November 15, 2017 – CAPACOA announced the winners of the 2017 CAPACOA Awards, recognizing excellence in the field of live performance touring and presenting, during the opening gathering dinner of the 30th CAPACOA Conference, at the National Arts Centre. These awards were sponsored and presented by Re:Sound, a long-time partner of the touring and presenting sector.
Recipients for the 2017 CAPACOA Awards are:
Presenter of the Year
Majdi Bou-Matar is a theatre director, performer and presenter from Lebanon. Majdi immigrated to Canada in 2003 and moved to the Waterloo Region in 2004, where he founded The MT Space (The Multicultural Theatre Space). In 2009, Majdi also founded IMPACT, a biennial theatre festival focused on Indigenous and culturally diverse work from Canada and around the world. The 2017 IMPACT Festival featured 60 performances from New Zealand, Mexico, Tunisia, and from all parts of Canada. This programming was deemed to be of “exceptional quality” and Majdi’s peers considered that “the festival portrayed a unique view of Canadian performance culture unlike any other Canadian festival.” Majdi recently declared: “To me, socially irrelevant theatre is not entertaining at all.” Indeed, IMPACT has become a festival where entertainment and spectacle mix freely with the idea that theatre can change the world.
Touring Agent/Manager of the Year
Cameron Smillie has more than 25 years’ experience in the performing arts world. In 1993, he co-founded the company Live at the Hippo Pool Events, for the purpose of presenting performing arts across southwestern Ontario. In addition, Live at Hippo Pool Events expanded its mandate to provide consulting services across Canada to a range of clients. This includes his current position of Business Manager for Jake’s Gift (Juno Productions). As Director of Touring for Ballet Jörgen, Cameron is an integral part of the company’s success in touring from coast to coast, to reach underserved communities and close to 60,000 people each year. Cameron works in a consultative way with a focus on nurturing and supporting long term relationships with presenters. “He treats the process not as a one-off sales transaction, but is passionate about the presenters being true partners with the artist.”
Touring Artist of the Year
The Tale of a Town by Fixt Point has had a remarkable history, launching as it did at CAPACOA in 2013 and plotting a course towards the Canada 150 celebrations. Lisa Marie DiLiberto, Charles Ketchabaw and the Fixt Point crew have since toured to numerous towns and cities where they have created individual shows for each place, based on gathering hundreds of hours of recorded recollections and sifting them to find the treasure, the heart of the community. They are, as they say themselves, “capturing the collective community memory of our country’s main streets, one story at a time.” In 2016, The Tale of Town toured BC, Nunavut, Yukon and the Northwest Territories, completing the tour of The Tale of a Town to every province and territory. In 2017, the Tale of a Town did a nine-city tour across the country and held a storybooth in Ottawa’s Inspiration Village. Over four months, they interviewed over 600 people from across the country. And the show goes on.
During the evening, the 2017 National Arts Centre Award for distinguished contribution to touring in the performing arts was also presented to the East Coast Music Association. The Award was accepted by Dean Stairs, Board Chair of ECMA.
The CAPACOA Conference continues until November 18. More than 200 delegates – presenters, artists, agents, networks and funders – are anticipated over the course of the four-day event.
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