Quebec's ELAN (English Language Arts Network) Celebrates 15 Years

Quebec's ELAN (English Language Arts Network) Celebrates 15 Years

On Monday, August 26th, ELAN will be celebrating 15 years of serving the English-speaking arts community of Québec. ELAN's 15th anniversary AGM and party at the Rialto Theatre (5723 park Ave.) will be a celebration of Québec's flourishing English-language arts community, featuring a slideshow of memorable moments and people, performances by ELAN members, and a booklet of photos and stories commemorating ELAN's first 15 years. The AGM and Anniversary Party are open to both members and the general public.

August 26, 2019
6 - 10 pm
Rialto Theatre
5723 Park Ave Montréal

6:00 - 6:30 PM: Welcome and Registration
6:30 - 8:00 PM: Business Meeting and Elections
8:00 - 10:00 PM: 15th Anniversary Party

Featuring performances by:

During the past 15 years, ELAN has offered hundreds of professional development workshops in Montréal and many regions of Québec, and has produced showcases for artists in Montréal, across Canada, in the US, as well as in the UK. ELAN's advocacy work with the CRTC, in collaboration with the Québec English-language Production Council, has contributed to bringing millions of dollars in new production to Québec. ELAN has established itself as the leading advocate and interlocutor for English-language artists in Québec.

ELAN has worked closely with communities around Québec in many ways. Arts Alive! Québec festivals (2014-2018) produced dozens of performances, presentations and hands-on-workshops, employing hundreds of artists in Hudson, Knowlton, Wakefield, Huntingdon, Québec City, and Montréal's West Island. ELAN's ACE Initiative project enabled artists and students to connect creatively in dozens of communities around Québec. Most recently, the new multi-million-dollar ArtistsInspire Grants will allow students in every English-language public school in Québec to work creatively with artists for the next four years.

ELAN was created in 2004, when 150 English-speaking artists from multiple artistic disciplines gathered to examine the state of the arts in Québec. After decades of decline and departures, the post-1995 referendum arts scene was experiencing a remarkable renaissance. Young artists were choosing to stay in Québec, and other artists were returning after living away. Artists, particularly musicians, from across Canada were flocking to Montréal because of cheap rents and a vibrant art scene, in what was described as the "Arcade Fire Effect".

Created by artists for artists, ELAN's board of directors has featured many of Quebec's leading artists and cultural workers from first president, Susie Arioli, and veteran CBC producer Frank Opolko; to dancers Andrew Tay, Helen Simard and Roger Sinha; musicians Tim Brady and Rob Lutes; spoken word artists Ian Ferrier and Fortner Anderson; and filmmaker Karen Cho. Founding Executive Director, Guy Rodgers, and ELAN's first office manager, visual artist Nadia Myre, have both been appointed as companions in Québec's prestigious Order des arts et des lettres du Québec.

ELAN's first challenge was to make contact with thousands of artists working in multiple disciplines who were living in different parts of Montréal across different regions of Québec. Monthly schmoozers in popular bars proved a simple and effective way to connect artists. The RAEV (Recognizing Artists: Enfin Visibles!) project provided public visibility by creating profiles and videos about life in Québec for minority English-speaking artists. Guernica Essays published Minority Report, a collection of essays on the history of English-language artists in Québec. ELAN's Made au Québec website aggregated an impressive volume of media coverage from around the world, demonstrating the impact of Québec's English-speaking artists.

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