Update (June 16, 2021): Grand OnStage remains on hold for in-person performances until the Regina Rosen Auditorium reopens. Alternative offerings are being presented in the meantime with in-person performances expected to resume later in 2021 as circumstances allow.
Grand OnStage performances are supported and amplified by engagement that aims to build community and expand the reach of the presenting program. Through master classes, pre- and post-show artist talks, workshops, partnerships, artist residencies and more, the engagement program supports greater access and opportunities for engagement with the performing arts for all. The Kingston Grand Theatre and Grand OnStage also offers young people the opportunity to experience world-class theatre, dance and music through live performance school program and arts learning.
Engagement and Learning Highlights
In 2019, an Elder-in-Residence program was introduced to share knowledge, traditional teachings, and offer cultural support to Grand OnStage patrons and artists. Grandmother Kathy Brant is the current Elder-in-Residence. She is Mohawk of the Haudenosaunee Six Nations Confederacy and has worked with Indigenous communities for close to 25 years.
In 2020, engagement opportunities including post-show artist talks and partnerships were delivered as part of the Virtual Grand OnStage program that launched in September 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In 2021, the Grand Theatre launched a new Local Arts Residency for Kingston-based artists in response to the impact of COVID-19 on the performing arts. The residency, which takes place in the Grand Theatre’s Regina Rosen Auditorium is open to Kingston-based artists and collectives working in varying performing arts disciplines and provides participants space and support to explore new ideas, create, self-direct their research and time and nurture new directions in their work.
Conversations with local, emerging artists - A new audio series titled On the Contrary, created by young emerging artists, for young emerging artists in Kingston has launched. This program is co-hosted the City’s Arts Program Assistants and artists, Kemi King and Gloria Digby and features and profiles young, emerging Kingston performing artists to learn about their practice, how they’ve navigated COVID-19, and what they see shifting in the sector in Kingston and beyond. The series aims to create new links between artists and audiences and promote the Grand Theatre as a space that supports and engages local artists. This series is presented by the City of Kingston, Arts & Culture Services department and the Grand Theatre.
Two episodes are now live for listening through SoundCloud:
Episode 1 – get to know your hosts Kemi King and Gloria Digby! Kemi King (she/her) is a writer, director, performance artist and divisor and Gloria Digby is a performer, choreographer, and educator.
Episode 2 – a conversation with Fonts the Duo, a brother sister duo originally from Caracas, Venezuela. One half of the duo, Jessica Rosales is currently working towards her Musical Theatre Bachelor and Honours Bachelor in the Arts at Queen’s University joint with St. Lawrence College. Fonts the Duo combines folk, pop, alternative, and funk and have been singing and writing songs for years.
Learn more about the Grand Theatre and Grand OnStage engagement and learning opportunities below.