Wednesday, October 5, 2011

ARTS: Canadian Playwrights! Interesting Funding Models!

Hey Americans, ever heard of any of these:

  • Robert Chafe, the St. John's-based winner of the 2010 Governor General's Award for drama (for Afterimage) and artistic associate and playwright for Newfoundland troupe Artistic Fraud.
  • Joan MacLeod, the award-winning playwright and associate professor at the University of Victoria.
  • Larry Tremblay, the Montreal playwright, actor and director.
  • Jasmine Dubé, the writer, actress and director who co-founded and serves as artistic director of Montreal's Théâtre Bouche Décousues.
  • Greg MacArthur, the playwright-in-residence at the University of Alberta and the Toronto writer behind The Decameron: things we leave behindTyland: The Toxic Bus IncidentBeggar Boy andgirls!girls!girls!
  • Mansel Robinson, the Chapleau, Ont.-based playwright (formerly of Saskatoon) and past president of the Saskatchewan Playwrights Centre.

I'll admit that I haven't. But I'm interested to see or read something by them now that they're on the short-list for a $100,000 prize!

Also, interesting side-note:
Each year, the winner is presented $75,000 and is asked to name a protégé to receive the remaining $25,000.
That's a fantastic way to promote the Ian Thal method of diversity! I really, really wish I knew who Tony Kushner or Martin McDonough would choose as their "protégé." You give a big chunk of change to one playwright, who's probably doing well in their career, and then ask them to pass along another chunk of change to a playwright -- hopefully they'll use that money well and pass that along to a playwright much earlier in their career.

If any Canadians or anyone familiar with these folks' work would like to chime in and let us know if these are well-deserved people, I'd love to hear about them.