[ X ]

Stories from the Inc.
2017 Learning Network


Focus Issue: Engaging Audiences and/or Building Communities

From a commitment to developing deeper relationships with underserved communities such as francophone youth, Spanish-speakers, newcomers, Indigenous people, and people with visible and invisible disabilities, to a dream of taking an underutilized space and transforming it into a vibrant cultural hub, five new projects are being launched for our 2017 Learning Network.

Click on each company’s logo to read about their initiatives.


Aluna Theatre

<p>Blood Wedding Bodas de Sange Aluna Modern Times co-production. Photo: Brian Damude</p>
<p>RUTAS 2016 Festival, Cabaret Nights. Photo: The Edisons</p>
<p>What I Learned From a Decade of Fear, 2016. Photo: Trevor Schwellnus</p>

Supported Initiative

Aluna Theatre develops, produces, and presents innovative and culturally diverse performance work with a focus on Latin Canadian and women artists. By uniting emerging and professionals, Aluna encourages new hybrids of theatre that evolve from a rich collaboration of experiences and performance traditions.

In recognition of the unique barriers, needs, and potential of the Latin Canadian community of artists and audiences, Aluna Theatre will develop three new artistic outreach ‘channels’ designed to engage its communities and grow its audience base in person, online, and on the radio.


Canadian Opera Company

<p>The Nightingale and Other Short Fables, 2009. Photo: Michael Cooper</p>
<p>Rigoletto, 2011. Photo: Michael Cooper</p>
<p>Artists of the COC Ensemble Studio for 2017/2018. Photo: Gaetz Photography</p>

Supported Initiative

The Canadian Opera Company is the largest producer of opera in Canada and one of the foremost opera companies in North America.

The COC will focus on animating their currently underused space, located at 227 Front Street East. In addition to becoming the home of an expanded Academy, this new cultural hub will showcase activity beyond the COC’s mainstage and allow the COC to leverage its infrastructure to empower emerging artists and organizations and to connect with new audiences. Specific projects to be explored include expanding the COC’s company-in-residence program and delivering a more varied and robust calendar of events, culminating in an Opera Music Festival.


Le Théâtre français de Toronto

<p>Les Zinspirés Cinq sur Cinq. Photo: Marc Lemyre</p>
<p>Les Zinspirés Cinq sur Cinq. Photo: Marc Lemyre</p>
<p>Les Zinspirés Puissance. Photo: Marc Lemyre</p>

Supported Initiative

Established in 1967, Le Théâtre français de Toronto is a professional French-language theatre company that produces and presents classical and original plays to Toronto francophone and Francophile audiences.

The initiative focuses on meeting the needs of a younger and diversified new audience base and, in particular, ethnically diverse communities, new Canadians, and Francophiles of all generations.


Toronto Fringe

<p>Wexford Gleeks at Fringe Launch Party. Photo: Paula Sanderson</p>
<p>Staff and Volunteers. Photo: Katie Nicholson</p>
<p>Inside the Next Stage Tent. Photo: Dahlia Katz</p>

Supported Initiative

The Toronto Fringe produces two important festivals every year: the Toronto Fringe Festival and Next Stage Theatre Festival. Since 1989, the Toronto Fringe has grown into Ontario’s largest theatre festival, welcoming over 105,000 patrons and giving voice to over 1,200 artists annually.

Building on their work to provide better access for deaf and disabled artists, the festival will continue to explore ways to include people living with both visible and invisible disabilities. Their initiatives will include producing signed videos, large print program guides, Braille, access to scripts, and signed, audio described, and relaxed performances.

The Toronto Fringe participated in the inaugural 2013 CrSI cohort to develop a crowdsourcing app, FWYC.ca.



Young People's Theatre

<p>Sultans of The Streets. Photo: Cylla von Tiedemann</p>
<p>James and the Giant Peach. Photo: Cylla von Tiedemann</p>
<p>Summer Drama Camp. Photo: Young People's Theatre</p>

Supported Initiative

The oldest professional theatre company in Toronto, Young People’s Theatre (YPT) has been a national producer and presenter of theatre for young audiences, often partnering with other Canadian and international arts organizations.

YPT’s initiative focuses on the research, design, and implementation of a program of community engagement with newcomers and Indigenous people, through a lens of cultural exchange and reconciliation.

YPT received Strategic Initiatives grants in 2004 and 2012.

The George Cedric Metcalf Charitable Foundation
38 Madison Avenue, Toronto, ON  M5R 2S1