SummerWorks expands the possibilities of performance. In its 32nd year, our summer Festival, based in Toronto, Canada, is widely recognized as one of the most vital platforms for launching new performance in the country.
We are currently seeking proposals for our Festival’s next edition, taking place August 4th-14th, 2022.
Proposals are encouraged from established and emerging creators, as well as curators, working across all disciplines and artistic traditions. In-person, digital, and hybrid performance projects will be considered.
This year, as an extension of our Public Works programming, SummerWorks is seeking proposals from artists for short solo performances (5-7 minutes) or art interventions to be experienced along sidewalks, streets, alleys, and laneways of Toronto. Artists working in all mediums are welcome to apply. Proposals from curators that unify a selection of works by different artists for this context, are also welcome.
Of particular interest are projects that bring attention to what otherwise might go unnoticed, and are designed to engage with more than just the Festival crowd: these projects will foster exchange with residents, business owners, and passersby as well.
“The sidewalks, streets, alleys, and laneways of Toronto have a long history of being sites for activation and performance for SummerWorks. We are inspired by these arteries of the city connecting neighbourhoods and people.They are often recognized as functional only, part of the transportation network of Toronto. But they have potential to be so much more when they are intervened with and repurposed by community and art.” Laura Nanni, Artistic & Managing Director
Work may be proposed for a static audience, or audience on the move. In all cases, we encourage artists and curators to take the site and audience experience into consideration.
Projects selected from this call will be provided a guaranteed fee of $350 CAD to $5,000 CAD (depending on the scale of the project and number of performances). An additional curatorial fee of $1,500 CAD will be provided where applicable. These works will be free to the public and should be designed with accessibility in mind. This initiative is kindly made possible through the support of Toronto Arts Council’s Animating Streets program.
DEADLINE: Tuesday, March 15th, 2022 11:59 PM EST.
APPLICATION: The application form for the SummerWorks Special Call for Artists & Curators is now closed.
ACCESSIBILITY: If you require an alternate mode to submit your application, please contact email@example.com.
NOTIFICATION: Applicants will be notified of curatorial decisions by May, 2022.
As an organization that brings together performance nationally and internationally, we wish to acknowledge that SummerWorks takes place on the traditional territory, Tkaronto, “Where the Trees Meet the Water,” “The Gathering Place” of the Mississauga, Anishinaabe, Haudenosaunee, and Wendat Nations. We pay our respects to all our relations who have gathered and will continue to gather in this place.
SummerWorks expands the possibilities of performance.
Founded in 1991, SummerWorks is a leader, collaborator, and community builder at the forefront of contemporary performance – asking crucial questions, nurturing artistic innovation, and presenting new works that reflect the complexity and diversity of our society.
Creative Risk and Curiosity:
We engage with artists, audience, partners, and staff who are inquisitive, willing to experiment, and be adventurous. We encourage bold ideas, new directions, and big questions, cultivating space for exploration and innovation.
Care and Collaboration:
We carefully consider all the choices we make, understanding that the works we curate, the time we give, who we work with, and spaces we use impact the experiences people have. We prioritize connection and dialogue, as well as community and relationship building. By working with artists and partners to exchange ideas and resources we’re able to multiply our impact.
Diversity and Difference:
We celebrate diversity in arts and people, prioritizing inclusive and accessible processes and experiences. We look to introduce professional artists and audiences from diverse communities to each other and to be inspired by our similarities and differences.
Fully-developed new works, offering a snapshot of contemporary performance.
A place for exploration, experimentation and process where new work is incubated or shared at crucial stages of development.
Encapsulating professional development and industry activities including workshops, conversations, mentorship and pitching opportunities.
Free performances, bringing artists and audiences together to experience public space in new ways.
SummerWorks programming and activities are supported by a variety of public and private sources. For a list of our current supporters, please see here.
Selected projects will be featured during the Festival (August 4th-14th, 2022).
SummerWorks supports participants with production resources and professional development opportunities while exposing them to the largest possible audiences, as well as industry professionals.
We provide mentorship and advice for all productions in the Festival, so if an artist is unsure something is possible, we encourage them to get in touch to talk through the idea. We want to hear about big ideas and help make them reality.
SummerWorks is a presenter, rather than commissioner or producer of new work. In the context of the Festival, artists are the producers and owners of their work.
Participating artists and companies receive a guaranteed artist fee. Projects curated from the SummerWorks Lab, SummerWorks Presentations or Public Works streams will be provided a guaranteed fee of $1,000 CAD to $7,500 CAD (depending on the scale of the project and number of performances).
Projects selected from our Special Call for Artists & Curators will be provided a guaranteed fee of $350 CAD to $5,000 CAD (depending on the scale of the project and number of performances). An additional curatorial fee of $1,500 CAD will be provided where applicable.
The guaranteed fee is a presentation fee provided for the performance(s) in the Festival. The guaranteed fees are set based on industry recommendations including CARFAC and CAEA.
The Festival provides a complete framework, which includes a venue, technical staff, a lighting designer, Festival publicity and marketing, technical and performance scheduling, box office and front of house management.
Selected projects from the SummerWorks Presentations Call normally receive up to 5 performances in a SummerWorks venue. Selected projects from the SummerWorks Lab normally receive up to 3 performances in a SummerWorks venue. Short-form projects (30 minutes or less) are considered for curation within double-bills or with multiple shorter performances, providing the opportunity for audience cross-over and greater attendance. The number of performances for outdoor, online, site-specific projects, immersive environments, and/or projects designed for a small capacity will be determined on a case by case basis.
In addition to the support of the Festival’s presentation model, SummerWorks artists receive access to free professional development workshops, and also receive an artist pass, providing them with highly discounted rates for all performances, events and workshops during the 11-day Festival.
SummerWorks is committed to continually increasing accessibility for our artists and audiences. This includes extending accessibility practices throughout the entirety of the artistic and administrative processes.
Currently, the main mode of application is online.
If you require an alternate mode to submit your application, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 416-628-8216.
We are responsive to the accessibility needs of artists once curated in the Festival as well, and encourage you to let us know of your needs at any point in the process.
We aim to provide ASL interpretation and captioning for our workshops, info sessions, and Festival events.
We are committed to ensuring that all our venues are wheelchair accessible. Should you propose an alternate venue and/or immersive space for your project, it must be wheelchair accessible.
We strive to go beyond the bare minimum standard of accessibility practices in the performing arts and to support artists, programmers, and partner organizations in considering how access can be incorporated throughout all aspects of a production and throughout all stages from development to presentation. It is our expectation that the artists we work with will also strive to put accessibility practices at the forefront of the creative process and implementation of their work.
To learn more about accessibility at the SummerWorks Festival, see here.
We welcome national and international applicants, however, should you be accepted, you are responsible for all expenses related to bringing your show to Toronto. SummerWorks is happy to assist Festival artists with applications for travel and touring funding.
Participating companies are responsible for obtaining the relevant production rights for their shows and performers. If anyone in your company has a membership in a guild, union, or other professional association, you must acquire the necessary releases, or pay the required fees to the respective organization. Note, SummerWorks has a Festival Waiver Agreement with the Canadian Actors Equity Association to allow Equity members to perform in the Festival.
Applications are no longer being accepted for SummerWorks 2022.
Deadline: Tuesday, March 15th, 2022 11:59 PM EST.
We look forward to receiving your submission.