Building Arts Communities in Kingston
The Kingston Culture Plan was approved by City Council in September of 2010 and since then, much has occurred to see this plan of supporting and promoting arts and culture in Kingston through. The plan’s intention is to help shape our cultural development over the course of a decade.
The recommendations in the plan are aimed at enhancing how we feature Kingston’s many cultural gifts — our heritage, our artists, dancers and musicians, our excellent venues, and beautiful vistas. The Culture Plan is about more consciously celebrating our assets to enrich the experience of living and visiting here. -Brian McCurdy, Director Cultural Services.
The City, alongside Kingston Cultural Services, The Kingston Arts Council, The Grand Theatre, local restaurants, galleries, museums, and theatre companies, is working hard to put this plan into play by creating and supporting more events. Thus far we’ve seen the growth of festivals such as The Kingston Multicultural Arts Festival and The Kingston Blues Fest; FebFest has multiplied in size and duration bringing tourists to town in the dead of winter; restaurants are holding regular locally sourced food events such as Toast to Tapas and Farm to Fork Harvest Dinners.
Another prominent part of the Culture Plan is the creation of better communication and collaboration between various cultural groups in Kingston. Workshops are being created and supported by the City to bring artists and audiences together. This February The Kingston Arts Council will present a two-day seminar, Building Arts Communities In Kingston.
The seminar, taking place on Wednesday, February 15th at The Grand Theatre will feature presentations from Simon Brault, Vice-Chair of The Canada Council for the Arts and author of No Culture, No Future; Justin Langlois, Senior Research Fellow at Broken City Lab and Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Windsor and Annalee Adair, Manager of Community Engagement and Education at City of Kingston & Director at POPart Consulting Services. Each speaker will present strategies for audience development and public outreach in Kingston arts and culture. The conversation will be interspersed with a documentary created by The Kingston Arts Council featuring various members of the community talking about their own experiences with culture in Kingston. There will also be a performance by Kingston’s favourite old-time fiddle and banjo duo, Sheesham and Lotus. Tickets for the seminar are $7.50 and are available at The Grand Theatre box office.
On Thursday, February 16th, The Arts Council will hold a follow-up public forum at Renaissance Event Venue at 1pm allowing community members to share ideas and form partnerships through moderated discussions on many of the topics covered at the seminar.
This two-day event should prove to be insightful and inspiring. The videos below will give you a sneak peak at the featured documentary. You’re sure to recognize many members of our community from all areas – maybe even someone from Kingstonist!