Harper Government Invests in Winnipeg's Master Playwright Festival

WINNIPEG, Sept. 14, 2012 /CNW/ - A new investment by the Government of Canada in the Master Playwright Festival will give residents of Manitoba increased access to the work of local artists while promoting economic growth and tourism in the region. Support was announced today by Joyce Bateman, Member of Parliament (Winnipeg South Centre), on behalf of the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages.

The Master Playwright Festival, organized by the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre, will take place in January and February 2013. This 13th edition will include the presentation of 12 plays by master playwright Stephen Sondheim. The work of over 200 local artists will be featured and more than 10,000 people are expected to attend.

"This year marks the start of the five-year countdown to Canada's 150th birthday in 2017," said Minister Moore. "Our Government is proud to invest in projects that contribute to our collective identity and define who we are as Canadians. On the road to 2017, let us continue to celebrate all of the things that make Canada the united, prosperous, and free country we are today."

"Investing in arts and culture is central to the economic health of communities across Canada," said Mrs. Bateman. "Today's investment will provide residents and visitors alike with greater access to cultural activities in Manitoba."

"We are thrilled that the Government of Canada has chosen to support MTC's Master Playwright Festival," said Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre General Manager, Camilla Holland. "The festival is truly a community event where a diverse range of professional, emerging and amateur artists come together to explore a familiar voice in a new way. This funding will help ensure that the festival remains accessible and affordable for the artists and the audiences."

The Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre, which has been in existence for more than 50 years, is a local non-profit organization that promotes arts in the community. It has been presenting the Master Playwright Festival since 2001.

The Government of Canada has provided funding of $8,800 through the Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage program of the Department of Canadian Heritage. This program provides Canadians with more opportunities to take part in activities that present local arts and culture and celebrate local history and heritage.

SOURCE: Canadian Heritage

For further information:

(media only), please contact:

Sébastien Gariépy
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Francine D. Lefebvre
Regional Communications
Prairies and Northern Region
Canadian Heritage
Tel.: 204-983-4367
Cell: 204-899-8611

Media Relations
Canadian Heritage

(This news release is available on the Internet at www.canadianheritage.gc.ca under Newsroom.)

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