A second opening night

15May09

Constance Brown seems so long ago – we’re up and running with the rice show and, to quench the thirst of a stat-driven animal, I’ll admit that in the opening 2 days we lost count after the first 1750 people through the doors…. Bill, the HarbourFront CEO, and Tina, the programming director, have been hugely complimentary about our presence here and the impact of Stan’s Cafe generally upon the venue and audiences. There was a vip reception yesterday and a more select gathering of the venue’s Board this evening. The show has developed well and would be more thorough were it not for the distractions of the multitude sweeping through the installation. At times during the past couple of days our jobs have been tantamount to glorified crowd hustlers. If the accompanying pictures fail to demonstrate that, it’s because I was simply too busy to take the pics while there were so many young people visiting  the show.

There is a fantastic programme here at The HarbourFront which integrates Education and Art in an intelligent and purposeful way – with a bias towards involving local communities in practice. The ethnic mix here in Toronto is phenomenal, even by our own accepted standards in Brum, and seeing the constant stream of school groups, of clearly mixed heritage – Somali, Tamil, Indian, Chinese, Caribbean, Euro-Canadian was not only enlightening but very heartening. A quick hand count revealed the evolving nature of Canadian history: Of 27 persons present, 16 are born in Canada, 8 have parents born in Canada, 4 have grandparents born in Canada, 2 had great grandparents…. 

There is all the optimism of America here, tempered by all the healthy wisdom and humour of the Old World. It’s a very appealing combination. And thrilling to know that your work is so appreciated here.

OATP Entrance

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