February 27, 2019 – Performing arts presenters are a vital component of their communities and the overall arts ecology, according to a new research report by the Canadian Arts Presenting Association and Hill Strategies Research.
Vitality and Impact of Arts Presenting is the outcome of a pan-Canadian survey of performing arts presenters and festivals led by a consortium of presenting networks and associations. The report explores presenters’ activities, finances, programming, attendance, community engagement, and purpose.
Survey findings highlight the commitment of presenters to put Canadian artists, and especially in-province artists, on stages – in theatres and concert halls, as well as in non-conventional places such as workplaces, libraries and community centres. Notably, the survey found that many presenters are deeply committed to reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. Among other positive findings, three in four Canadian presenters presented Indigenous artists in the last year.
The report also provides new information on the range of community engagement activities that presenters deliver, and their profound impact on audience members and communities. 99% of respondents are involved in arts engagement activities such as “pre- or post-show discussions”, “participatory arts experiences” and “art for social change”.
Many presenters provided stories illustrating their connections with their audiences and their communities, such as lighting up the eyes (and dancing shoes) of an attendee with dementia, making deep and moving connections with audience members at an Indigenous performance, and facilitating a little bit of magic in people’s lives when presenting little-known performers.
“This report shows clearly what those of us who work in the field see on a daily basis: performing arts presenting provides both literal stages for artists across Canada, and creates a stage for increasingly meaningful connections between community members,” observes Natalie Dewan, Communications and Membership Services Coordinator at Ontario Presents and member of the Vitality and Impact Advisory Committee.
Survey results will be presented and discussed during a web conference on March 14th at noon (EDT). This will be an opportunity to explore the findings as they relate to the presenting practice and to cultural policies. Register
We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts.
About the Vitality and Impact of Arts Presenting
Vitality and Impact of Arts Presenting is a pan-Canadian survey of performing arts presenters and festivals led collaboratively by twenty-one presenting networks and conducted by Hill Strategies Research. This research initiative is intended contribute to performance measurement in the sector, to strategic watch over the health of the sector, and to advocacy. It builds on research evidence gathered since The Value of Presenting, a landmark research initiative conducted in 2011-2013.
For more information about the initiative and for communications resources, visit the Vitality and Impact web page.
For inquiries about the Vitality and Impact of Arts Presenting, contact Frédéric Julien, Director of Research and Development, CAPACOA.
The Canadian Arts Presenting Association/l’Association canadienne des organismes artistiques (CAPACOA) serves the performing arts touring and presenting community through its commitment to integrate the performing arts into the lives of all Canadians. CAPACOA fosters skills development, knowledge sharing, policy advancement, collaboration and innovation within the performing arts community and society at large.
About Canada Council for the Arts
The Canada Council for the Arts is Canada’s public arts funder, with a mandate to foster and promote the study and enjoyment of, and the production of works in, the arts. The Council champions and invests in artistic excellence through a broad range of grants, services, prizes and payments to professional Canadian artists and arts organizations. Its work ensures that excellent, vibrant and diverse art and literature engages Canadians, enriches their communities and reaches markets around the world. The Council also raises public awareness and appreciation of the arts through its communications, research and arts promotion activities. It is responsible for the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, which promotes the values and programs of UNESCO in Canada to contribute to a more peaceful, equitable and sustainable future. The Canada Council Art Bank operates art rental programs and helps further public engagement with contemporary arts.