Activities 2009 – 2019

September 2009. Presentation and Workshop at Ontario Contact: charles c. smith contributed a presentation and workshop to the 2009 Ontario Contact event. This workshop drew close to 40 presenters and stimulated dialogue and information sharing on demographic changes, diversity in artistic standards and traditions, interesting initiatives being implemented to address these challenges and opportunities to do so in partnership through the CPPAMO/CCI project.

January 2010. Town Hall: This event was co-sponsored by the University of Toronto (Scarborough) and attended by about 100 individuals. It included a panel session, a keynote address by Sara Diamond (President of OCAD) as well as several workshops, captured subsequently in a meeting report. The event also showcased two dance performances by Kevin Ormsby of Kashedance and Sampradaya Dance Creations.

June 2010. Town Hall: CPAMO partnered with the Kitchener-Waterloo Region Coalition of Performing Artists (COPA) and Magnetic North to convene a Town Hall. The event included a plenary and two workshops, and was attended by over 150 people.

The session aimed to facilitate learning and relationship building between creation-
based culturally specific performing artists and presenters, and focused on creating homes and audiences for performance both within and without the conventional presenting networks and festival circuits. The panelists for this session were: Majdi Bou-Matar (The MT Space/IMPACT, Kitchener–Waterloo), Shivani Lakhanpal (Toronto International Film Festival), Eric Lariviere (Markham Theatre for Performing Arts), ahdri zhina mandiela (b current, Toronto) and Helen Yung (Culture Days, Montreal). The session was facilitated by charles c. smith (CPPAMO, Toronto).

Building on the above-noted plenary session, a hands-on workshop offered ways to renew presenting practices and attract new audiences. While it is crucial to bring in work that appeals to the cultural communities in our neighbourhoods, a key focus of this workshop was the importance of not making curatorial assumptions that create ghettos for intercultural art. Facilitators: Shivani Lakhanpal (Toronto International Film Festival), Eric Lariviere (Markham Theatre for Performing Arts), Helen Yung (Culture Days, Montreal) charles c. smith (CPPAMO, Toronto).

The second workshop focused on teaching an audience what to expect from artist/presenters and how they search out the work of others. This session was led by
Majdi Bou-Matar (The MT Space, K–W), Brenda Leadley (Presentation House, North Vancouver), ahdri zhina mandiela (b current, Toronto), Janet Munsil (Intrepid Theatre, Victoria) and Marcus Youssef (neworld theatre, Vancouver.)

June 2010. Workshop on Audience Development (#1): This full day session examined the importance and extent of community-based organizations in diverse communities and how to work with them in attracting racialized communities to the arts.

Held at Hart House at the University of Toronto and attended by over 80 people, this event examined demographic changes taking place across Ontario and the implications these changes are having for connecting with communities.

The workshop included presentations by Professors Myer Siemiatycki, Sandeep Agrawal and Shuguang Wang related to data on immigrant settlement and the capacities and interests of immigrants, followed by facilitated discussions to carry this discussion further and to learn from each other what presenters and performers are doing to connect with these growing communities, what’s working and where there is need for assistance.

 September 2010. Culture Days Ontario:  Convening of performance event in partnership with the Coalition of Performing Artists (COPA) of Kitchener-Waterloo, as part of Culture Days in Ontario. This event, attended by over 80 people, featured local musicians, poets and theatre artists and was held at the Conrad Centre for Performing Arts.

November 2010. Town Hall &Workshop: Town Hall convened in partnership with CAPACOA and held at CAPACOA annual meeting. A keynote address was given by Governor-General Award-winning poet George Eliot Clarke; and presentations were given by Shahin Sayadi (Artistic Director, One Light Theatre, Halifax), Jeanne Holmes (Chair, CanDance Network) and Sandra Laronde (Artistic Director, Red Sky Performance).

Workshop on Audience Development (#2): Further, two workshops were held, which represented the second workshop on audience development.

Lastly, the event included dance performances by the Collective of Black Artists (COBA), Ipsita Nova and Kaha:wi Dance Theatre.

November 2010. Workshop on Audience Development (#3):  This event focused on the history of colonization and important developments in the history of Indigenous artists, e.g., the important work of Daphne Odjig, Thomson Highway, Alannis Obansawin and others whose practice was both advocacy for art created by Indigenous peoples and resistance to colonization. The session also discussed strategies on partnering with Indigenous artists and arts organizations with examples: from Harbourfront Cultural Centre and Planet IndigenUS, a multi-disciplinary arts festival coordinated through a partnership between Harbourfront and the Woodlands Cultural Centre located on Six Nations; Soundstreams work with the Thomson Highway opera, Pimweeotin, and the Ottawa Art Gallery’s ongoing commitment to present Indigenous art through development of long term relationships and collaboration with Indigenous artists and arts organizations. In addition, there was also a presentation on information gathering practices of immigrant, racialized and Indigenous communities.

January 2011. Workshop on Audience Development (#4) was held at Markham Theatre. This full day session built on the previous workshops and provided an opportunity for presenters and performers to discuss common issues and concerns related to staging performances by Indigenous and racialized artists. This workshop involved presentations by general managers of performing arts venues who discussed what presenters need to do to set up a season’s schedule, the criteria and methods they use to select performances and how performers can build a relationship with presenters. A number of performers also made presentations on how their companies create their work, the influences (traditional, modern, contemporary) on their work and how it fits into Canadian culture today.

March 2011. Workshop on Audience Development (#5) was held in partnership with the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus Cultural Pluralism in the Arts Program. It focused on audience engagement studies, results and ongoing work in building audiences from diverse communities, particularly Indigenous and racialized. The session involved presentations by Creative Trust, Creative Mosaics (Scarborough Arts Council), the Neighbourhood Arts Network (Toronto), CCI/CPPAMO, Kashedance and Menaka Thakker.

June 2011. Launch Event with Workshop: Toolkit on Pluralism in the Arts – Evidence for Change: CPAMO developed a toolkit for presenters and artists to refer to as they move forward with implementing the knowledge, values and new approaches they have learned to embrace cultural pluralism in the arts.

Issues related to the following areas were addressed in the workshop:

  1. Employment and Professional Development, e.g., staff recruitment, training and promotional opportunities for individuals of diverse backgrounds;
  2. Programming and Curatorial Decision-making, e.g., assessing productions from diverse communities as well as the collaboration with, and between these communities in programming development and promotion;
  3. Community Engagement, e.g., making connections and building constructive relationship with organizations and community groups from Indigenous and racialized communities;
  4. Audience Development, e.g., marketing and outreach in diverse communities, and various means of effective communications; and
  5. Governance, e.g., the development and involvement of governance diverse communities in organizational decision-making, as well as the cultural pluralist awareness and practices of people in governing positions.

In each of these sections, there are summaries of some case studies and references to others. These cases highlight what arts organizations have done and/or are doing to address the issue under consideration. The toolkit further includes comprehensive annotated bibliography for reference. The toolkit was also made available online: https://sites.google.com/site/cpamotoolkit/2-structure-of-the-tool-kit

September 2011. Town Hall: IMPACT CPAMO participated in the planning and implementation of the MT Space biennial IMPACT Theatre and Performing Arts Festival held in September 2011. As part of this project, CPAMO also presented two showcases.

October 2011. Workshop on Cultural Competence and Curatorial Development (#1): Beginning with a presentation by Mimi Beck of the CanDance Network which regularly co-commissions work, this workshop involved all presenters and performers in a discussion on what is needed to develop guidelines and criteria for the selection of presenter-performer partnerships and the co-commissioning of performer works by presenters. The guidelines and criteria for presenter-performer partnerships determined the purpose of the partnerships, the role to be played by performers and presenters, the desired outcomes and timeframes for implementation. Regarding co-commissioning, this session will develop the application/selection process, including criteria, for the co-commissioning of performers work and the intentions of presenters to present the work within their communities, share it with other Ontario presenters and promote the work in other national and international forums. Once the criteria for co-commissioning performer work has been established, the presenters and performers agreed upon a jury to review and select the work.

November 2011. Workshop on Cultural Competence and Curatorial Development (#2): Beginning with a presentation by Patty Jarvis of Prologue to the Performing Arts, this workshop discussed the importance of arts education in schools and the importance of such education to building communities. Following the presentation, this workshop paired presenters and performing arts organizations based on the guidelines and criteria drafted at the first session and including ideas related to arts education in schools.

December 2011. Workshop on Cultural Competence and Curatorial Development (#3): Beginning with a presentation by Skye Louis and Leah Burns of the Neighbourhood Arts Network/Toronto Arts Foundation, this workshop focused on the importance of community engagement as an integral component of building audiences amongst Indigenous and racialized communities. The workshop also provided opportunities for presenters and performers to begin to share the results of their work, network with each other and receive information on other similar collaborative projects within Canada and from other countries. The latter were provided by CPAMO Project Lead, charles c. smith, based on research into ‘best practices’ of audience development with Indigenous and racialized communities.

April 2012. CPAMO supported a MASC (Multicultural Arts in Schools and Communities) and Coalition of New Canadians for Arts and Culture (CNCAC) performance.

June 2012. CPAMO contributed a presentation by charles c. smith at the CARFAC annual meeting; to address matters of concern to Indigenous and racialized visual artists.

June 2012. Launch of Publication Pluralism in the Arts in Canada: A Change is Gonna Come, published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives in May 2012.
This launch was part of the Community Cultural Impresarios’ annual meeting.
Compiled and edited by charles c. smith, this volume reflects the increasing role of Indigenous and racialized artists in Canada and “chronicles a contemporary dialogue and points in the direction the […] arts must go.” (Lata Pada, Sampradaya).
The book is comprised of:

  • Nine essays arguing for or showing examples for a pluralistic expansion of the
    base of valued knowledge and artistic expression in dance, theatre, literature, and music; authors including award-winning poet George Elliot Clarke and award-winning presenter Ajay Heble (Guelph Jazz Festival), and a number of performing artists such as Natasha Bakht, Kevin A. Ormsby, Shahin Sayadi, Charmaine Headley, Helen Yung and the catalysts for the NAN toolkit, Leah Burns and Skye Louis.
  • Three toolkits on promoting cultural pluralism and community engagement –
    provided by CPAMO (see above), by the Independent Media Arts Alliance/National Indigenous Media Arts Collective, and by the Neighbourhood Arts Network (NAN) of the Toronto Arts Foundation.

September 2012. Town Hall on Pluralism in the Arts – Ottawa: This full day event examined Indigenous and Racialized Communities in Ottawa and Implications for Arts and Culture. It provided an opportunity for Ottawa artists and arts organizations to discuss the demographic changes in the Ottawa region and to share strategies for engaging these changing racialized communities and building audiences for and from them.

This first Town Hall in Ottawa focused on the characteristics of Indigenous and racialized communities and relationship to community engagement and audience development. This full day session involved presentations by Cathy Shepertycki (City of Ottawa Cultural Services), Professor Brian Ray (University of Ottawa) and Jerry Longboat (Artistic Director, Circadia Indigena).

These panelists addressed issues related to Indigenous communities and their engagement in the arts as well as on racialized and immigrant communities, their interests in the arts and their social capital. This was followed by facilitated discussions on the importance and extent of community-based organizations in Indigenous and racialized communities and how to work with them.

Organizations involved included, among others, MASC (Multicultural Arts in Schools and Communities), Coalition of New Canadians for Arts and Culture, the Ottawa Art Gallery, Shenkman Centre for the Arts and Centre Point Theatre, One World Dialogue, CARFAC National, and the Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership.

September 2012. CPAMO co-sponsored the One World Dialogue Peace Art Exhibit at Shenkman Centre for the Arts Ottawa.

October 2012. CPAMO co-sponsored the Flato Markham Theatre’s full day conference Diversity in Dance. This conference featured as panelists CPAMO Roundtable members from Little Pear Garden Theatre Collective and Dance Immersion.

Markham Theatre Dance Forum

Group session at Diversity in Dance conference in Markham

November 2012 – February 2013. Capacity Building Workshops in partnership with Creative Trust, Neighbourhood Arts Network and Young Associates.
These workshops were designed to help participants optimize the use of their database for advancing marketing and fundraising. 60 people attended. The workshops were funded by Creative Trust with support from the Trillium Foundation, and co-sponsored by the Neighbourhood Arts Network, and delivered by Young Associates.

Sessions delivered by Young Associates were held in November and December 2012 and repeated in January and February 2013. Each session focused on a variety of aspects of database management and session participants learned how to manage data, research databases, creating organizational consistencies about retrieving/entering data and central management of databases.

Topics included:
• Singing from the same songbook: Harmonizing database and accounting software
• Garbage into Gold: Housekeeping for your database
• Managing data: Policies and procedures for populating your database
• Researching your database: Advancing marketing and fundraising
• Managing up, down and across: A peer exchange about buy-in on database investment, training and policies

December 2012. “Fall in Love with the Arts Speed Dating” Volunteer Recruitment Session: CPAMO convened a volunteer recruitment session (co-hosted by COBA) at the Daniel’s Spectrum in Regent Park. This event matched individuals interested in volunteering with CPAMO Creators’ Roundtable members who were looking to recruit volunteers for specific functions within their organizations attracted. The event provided opportunities for the Roundtable members to showcase their organization and to attract needed volunteers. Close to 40 potential volunteers attended.

December 2012. Workshop: Expanding Capacity for Connections: This workshop was presented in partnership with Tech Soup Canada, and was designed to explore emerging trends in online meeting capabilities for artists and arts organizations.

The workshop was designed to build/increase capacities for utilizing Google+ Hangout with demonstrated features such as the video chat, screen sharing, document collaboration, etc. Participants were asked to brainstorm scenarios where this would be applicable and to practice using online meeting tools during the session.

January 2013. Report on Pluralism in Dance: During the fall of 2012, the Canadian Dance Assembly (CDA) worked with Cultural Pluralism in the Arts Movement Ontario (CPAMO) on to address issues related to pluralism in dance across Canada. This was one of the key focal points of the CDA’s 2012 National Conference which took place in Ottawa in October 2012.

The CDA commissioned CPAMO to provide a report and recommendations. In January 2013, charles c. smith delivered a report on the state of pluralism in dance to the Canadian Dance Assembly (CDA). The findings demonstrated that dance artists from racialized backgrounds confront inequities in terms of their access to resources, performance opportunities and thus funding/incomes. The report recommended that the CDA establish an Advisory Council on Pluralism which was adopted by the CDA Board. Subsequently, CPAMO’s ED and Program manager helped establish a standing pluralism committee which is still in place and in which CPAMO remains involved

February 2013. Workshop Smart Data: Getting your Data Working for You (Ottawa). This full day session was delivered by Young Associates in partnership with Creative Trust and CPAMO.

The session featured a seminar from Young Associates designed to provide an overview of good database management practices for the arts and cultural sector. The seminar covered goal setting, policies and procedures, and tips and tricks, and was geared to those working in both a spreadsheet or relational database environment; as well as a peer exchange session where participants were able to share best practices, challenges, goals, and questions around data management and discuss case studies presented by the instructors.

February 2013. CPAMO co-sponsered Circadia Indigena’s Winter Festival: This weekend-long Winter Festival coordinated by Circadia Indigena as the first First Nations artists gathering in the National Capital Region (Ottawa). This event featured storytelling, music, dance, video/film and panel presentations by Indigenous artists such as Ron Naganok, Leanne Simpson, Louise Proffet-Leblanc and others.

March 2013. Workshop Connecting the Dots – A path to effective technological and administrative practices: This final (live and online) workshop was facilitated by CPAMO. It pulled together all of the information provided in the respective capacity-building workshops since the fall of 2012. it was designed as a working session to further explore the applicability of the skills gained in the original workshops in the CPAMO members’ own organizations.

March 2013. Community Engagement in the Arts: CPAMO convened a gathering with the purpose to reinforce the work already taking place in communities across Ontario, highlight what we’ve learned, and explore what we need to do to build on this foundation. The event featured a keynote presentation by Sandra Laronde of Red Sky Performance and panel presentations by Robert Daly, Pan Am Games, Nadia Caidi, Professor of Information Management at U. of T., Jini Stolk of Creative Trust and Bea Pisano of Aluna Theatre.

April 2013. CPAMO co-sponsored the Latino Film Festival Alucine.

April 2013. Dancing in Diversity: As part of the Canadian Dance Assembly National Dance Awareness Week, CPAMO, the Canadian Dance Assembly (CDA), and Dancemakers presented a unique showcase of culturally diverse dance artists, featuring ten dance artists/companies: Red Sky Performance, Sampradaya Dance Creations, Sheyenne Productions, Little Pear Garden Theatre Collective; Sashar Zarif, Olga Barrios, Kashedance, Lucy Rupert/Nova Dance, Roshanak Jaberi, and Jasmyn Fyffe.

April 2013. CPAMO Advisory Committee established to contribute to its project proposal Strengthening Voices: Advancing Pluralism in the Arts Through Collaborations and Resource Sharing.

Some of the members of this Advisory Committee included: Jeff Melanson of the Banff Centre, Tim Jones of Artscape, Kathleen Sharpe of Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund, Patty Jarvis of Prologue to the Performing Arts, Mimi Beck of CanDance Network, Carol Beauchamp of Theatre Ontario, Cindy Yip of Little Pear Garden Theatre Collective, Charmaine Headley of Collective of Black Artists.

May 2013. CPAMO co-sponsored the Red Revue of the Association of Native Development in the Performing and Visual Arts. This event featured a performance and cd release by Cheri Maracle.

May 2013. CPAMO coordinated a panel on pluralism in theatre with Theatre Ontario. Convened at Theatre Ontario’s annual meeting, this panel featured the following speakers: Yvette Nolan (former Artistic Director of Native Earth Performing Arts); Ravi Jain of why not theatre; Trevor Schwellnuss of Aluna Theatre; and Soheil Parsa of Modern Times Theatre.

June 2013. Workshop: Crowdsourcing Who: Understanding online Fundraising Strategies. CPAMO teamed up with Business for the Arts and Sudarshan Jagganathan to deliver a workshop on effective alternatives to traditional fundraising.

Topics included:
• What guides your sourcing?
• Who is the crowd?
• Have they interacted with you?
• How big is your ask?
• Are many small fishes easier to catch than a few big ones?

June 2013. Town Hall in Ottawa: Collaborations, Partnerships and Resource Sharing: Advancing Pluralism in Tough Times. As part of the first Welcome Ottawa Week coordinated by the City of Ottawa and the Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership, CPAMO convened a volunteer recruitment event and a Town Hall on Collaboration in the Arts. The Town Hall focused on collaborations in the arts to promote pluralism and inclusion. The session consisted of a keynote presentation, panel discussion and workshops. The keynote was given by renowned dancer and choreographer Natasha Bakht and the panelists were journalist and arts administrator Lisa Zanyk (Arts Centre Programmer, City of Ottawa) and Rima Zabian (ED of Under One Roof, an exciting new registered non-profit organization that houses other non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) and progressive individuals created to meet their needs and get them out of isolation. UOR is dedicated to creating, for downtown Ottawa, an innovative workspace that, over the next few years, will house dozens of NGO’s and progressive individuals to pool resources and foster an environment of collaboration, learning, and multi-sectoral knowledge-sharing.
The volunteer recruitment event featured panelists Will Coukell of Volunteer Ottawa and Gabriel Jean-Simon of Business for the Arts.

June 2013. CPAMO co-sponsored with Luminato an artist meet-and-greet session featuring Long Shen Dao, a Chinese reggae band from Beijing contracted by Luminato, and the showing of the film Rasta: A Soul’s Journey that featured a journey of discovery by Donisha Williams, granddaughter of Bob Marley.

September 2013. CPAMO co-sponsored the IMPACT Festival 2013 coordinated by MT SPACE in Kitchener-Waterloo.

October 2013. Workshop Social Media – Making Sense of it all: This workshop was presented in collaboration with the Black Chick Media Group. It addressed the constantly changing nature of social media and its use in the everyday reality of the Arts and was designed to help participants better understand and utilize Social Media and build a robust Social Media Strategy. Centered around when and where to engage and understanding Socials, Big 6 and what they’re good for- (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest)it also addressed the experiential review leading to the creation of a bolder social media strategy, being clear on social goals, learning ways of designing a strategy for results, and content marketing.

November 2013. Town Hall Collaborations and Resource Sharing (Ottawa): The event held on June 29, 2013 was deemed so important that participants wanted a follow-up which was held on November 19, 2013. The keynote for this session was provided by Audrey Churgin, Executive Director of MASC (Multicultural Arts in Schools and Communities). Audrey was joined by Peter Honeywell, Executive Director or Arts Ottawa, and Nancy Oakley, Arts Administrator.

Audrey led the presentation with a summary of a major report commissioned by MASC in 2009 and completed in 2011. Peter Honeywell and Nancy Oakley contributed their perspectives to this ground-breaking report and its relevance to the Ottawa arts communities.After an open discussion on the keynote, there were presentations made on the theme of collaboration by: Jerry Longboat (Circadia Indigena) regarding the efforts to coordinate and present the first Aboriginal Winter Festival in Ottawa; Rima Zabian (Under One Roof) regarding the intention of this physical space to offer areas for artists to meet and work;Jaime Koebbel (Independent Artist) regarding her work with the National Arts Centre on the exhibit of 2013; and April Britski (CARFAC National) regarding the availability of affordable legal services for Ottawa-based artists.

As a result of the session, those present agreed to develop a shared calendar of activities and promote each other’s programs; convene 2 Town Halls in 2014 to further the conversation and develop an action plan, sharing information about the Canadian Arts Coalition’s advocacy toolkit.

December 2013. Workshop Marketing Deck Fundamentals & Importance of Bilingual Marketing:  In collaboration with Business for the Arts, this workshop was designed to help participants to effectively use strategic information of their organization to create effective messaging that can help prospect, and secure investment from potential corporate and individual sponsors.

It further addressed the topic of effective communications for non-English/French speaking audiences as artists and arts organizations are responding to the changes in Canadian demographics

December 2013. “Fall in Love with the Arts Speed Dating” Volunteer Recruitment Session. CPAMO convened this event in partnership with Business for the Arts, Maytree Foundation’s DiverseCity onBoard, and the Neighbourhood Arts Network.The event matched individuals interested in volunteering with CPAMO Creators’ Roundtable members who were looking to recruit volunteers for specific functions within their organizations. The event provided opportunities for the Roundtable members to showcase their organization and to attract needed volunteers.

This event was co-hosted by CPAMO Roundtable member COBA (Collective of Black Artists) and was the fourth annual Fall in Love with the Arts [formerly Spring Fling] event.

February 2014. Workshop: Making a successful pitch: Session for its Roundtable members and others interested in learning best approaches to making a ‘pitch’ to presenters to stage their works. Over the past years, CPAMO Roundtable members such as Manifesto, KasheDance, FuGen Asian Theatre, Sampradaya Dance Creations,
IMAGINATIVE Film Festival, Red Sky Performance, South Asian Visual Arts Collective, why not theatre and others have made successful ‘pitches’ to Luminato, University of Toronto Scarborough, Hart House, the Art Gallery of Ontario, Rose Theatre (Brampton) and other venues. Such a session would pair the aforementioned CPAMO members with the presenters across the GTA. Speakers included Lata Pada, Sampradaya Dance Creations; Naomi Campbell, Luminato Festival; Ronnie Brown, Oakville Centre for the Arts; Ravi Jain, why not theatre; Daniel Northway-Frank, ImagiNative Film Festival; and Eric Lariviere, Flato Markham Theatre.

October 2015. Launch Event for Report: Thinking Collaboratively, Acting Collectively: Creating and Operating a Collaborative Learning Community for Indigenous and Racialized Artists in Ontario. Responding to the current challenges of retaining status as a stand-alone, non-profit arts organization (requiring too many resources in the organization, and growth in number or arts organizations has long outstripped growth of funding), CPAMO commissioned Jane Marsland to develop this report, for which she examined the available literature, a CPAMO member survey, and the findings of two focus group sessions and three advisory committee meetings on the subject.

Recommendations included capacity-building workshops and the creation of online platform to provide easy access to a range of tools for collaboration and promote a sharing economy. The report emphasized that this is a new area for the arts, and that more substantive research will be needed on the scope of racialized and Indigenous artists and arts organizations. This launch event included panel discussions as well as artistic showcases.

October 2015 – April 2016. Workshop Series on Collaborative Practices: 7 full day workshops designed to develop participants’ knowledge of collaborative concepts, strategies and evidence-based benefits and strategies; therefore, enabling participants to build collaborative practices between artists and between artists and presenters. NEW ground in the arts at the time, and this initiative was seen as urgently needed to firstly create a stronger community, and secondly, establish best practices for sustainability, and the scale, development and contribution of artists and arts organizations, respectively.
The workshops included presentations, facilitated panel discussions and small group work.

1. Workshop: Creating creative collaborations: KasheDance & COBA. Oct 2015.
Topics included:
• Creating a contract collectively
• Collaborative agreements
• Maintaining and nurturing the relationships
• Meaningful collaborations
• Value of investing in collaborations
• Time commitments
• Space for intergenerational collaborations: Mentor next generation
• Sharing resources

2. Workshop: Building Collaborative Practices: Oakville Centre for the Arts. Nov 2015.
Topics included:
• Understand presenters’ expectations
• Collaborative transparency
• Building relationships
• Creating communication strategies
• Debrief, follow-up and impact statement
• Make it fun!

3. Workshop: Curating Collaborative Performances and Engagements: Aluna Theatre/Pan American Routes. Dec 2015.
Topics included:
• Develop common themes
• Funding & fundraising
• Audience development and engagement
• Timing and logistics
– Timing of grants
– Responsibility for rehearsal space, design, recordings, promotional materials,
touring logistics if applicable, permits, visa etc.
– Utilizing internships
• Follow up and evaluation

4. Workshop: Collaborations in Practice Scenarios: Flato Markham Theatre. Feb 2016. (Following this event, the presenter had a number of the CPAMO Roundtable artists booked.)
Topics included:
• Negotiating space
• Understanding program development, promotion and education
• Consulting with community/community engagement
• Defining success
• Open up networks and maximize visibility
• The key success factors

5. Learning Circle I: Facilitated by CPAMO’s Executive Director. Feb 2016.
• Review and discussion of project participants’ ideas and draft proposals for
collaborative projects; to assist them in finalizing the respective project plans.

6. Learning Circle II: Facilitated by CPAMO’s Executive Director. Mar 2016.
• Review and discussion of project participants’ ideas and draft proposals for
collaborative projects; to assist them in finalizing the respective project plans.

7. Learning Circle III: Facilitated by CPAMO’s Executive Director. Apr 2016.
• Review and discussion of project participants’ ideas and draft proposals for
collaborative projects; to assist them in finalizing the respective project plans.

February 2016. Coordinating National Arts Services and Canada Council for the Arts Annual Meeting: Organisation and facilitation of annual meeting and exchange between NASO representatives and Canada Council for the arts.

This is an important annual meeting between representatives of National Arts Services Organizations and Canada Council for the Arts: It brings together representatives of about 60 national organizations to discuss such issues as equity, digital technology and impact assessment/measures for arts organizations. The Coordinating Committee included: Canadian Dance Assembly, Stage Left, Federation Culturelle Canadienne Francais, Ad Hoc Assembly Canadian Crafts Council, and the Canadian Museums and Galleries Association.

May 2016. The Gathering: Arts Organizations Promoting Equity/Pluralism: This is a regularly held public forum convened by CPAMO to provide artists and arts organizations opportunities to share with and learn from each other regarding issues, concerns, actions to promote pluralism in the arts.

January 2017. Launch: Tilling the Field: Unearthing Collaborative Practices in the Arts: In follow-up to Jane Marsland’s 2015 report and findings, CPAMO (Kevin Ormsby and Vanessa Harris) conducted extensive research into arts practices that supports and enables pluralistic arts practices to be sustained.

The resulting report provides tools, process plans, definitions and evidence-based examples of collaborations in the arts with Indigenous and racialized artists/arts organizations.It was launched in a public forum with panel discussions and with presentations by arts organizations working in collaborative practices

November 2017, February 2016 – June 2016. CPAMO-POC: Needs Assessment and Fact Finding on Pluralism/Organizational Change. This process started with monthly information gathering sessions designed to establish a baseline, sharing with/learning from each other to assess their strengths and needs to develop and implement equity and pluralism initiatives, and develop an achievable action plan for each organization.

Using the information and questions emerging from our first meeting, each facilitator was assigned to participating organizations with the directive of supporting that organization’s engagement over the first phase of the project. Out of this, working groups were established, facilitated by charles c. smith, Kevin A. Ormsby, and Shula Strassfeld, respectively.

Participants included: Media Arts Network Ontario, Ontario Association of Art Galleries, Ontario Presents, CARFAC Ontario, Theatre Ontario, Toronto Association of Performing Arts, CanDance Network, Dancer Transition Resource Centre, Canadian Dance Assembly, WorkinCulture, The Writers Union of Canada, Playwrights’ Guild, Toronto Association for the Performing Arts, Orchestras Canada, Opera.ca.

May 2017. The Gathering: Impact Assessment in the Arts and Pluralism: This was a public forum organized to provide artists and arts organizations opportunities to share with and learn from each other regarding issues, concerns, actions to promote pluralism in the arts. There were 24 arts organizations making presentations at this, e.g., PACT, Playwrights Guild of Canada, Dance Umbrella Ontario, Prologue to the Performing Arts, Canadian Dance Assembly, Toronto Association for the Performing Arts, SKETCH, Theatre Centre, and others. Representatives from 40 arts organizations attended. The event also showcased performances by Whitney French (spoken word), Victoria Mata Soledad (dancer), Yui Ugai (dancer) and Ronald Taylor (dancer).

September 2017. CPAMO-POC Educational Session: Leading from the Inside. Co-facilitator: Ontario Presents. Following the Needs Assessment sessions earlier in the year, CPAMO convened and co-facilitated educational events which focused on organizational leadership and personal responsibility to begin the process of organizational change to further pluralism/equity in the respective organisations.

Topics included:
• Advancing culturally diverse leadership within ASOs
• Discover/working with strengths
• Strategic thinking frameworks
• Tools for goal setting

October 2017. CPAMO-POC Educational Session: Community Engagement. Co-facilitator: Playwrights’ Guild of Canada. Following the Needs Assessment sessions earlier in the year, CPAMO convened and co-facilitated educational events which focused on organizational leadership and personal responsibility to begin the process of organizational change to further pluralism/equity in the respective organisations.

Topics included:
• Understand your worldview
• History lesson: Massey Commission
• Exploring common Ground: Mass culture/Mobilisation culturelle
• Resources required for effective community engagement

November 2017. CPAMO-POC Educational Session: Action Planning. Co-facilitator: CPAMO. Following the Needs Assessment sessions earlier in the year, CPAMO convened and co-facilitated educational events which focused on organizational leadership and personal responsibility to begin the process of organizational change to further pluralism/equity in the respective organisations.

December 2017. CPAMO-POC Educational Session: Conflict Resolution & Cultural Mediation. Co-facilitators: Sheila Wilmot and Clayton Windatt. Following the Needs Assessment sessions earlier in the year, CPAMO convened and co-facilitated educational events which focused on organizational leadership and personal responsibility to begin the process of organizational change to further pluralism/equity in the respective organisations.

Topics included:

Conflict Resolution (Sheila Wilmot)
• Recognizing conflict
• Creativity in responding to conflict
• Active Listening: A critical skill
• Disputes and diversity vs tokenism
• Cultural Competency vs appropriation
• Organizational policies
• Collaborative conflict resolution practices: Negotiation and mediation

Cultural Mediation (Clayton Windatt)
• Communication beyond mere motives and benefits
• Representation and terminology
• Understand that marginalized groups may challenge a peer who engages on
their own with a powerful organization: Prevalence of suspicion of tokenization
• Engaging marginalized groups: Shared space for all
• Challenges around educating:
– Forming personal connection vs. formally representing one’s marginalized community
– Asking questions vs. asking for advice
• Role of a cultural mediator

December 2017. National Arts Services and Canada Conference for the Arts Annual Meeting. Organisation and facilitation of annual meeting and exchange between NASO representatives and Canada Council for the arts.
This is an annual meeting between representatives of National Arts Services Organizations and Canada Council for the Arts. It brings together representatives of about 60 national organizations to discuss such issues as equity, digital technology and impact assessment/measures for arts organizations. Coordinating Committee included: Canadian Dance Assembly, Stage Left, Federation Culturelle Canadienne Francais, Ad Hoc Assembly Canadian Crafts Council, Canadian Museums and Galleries Association.

January 2018. CPAMO-POC Educational Session: Inclusion in the Creative Workplace: Recruitment and Retention. Co-facilitator: Workin Culture. Following the Needs Assessment sessions earlier in the year, CPAMO convened and co-facilitated educational events which focused on organizational leadership and personal responsibility to begin the process of organizational change to further pluralism/equity in the respective organisations.

Topics for this event include:
• Recognizing and identifying relevant resources to increase capacity to be more inclusive in workplace strategies, practices and culture
• Finding talent – take your time
• Managing talent
• Accessibility
• Inclusive leadership
• Practical applications
• Action planning

January 2018. CPAMO-POC Educational Session: Mentoring. Co-facilitators: Ontario Association of Art Galleries, WorkinCulture.
Following the Needs Assessment sessions earlier in the year, CPAMO convened and co-facilitated educational events which focused on organizational leadership and personal responsibility to begin the process of organizational change to further pluralism/equity in the respective organisations.

Topics for this event include:
• Example of Mentorship Initiative (OAAG)
– Matching: Culturally diverse arts professionals being mentored by senior arts managers to help them transition into leadership positions in public art galleries across the province. Mentorships last 9-12 months.
– Learning: Two workshops on leadership and cultural pluralism in the public art gallery were presented and open to all registrants.
– Documenting: Website with resources and knowledge from this project
• Principles of Mentoring Program (WIC)
– Traits required: Mentee and Mentor
– Key long-term benefits for Mentee
– Framework and structure
– Recommended resources

April 2018. CPAMO-POC Educational Session: Action Planning. Facilitators: CPAMO. Following the facilitated educational sessions on beginning process of organizational change to further pluralism/equity in the respective organisations, CPAMO facilitated a working session on action planning.

May 2018. The Gathering – Pluralism in Arts Practices: Contemporary Intersections.  CPAMO, Aboriginal Curatorial Collective, Small World Music/Polyphonic Ground, Humber College, Feminist Art Collective and OCAD University collaborated to address pluralism in the arts. Held over three days, this symposium showcased artists through performances, visual arts exhibitions, plenary sessions aimed at building organizational and artistic capacity, with the aspirations of enlivening community conversation in the arts.

May 2018. CPAMO-POC: Launch of Phase I Project Report & Resource Kit. For a number of years, CPAMO has been exploring and promoting cultural pluralism from an organizational change perspective; which lead to research, needs assessments, and countless conversations in Town Halls and workshops.

The culmination of these efforts has been the Pluralism in Organizational Change initiative (2016-present), during which the CPAMO-POC group has investigated pluralism in the arts from a wide range of perspectives and with a diverse group of arts organizations, with the objective to clearly identify the support that is required to achieve a truly pluralist arts ecosystem in Canada.

Numerous presentations, research reports and other learning resources are the result of this initiative. CPAMO has collated those materials in a resource kit that provides an overview of the whole process and a wealth of information in the individual documents that are included.

June 2018. CPAMO-POC: Orientation session for next group of CPAMO-POC participants Organizations committed to date include: National Ballet School, Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Gallery 44, Open Studio, Ontario Culture Days, Canadian Association of Dance Artists, Business for the Arts, The Dance Current, Dance Collection Dance, Literary Press Group, SKETCH, Jaberi Dance, Modern Times Theatre, Cultural Human Resources Canada

June 2018. Promotion of CPAMO-POC; inviting interested artists to submit proposals to do a panel presentation and/or a live performance for the public and arts organizations involved in CPAMO-POC; artists will be chosen through jury process.

September 2018 – February 2019. CPAMO-POC: Needs Assessment and Fact Finding on Pluralism/Organizational Change. This process started with monthly information gathering sessions designed to establish a baseline, sharing with/learning from each other to assess their strengths and needs to develop and implement equity and pluralism initiatives, and develop an achievable action plan for each organization.

Photo 17 adjusted

CPAMOPOC Session – February 2019

Using the information and questions emerging from our first meeting, each facilitator was assigned to participating organizations with the directive of supporting that organization’s engagement over the first phase of the project. Out of this, working groups were established, facilitated by charles c. smith, and Kevin A. Ormsby.

Participants included: Literary Press Group, Music Gallery, 981 Bathurst Cultural Centre, Ontario Culture Days, National Ballet School, National Ballet Company, Gallery 44, Prologue to the Performing Arts, Polyphonic Ground, Canadian Association of Dance Artists, MOCA, Business for the Arts, Dance Canada DanseThe Dance Current, North York Arts Council, and Canadian Stage

November 2018. The Gathering – Intersections between Community Arts & Socially Engaged Arts Practice. This Gathering explored frameworks for understanding the potential of community arts and socially engaged arts in supporting the expressions of these artists and their art making. This convening featured artwork by visual artists Wayne Dunkley, Akshata Naik and Lisa Frost. Aria Evans and the GoToDanceCompany were part of timages banner - FBhe dance showcase performances, as well as dance artist Coco Murray respectively rooted in Arts Education and Community engaged Indigenous and African dance. This event featured a special performance by Dance Exchange (Washington, DC) for which it’s founder is the visionary behind the Critical Response Process (CRP) which CPAMO employs in its work with the Pluralism for Organizational Change (CPAMOPOC) participants. Their performance was intergenerational with embedded audience engagement. This edition of the Gathering was dedicated to the work of Shula Strassfeld, CPAMO Program Facilitator, Dancer and Intergenerational Community Arts Champion.

March 2019. CPAMO POC full-day session presentation by Warren Garrett from Ontario Presents at Canstage.

April 2019. CPAMO POC full-day session presentations by CPAMOPOC Cohort 1 participants: Siobhan O’Connor fromThe Writers’ Union of Canada, Amanda Hancox formerly of Dancer Transition Resource Centre, and Jacoba Knappen from Toronto Association of Performing Arts and Dora Award.

FullSizeRender (20)

CPAMOPOC Session with Robin Sokoloski

 June 2019.  CPAMO-POC Educational Session: Community Engagement – Guided through purpose to practice facilitated by Robin Sokoloski from Playwrights Guild of Canada.

May 2019. The Gathering – Celebrating 10 years of showcasing, convening and support for equity and pluralism in the Arts. CPAMO celebrated 10 years of working with providing services to and facilitating learning forums for artists and arts organizations in equity, diversity, inclusivity and pluralism. This 4-days celebration was in collaboration with 45 artists and 56 organizations. The Gathering offers an interactive space where arts organizations, artists and attendees dedicated to advancing equity, diversity, inclusivity and pluralism in the arts can share dialogue on common purposes and strategies in shaping how contemporary intersections in artistic practice influence diverse Canadian cultural expressions. CPAMO also launched it’s latest publication KEEP ON KEEPING ON 10 YEARS AFTER: Mobilizing Organizations Beyond Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity into Pluralism.

September 2019. CPAMO-POC Educational Session: Conflict Resolution with facilitators: Sheila Wilmot. Following the Needs Assessment sessions earlier in the year, CPAMO convened and co-facilitated educational events which focused on organizational leadership and personal responsibility to begin the process of organizational change to further pluralism/equity in the respective organisations.

2019-09-26 CPAMOPOC Sheila Wilmot

CPAMOPOC Session with Sheila Wilmot

Conflict Resolution Topics included:
• Define “Conflicts & Disputes”
• Practice “Active Listening” Skills
• Expand knowledge and skills on various sources of conflict: diversity, interdependence, systemic racism and white fragility
• Deepen our understanding of human rights protections & connections to conflict resolution
• Practice collaborative anti-racist conflict resolution processes

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s