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Starting a Creative Business Workshop

Happening on Friday, March 9, register for "Starting a Creative Business", an initiative of WorkInCulture to support creative professionals of diverse artistic disciplines who are thinking about building a creative enterprise, and thus supporting the sustainability of the creative sector.

Runs from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at 10C Shared Space, 42 Carden St. in Guelph. Cost is $10 and includes lunch. 

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This one-day workshop provides the basic tools of creating, developing and putting together a solid creative business idea that will shape the business plan. Through interactive, reflective, and writing activities that correlate with a workbook, participants get to step into the business mind frame and leave with the key components of their business more clearly defined.

Takeaways for participants
  • Step into the business mind frame
  • Build a bridge from creative professional to creative business
  • Clarify your business idea, direction & create the base of your business plan
  • Get to know your local business and creative sector supports and community


Agenda Includes:

Mapping your idea / business (and building the frame of the business plan)

  • Your business vision
  • Your business goals
  • Business Analysis

The Heart of Your Business
  • The problem
  • The value
  • The purpose
Who are your clients?
  • Creating your client avatar

Putting it all together
Panel with guest speakers sharing tips and resources

Interview with Professor Ajay Heble: Improvlab Awarded a $2.03 Million Grant from the Canada Foundation for Innovation

Ajay Heble, Professor, School of English and Theatre Studies, University of Guelph, and Director, International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation was recently awarded a $2.03 million grant from the Canada Foundation for Innovation to build ImprovLab at U of G. The funding will be used to build the 300-seat performance facility and furnish it with the latest technology. Petra Nyendick spoke with Professor Heble about this exciting project.

“First of all, congratulations! This is so exciting for IICSI, the University and the Guelph community at large. How do you think the community will become involved in this project?”

Thanks! Yes, we are all very excited about this. We’ve been working on developing plans for this facility for several years, and it’s great to see it coming to fruition. I anticipate that the facility will have a positive impact for a wide range of community members. Although the primary use will be for members of our research team, we certainly plan to have significant afterhours availability for community use by artists, festivals, and other arts organizations. Several community-based partners, including social service organizations, will also be involved. With KidsAbility, for example, we expect to hold improvisation workshops to support our research on the capacities and confidence of youth with disabilities; with Immigrant-Services Guelph-Wellington, we hope to be able to develop a series of projects investigating improvisational arts as means of self-representation and inter-cultural exchange among newcomers to Canada; and with Musagetes, ImprovLab will be a primary site for practice-based research initiatives involving our Improviser-in-Residence program. We also, of course, hope the that the facility can be a performance venue for arts organizations and festivals such as the Guelph Jazz Festival, Guelph Dance, Hillside Inside, ArtsEverywhere, and others.

ImprovLab’s collaborative, community-engaged research program will, in short, support sustained and meaningful contact with a broad range of community members

“There is limited venue space in Guelph and a 300-seat facility is desperately needed. How will the ImprovLab ease the need for IICSI to find appropriate performance facilities? What kind of events will take place in the new facility?”

Given the current lack of this type and size of space on-campus and city-wide, we have deliberately sought to fill this need. We expect that the flexible black-box space can be used for a variety of research projects, performances, and other activities, as in some of the examples I’ve noted above. The general lack of similarly sized performance facilities on-campus and throughout the City of Guelph has created an opening and an important opportunity for the development of a mid-size performance space. We will take advantage of the opportunity to partner with internal and external parties to maximize usage of the facility during off-hours and during gaps between research projects.

“What kind of state-of-the-art equipment do you envision at the ImprovLab?”

CFI funding will support equipment and interactive performance technologies including infrastructure for laptop music, surround audio, interactive instruments, video and immersive projection and archiving, interactive lighting, movement sensors, interface design, and high-grade internet for telematics. The facility’s main space will house a performance lab and studio space that can be adapted into smaller spaces for community workshops, focus groups, and telematic research collaboration and performance. This will be a combined production and presentation facility, designed for maximum collaborative capability for research, audio-visual documentation, and live performance.

“How will UofG students benefit and what will be their involvement with the new facility?”

The International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation has become a focal point for leading-edge research in an interdisciplinary field that our research team has, in effect, shaped and defined. Our team members have already trained and mentored several hundred students and postdoctoral fellows, and many of these students are now employed in a range of faculty, professional, community-based, and public sector roles. We expect that ImprovLab will significantly enhance our team’s ability to train students in a facility and with inter-disciplinary and cross-sector project goals that are not duplicated in this way anywhere else. The infrastructure will fill a significant resource need and will establish on-going training for faculty, graduate students, and outside users. The technological competencies, collaborative skills, practice-based research expertise, and community literacies that students, community partners, and the research team will develop at ImprovLab are in high demand across a range of sectors and markets. We expect over 100 students to be trained and mentored through their involvement with ImprovLab.

“When will building begin and what is the expected completion date?”

The building construction will begin by December 2018. Expected completion date is late 2020. We are thrilled to be working with world renowned Diamond Schmitt Architects on this facility. It promises to be a centerpiece for Guelph’s research, performance, and cultural communities. 

Member Spotlight and Gala Announcement: Kiwanis Music Festival

By Katie Owen

Every spring, venues across the city resound with the musical offerings of talented young performers.  Professional adjudicators offer constructive feedback and encouraging critique to performers of all ages and levels in a wide variety of disciplines including piano, strings, voice, brass & winds, recorders, guitar, harp, pipe organ, digital piano, speech arts, chamber music, choirs, concert bands, ensembles and orchestras.

Morgan Melbourne

Morgan-Paige Melbourne - Pianist  (Photo courtesy of Kiwanis Music Festival of Guelph)

The Kiwanis Music Festival has been providing these opportunities to young musicians for 37 consecutive years and ran for many years prior to a brief hiatus in the 1970s.  Since its inception, the Festival has grown by leaps and bounds; it is now the largest youth services program in the arts in our community.

The Festival not only provides young musicians with performance experience, valuable feedback, and scholarships but also with a chance to network and make friends. Music is a universal language which transcends cultural divides and helps young performers develop empathy, tolerance, and appreciation for the wonderful uniqueness of one another.

Each year, the Festival celebrates the achievements of the most outstanding performers at the Highlights of the Festival Concert & Awards Ceremony where select performers are chosen to share their amazing talents. Performers of all ages and levels have the opportunity to be awarded with scholarships of up to $15,000. Save the evening of May 26, 2018 on your calendars for this great event.

However, music supporters and enthusiasts need not wait until spring to hear some great performances.

The Kiwanis Music Festival of Guelph hosts its annual Festival Gala Concert on Saturday, February 10th at 7:00pm at the Guelph Youth Music Centre.  Two stellar young musicians, Pianist, Morgan-Paige Melbourne and Singer/Songwriter, Mikalyn Hay are the featured guest artists. There will also be local professional musicians and students who will be donating their time and talent to help raise funds for the organization.

This elegant evening will feature a delightfully eclectic concert as well as a drinks and hors d'oeuvres  silent auction, live auction, draw prizes, and raffle. Only 180 tickets are available, so advance ticket purchases are recommended. See https://gkmf.ca/gala/for more details.

Mikalyn Hay

Mikalyn Hay - Singer/Songwriter (Photo courtesy of Kiwanis Music Festival of Guelph)

Mikalyn Hay, one of the featured performers in the upcoming gala concert, has participated in the Kiwanis Music Festival for the past 7 years. This year Mikalyn was recognized for her song writing abilities and was awarded with a scholarship, money which has gone towards furthering Mikalyn’s musical career. She regularly performs in the Greater Toronto Area, and is working on an upcoming album release. 

Mikalyn has found great success at only 15 years of age and expresses enthusiasm and gratitude for her experiences with the Kiwanis Music Festival:

‘Every single year, through your donations, young musicians like myself have a place to go to meet other musicians, learn, and keep the music community in Guelph growing. It gives us an annual goal to strive toward. On behalf of my family and fellow musicians, I sincerely thank you for supporting the Kiwanis Music Festival and encourage you to keep doing so. This festival is what brought my love of music to life, and thanks to you, thousands of students can participate every year, and we cannot thank you enough for providing us with that opportunity.’ 

Art on the Street 2018 Applications Are Now Open

Guelph, ON – January 19, 2018 – Guelph Arts Council is now accepting applications from artists for Art on the Street. Guelph’s popular annual art exhibition and sale will return to Quebec Street on Saturday, June 23 from 10 am to 5 pm. Applications from artists for this juried event will be accepted until March 9, 2018. The detailed artist guidelines and application form are posted at guelpharts.ca.

Guelph Arts Council offers assistance to artists in preparing their Art on the Street applications. Interested artists are invited to review the application guidelines and to contact Guelph Arts Council for assistance at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 519-836-3280. 

Art on the Street is co-presented by Downtown Guelph Business Association and Guelph Arts Council and features contemporary fine art and craft. The event has grown both in scale and calibre of artist since its inception in 2003 to become Guelph's largest outdoor exhibition and sale. Art on the Street spotlights multi-disciplinary talent within the regional arts community and offers a fresh-air art experience for Guelph’s residents and visitors. Each year, approximately 100 established and emerging artists showcase their works in temporary, open-air studios. Art on the Street is an opportunity to meet painters, potters, blacksmiths, jewellers, glass blowers, wood carvers, textile artists, photographers, and more, and to take home a piece of Guelph's creative culture. Art on the Street is a free event that welcomes art lovers of all ages.
 
Art in the Shops, presented by Downtown Guelph Business Association, will take place during the week prior to Art on the Street. Artists will be paired with downtown venues to showcase selected work. This associated event highlights both Guelph’s creative talent and its downtown business community.

Find the original press release here.

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