“Love will keep us together”

“Love. Love will keep us together…”

It is safe to say there is a lot of bad news out there these days. And though we do not want to downplay the seriousness of this time, it is encouraging, despite the widespread international tragedy of COVID-19, just how much people are coming together to show love for each other in unique and poignant ways. From the 7 o’clock cheers for our health workers, to people helping out their neighbors, to local breweries and distilleries heeding the call for more hand sanitizer. And artists are sharing the love too! So many generous artists are taking to online platforms to share their talents with the world! We don’t know about you, but it really is love that is getting us through here at The Cultch.

We asked some staff, patrons, and artists what it was they loved about The Cultch, and we were flooded with such beautiful heartfelt responses—they just warmed our hearts! It means so much to us to hear just how much you value the work we do!

Here are some of the wonderful responses of love we have gotten this week!

Pippa Mackie as Pinocchio in East Van Panto. Photo by Tim Matheson

“I love the Cultch because it brings the community together.
I love the Cultch because the arts are an essential service.
I love the Cultch because they empower me as an artist.
I love the Cultch because they bring people together.
I love the Cultch because they provide an opportunity for local artists.
I love the Cultch because without them…East Van just wouldn’t be East Van.
I love the Cultch because I have seen the impact the Panto has on audience members.
I love the Cultch.”  – Pippa Mackie, local playwright & performer

“I love The Cultch because the shows I’ve seen at The Cultch are some of my most cherished memories. So it’s like the Cultch is this old friend who keeps surprising you.” – Veda Hille, local singer, pianist & songwriter

“I love the Cultch because …
it’s in my neighbourhood
it’s always felt like a second home
Len Gardiner is the world’s coolest Caretaker
it’s where I can see non-commercial art
it’s a not-for-profit
it connects me to the world
it’s the first place I saw a live show in vancouver
it used to be a church
it’s the theatre I’ve performed most in, in my LIFE!
I’ve seen about 200 shows there”
– Marcus Youssef, local playwright & performer

“I love The Cultch because it is a family.” –Louise Chapman, Development Manager

“I love The Cultch because it is a place of connection in a time when connection is difficult.” –Lisa Mennell, Communications Associate

“I love The Cultch because it is a gathering place where everyone is welcomed with open arms.” –Chelsea Isenor, Marketing Manager

“I love The Cultch because when I walk through the doors it feels like a very familiar place. It feels like I’m coming home.” Corey Payette, Urban Ink Artistic Director

“I love The Cultch for the bravery and innovation. The sense of community and opportunity to see performers extend their (and my) reach.” –Rick Barker, patron

Kit Redstone and the rest of the Testosterone cast. Photo by Luke Forsyth

 

“I love The Cultch because I had the great pleasure of bringing my work there all the way from London. It was and still is the most sensational venue I have ever had the privilege to work with. Located in the heart of a wonderful community, every single staff member works tirelessly to make this a really special place. I have never experienced a team so generous, fun, good natured and talented at what they do. A good venue should feel like a family working in absolute harmony, and this was my experience of working with the theatre. The work they program is bold and important – showcasing plays that entertain, delight and most importantly informs, inviting their audience into important questions raised. The theatre is in many ways the centre of a gorgeous community, it’s beating heart is a conduit to the varied voices that it brings to the stage. Without a doubt, my favourite theatre in the world.” – Kit Redstone, Testosterone writer & performer

“I love The Cultch because it’s our cultural living room where we gather and share and converse and remember. It’s this incredible gathering place for all kinds of different communities who are all passionate and devoted to the arts – patrons, volunteers, theatre makers, dance makers – it’s this amazing home for both local artists and visiting artists which is a really beautiful thing.”Dave Deveau, Playwright / Zee Zee Theatre Associate Producer

“I love The Cultch because the crowded lobby feels and smells like one big friendly Vancouver hug.” –Amiel Gladstone, local playwright & director

“I love The Cultch because East Van is my home and the Cultch helps me better feel the rhythm of its pulse. Whenever I’m there it feels like stopping by a friend’s house. Except that friend has a really big house…but lawd do they know how to share every inch of it!” –Jivesh Parasram, Rumble Theatre Artistic Director

“I love The Cultch because it’s my home away from home – where I can spend time with my neighbours, hear their stories, and celebrate our community together.” –Christine Quintana, local playwright & performer

“I love The Cultch because it’s the place where the world comes to me.
I love The Cultch because it’s where I get to see old friends and make new ones.
I love The Cultch because this is the place where my dreams came true.
I love The Cultch because it is a wormhole that transports me across time and space.
I love The Cultch because it celebrates BIPOC and LGBTQ2SIA+.
I love The Cultch because it is where my partner and I have our dates nights.
I love The Cultch because of the people who work there.
I love The Cultch because it expands my mind as an artist.
I love The Cultch because The Cultch audience has become my audience.
I love The Cultch because Heather Redfern never panders. The work she programs is challenging, beautiful and brave.
I love The Cultch because it is a place where womens’ voices are celebrated.
I love The Cultch because its commitment to reconciliation goes beyond land acknowledgments.
I love The Cultch because it is the best thing in Vancouver.
I love The Cultch because it has been the backdrop for a thousand selfies :)”
–  Tetsuro Shigematsu, local playwright & performer


Don’t those messages of love just warm your heart? Thank you for all the love you give us! With your love and support we look forward to when all of this is over, and we can come together again to sit in the dark—friends, family, colleagues, and strangers—and have our hearts and minds transformed by the arts once again.

SUPPORT THE CULTCH

Cultch Connects: making art for everyone!

Cultch Connects: making art for everyone!

A thank you note from a grateful recipient!

As Vancouver’s most diverse arts and culture hub, The Cultch brings world-class performance to our community in East Vancouver. We are a charity, and ticket income from our shows only makes up 30% of our running costs – the rest comes from the generous support of our donors, sponsors and funders. In return, we offer dynamic contemporary programming in theatre, dance, music, and the visual arts, showcasing cutting-edge national and international work.

At our core is the belief that art is for everyone, and economic background or life circumstances should never be a barrier to participation in live performance.  To this end, we set up our Cultch Connects program, so that our donors could share their love of performance with everyone in our community.

Cultch Connects provides free tickets to our holiday hit the East Van Panto and other shows throughout our season to people in need. Now in its 6th year, Cultch Connects has brought thousands of people from low-income families, mental health facilities, recovery centres, community organizations and more to our shows at no cost.

We know from the messages our Cultch Connects patrons send us that this simple act makes a real difference in the lives of people who are facing difficult times, making the holiday season a little brighter for hundreds of families.

“Christmas was going to be a hard time at the transition house, but attending the Panto helped to make the holiday season better for me and my daughter. You made our holiday season special.” — Cultch Connects patron

This year will be our most ambitious Cultch Connects fundraising campaign yet. Our anonymous match-funder has once again agreed to double any gift made to Cultch Connects between now and November 30 2018, making more tickets available than ever before to people in need.

“By giving to Cultch Connects, our donors are making our theatre accessible to everyone” says Executive Director Heather Redfern. “What I love most about the program is that it is inspiring the next generation of artists, musicians, and theatre-goers, ensuring our city remains a vibrant centre for the arts for years to come. That’s pretty amazing!”

— Louise Chapman, The Cultch’s Development Associate

Would you like to support Cultch Connects? Click here to donate now!

$150 = $300 Brings a community/school group to the Panto

$100 = $200 Brings a local youth group to a Cultch show

$50 = $100 Sends a Cultch Connects family to the Panto

Do you know an organization that would benefit from this program? Let us know!


Contact Louise Chapman, Development Associate:

louise@thecultch.com; 604 251 1766, ext. 108

Charitable registration # 11928 1574 RR0001

Sponsor Spotlight: Patti Flaherty with brainstreams.ca

Sponsor Spotlight: A chat with The Cultch & Patti Flaherty from brainstreams.ca

Patti Flaherty from brainstreams.ca

Can you tell us how brainstreams.ca first got involved with The Cultch?

The good folks from the Cultch approached brainstreams.ca to explore with us our interest in being associated with the production of Reassembled, Slightly Askew.  The relevance to our group and what this production represented was so aligned that it only made sense to try and figure out how we could support the production.  Getting the story of Shannon out into our network and community was very important to all of us.

Patti, how unique was it for brainstreams.ca to sponsor the international and experiential show, Reassembled, Slightly Askew? What were the benefits to your professional community?

Brainstreams.ca and BC Brain Injury Association has never financially sponsored anything.  In fact, brainstreams.ca is normally reaching out to our friends and organizations to find financial support to do the good work we do. So, it was highly unique for us to sponsor the show. Being associated with this show was right up our alley and we were so proud to be a part of it. The benefits to our community are still somewhat unclear. However, it is clear that we have done something that has strengthened our efforts to offer education and awareness opportunities to the community. We produced a short video that lives on our site to celebrate this partnership. To see this video please go to: http://www.brainstreams.ca/videos/video-type/bcbia-presents-reassembled-slightly-askew/.

I have worked in the health care and brain injury rehab field for a very long time and have been deeply involved in many educational and learning opportunities; Reassembled, Slightly Askew is by far the most powerful and effective learning tool I have ever experienced.  I wish that everyone who works in the field or loves someone who has a brain injury could experience it.  Somehow, we need to find more ways to share this unique and brilliant performance.

Did you feel like there was a certain amount of risk involved in taking on this show?

Yes, there was some real risk in taking on this show. This partnership was very different from every other partnership that we have purposefully engaged in. The risk was in the unknown and in the use of our precious financial resources. That said, the board of directors unanimously agreed that this partnership made very good sense and was willing to take the risk. We are so pleased we choose to be involved with the Cultch and the show……no regrets!!

Can you tell us more about the work you do with brainstreams.ca?

Brainstreams.ca is the official website for the BC Brain Injury Association. Essentially the work of the BCBIA has become what brainstreams.ca offers to the people in BC who work with and live with the effects of brain injury. This site is a place where people’s stories are shared as a method of healing. It also offers an online library of brain injury related services and resources that are available in our province to our brain injury community. The bottom-line is that we are here to help strengthen the network of services and supports for people living with brain injury by offering decision makers strategic insights from our learnings and to help people navigate the system of services throughout British Columbia.

What are you curious about right now?

I’m curious to see how our partnership evolves. We would love to continue to be involved and develop our connection with the Cultch. We are planning on hosting our AGM in June at the Cultch and we are looking forward to finding other creative ways to build on this great experience.


As a registered Canadian charity, The Cultch relies on the support of the community to operate as a cultural hub; bringing diverse and engaging live performance to the stage.
Please consider making a donation today! Contact Natalie Schneck, Development Associate: natalie@thecultch.com; 604.251.1766 x.121
Charitable registration # 11928 1574 RR0001

DONOR SPOTLIGHT: Kath Bourchier

DONOR SPOTLIGHT:  A conversation with Kath Bourchier

Kath Bourchier with Alberta’s sweetheart, Mrs Edna Rural!

Kath, you have been involved with The Cultch in many different ways. Can you tell us what first attracted you to the organization?

I first became involved with The Cultch when I managed provincial sponsorships for Alcan Aluminium Limited (now Rio Tinto). Heather Redfern’s predecessor Duncan Low visited me to discuss whether we could find some mutually-beneficial basis for a partnership. In 1996, we developed the $60,000 Alcan Performing Arts Award to be granted annually to a B.C. performing arts company for the development of new work. I am very proud that this award lasted for 14 years, funding many of the B.C. companies that have gone on to win international acclaim. When I left Alcan in 2001, after 26 years, and was no longer in a conflict-of-interest position, Duncan recruited me to The Cultch Board of Directors, which I served for 15 years. I was Board Chair when we broke ground on our incredible renovations. And, as Chair, I hired Heather, perhaps my proudest accomplishment of all.

Reoccurring gifts are important for the sustainability of The Cultch. Why did you choose to become a monthly donor?

I became a monthly donor when I was elected Board Chair, primarily to set an example for other Board members.  We have never required Board members to be donors but I’ve always believed that, as Directors of not-for-profit organizations, we’re on more solid ground to solicit donations from others if we’re financially invested ourselves. My monthly donations come out of my bank account automatically. I budget for them, and this is the most painless way I know to watch affordable donations add up to significant contributions. I have also learned, over the years, how important monthly donations are to The Cultch as a consistent and reliable source of revenue. It’s not the amount of one’s monthly donation that is important; it’s the accumulative value over time. For me, it’s immensely satisfying to contribute an amount I can afford on a monthly basis to an organization to which I am deeply committed because it enriches our lives. Try it … I guarantee you’ll like it!

You have several years’ experience working in strategic communications; can you tell us how this skill set intersects with your involvement at The Cultch?

Once in a rare while, I provide some advice that seems to help (or so they’re kind enough to tell me). But we have such a bright, young staff that do such a good job of looking after our donors, our patrons, and the marketing challenges that I think they’re just indulging me.

Can you tell us what you wish other people knew about The Cultch?

Easily. I wish they knew the lovely sense of community available to them. Challenging shows, good friends, wonderful conversations. And the loveliest sense of commitment to something bigger than ourselves.

What are you curious about right now?

I am always curious about what Heather will identify next. She is an extraordinary programmer who brings to Vancouver audiences things we need to see and hear and experience.


As a registered Canadian charity, The Cultch relies on the support of the community to operate as a cultural hub; bringing diverse and engaging live performance to the stage.
Please consider making a donation today! Contact Natalie Schneck, Development Associate: natalie@thecultch.com; 604.251.1766 x.121
Charitable registration # 11928 1574 RR0001

Donor Spotlight: Jamie Evrard

Donor Spotlight with Jamie Evrard

Jamie, you have been long-time supporter of The Cultch.  Can you tell us how you first got involved with the organization?

I’ve been involved with the Cultch since 1978 when I moved to Vancouver and sold my weaving at the Circle Craft Christmas Market which was then held there. I’ve always been intrigued by and attended many of the Cultch’s offerings so when I realized I had enough money to begin giving back to Vancouver in some way the Cultch was an obvious choice.  It is a real community theatre and supports so many smaller local theatre groups as well as international performers. I went to a Peggy Baker show way back and I met a filmmaker/photographer, who asked me if he could photograph my hands for one of his projects. The Cultch is a place where this kind of connection can happen. It’s intimate and you’ll always talk to people.

What has surprised you most about working/partnering with The Cultch?

The fun of getting to know so many of the people who work at and give to the Cultch. Being able to attend special events and actually see works in progress and meet their creators.

You’ve built an admirable and remarkable career as a visual artist both in Canada and internationally. What do you find interesting about supporting the other artistic disciplines such as theatre and dance? 

I believe that a vibrant arts scene is essential for a great city so I’d like to help make Vancouver more exciting. Great theatre adds color to life, that can’t hurt!

Does seeing theatre and dance inform your own artistic work? 

You know I saw Jane Heyman’s version of “Three Sisters” by Chekhov in 2013, and I’m not saying that it informed my work directly, but there was something about that piece. Jane and I often talk about the creative process and one day she saw a painting hanging upside down in my studio and I confessed that I often work this way to be able to better see the shapes and forms I’m creating.  She told me sometime later that she was experimenting with rehearsing her theatre pieces starting at the end.

It’s hard to be an artist of any age, from being a small child to an older person. I think just seeing people making and performing art is inspiring in itself.  I like that you guys do risky work.

Can you tell us what you wish other people knew about The Cultch?

Giving to the Cultch is a great way to feel a part of artistic creation and giving money away is one of the most fun things you can do. Its fun to support artistic creation and it’s easier and more possible to become a donor then a lot of people think. The Cultch is a place you can make a difference, it is small enough so that every donation counts and it’s a cool community of vibrant artists.

What would you tell someone who is thinking about donating to The Cultch but hasn’t made the move yet? 

It is an exciting organization to be inside of.  The Cultch has lots of outreach programs for kids and people who would otherwise  not be able to attend theatre. Also, donor events , like the director’s circle receptions before shows are a lot of fun.

You have got a great aesthetic sensibility in many areas, Jamie (I love your style!) Can you tell us where you look to for inspiration?

I’m inspired by the work of other artists I see when I travel, and the work of local artists including many of those in Bau Xi Gallery. Also by solitary confinement and boredom—my time in Italy where life is simpler.  As Einstein said, “creativity is a residue of time wasted”.   You know last night, I came back from San Francisco and I had to go into the studio – I had to work. The phone rang and I didn’t answer.  Sometimes you gotta be ruthless to be creative.  These days we are offered all this free stuff on social media but really it takes away something of incredible value – our time—so I don’t do any of it.

What are you curious about?

People. I love hearing people’s stories and everybody has a story to tell if you ask which I often do.  Stories well told are universally engaging, and theatre is the best way to tell them.  And the Yucatán! My next trip.

 

 

Jamie Evrard’s Upcoming Exhibition:

Bau-Xi Gallery

March 3-17, 2018
3045 Granville Street, Vancouver

Opening Reception: Saturday, March 3, 2:00 – 4:00pm

 

 

 


As a registered Canadian charity, The Cultch relies on the support of the community to operate as a cultural hub; bringing diverse and engaging live performance to the stage.
Please consider making a donation today! Contact Natalie Schneck, Development Associate: natalie@thecultch.com; 604.251.1766 x.121
Charitable registration # 11928 1574 RR0001