Six Outstanding Canadian Designers Short-Listed for 2009 Siminovitch Prize in

    Designers from Vancouver, Montreal, Edmonton, Toronto and Calgary in the
    Running for $100,000 Prize - the Largest in Canadian Theatre
<p><location>TORONTO</location>, <chron>Oct. 13</chron> /CNW/ - BMO Financial Group, sponsor of the Elinore & Lou Siminovitch Prize in Theatre, today announced the names of six Canadian designers who have made the 2009 short-list for the largest prize in Canadian theatre. The finalists are:</p>
    -  Jean Bard, Montreal, Quebec;
    -  Ronnie Burkett, Calgary, Alberta and Toronto, Ontario;
    -  Bretta Gerecke, Edmonton, Alberta;
    -  Anick Labissonnière, Montreal, Quebec;
    -  Richard Lacroix, Montreal, Quebec; and
    -  Ken MacDonald, Vancouver, British Columbia and Toronto, Ontario.
<p>The six finalists were selected from a list of 17 nominees, recognized for their work in professional lighting, costume, set, sound and mixed media design and for their inspiration to younger theatre designers.</p>
<p>"On behalf of BMO Financial Group, our congratulations go out to all nominees short-listed for the 2009 Siminovitch Prize in Theatre," said Gilles Ouelette, President and CEO, Private Client Group, BMO Financial Group. "We would like to extend a sincere thank you to Jury Chair Maureen Labonté and the rest of this year's jury for their commitment to recognizing such remarkable achievements in Canadian theatre."</p>
<p>"The jury feels strongly that each of the nominees on this year's short-list show incredible artistic talent and provide vision in Canadian theatre," said Maureen Labonté, a Montreal-based translator and dramaturge who was selected as the new Jury Chair for this year's Siminovitch Prize in Theatre.</p>
<p>"Whether it is set, costume or lighting design, the short-listed nominees demonstrate impressive skills which inspire creativity and exemplify excellence in the world of theatre," Labonté said.</p>
    Other jury members include:

    -  Mérédith Caron - Montreal, Quebec, one of Quebec's foremost costume
       designers and a teacher at Montreal's National Theatre School;
    -  Rachel Ditor - Vancouver, British Columbia, a dramaturge who has
       freelanced around Canada and currently Literary Manager at the Arts
       Club Theatre in Vancouver as well as adjunct professor in dramaturgy
       at the University of British Columbia;
    -  Sue LePage - Toronto, Ontario, celebrated set and costume designer for
       more than 25 years; and
    -  Mieko Ouchi - Edmonton, Alberta, playwright, actor, stage and film
       director as well as co-founder and Artistic co-director of the
       Concrete Theatre in Edmonton.
<p>The recipient of the Siminovitch Prize will receive <money>$100,000</money>, of which <money>$25,000</money> will be awarded to a protégé or organization of their choice. The Prize will be presented on <chron>November 2, 2009</chron> at a ceremony in <location>Toronto</location>.</p>
<p>For more information about the short-listed designers, please visit <a href=""></a>.</p>
<p>The Selection Process</p>
<p>The Jury reviewed nominations of professional Canadian designers who have advanced Canadian theatre through a body of work achieved in recent years while influencing and inspiring younger theatre artists. In the preceding 10 years, nominees were to have made a significant creative contribution to no fewer than three noteworthy theatre projects in <location>Canada</location>. The jurors assessed the nominees' originality, sense of evolution, growing maturity, continuing experimentation, impact upon audiences, and/or influence upon younger artists. They also considered whether the artists were at a point in their professional career where the recognition and resources associated with the prize would make a significant difference, allowing and encouraging the artist to go further in the pursuit of his or her craft.</p>
<p>About the Siminovitch Prize</p>
<p>The Siminovitch Prize in Theatre was introduced in 2001 and dedicated to renowned scientist Lou Siminovitch and his late wife Elinore, a playwright. Sponsored by BMO Financial Group, Canada's largest annual theatre arts award recognizes direction, playwriting and design in three-year cycles. Previous recipients include:</p>
    -  Toronto director, Daniel Brooks in 2001;
    -  Montreal playwright, Carole Fréchette in 2002;
    -  Montreal designer, Louise Campeau in 2003;
    -  St. John's director, Jillian Keiley in 2004;
    -  Toronto playwright, John Mighton in 2005;
    -  Toronto set and costume designer, Dany Lyne in 2006;
    -  Montréal director, Brigitte Haentjens in 2007; and
    -  Toronto playwright, Daniel McIvor in 2008.

For further information: For further information: Orli Namian, Toronto,, (416) 867-3996; Laurie Grant, Vancouver,, (604) 665-7596; Internet:

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