Our projects bring youth together with professional artists to create works that are focused on issues of importance to the participants. Our unique collaborative approach allows the participants the opportunity to tell their own stories with artistic guidance and support. Workshops and performances are created with the goals of empowering the participants, and of engaging diverse communities in thought and conversation.
The Regent Park Project – A collaborative initiative telling the stories of Regent Park.
This is a multi-disciplinary project incorporating writing, film and theatre in a collective creation process with professional artists, and youth from Regent Park and beyond. Taking place over time, this initiative empowers participants with opportunities to develop their acting, writing and film-making skills through free hands-on sessions – sharing their stories and experiences in ways that are meaningful to them. We have developed a web-series as part of this initiative.
We have launched both Season 1 and 2 on Youtube. Click Here to View it!
Season One scripts available for purchase now! Click here!
Check out our project web site for more information.
Our process saw us collaborating with accomplished Director of Photography, Daniel Grant, Jordan Crute, Editor, and other professionals in the film world. Much thanks to the Regent Park Film Festival, Urban Post, TAC, City of Toronto, John Young at Boat Rocker Media, OAC, Larissa Giroux, and Kathryn Emslie from the Canadian Film Centre for their support – we simply could not have done any of this without you.
This project has been created through a process of offering free acting, creation, and production classes – building our ‘company’ of diverse emerging actors and film-makers. They have had the opportunity to make connections within the professional film community; participating in workshops, mock auditions, and development sessions with actors from the Canadian Film Centre’s Conservatory Program, partaking in many opportunities through Boat Rocker Media, including set visits, and professional mentoring.
We have seen a lot of success. Many of our youth now have agents and are working actors, one is in the Screen-Writing Program at York University, one graduated from the acting program at Humber, and another is in the Media Arts Program at OCAD University
With funding from both the Ontario Arts Council and the Toronto Arts Council, we are expanding this program in the fall of 2019, adding a dance program with the same vision of giving interested emerging artists access to the professional realm, and creating creators. Please click here to ask for more information.
The Four Canoes Project ~ A Reconciliation Project with Youth in Regent Park
In partnership with Indigenous Knowledge Carriers Suzy Kies, and Master Canoe Builder Josy Thomas, we were very pleased to host the creation of a traditional canoe build. This project, funded by Canadian Heritage, saw participants from Regent Park and beyond working collaboratively with the Indigenous artists. They learned about traditional teachings, shared how their own cultures intersect, and participated in the hands-on creation of a canoe, and drums, while learning about art, design, and culture. The project culminated in a sharing in the community. Over 40 people, 6 months-96 years old participated.
The Spectrum Collective
Kick Start Arts is pleased to have collaborated with the tenants of the Daniels Spectrum Building (An arts and cultural hub in Regent Park). We acted as Artistic Directors/Producers for their collaborative multi-disciplinary ‘Summer Arts Lab’ for youth ages 11-18. The Collective includes: ArtHeart, COBA Dance, Native Earth, Regent Park Film Festival, and the Regent Park School of Music. Artscape, The Centre for Social Innovation, and Pathways to Education are all supporting partners in this project. Participants explored a common theme through drama, dance, visual art, music, media and writing – the week-long session culminated in a performance, and community pot luck.
We are looking for funding to continue this in future years.