Posts by

Margaret

Reimaging Partnerships in the Arts: Thoughts from Canada Council’s Arts in a Digital World Summit

BeMused Network

We are living in a critical time. Entire systems and sectors are imploding because the assumptions they were built on no longer exist. ~ Simon Brault, Director and CEO of Canada Council

Back in March, we were honoured to be invited as a contributor to Canada Council’s Arts in a Digital World summit in Montreal. I met many people with whom I had only communicated by email or phone, and many more whom I was happy to meet.

It was inspiring to hear BeMused Network’s founding values echoed by the keynote speakers, and to engage in two intense days of the kind of conversations we’ve been having for the last few years. I came away full of optimism for the future of the arts Canada. Read on…

New Audiences Are Not Unicorns

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When done right, self-service is a great option to offer customers. When done to merely cut costs, or when done with a poor understanding of the user, it’s mostly annoying. – Seth Godin

Patrons new to the arts are often surprised to learn that some of the highest-calibre artistic offerings in cities like Toronto are primarily presented by volunteer-run organizations (like the Women’s Musical Club of Toronto), or just a handful of full-time staff (like Soundstreams Canada or Alliance Française).

They accomplish the Herculean job of creating rich artistic experiences and eye-catching marketing materials with limited resources. These are the hidden miracles that arts professionals and volunteers work everyday, despite the thankless task. The personal fulfillment they take from the job is one of the reasons they stick around, despite the fraught realities confronting the arts.

It is this dedication that makes the challenge of attracting new audiences such a frustrating one. What more can be done to show the value of the arts? How much more can we give to the creation of unique and memorable artistic experiences? Read on…

What kind of Digital Future do the Performing Arts Deserve?

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“…digital networks will continue to be increasingly central to daily life and anticipates a time when they are regarded as a mundane, but vital part of the social infrastructure.” ~ Andrew Clement and Leslie Shade, “Access Rainbow” (PDF)

Infrastructures are essential yet invisible to us, even as they play a critical role in our everyday lives. Just imagine if our power grid goes out, roads collapse, or water ceases to flow in our homes. Unimaginable disruptions.

We are in an era of constructing digital infrastructures. From high profile projects like electronic health records, which requires the coordination of policy makers, creating of new jobs, and the partnership of various health organizations, to the less visible but no less impressive network of digital applications and social platforms. Read on…

BeMused Network Open House 2016

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BeMused Network Open House
“Building the Future of Performing Arts”

Guest Speaker: Ben Dietschi, Executive Director of Soundstreams Canada
Featured Performers: Jazz Pianist Ron Davis (Symphronica), Vocalist Janet Whiteway,
and Contemporary Dancers from the Chimera Project
November 29, 2016 • 5:30-7:30pmHeliconian Hall (35 Hazelton Avenue) MAP
RSVP / Press Release


What does an arts-friendly and patron-focused ticketing service look like? What does it mean to build digital infrastructures for the arts? How can we empower the growing number of independent performing artists and organizations? Come meet the artists, patrons, and partners who have helped shape BeMused Network in the last three years, and how you can be a part of our vision to help artists focus on their art. Read on…

Building Digital Infrastructures for the Arts in Canada

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“If we wish a different world, it is necessary to design humane and liberating technologies that create the world as we wish it to be.” — Bonnie Nardi

What does it mean to build a digital infrastructure for the arts? What does it take?

A digital infrastructure is a network of independent systems that play nice with each other. I imagine a digital infrastructure that will exclusively serve the arts community, provide end-to-end services for their most pressing needs, and ensure its sustainability by evolving with the times we live in. Read on…

Award-Winning Dover Quartet makes Toronto debut

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“There was also something you can’t put your finger on that’s intuitive about the way that we responded to one another’s playing. I don’t even know how to put it into words. It’s chemistry, like in any relationship.” ~ Milena Pajaro-van de Stadt

In 2013, the Dover Quartet’s sensational performance earned them the top and special prizes at the String Quartet Competition in Banff. They have been in high demand ever since on the performance circuit.

As part of their breakneck touring pace throughout the US and Canada, they will be performing in Toronto this Thursday afternoon in the Women’s Musical Club of Toronto’s 117th series, and at Jeffery Concerts on Friday at 8 pm in London, Ontario. Read on…

BeMused Network Open House

getting-started-graphicBeMused Network Open House!
November 24, 2014 • 5:30-7:30pm
Heliconian Hall (35 Hazelton Avenue)
RSVP


It has been almost a year since we’ve launched BeMused at Canadian Film Centre’s ideaBOOST launchpad, and you are invited to our Open House to celebrate this important milestone! Come meet the artists, patrons, and partners who have helped shape our inaugural year. I will also be sharing news about the latest developments at BeMused Network. Read on…

Performing Arts as a Living Collection

BLOG_header_arts_living_collection_2014(Image credit: “The Seven Lively Arts” mural by R. York Wilson at the Sony Centre in Toronto)

The future library will not be a bricks and mortar institution, but distributed and decentralized.

Imagine a library full of not books, but performing artists. As you walk down the aisle, you can experience any sort of performance you can think of – and a great number of ones you couldn’t even imagine.

If such a library existed, I would spend all my spare time there, happily getting lost, exploring every art form. Read on…

The Connective Joy in Stravinsky’s The Soldier’s Tale

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“To me, the joy is watching like-minded multidisciplinary performers come together, and share each other’s world.”

Tickets to Toronto Masque Theatre at BeMused Network!
$20 student / $23 general & over 65
(Oct 25, 2014, 6:45pm) The Soldier’s Tale • (Oct 20, 2014, 8:00pm) The Soldier’s Tale
Performances at Yonge Centre for the Performing Arts.


Igor Stravinsky’s The Soldier’s Tale is often only heard in concert; the full production involving actors and dancers can be an unwieldy undertaking. But for artistic director Larry Beckwith, it is one of many such multidisciplinary productions that Toronto Masque Theatre has presented since 2003.

This coming weekend, presented as part of Soulpepper Theatre’s Global Cabaret Festival, Beckwith will conduct an ensemble of top-notch instrumentalists in collaboration with long-time artistic associates Derek Boyes as narrator and choreographer Marie-Nathalie Lacoursière. Read on…

Continuum Marks 30 Years With Souvenir Film Project

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“Doing this is so hard, the musicians and composers have to come from a love and understanding of new art music.”

Tickets to Continuum Contemporary Music at BeMused Network!
$10 student / $20 artist & senior / $30 general
(Oct 19, 2014, 8:00pm) Souvenir(Oct 20, 2014, 8:00pm) Souvenir
Performances at Betty Oliphant Theatre.


As Continuum Contemporary Music celebrate their 30th years of championing new works by contemporary composers, their first concert of the season at the Betty Oliphant Theatre on Oct 19 & 20 presents a film project 20 years in the making.

Initiated by founding artistic director Jennifer Waring and her friend and filmmaker Gary Popovich, “Souvenir is a tale of the history of the universe and humanity’s place in it. The film features six commissioned works by different composers as the soundtrack. This is an unusual performance for Continuum, as it features a large-scale projection against which the Continuum ensemble and guests artists will perform on stage. Read on…

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