Archive for October, 2011

October 14, 2011

Nearly Everyone Has Taken a Dance break at Least Once

I’m vindicated. Dance breaks are an important part of the work I do – when it all gets to be too much, too complicated or too silly, you must dance it out. And as it turns out, I don’t personally know everyone who does it.

Why is this post-worthy? Because I was at the Ontario Arts Council launch of the Ontario Arts Engagement Study – a commissioned report that reveals signficant implications for arts organizations seeking to build audience development and engagement. A lot of information, a lot to digest. Some highlights from the press release:

Ontarians place a high value on live arts experiences    While media-based participation is more widespread, Ontarians attach a relatively higher level of importance to attending live events such as visiting art museums and attending plays.  For example, among Ontarians who reported visiting an art museum or art gallery at least once in the past year, 80 per cent described this activity as being very important to them.

Online participation is a central aspect of the arts participation of younger adults.  For example, 75 per cent of Ontarians age 18 to 34 download music at least once a year or more.  In addition, Ontarians ages 18 to 34 are twice as likely to be engaged in personal practice activities, such as playing a musical instrument, as those over 65.

Room to grow The results suggest that opportunities exist for increasing the engagement among those who are interested but participate infrequently in the arts.  In most types of activities, approximately 20 per cent of Ontarians account for about half of the engagement.

Click here to access the Summary and the full WolfBrown report.

A worthwhile afternoon, with lots of things to ponder. Thanks, OAC. Take a peek, click a link, read it over and do some thinking about his these finding affect the business of your art. In the meantime – dance break. This will get you started. And you should absolutely do the guitar solo.

October 12, 2011

Your Passion, Your Vision

Yesterday’s episode of Entrepreneuse School was absolutely amazing. We spent the afternoon working on our vision and mission statements, and did a great exercise called No Brain, All Heart. It was sort of like that scene in Dead Poets Society where the instructor fired questions at us about why we wanted to open our own business and we answered them. He continues to “shoot down” our answers until we began to react on an emotional level as to why we wanted, needed to open this business. And then when we hit that point, asked us, “in the year 3011, a six-year-old boy stands in front of a two storey tall statue made of gold. That statue is of you. And the six-year-old boy asks, ‘what did this person do to have such a statue created?'”

And the simple answer he gets, the sentence that a six-year-old can understand – is your vision statement.

“I help people make their art.”

A truly exhausting marvelous day of learning. I was the volunteer who had the questions fired at her of course I volunteered, I went to theatre school – I have a degree in standing in front of the class and weeping.

I rarely take notes in class. I have pages from yesterday. I’m excited to go through them again.

“Elevating the world from mediocrity to greatness”

“To put joy in kids’ hearts and a smile on parents’ faces”

“To make people happy”

What is YOUR BIG, BOLD, BRAVE vision? What will your statue’s plaque say about you?

Couple other things – the Off Bathurst Theatre District Marathon is happening again this year. Check it out.

Nestlé Purina is trying to bypass the pet owner altogether with a direct pitch to dogs —making a television commercial that includes high-frequency sounds only audible to them. I need someone with a dog to tell me if this works in two ways – one, does your dog react positively, and second, would that reaction push you to buy the product? I’m torn between good marketing and clever marketing and a stunt.


Here we go.

October 11, 2011

Buy a Theatre

Hope everyone had a glorious long weekend, whether you Thanksgivingèd or just enjoyed the sunshine. Quick post today as class starts in ten minutes.

Couple articles today, one from the Star, one from the Globe

Arts Task For Looking For Input


The Plot Thickens….

We`ll know what`s going to happen by November 30th – or rather, the task force`s report is due November 30th.

ETA: There’s a new page here at Sue Edworthy Arts Planning. Grants+Things will point you in the right direction for funding sources and specific grants I can help you with. Let’s  talk.

October 9, 2011

Sunday Roundup – October 9

It’s the Sunday of the long weekend and Thanksgiving here in Canada. Before you set the oven, make the stuffing and get ready for guests, what happened this last week?

Sunday Roundup on a Monday – got busy ding things last weekend, so the Roundup got held back by a day.

Back to School and a Schedule – a bit of a backgrounder on my latest thing, Entrepreneuse Schoo and my new digs at CSI.

Election Day (yes again) – now I can tell you we’ve got a Liberal Minority Government with the usual amount of noise coming from either side. And given that we did this last October and in May, I`m pretty sure everyone is electioned out.

The day after – well, it was indeed the day after and articles abounded on who did what and why so and so got elected nad such and such didn`t.

Have a happy long weekend folks, whether with family, friends or both –  always remember the true spirit of Thanksgiving.

See You Tuesday!

October 7, 2011

the day after

So it’s the day after, we have a Liberal minority government and everyone is talking about it, people who follow more closely than I do, so I’m gonna send you over to them to read about it.

Friday’s Headlines from our friends at Spacing – nice round-up.

Good article from Christopher Bird over at torontoist .

I have to add their live blog was great too – favourite comment? 9:54 PM: PC spokesperson: “We wanted to focus on change and pocketbook issues.” This is why they spent the last few days of the election complaining about cross-dressing schoolchildren.CB

And finally – something lovely to watch for your Friday:


October 6, 2011

Election Day (yes, again)


Ontario election today! Get out and vote!  I know it seems we’ve been doing this a lot lately – it’s true we have. Go do it again. It matters.


Some party platforms:

In other news yesterday was day two of entrepreneuse  school –research and market analysis. I have surveys to complete. Expect to see a link here tomorrow – it will be short and sweet and I do hope you’ll take a few minutes to fill it out and be part of my research. Thanking you in advance.

And final thought in this short post – from Edelman Digital – Brevity is the new Black.

October 4, 2011

Back to School and a Schedule

So yesterday was my first day at what I’m calling Entrepreneuse School. I’m going to like it a lot, I think. It’s boot camp on opening your own business.

For those who have been asking – it’s a program called  the Ontario Self Employment Benefits Program, administered by the Ministry of Colleges, Training and Universities and run out of the Toronto Business Development Centre,

It’s tough to get in. And it takes time, and teaches you patience (something I don’t have much of). In June I went to JobStarts which is where your paperwork begins, as you need to be recommended to this program.

Then I went to an info session in July. A week later I sent in my business proposal (your proposal must demonstrate not only a viable business idea, but need for the program).

Then I waited.

In August I heard back that my proposal was indeed successful and I had been invited to the next stage which was a full on presentation of said proposal, which required me to expand upon my previous proposal. (Years of grant writing certainly came in handy!) So I expanded upon my previous proposal. And went and made a presentation of my viable business idea.

Then I waited.

Two weeks ago I got a call that I had been accepted and went to sign my contract. What have I committed to?

Essentially, a ten week boot camp on opening establishing and running a business from the ground up. We started yesterday with the most basic things like your business name, will you register for HST, where is your office, what is your fax number, you name it. I attend school two days a week from 9:00 – 4:00 and then do my homework – a milestone a week ( sales analysis, the marketing plan, your ops plan,  setting up your books – everything). And at the end of ten weeks – you have a completely solid business plan, and another 32 week s of support from the Ministry while you work on your business. It’s a great program. And a serious commitment.

There are 30 of us in the class (over 120 attended that first info session) and we run the range from dog walkers to video surveillance to scarf designers to relationship coaches. I[‘m looking forward to working with my new colleagues – I think we’ll learn a lot from each other, and I think it’s going to be an excellent ten weeks. We’re already in this together a few people mentioned yesterday they didn’t register the wad of stress they’d been feeling about this endeavor until yesterday when it was gone. I agree. Two months feels like a long time when it’s about your future.

Which brings it to the schedule part – I’m a Virgo – I do love schedules.  So I’m enjoying the fact that I can now have a schedule that puts me in school two days a week, and leaves three days a week at CSI to work with my current clients and do my homework.  My google calendar is full again and I spent last night getting very, very organized.

I’ll keep you posted when we’re doing interesting stuff.

One of the better Mondays in the world.

October 3, 2011

Sunday Roundup on Monday

Sorry for the delay folks, I was at a wedding this weekend – two of my favourite people say I do in front of all of us and a grand old celebration was had by all.

So what went on this week?

Everything Stops For Tea – started the week with a terrible cold that’s going around and seems to have left me.

New Day New Digs New Info – spent the day at the Centre Social Innovation at 215 Spadina, setting up me new workspace and attending a great workshop.

Information Overload/Information Detox – great article on how to undertake a detox from all the info that seems to be coming at us these days

A Weekend of Culture – Culture Days, Nuit Blanche and what turned out to be a very successful fundraiser for the newly forme Stratirical Theatre.

A busy week ahead of getting into aq new schedule, new work and new school. I mentioned last week that I am starting a business entrepreneur course through the Toronto Business Development Centre, and later today I’m a guest speaker at the UofT Scarborough campus. The 3rd year Arts Management undergrads are working on a project where they are researching the arts issues for the provincial election  prior to working on “doorstep questions” to ask candidates. I’m looking very much forward to school and guest speaking. Will keep you posted.

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