Erin Ball performing at Crippling the Arts at Harbourfront Centre, organized by the British Council, Creative Users Projects, Ryerson University’s School of Disability Studies and Tangled Art + Disability. Photo: Michelle Peek
Four Performing Arts Companies Moving Into Stage 3 of Staging Change 2020

Staging Change is Metcalf’s multi-year strategic funding initiative in the performing arts. Delivered in collaboration with EmcArts, Staging Change provides adaptive learning in support of innovation within performing arts organizations in Toronto.

Staging Change is delivered over four stages, and we are delighted to share the four organizations in Staging Change 2020 that will be moving forward to Stage 3: Jamii Esplanade, Outside the March, Soulpepper Theatre Company, and Tangled Art + Disability.

Stage 3 is focused on providing organizations with the opportunity to test new ways to address a complex challenge each has selected as a priority for their organization. Each company will receive $25,000 to support their work in Stage 3 over a one-year period.

Jamii Esplanade

Jamii (Swahili for “community”) is an arts organization committed to enhancing social cohesion within The Esplanade community in downtown Toronto and beyond. Jamii offers intergenerational programming that creates a sense of belonging and opportunities for social interaction, dialogue, and empowerment. By creating shared memorable arts-based experiences, Jamii brings Esplanadians together to form closer community bonds.

Complex challenge: to explore new pathways to build a sustainable structure in the context of an ever-changing landscape, while staying who we are, embracing our essence, and resisting pressure to be institutionalized.

Outside the March

Outside the March is a theatre company best known for their immersive presentations of new or existing work in unexpected places. Bringing underused spaces into the public eye and welcoming audiences who don’t normally find themselves at the theatre, Outside the March has invited audiences to play in kindergarten classrooms, parade with royalty along the Danforth, tinker in garages, shelter in movie theatres, sleuth over their telephones, and more.

Complex challenge: to embrace more predictive systems for developing our new work, yielding even richer and more surprising creative outcomes.

Soulpepper Theatre Company

Soulpepper is Toronto’s largest not-for-profit theatre company, known for the boldness of its productions, its celebration of vital Canadian voices, and the excellence of its acting ensemble. Founded and guided by artists, Soulpepper has an integrated mission which includes: industry-leading youth and community outreach initiatives; artist training and mentorship programs; and a year-round season including mainstage plays, theatrical concerts, musical performances, and cabarets.

Complex challenge: to thrive as an organization that understands, supports and actively demonstrates our commitment to Radical Inclusion, both within and beyond the walls of the Young Centre, through recognizing and dismantling of exclusionary systems, and by innovating new ways of working.

Tangled Art + Disability

Tangled Art + Disability is boldly redefining how the world experiences art and those who create it by developing, promoting and employing Deaf, Mad & Disabled artists and arts leaders, and by increasing opportunities for all people to experience the arts. Tangled Art + Disability uses the power of art as a transforming medium to create new standards of excellence in the arts by prioritizing inclusivity through accessible curatorial, programming, and art making practices.

Complex challenge: to maintain the integrity of Tangled’s identity and ethos of inter-personal support while developing activities for a hybrid (digital/in-person) world and expanding the influence and engagement of Disability Arts with non-Crip communities.