. ABANDON THE FUNDAMENTALS — Fundamentals in “art creation” are there to give us an understanding of how to go about creating new art at a basic level. The pandemic has forced us to abandon the fundamentals and come up with new ways for art to stay relevant and survive. In some cases this has increased accessibility. Support projects that build on these new developments, and avoid forcing artists to revert back to the fundamentals, just because the pandemic is over.
  5. NEVER UNDERESTIMATE YOUR AUDIENCE — Support artists who have ideas that go against the norm, and never diminish their vision in fear that audiences will not relate to it or understand. Acknowledge especially that our lived experience is going to differ greatly from the experiences of others, and don’t allow this to cloud our judgement when we support artists who are developing new works, which we might not relate to on a personal level.
  6. LOOK TO THE FUTURE — Think of what the arts industry can look like in the future. Think about this on an ongoing basis, and support artists who infuse fresh, new and innovative ideas into their work. Allow them to propel us forwards, toward that future.

Encouraging audiences to assess their current social standings in response to subjective pieces of art—in the way that these Lebanese artists have done—can be a very useful tool, but it’s important to remember that no one artist would be likely to pen an accurate and widely-acceptable representation of the pandemic and its movements on their own. I hope that my fellow arts leaders see the value in priming artists of many disciplines, backgrounds and identities today, so that when the time comes, we are at the forefront —uniting and healing our audiences, and ultimately promoting arts recovery, as well.


Luay Eljamal (he/him) is a theatre artist and Arts & Culture Manager living in Fort McMurray, AB. He has worked as a writer, director and audiovisual designer on projects across Canada and the United Kingdom. He currently works as Programs Manager for Arts Council Wood Buffalo and is the Artistic Director of Symmetree Theatre, which aims to share stories about marginalized members of society, where the main conflict does not stem from the fact that they’re marginalized.


 

References

Bramley, Ellie V. and Halwani, Yazan (2015). ‘How a Beirut Graffiti Artist is Using his Murals to Try to Unite a Fragmented City’. The Guardian. (Accessed 20 December 2015)

Elkamel, Sara and Halwani, Yazan (2015). ‘Meet ‘Beirut’s Banksy,’ The Artist Who’s Transforming The City One Wall At A Time.’ The Huffington Post. (Accessed 20 December 2015)

 

Announcment (Alberta): MacEwan University Adds Bachelor of Fine Arts Program

MacEwan University has announced the addition of a new Bachelor of Fine Arts. The program builds on the university’s decades of experience in preparing graduates through diploma programs to shape Alberta’s vibrant arts and culture sector, creating a supportive environment where students can study their craft and develop the skills they need to develop their future careers.

“It truly has been the creativity and energy of our students, faculty, and alumni that has helped to build MacEwan University’s arts legacy over the past 50 years,” says Dr. Annette Trimbee, MacEwan University president and vice-chancellor.

The Bachelor of Fine Arts will offer students the opportunity to explore the interdependent and interdisciplinary nature of contemporary art while seeking ways to respond to the rapidly changing needs of the creative and cultural industries.

Students will learn and collaborate in Allard Hall, which offers access to state-of-the-art learning and performance spaces. In addition to the facility itself, Allard Hall is in close proximity to downtown Edmonton’s galleries, theatres, museums, concert halls, festivals and more.

Though COVID-19 has impacted the arts, the pandemic has also illustrated the critical role that the arts play in society — and in our quality of life. A re-energized arts scene is part of the province’s plans to restart the economy, and the Bachelor of Fine Arts program will position graduates to respond to a resurgence and planned growth in this sector.

“This is exactly the kind of energy we need right now,” says Dr. Trimbee.

Graduates of this program will possess management savvy and knowledge, intrapreneurial and entrepreneurial skills, as well as a depth of knowledge, skill and expertise in their chosen discipline.
“This unique degree gives our Theatre, Fine Art and Arts and Cultural Management students the opportunity to complete their degree at MacEwan,” says Dr. Allan Gilliland, dean of the Faculty of Fine Arts and Communications. “It also provides them with two more years to hone their skills in our world-class facility, Allard Hall, before embarking on a career in the arts.”

The Bachelor of Fine Arts will feature four majors:

  • Arts and Cultural Management encompasses presenting and promoting all things arts and culture: music, theatre, dance, galleries, museums, archives, heritage conservation and the literary arts. The core of this major is leadership and project management.
  • Musical Theatre Performance offers students intensive conservatory-style training in musical theatre and opportunities to showcase their talents in smash-hit Broadway musicals and cutting-edge contemporary plays for public audiences.
  • Studio Arts takes an experiential learning and hands-on approach to equipping students with skills in performance and sound art, painting, drawing, video, sculpture, fibres and more. In this interdisciplinary environment, students are challenged to think critically and creatively about contemporary art.
  • Theatre Production trains students in stage and production management, costuming, scenic painting, scenic construction, lighting, video, properties, and audio to prepare them for dynamic career opportunities in live and recorded entertainment sectors as technicians, artisans, craftspeople and managers.

“A Bachelor of Fine Arts gives students room to learn, to share knowledge and to take their careers in many different directions,” Dr. Craig Monk, MacEwan’s provost & vice-president, Academic. “It will prepare MacEwan students to contribute to diverse teams while working in the arts and beyond. It will allow them to develop the skills to be responsive to that with which the world confronts them.”

Applications open in Fall 2021 with programming to begin September 2022. Learn more at MacEwan.ca/BFA.

Job (Canmore): Production Assistants – Canmore Summer Theatre Festival

The Canmore Summer Theatre Festival (CSTF) is an annual outdoor theatre festival. A unique aspect of the CSTF is that volunteers from Pine Tree Players perform alongside and learn from theatre professionals and emerging artists.

This year, the CSTF team are proud to present William Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night directed by Shelby Reinitz and Minotaur by Kevin Dyer directed by Tyler McClaron. Performances will take place outdoors at the Stan Rogers Stage in Centennial Park, Canmore.

The CSTF has six production assistant positions available for a period of 8 weeks starting in May. The positions are 35 hours per week and pay $15/hour.

The Production Assistants will aid in production management, stage management, as well as creation and maintenance of technical aspects for the Festival. They will gain a breadth of experience in production and stage management, as well as technical theatre, and will focus on one or more departments (stage management, wardrobe, set and properties, sound, social media and marketing) depending on their interests and skill sets. Their tasks and responsibilities could include sewing, purchasing, repairing, and maintaining the costumes; constructing, building, assembling, and painting the set of the production; sourcing, building and maintaining the properties of the production; and setting up and operating sound equipment.

These positions are funded by the Canada Summer Jobs program, therefore all applicants must meet the criteria below:

  1. be between 15 and 30 years of age at the start of the employment*;
  2. be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or person to whom refugee protection has been conferred under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act for the duration of the employment; and,
  3. have a valid Social Insurance Number at the start of employment and be legally entitled to work in Canada in accordance with relevant provincial or territorial legislation and regulations.

*You must be 15 years of age at the beginning of the employment period. You may be more than 30 years of age at the end of the employment period as long as you were 30 at the beginning of the employment period.

We encourage submissions from diverse artists of all backgrounds, regardless of race, color, gender, national origin, age, religion, creed, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.

The dates of the festival are as follows:

  • Rehearsals – Starting May 9, Sundays from 10AM-6PM; Tuesdays & Thursdays from 6PM-9PM
  • Tech Rehearsals – August 7-9, 2021
  • Festival Run – August 11-22, with performances of Minotaur at 1pm and Twelfth Night at 7pm.
  • There will be no performances on August 16 and 17.

If you have any questions about these positions please email us at info@pinetreeplayers.com or call (403) 589-5732.

Please follow the link below to apply:
form.jotform.com/pinetreeplayers/cstf-CSJ

Workshop (Alberta): A Crash Course in Digital Theatre – Vertigo Theatre

WORKSHOP DESCRIPTION

With the growing interest and need for digital work during the pandemic, Vertigo Theatre has taken the knowledge we have gained in audio and video creation to offer a crash course in digital theatre creation. This workshop will take three key components of digital creation; video, audio and digital dissemination and introduce artists to the basics of each.

Vertigo will employ different instructors for each component so we might offer a variety of perspectives and focuses for participants.

This workshop will offer knowledge in an accessible way to the artists in our community who may require some of this information to succeed on their next virtual project. With the world of performance expanding, we want to find innovative ways to connect and create with one another, which requires many new learnings for all of the artists in our theatre world.

OUTLINE

VIDEO
INSTRUCTOR: JOEL GOUNDRY
MAY 3 AND 7 (10AM – 2PM)
Video will focus on the beginner steps of filming. This will include tips on framing your shot, lighting, and editing. It will be accessible for people who can not access high end equipment, and only have their phone and basic software to utilize.

AUDIO
INSTRUCTORS: OLIVIA WHEELER, CHRISTIAN GOUTSIS
MAY 10 (10 AM – 3 PM)
AUDIO SESSION #1 (10 AM-12 PM)
AUDIO SESSION # 2 (1PM- 3 PM)
Audio will feature two sessions. The first will be an instructional crash course on how to use basic recording software and how to set this up in your home. Once participants are feeling comfortable with the basic setup of gear and some key lessons in how to begin recording, Christian Goutsis from 6 Degrees Music + Sound will teach a second session on voice over and recording performance. Christian will delve into directing of voice, and how to capture the highest quality take when limited by time.

STREAMING YOUR WORK
INSTRUCTOR: LYALL JOVIE
MAY 17- STREAMING YOUR WORK (APPROX. 10AM – 1PM) INSTRUCTOR: LYALL JOVIE
Digital Dissemination is an introduction to producing and streaming your digital content. Once your project is ready, how do you put it out into the world for viewing? Lyall Jovie will act as the instructor for this section and guide folks through the various software, streaming sites, and hardware that will assist in putting your creation into the audiences homes.

COST

There is a $50 registration fee, as well as a list of required equipment.

Bursaries for registration are available if the full cost of registration would be prohibitive to your participation. Please contact kathryn.smith@vertigotheatre.com or laura.couch@vertigotheatre.com for more information.

Visit vertigotheatre.com/digitalcreationworkshops for more information and to register.

News (National): Award-Winning Playwright Sharon Pollock Passes Away at Age 85

Photo by Darryl Pollock.

We were saddened to hear of the loss of acclaimed Calgary playwright Sharon Pollock on April 22, 2021.

Pollock was well-known and widely celebrated for her work which included more than 46 scripts for theatre, radio, and television over her 50 year career as a writer.

She received, in addition to other awards, two The Governor General’s Literary Awards for Drama, (Blood Relations; Doc) and was shortlisted for the same award in 1986 for Whiskey Six Cadenza. In 1987 she was the recipient of the prestigious Canada Australia Literary Award for her body of work; in 2008 the National Theatre School of Canada’s Gascon-Thomas Award; in 2012 her contribution to the arts was acknowledged with her investiture as an Officer of the Order of Canada.

She worked in a number of positions with organizations in Alberta and across the country including: chairperson of the Advisory Arts Panel, Canada Council; Head of The Playwrights Colony at The Banff Centre of Fine Arts; Playwright in Residence at Alberta Theatre Projects, at Theatre Calgary, and at Theatre Junction in Calgary; Associate Director and Artistic Director of Theatre Calgary; founding member and Artistic Director of the Calgary’s inner city storefront theatre, The Garry; Executive Director, Alberta Playwrights Network; Director of Playwrights Lab APN; Director of APN’s Bootcamp for Writers.

Pollock was well-respected in the Canadian and Alberta theatre communities. Thoughts and memories from her theatre peers can be seen in the following articles:

Calgary Herald | April 23, 2021 | Louis B. Hobson
Global News | April 24, 2021 | Jacqueline Wilson
CBC News | April 24, 2021 | Joel Dryden
CTV News | April 23, 2021 | Stephen Hunt

 

What’s On (Alberta): Collider Festival 2021

Witness Creative Collisions
at Collider Festival 2021
May 12 – 16, 2021

Collider is a new play development festival that celebrates and helps bring to life new stories and scripts for larger stages showcasing a mix of local artists and artists from across the country and beyond. This year’s inaugural festival is completely digital and features five days of workshops, readings, a digital preview, and a keynote address dedicated to creating a creative collision of artists and audiences passionate about exhilarating new large-scale productions.

Registration and attendance are free, but space is limited.

REGISTER HERE

For more details and programming for the 2021 Collider Festival please CLICK HERE.

Announcement (National): SureFire 2020 Released – Playwrights Guild of Canada

 

The Women’s Caucus of Playwrights Guild of Canada (PGC) announces the second rendition of SureFire, a community-generated resource identifying remarkable, production-ready plays by Canadian women, trans creators, and non-binary artists.

The underrepresentation of women playwrights on our nation’s stages is a well-documented fact; a problem that is magnified further for Indigenous women, women of colour, trans, and non-binary folks. Often, ADs, producers, and educators state that they don’t produce shows from these communities primarily because they don’t know of any good plays. Members of PGC’s Women’s Caucus, Kelley Jo Burke (Chair), Beverley Cooper, Marcia Johnson, and Christine Quintana, along with PGC staff liaison Rebecca Burton, are at the helm of this initiative, designed to help redress this cultural inequity. Over three hundred theatre experts (“Recommenders”) across the country were asked to send in their top three “passion-picks” or favourite full-length plays by women, trans, and/or gender non-conforming creators, if the works had one professional production, or none, and so long as they were not part of SureFire 2018. PGC collected the submissions, tabulated the findings, and used the results to create SureFire 2020 (the final release of which was delayed by the pandemic, but no longer!)

PGC’s Executive Director, Nancy Morgan, says: “SureFire 2020 strives to amplify voices and celebrate exceptional works by talented Canadian playwrights. PGC recognizes that SureFire is but one way to highlight works of women, trans, and non-binary writers for the stage, to support the ultimate goal of gender parity. It is hoped that SureFire 2020 will help others to be spurred by curiosity, by openness, and by a genuine interest to share and learn. The beauty of art is its ability to share with us perspectives beyond our own – we encourage audiences, producers, directors, and all artists to seek out these plays and experience the lessons within their pages.”

SureFire 2020 is comprised of twenty-four plays and three honorable mentions; an exciting listing for its plurality and diverse aesthetic styles. In addition to the play choices, SureFire 2020 contains statistical data related to the Recommenders. Since their identities and play choices were anonymous, data about return rates, region, racialization, gender, and more is presented to help demystify the process and provide greater transparency about the participants involved.

We hope that SureFire 2020 will be picked-up, shared, read, discussed, and implemented far and wide to help offset industry imbalances. Contact PGC for more information, or the Canadian Play Outlet to purchase these plays (and more)!

PGC is a registered national arts service association mandated to advance the creative rights and interests of professional Canadian playwrights; promote Canadian plays nationally and internationally; and foster an active, evolving community of writers for the stage.

 

Workshop (Alberta): One Year Later: Exploring how COVID-19 has Re-defined the Experience Economy in Alberta

May 5, 2021 11:00 AM
REGISTER HERE

One year into the pandemic, how are interests and priorities shifting for Albertans? What does that mean for organizations who offer experiences? What do vaccinations and other measures mean for participation?

These are the kinds of questions businesses and organizations are asking as they continue to grapple with COVID-19. So much has been learned about consumer behaviours and attitudes in extraordinary circumstances, and while vaccinations and a new season offer optimism and hope, consumer expectations continue to evolve, and organizations need to understand what this means for them.

Join Stone-Olafson as we share results, facts, and ideas from the most recent phase of Experience Economy research to help inform your decision making over the coming months. We will be joined by a panel of leaders from various industries to discuss the steps they’re taking as they look toward a relaunch strategy.

The Experience Economy is an ongoing provincial study that explores Albertans’ attitudes and behaviours towards live experiences across a variety of sectors.

For more information and to view research results visit stone-olafson.com.