Summerworks Wrap Up

by Justin Haley

Unfortunately we were on holiday this August and missed SummerWorks but for a festival we love we wanted to take the time and provide you all with the closing press release: 


August 18, 2013, Toronto – Canada’s 23rd annual SummerWorks Performance Festival wrapped up a successful year with an awards ceremony recognizing outstanding artistic achievements at the Closing Night Party, held at the Festival Hub’s Shop Bar (in the Lower Ossington Theatre). Despite funding setbacks, SummerWorks continues to develop its programming and garner a strong audience. This year the festival celebrated a continued strong audience, with a 10% increase in revenues.

“We’re unbelievably pleased and proud of the breadth of amazing experiences at SummerWorks this year. More than ever before, we worked with artists to create groundbreaking shows and memorable experiences. SummerWorks continues to represent abundant talent from across Canada as well as starting to welcome international artists. With so much to discover, we can’t wait to start thinking about SummerWorks 2014,” says Michael Rubenfeld, SummerWorks’ Artistic Producer.  

This year’s SummerWorks offered an array of experiences, with highlights like the innovation of the Music Series with The Wooden Sky Traveling Show and Maylee Todd’s Musical Planetarium, the sold out North American premiere of Schützen, one-of-a-kind experiences in the Live Art Series and the first ever Artists-in-Residence, which featured Sook-Yin Lee, Ben Kamino and Adam Litovitz with How Can I Forget?

All awards are adjudicated by a jury comprised of Dalal Badr, Njo Kong Kie, and Tawiah M’carthy with the exception of the 

NOW Audience Choice Award, which is determined by ballot. The award winners are as follows:

SummerWorks Prize for Production
The prize is a free trip back to the festival next year. All companies presenting new work were eligible.

Late Company directed by Peter Pasyk

The Contra Guys Award for Outstanding New Performance Text
Generously supported by two SummerWorks founders, Benj Gallander and Ben Stadelmann, the $1000 cash award is presented to a performance-maker for an outstanding new work (script or performance text).

7 Important Things by STO Union  
National Theatre School Award for Set or Costume Design
This award, sponsored by the National Theatre School, offers a $750 cash prize to a designer for an outstanding set or costume design.

Birdtown and Swanville for Family Story (photo below)

Buddies in Bad Times Vanguard Award for Risk and Innovation
Sponsored by Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, this $500 cash prize is awarded to an individual or company in recognition of an artistic choice or choices exemplifying innovation and/or artistic risk.
Les Petites Cellules Chaudes for iShow (photo below)
Canadian Stage Award for Direction
$500 cash prize awarded for an outstanding piece of direction at the Festival.
James Long for How to Disappear Completely

The Spotlight Award
Awarded to a featured performer in a SummerWorks show. The winner receives a VIP pass to the Festival next year.

Anthony MacMahon for Wild Dogs on the Moscow Trains
Kat Sandler for Delicacy

The Theatre Centre Emerging Artist Award
$500 cash prize awarded to an artist early in their career who made an artistic impression during the festival.

Ben Wheelwright for girls! girls! girls!
Christo Graham for Entitlement
Daniel Ellis for Maria Gets a New Life 
Jeff Ho for Murderers Confess at Christmastime
Zoe Cleland for girls! girls! girls!
RBC Arts Professional Award
This $1000 cash prize recognizes the work, craft and dedication of an emerging arts professional. This award is made possible with the support of RBC.

Andrea Scott for Eating Pomegranates Naked
Sunny Drake for (photo below)

The NOW Magazine Audience Choice Award
Audience members voted for their favourite SummerWorks production by placing their ticket stub in the NOW Audience Choice box before leaving the theatre. The Winner receives $3000 towards print, social media and online advertisement with NOW magazine. All shows were eligible for this prize.

Late Company by Jordan Tannahill, directed by Peter Pasyk.