BANFF, Alberta, April 12, 2007 - On behalf of the Honourable Beverley J. Oda, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Status of Women, Myron Thompson, Member of Parliament (Wild Rose), today announced over $5.9 million in funding to The Banff Centre for Continuing Education. The funds will allow the Centre to revitalize its campus, and present its 2007-08 Playbill Series.
"Canada's New Government is proud to support the revitalization of this unique institution," said Minister Oda. "For over 70 years, The Banff Centre has been a vital part of Canada's arts community and a leader on the local, national, and international cultural scene."
"We are lucky to have the high-quality programming offered by the Playbill Series right here in Banff," said Mr. Thompson. "I would like to congratulate The Banff Centre for its outstanding contribution to Alberta's cultural and community life."
"This significant investment by the Government of Canada acknowledges the essential role that The Banff Centre plays in supporting the development of Canadian artists and cultural leaders," said Mary Hofstetter, the Centre's president and chief executive officer. "The Banff Centre revitalization project will build an environment for creativity and innovation. It will inspire exceptional artists and thinkers, fostering the leaders Canada needs for vital sustainable communities."
The Banff Centre is transforming its campus to better support creative practice, and to increase and improve access for Canadians to multidisciplinary programming. Phase 1 of the revitalization project involves the construction of cultural spaces, including specialized equipment (outdoor performance amphitheatre); creating arts programming facilities in the Learning Centre and Creative Commons; as well as additional public gallery space and; feasibility studies for Phase 2. Phase 2 will modernize the Margaret Greenham and Eric Harvie Theatre Complex, Glyde Hall, Walter Phillips Gallery and Aboriginal programming spaces.
The Playbill Series will take place at The Banff Centre from April 1, 2007 to March 31, 2008. It offers a wide variety of performances of both familiar and innovative works by over 260 established and emerging artists. The programming is innovative and diverse, and includes dance, theatre, music, and comedy by Aboriginal, multicultural, francophone, and youth performers.
Founded in 1933, The Banff Centre provides professional career development and lifelong learning for artists and cultural leaders in performing, literary, new media, and visual arts. Work is showcased throughout the year in public concerts, exhibitions and events, culminating in the Banff Summer Arts Festival.
Canada's New Government has provided $5.8 million for Phase 1 of the revitalization project through the Cultural Spaces Canada program of the Department of Canadian Heritage. This program supports cultural infrastructure projects that increase access for Canadians to the performing, visual, and media arts and that improve physical conditions for artistic creativity and innovation. Funding is also provided for the construction and renovation of arts and heritage facilities, for the purchase of specialized equipment, and for feasibility studies and projects to transform buildings into arts or heritage facilities.
The remaining $100,000 has been allocated for the Playbill Series through the Arts Presentation Canada program of the Department of Canadian Heritage. This program seeks to give Canadians more access to direct experiences of the diversity and richness of Canada's culture through professional arts festivals, presentations of live professional performances, and other artistic experiences.
Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Status of Women
Policy and Communications