Did you know that your version of Internet Explorer is out of date?
To get the best possible experience using our website we recommend downloading one of the browsers below.

Internet Explorer 10, Firefox, Chrome, or Safari.


May 7, 2019

The RBC Rising Star Emerging Director Prize

The Award

In order to encourage and celebrate our most outstanding early-career directors, as well as to provide them with an opportunity to develop work at Crow’s Theatre and receive ongoing mentorship, Crow’s is proud to invite submissions for the fifth annual RBC Rising Star Emerging Director Prize.
The prize is made possible by the RBC Emerging Artists Project which helps artists bridge the gap from training and/or the academic world to career, believing that the next generation of artists, in particular, are in need of extra support. RBC supports arts and artists in a range of genres – including visual, music, theatre, dance, literature and film - through a combination of donations and sponsorships.
Launched in 2015, The RBC Rising Star Emerging Director Prize provides a $5,000 award to a Canadian emerging director. In addition to the cash prize, the director receives resources towards a residency at Crow’s Theatre along with project development resources, and mentorship. The award recipient will be selected on a balance of award criteria by a jury of professional artists that includes Crow’s Artistic Director Chris Abraham. The jury will take into account the merits of the emerging director’s current body of work as well as how meaningful the residency would prove to the director’s professional development. This prize and Crow’s residency will recognize the creative potential of an up-and-coming theatre-maker, and provide the means to substantially advance their practice, by providing a resourced incubation lab for a new or existing work.
About Crow’s Theatre
Founded in 1983, Crow’s Theatre is nationally recognized as an award-winning contemporary theatre company. Crow’s has toured across Canada and abroad with memorable works including Seeds, Winners and Losers, True Crime, The Wedding Party, Unidentified Human Remains and the True Nature of Love, Eternal Hydra, Someone Else, The Watershed and A Short History of Night. The company seeks to ignite passionate and enduring engagement between audiences and artists by creating, producing, and promoting unforgettable theatre that examines and illuminates the pivotal narratives of our times. The company commits to a long-term artistic process, with an appropriate gestation period and multiple moments of audience engagement. Each work grows and is informed through its resonance with the public.
In 2017, Crow’s Theatre opened the doors of its first permanent home, Streetcar Crowsnest, a new state of the art performance facility in Toronto’s East End. Streetcar Crowsnest has become a bustling arts and community cultural hub for the residents of the neighbourhood and a beautiful venue for Crow’s Theatre.
Crow’s productions at Streetcar Crowsnest to date include The Wedding Party by Kristen Thomson; A&R Angels, a playwriting debut by Kevin Drew of Broken Social Scene; The Boy in the Moon, Emil Sher’s adaptation of a beloved memoir by renowned journalist, Ian Brown; True Crime, a brilliant one man show by Torquil Campbell; Breath in Between, by celebrated Canadian playwright, Anton Piatigorsky; and The Emancipation of Ms. Lovely by Ngozi Paul, winner of the Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play. In addition, a carefully curated selection of outstanding quality partner productions has been presented such as Project: Humanity’s world premiere of Freedom Singer, Nightwood and Volcano Theatre’s Century Song and Theatre Direct’s The Old Man and the River. Crow’s has also hosted productions from Toronto Masque Theatre, Soundstreams, Morro and Jasp, Outside the March and The Howland Company. In addition to theatrical productions, the space is home for music, dance, cabaret, youth classes and family programming.
Past recipients of this prize are Zack Russell, Rebecca Northan, Sarah Kitz, Tom Arthur Davis and Jivesh Parasram.
Zack Russell is a writer and director. His latest short film "7A" (starring Tom Rooney) premiered at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival and is now screening on the CBC. He was the 2018/19 playwright in residence at Canadian Stage and is currently collaborating with Chris Abraham and the band Stars on Together for the Crow’s 2019/20 season. Other theatre credits include directing Ngozi Paul's Dora-Award winning The Emancipation of Ms. Lovely at Crows in 2017 and assistant directing at The Stratford Festival (most recently, The Breathing Hole by Colleen Murphy). 
Rebecca Northan is an actor, improviser, writer, director and Artistic Producer of Spontaneous Theatre. She is a Gemini-nominated TV actor and a two-time Canadian Comedy Award winner. Her one-woman show, Blind Date, was her first foray into the emerging genre of spontaneous theatre, and it has toured across Canada, the US, played off-Broadway and in London’s West End. During her residency at Crow’s Theatre, Rebecca trained a group of 40 participants in her Spontaneous Theatre method, bringing her influence and impact to a new level.
Sarah Kitz is a Toronto director, actor and writer. She has directed for the Next Stage Festival, SummerWorks, and Shakespeare In The Ruins. She is extensively involved with the AMY Project, which supports the creative trajectories of young women and non-binary youth in Toronto through arts mentorship. To date, Sarah’s twin focus lies in re-visioning classical works to recognize their current day interpretation, and in new creation.
Last year’s recipients of the prize were Tom Arthur Davis and Jivesh Parasram.
Tom Arthur Davis is the founding artistic director of Pandemic Theatre. Originally from the unceded territory of the Algonquin people (Ottawa), Tom has toured his work across Turtle Island and overseas. As an artist, he is interested in elevating marginalized voices through facilitating the creation of new work. His works for the stage include Mahmoud (co-writer/director), Take d Milk, Nah? (co-creator/director), The Only Good Indian (co-creator), and Situational Anarchy (director), and most recently Johnnie Walker’s Shove It Down My Throat, Pandemic’s co-production with Buddies in Bad Times.
Jiv Parasram is a multidisciplinary artist, researcher, and facilitator of Indo-Caribbean descent. His work has played across Canada and internationally. His work centres around de-colonial aesthetics and the intersections of performance and political action. He is the founding Artistic Producer at Pandemic Theatre, and the Artistic Director of Rumble Theatre. He grew up in Mi’kmaki (Halifax) and now splits his time between T’koronto (Toronto) and The Unceded Coast Salish Territories (Vancouver.) Select projects include: Take d Mik, Nah? (Performer/Co-Creator), The Only Good Indian (Co-Creator), Victim Impact (Director), Daughter (Co-Creator) and Sound of the Beast (Co-Director/Dramaturge).
Award Guidelines:
Applicants must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents.
Applicants must be practicing theatre directors for at least three years and no more than ten years.
Directors of text-based or non-text-based work are invited to apply.
Applicants must have at least two professional directing credits. Productions at major curated theatre festivals (such as SummerWorks or The Next Stage Theatre Festival) will be accepted.
The Prize jury will take into account the proposed residency’s level of ambition and its transformative potential for the applicant. Equally important is the vision of the proposal and the applicant’s potential to realize the residency’s central project.
Each applicant should include in their nomination package:
  1. An introductory letter that outlines the emerging director’s practice, experience and personal vision. This letter is to be conceived as a kind of artist statement that communicates the emerging director’s passion and the kind of work they are interested in.
  2. A one-page project proposal for either one or two projects to be considered for a Crow’s residency. The applicant should describe the proposed work-in-progress and their connection to it, its current phase of development, and in what way it could be served by a Crow’s residency. Whether the applicant chooses to put forward one or two projects, this component of the nomination package should still be limited to a total of one page.
  3. A copy of the applicant’s CV
  4. Two letters of support from theatre professionals
  5. A maximum of 5 pages of support material. This can include production stills, reviews, or materials relevant to the central project proposed in the application. In lieu of written materials, the applicant is welcome to submit a video link. The duration of the video should be no more than 5 minutes.
Please submit all materials to Crow’s Theatre electronically, as a single PDF file. A shortlist of candidates will be interviewed by phone or Skype in advance of a recipient being selected.
The DEADLINE for all submissions is June 28, 2019. The recipient will be announced in late July.
Please submit all materials to: applications@crowstheatre.com
Should you have any questions about eligibility or application details, please contact Associate Producer Margaret Evans: margaret@crowstheatre.com

Download as a PDF