Cole Foundation announces
its latest grant recipients
Intercultural Conversations’s successful pilot project bestows $195,000 in crucial theatre grants
Encouraging theatrical dialogue between the various cultures in Montreal
With diversity in all its facets at the core of the Cole Foundation’s Intercultural Conversations – Conversations Interculturelles (IC-CI) programme, Foundation President and Chairman Barry Cole is proud to announce the latest round of grant winners.
Intercultural Conversations – Conversations Interculturelles was created to motivate the production of professional theatre that features intercultural dialogue and introduces Montrealers to other cultural heritages and social realities. This includes themes and issues surrounding inclusion, as well as stories involving other marginalized communities.
Intercultural Conversations – Conversations Interculturelles was created to motivate the production of professional theatre that features intercultural dialogue and introduces Montrealers to other cultural heritages and social realities.
For the recent competition, 12 companies were given 15 crucial grants to support diverse theatrical stories in Quebec, for a total of $195,500 for the 1920-21 season. New this year is a second application date to accommodate the timetable of independent theatre companies, as well as funding for post-show audience talkbacks to continue the conversation initiated in the play.
Ongoing recognition for the need to honour every voice
Cole is very pleased with the outcome of this newest application practice, “This first-time spring competition received high-quality applications which yielded an excellent acceptance rate. The Foundation is also happy to mark and advance the trend of collaborations and co-productions – between French and English companies, between companies from diverse cultures, and for various local and international tours,” said Cole. He adds, “It’s clear the Intercultural Conversations – Conversations Interculturelles programme has great resonance with Quebec theatre companies, fostering their desire to explore diversity. The initiative that the Cole Foundation has enabled for over 10 years continues to help companies transition to this meaningful work.”
Play submissions encompass a widespread range of cultures and the varied communities within them. This cycle of grants sees award-winning productions in translation, the same play being performed in different theatres, and a range of styles and inspirations including clown, marionettes, children’s theatre, and epic 16th-century literature.
‘It’s clear the Intercultural Conversations – Conversations Interculturelles programme has great resonance with Quebec theatre companies, fostering their desire to explore diversity. The initiative that the Cole Foundation has enabled for over 10 years continues to help companies transition to this meaningful work.’
– Barry Cole, Cole Foundation President and Chairman
Works, written by emerging and established playwrights, target a wide range of ages and include themes and ideas about racial and queer politics colliding at a Pride parade; the realities between French and English theatre in Quebec; reflections on culinary traditions from various origins; the intersection of racism and violence against women; the tension and irony surrounding ‘protecting secularism’; the relationship between the USA and China; and the impact of water access in West Africa compared to Europe or Canada.
Recipients of the latest competition
The Foundation’s encouragement is felt across the board.
“Like the rod that brings the puppet to life, the Cole Foundation brings this piece to life. Our upcoming show, Furioso, debunks clichés and promotes relationships with others.”
– Simon Boudreault, Artistic Director of Théâtre de l’OEil
“[I am] thankful that the additional competition deadline has allowed us to confirm that we will be able to mentor and support four BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour) artists through this new programme.”
– Amy Blackmore, Executive and Artistic Director of MainLine Theatre
“While the pandemic has reinforced inequities and exclusions, Intercultural Conversations offers an opportunity to understand those inequities and reverse the wrong. The Foundation’s support of our work promotes the necessary dialogue to move forward together.”
– Rahul Varma, Artistic Director, Teesri Duniya Theatre
“The Cole Foundation has undoubtedly become a major partner in the creation of intercultural projects. Their openness and understanding of current issues as well as their great adaptability to the realities of the creative community is precious and unique.”
– Hélène Ducharme, Artistic Director, Théâtre Motus
Théatre aux Écuries – Bonnes Bonnes by Sophie Gee
Teesri Duniya Theatre – Merchant of God by Rahul Varma
Théatre Motus – Paroles d’eau by Hélène Ducharme and Patricia Gomis (also production and translation grants)
Duceppe – Chimerica by Lucy Kirkwood (also translation grant)
Geordie Productions – The Little Mighty Superhero by Marie Barlizo
Jamais Lu – Le territoire autrement, collective creation including students
MainLine Theatre – Culturally Diverse Artist Project
Théâtre de l’OEil – Furioso by Olivier Kemeid
Espace Libre – Every Day She Rose by Andrea Scott and Nick Green (also translation grant)
Centaur Theatre and Centre du Théâtre d’Aujourd’hui – Cyclorama by Laurence Dauphinais and Antoine Yared
Teesri Duniya Theatre – Counter Offence by Rahul Varma
L’Acteur en marche – Auditions by Mohsen El Gharbi.
Translation grants (as listed above)
Every Day She Rose
The deadline for the next competition for the award is Friday, October 2, 2020, at 5 pm.
Theatre companies interested in applying for a grant can download the necessary application forms and information from the Cole Foundation’s web site at colefoundation.ca
Feature image: Furioso, Théâtre de l’OEil, by Michel PinaultRead also: Past articles about Intercultural Conversations
The Cole Foundation is a private family foundation based in Montreal, initiated in 1980 by the late J. N. (Jack) Cole, a Montreal businessman and philanthropist. It supports research in pediatric leukemia and related diseases, as well as a programme of support for community initiatives, including Intercultural Conversations. The catalyst for Intercultural Conversations was the Bouchard-Taylor Commission which recognized the multi-cultures of Montreal and the need to increase the intercultural dialogue between these communities. Barry Cole has had a 30-year career in the management of the performing arts, with an emphasis on classical music. He has been the Chair and President of the Cole Foundation for the past 12 years.