2019 was the inaugural conference for TDArts. We started small with one day’s worth of programming to see how the community would respond. The response was better than expected. Both our courses sold out and included people from across Canada both in person and digitally.
Our conference Director, Paul Fujimoto-Pihl, kicked off the conference with an in depth look at costing a show starting with the basic and then deep diving into the intricacies of EXCEL. Three hours was not enough time and we are hoping to bring this course back with a part two in the future.
In the afternoon, Daniel Bennett & Shanna Miller, talked about their experiences with creating a respectful workplace for workers of all races, ethnicities, genders, sexualities and religions. This session was more of an open dialogue with those in the room rather than a “how-to” session. The participants came away with different strategies to consider and evaluate in their own organizations.
The vibe from the day was one of excitement at “finding one’s community” and of looking forward to next year’s conference.
Had representatives from major performing arts companies such as Canadian Opera Company, Vancouver Opera Company, Alberta Ballet, Crow’s Theatre, National Arts Centre, Segal Centre (Montreal), and National Music Centre (Edmonton), as well as from educational institutions.
- Making the Leap to TD
Moderated by Conference Director, Paul Fujimoto-Pihl, this panel featured 7 experienced technical directors discussing how they made the leap to TD. Speakers included:
- Shanna Miller (Young People’s Theatre)
- Daniel Bennett (The Grand Theatre)
- Barney Bayliss (National Ballet of Canada)
- Wendy Churton (Freelance)
- Melynda Jurgenson (Canadian Opera Company)
- Adrien Whan (Buddies in Bad Times Theatre)
- Greg Dougherty (Canadian Stage)
The panel discussed their paths to where they are now, their biggest mistakes and advice they wish they had been given when they were starting out. Their advice?
- Don’t let fear drive you.
- It does not all need to be done right away. Keep the big picture in mind. One thing at a time.
- It is really important to go above and beyond because you expect others to do it.
- Trust your instincts. Take a look at the big picture – sometimes you have to say no.
- There is value in “I don’t know”.
- Trust the people who are working for you.
- Remember you are part of the team. You have many resources.
After the panel discussion, the panellists and the participants continued the discussion and sharing stories at the Imperial Library over beverages.