Praxis Theatre is currently on hiatus! Please find co-founders Aislinn Rose and Michael Wheeler at The Theatre Centre and SpiderWebShow, respectively.
November 30, 2010, by

Take this workshop or: How I learned to stop worrying and love the Ford

by Michael Wheeler

Recently it seems all my actions are direct responses to Rob Ford’s suggestions to Toronto artists.

Guests at Praxis Gourmet #9 play some pool and enjoy a cocktail in the lounge before dinner is served

Guests at Praxis Gourmet #9 play some pool and enjoy a cocktail in the lounge before dinner is served

A month after Ford suggested at The Mayoral Arts Debate that artists raise more money by throwing dinner fundraisers, Praxis Theatre threw its 9th installment of the $110/plate Praxis Gourmet dinner series. The event was our most successful so far with live jazz, a sneak peek at our latest work Jesus Chrysler and a four-course wine pairing that starred Coq au Vin at an upscale Bay Street address.

The latest news out of the Ford administration with regards to the arts in Toronto is that Jeff Melanson, Executive Director of The National Ballet School, has been brought on board in a voluntary capacity as the Mayor’s ‘Arts Czar’. The line is that the Mayor was impressed with an article about Melanson in Canadian Business magazine encouraging artists to be more “entrepreneurial”.

The article does not mention that Melanson is responsible for a budget that receives roughly 40% of its revenue from the government, or that he runs a world class training institution – not an organization with a mandate to actually produce art – but hey, who’s paying attention to those sorts of details now that James Bradshaw isn’t covering the arts for The Globe and Mail anymore?

Wesley and Arch played several sets throughout the evening

Wesley and Arch played several sets throughout the evening

It’s time for artists whose organizations DIDN’T recently receive over $18 million from the Harper government over the next three years to get off the gravy train!

Playing close heed to this message from City Hall for independent artists to put their business thinking caps on and be serious about things, I present this lecture and workshop taught by the “intrepid” Cathy Gordon and myself on how to be a theatre entrepreneur.

Cathy and I have twice taught this lecture and workshop combo at University of Toronto for their students on how to create their own theatre. For the first time ever we are offering it to the public.

We have over 10 handouts that break down all the basics to be considered when creating the infrastructure that will support you and your work. This is probably the cheapest we will ever offer this course as a measure to spread the word about how awesome it is, so sign up now for the lecture you cannot AF-FORD to miss.  Buh-dum-pum.

Cathy Gordon & Michael Wheeler / ADAPT services

“Cathy and Michael’s independent theatre creation workshop at University of Toronto addressed topics that most artists fear to even go near in a way that was both fun and engaging. It helped dispel common misconceptions and confusion about how to get my own work off the ground and left me prepared to take control of my career as an artist.”

Yevgeniya Falkovich (University of Toronto 2010, National Theatre School Directing Program 2013)

Sunday December 12
hub14 / 14 markham street
(Queen & Bathurst)
To register:

Lecture topics include:
*Non-profit v For Profit structures- What Are They
*Producing A,B,Cs
*Toronto opportunities – They Do Exist
*Social Media
*Marketing On A Shoestring
*Grant Writing Tips

Practical Exercises:
*Artistic / Company Visioning
*Budget planning

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  1. jenna turk says:

    how would one sign up?
    and may i post this to my facebook?

  2. Michael says:

    Hey Jenna,

    Just email to reserve your spot…. I think I read that you got a spot in the Fringe Lottery no? I think we can be helpful.

    Obviously I think it would be great if you reposted this. Probably the clearest single link that is only about the lecture and workshop is to this PDF overview:

    Thanks and bring your friends!