The Cultch receives $130,000 grant from Vancouver Foundation for “Democratizing our Stages” Project

The Cultch and Diwali Fest staff at Nirbhaya Community Engagement meeting1Left to Right, Rohit Chokani & Vineeta Minhas Co-Producers of Diwali Fest, Heather Redfern – Executive Director, Nicole McLuckie – Director of Patron Development, Kim Harvey – Youth Program Manager, Abdel Naroth – Marketing Intern, Ricky Choi – Marketing Coordinator

 

We’re thrilled to announce that we’ve received a significant three-year $130,000 grant from the Vancouver Foundation for our “Democratizing our Stages” Project! While The Cultch has a long history of diversity, community inclusion, and pushing the boundaries of art to benefit society, this grant will allow us to go even further, challenging the status quo by prioritizing community development and presentation with groups and communities that have not yet engaged with us.

“We are delighted and grateful for Vancouver Foundation’s support,” says executive director Heather Redfern. “I truly believe this is a game-changer. The confidence the Vancouver Foundation has shown in our ability to make significant change is heartening and meaningful not only to The Cultch but to the community partners we will work with on this project over the next three years.”

The project began in earnest this past November when we partnered with Diwali Fest, Women Against Violence Against Women (WAVAW), and Amnesty International to present and engage in community dialogue around Nirbhaya, the internationally acclaimed play inspired by the 2012 rape and murder of Jyoti Singh Pandey in Delhi and featuring the real life testimonials of sexual violence survivors. This was the first year in what will now be an ongoing partnership with Diwali Fest. Other Democratizing our Stages partners include Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre (VACT), Dancers of Damelahamid, Neworld Theatre, Neworld Theatre, and Urban Ink, with plans to bring others on board over the course of the project and into the future.

“There is increasing diversity in professional arts practices in Canada, however there are still very few venues that present this work in a mainstage context throughout a season of programming,” says Redfern. “We are interested in talking to people who are not coming to The Cultch. We’ll be partnering with like-minded organizations from the community to diversify the audience that attends these productions, finding innovative ways to provide access to communities. Social exclusion is systemic and can only be reversed by conscious and proactive efforts. The democratization of our stages will happen when cross-cultural communication takes place between artists and communities over and over again, until we reach the point that it feels ordinary, as though it’s always been that way.”

Read more:
The Georgia Straight
Vancouver Presents

The Daisy Theatre Opening Night Photos!

On Sept 23 we kicked off our 2014/2015 season with Ronnie Burkett’s rollicking performance of The Daisy Theatre. The lounge was just buzzing with excitement prior to the show and it’s clear that that buzz will continue for the rest of the run.

“The Daisy Theatre is one of the best shows you’ll ever see. What are you waiting for? Pick up the phone” – Colin Thomas, Georgia Straight

Here are some of our opening night photos (taken by one of our volunteer photographers, Edward Juo). A big congrats to Ronnie and his team.

The Wine Guy with our lovely interns, Maude, Teresa and Alex

Paul Martin with our lovely interns, Maude, Teresa, and Alex

Alex Hung and Annalies Camfferman

Alex Hung and Annalies Camfferman

Rich and Sue Baerg

Rich and Sue Baerg

Cindy Reid, Garnet Nelson, and Phillip Waddell

Cindy Reid, Garnet Nelson, and Phillip Waddell

Heather Redfern and Ken Gracie

Heather Redfern and Ken Gracie

Tara Travis and Dusty

Tara Travis and Dusty Hagerud giving the keynote speech

Frank Costanzo

Frank Costanzo

Garnet Nelson, Lydia Lovison, Lucy Komori, and Kath Bourchier

Garnet Nelson, Lydia Lovison, Lucy Komori, and Kath Bourchier

Dusty Heather Redfern, Ronnie Burkett

Dusty Hagerud, Ronnie Burkett, and Heather Redfern

Tara Travis, Dusty, Ronnie Burkett, Heather Redfern and Evalyn Parry

Tara Travis, Dusty Hagerud, Ronnie Burkett, Heather Redfern and Evalyn Parry


The Daisy Theatre runs September 23 – October 12. Tickets are selling out fast! Tickets are available Online or through the box office at 604.251.1363. Tickets from $19!





Letter from Heather: We need your support!

Dear friend of The Cultch,

We need your support!

This December, The Cultch will open the newly renovated York Theatre. The theatre will be an invaluable community resource that will revitalize the north corridor of Commercial Drive between Venables and Hasting Streets and bring live performance to the Commerical Drive neighbourhood.

A shot from the new York Theatre. Photo taken on May 29, 2013

Following in the tradition of the naming of other heritage buildings such as the “Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage,” The Cultch would like to name the stage of the York Theatre and put signage on the exterior of the building that includes the name of its sponsor. The significant funds raised from this naming are essential in ensuring The York and The Cultch are financially healthy, stable, and sustainable both now and in the future.

About the signage:

  • Low-tech and unobtrusive
  • Will progressively dim as it gets darker; by evening the sign will only be at 30% of its brightness
  • No flash; the projecting sign will scroll and will be text
  • Controlled and monitored by The Cultch
  • On the fascia sign, the lighting will come from below the sign and point upward
  • Both signs will be turned off at 11 pm each day

We’re inviting Cultch supporters, neighbours, and artists to join us in showing your support for The Cultch, the York Theatre, and the sustainability of arts in this community!

COMMUNITY OPEN HOUSE

When: Wednesday, June 19 from 5 pm – 8 pm

Where: The Cultch’s Vancity Culture Lab (1895 Venables Street)

What: An open house held by the City of Vancouver to review our signage proposal and receive community feedback.There will be pictures of the proposed signs and Cultch representatives and City staff available to answer your questions. There will also be an opportunity to fill out a survey. Please feel free to stop by any time during the course of the open house.

Please do not hesitate to contact me at 604.251.1766 or heather@thecultch.com, if you have any questions or would like to chat further.

Thank you so much for your ongoing support of The Cultch and the new York Theatre!

Heather Redfern

Executive Director