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Call for Submissions (Edmonton): Confluence Artistic Fellowship for IBPOC Artists – Catalyst Theatre

The Virgin Trial – Alberta Theatre Projects
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Call for Submissions (Edmonton): Confluence Artistic Fellowship for IBPOC Artists – Catalyst Theatre


Catalyst Theatre is pleased to announce the fourth cycle of Confluence– a creative fellowship for an IBPOC artist based in Edmonton or surrounding areas.
The fellowship offers money, space and time as well as the opportunity to be in an ongoing conversation with the creative and administrative team at Catalyst who bring nearly three decades of professional experience in creating, producing and touring original work nationally and internationally.

Confluence is designed to make space for IBPOC artists to develop a specific creative project using the models that work best for them with the wholehearted support of Catalyst’s artistic and administrative team.

The fellowship aims to support the work of an IBPOC artist while creating an opportunity to evolve their practice, augment their creative and administrative skills, and expand their professional networks.

The Confluence Fellowship will run from March 1 to June 30, 2024, but the selected artist will have access to Catalyst’s staff, network, and team of artists throughout the 2023/2024 season (i.e. September 1, 2023 to June 30, 2024).

Please note: Catalyst remains open to negotiating an alternate timeline for the fellowship based on your particular needs and those of your project as long as the timing and duration of the fellowship fall between September 1, 2023 and June 30, 2024.

Our hope is that, over the coming years, Confluence will play a role in evolving the makeup of Edmonton’s theatre community and have a meaningful impact on the creative journeys of future creative leaders who identify as IBPOC.

Catalyst Theatre is mandated to create original Canadian work that explores new possibilities for the theatrical art form and the process through which it is created. Since 1996, Catalyst has become synonymous with the award-winning work of a group of Edmonton-based artists who create bold new productions in a style completely their own.

Embedded in Catalyst’s mandate is also a commitment to share these productions with audiences locally, nationally and internationally and, to this end, the company has mounted many successful tours over the past two and half decades, performing at leading theatres and festivals around the world.

The Confluence Fellowship was created to make space for IBPOC artists who have similar dreams of creating their own work in their own way and sharing it with local, national and international audiences. It is part of Catalyst’s multi-pronged commitment to supporting and elevating the work of under-represented artists and ensuring that Catalyst is a safe and inclusive workplace.

The Confluence Fellowship offers the following:

  • A cash investment of $20,000, divided into two parts:
    • a $10,000 subsistence fee (paid to you in four instalments over the four months of the fellowship), and
    • a $10,000 investment in the cost of mounting your own workshop and public presentation of the specific creative project you develop
      during the fellowship.

Please note: in addition to remaining open to negotiating an alternate timeline for the fellowship, Catalyst is also open to negotiating an alternate division of the $20,000 cash investment based on your needs and the needs of your project. The timing and duration of the fellowship, however, must fall between September 1st, 2023 and May 31st, 2024 and the fellowship must culminate in some form of public presentation.

  • ● Support from Catalyst’s core staff in applying for grants and/or securing
    other development partners for the specific creative project the artist
    develops during the fellowship,
    ● Access to workshop/rehearsal space,
    ● Access to Catalyst’s production equipment,
    ● Access to a work station with internet access in Catalyst’s offices,
    ● Access to our staff and creative team,
    ● A dedicated page about you and your work on our website where you can share photos, video or audio of past work and/or of your work-in-progress,
    ● Takeovers on our social media platforms to amplify you and your work,
    ● Regular check-ins with the creative/administrative team at Catalyst,
    ● The opportunity to make connections and to be introduced to Catalyst’s network of theatre practitioners, creators, and presenters across the
    country. If there’s a theatre professional you want to talk to, or learn from, we will work with you to try to make that happen, and
    ● Access to all Catalyst activities throughout the season of the fellowship (i.e. September 2023 through May 2024), including rehearsals, creative
    meetings, staff meetings, production meetings, special events, or any other activity that would be of interest.

In exchange, the CONFLUENCE FELLOWSHIP asks that you commit to:

  • Spending the equivalent of at least four months (March 1 – June 30, 2024 – TBC between you and Catalyst) focused on developing the original
    project you outline in your application,
  • Organizing a workshop of your project, and
  • Mounting a public presentation of your work-in-progress, the scale and scope of which will be guided by your needs and approach, and determined in consultation between you and Catalyst.

Our goal with Confluence to engage in a reciprocal relationship. As you develop your work and evolve your creative practice, the Catalyst team will also develop and evolve ours. As we work alongside each other, we hope we will all gain valuable insights, develop new ideas, learn new ways of creating, and integrate new modes of communication. We are excited to embark upon a journey of growth, creation, and evolution with you. We want you to ask questions, get involved, and be as excited about engaging in a relationship with us, as we are about welcoming you into our season.

Once an artist has been selected, we will hire a facilitator to develop a working agreement that will ensure a safe space for creation and collaboration while ensuring the artist’s needs are being met, and that the artist is getting everything
they can out of the program.

Catalyst will then work to create an environment that facilitates those terms, doing our best to help you achieve your own self-identified goals. This will be our jumping off place, in terms of our working relationship with you, and how you can begin your project.

We Welcome:

  • Artists who self-identify as IBPOC. We encourage IBPOC artists who also identify as LGTBQ2S+ and/or artists with disabilities to apply.
  • Artists with experience in, or who express a strong interest in, developing new work and/or demonstrate a desire to work outside of traditional theatre models.
  • Curious and passionate artists who are ready to dive into a season with us and take advantage of all the opportunities available.
  • Artists who have a theatrical project, story, or idea they are passionate about, and want to dedicate time to exploring.
  • Artists who are self-motivated and need extra support to get their project off the ground.
  • Artists from Edmonton or the surrounding area who are dedicated to continuing the next step(s) of their career development in Edmonton.
  • Emerging, mid-career or established artists with a strong interest in creating original work.

What we’d like you to share with us:

  • SECTION ONE: Who you are and what inspires you? Introduce yourself. Send a resumé if you have one. Tell us about your work, the processes
    you like or don’t like, and what excites you about Confluence (Why this fellowship? We want to know why you want to work with Catalyst?)
    SECTION ONE can be done in a format of your choosing (i.e: written statements, video and audio recordings will all be accepted). If you
    communicate primarily in a language other than English, we will also accept submissions in other languages (in such a case, Catalyst will pay
    for your submission to be translated before being reviewed by the committee). Not including your resumé, SECTION ONE should be no longer than three pages for written material or five minutes for recorded material.
  • SECTION TWO: Examples of Your Work. Do you have a writing sample, a video of a dance piece, photos of your design work, a recorded piece of
    music you wrote? We’re curious to see any pieces you’d like to share with us. We’re not looking for highly produced videos, photos or audio recordings, and the quality of video will not be a consideration of the panel.
    If you don’t have anything to share at this time, this section is not a requirement. Please do not let it stop you from applying if you are interested. Please keep writing samples to a maximum of five pages, and any video/audio recordings to no more than five minutes.
  • SECTION THREE: What would you like to work on during the Confluence Fellowship? While the scope of your project may not yet be fully realized, we would like you to tell us about a specific project you would like to focus on during the fellowship. We are interested in hearing you speak to a project that allows for new forms of exploration or something you never thought would be possible to create before. We are curious about what kinds of stories you want to tell, and how you might consider telling them.
    SECTION THREE can be done in a format of your choosing (i.e. written statements, video and audio submissions will all be accepted). Please
    keep writing samples to a maximum of three pages, and any video/audio recordings to no more than five minutes.
  • SECTION FOUR: What will you need? Tell us what the ideal framework of your creation time might look like. What kind of supports/resources,
    outside of the ones outlined in the SPECIFICS section above, do you think you may need? Examples could include: specific equipment, individuals within a certain community, artists who specialize in a skill set you’re interested in learning about, or a way of gaining access to research materials.

Please keep this section to a maximum of two pages.

  • SECTION FIVE: References. Please provide two references from individuals who have a relationship to you and/or your work. These
    references do not have to come from within the theatre community, but can come from within one of your communities, a trusted accomplice, or anyone you believe can speak about you, your work, your potential, or your experience.
    SECTION FIVE can be done in a format of your reference’s choosing (i.e. written statements, video and audio submissions will all be accepted).
    Please keep writing samples to a maximum of two pages, and any video/audio recording to no more than two minutes each.
  • SECTION SIX: Schedule or timeline. Please give us a sense of what other commitments you may be juggling during the four months of the fellowship (March 1 – June 30, 2024) and any barriers that may exist to undertaking a workshop and public presentation of your work-in-progress at the end of the fellowship.
    Or, if you would like to propose an alternate timeline for the fellowship, please explain why that timeline is preferable and what other commitments you may be juggling around that.

To share your materials, ask questions, or if you would like an example of what a submission in any of the five sections above might look like, please contact Associate Producer, Jessica Glover, at

Want to apply but there’s something you’re unable to provide? Again, please feel free to reach out. We’re happy to be in dialogue with you as you prepare your submission.

The selection process will be led by a paid committee of IBPOC artists along with Catalyst’s artistic director, managing director, and associate producer. The committee will review all submitted materials and select an artist for the fellowship.

Applications will be assessed on: previous and proposed work, clarity of process/practice, impact that Confluence could have on the artist, impact that the partnership between Catalyst and the artist could have on the wider Edmonton community, and Catalyst’s ability to provide the resources/experience the artist is looking for.
Once all applications have been reviewed, candidates may be asked to participate in an informal interview to allow the selection committee to learn more about the applicant and their proposed work.

The deadline for submissions is Friday, July 21, 2023.

Submissions should be sent to Jessica Glover at

Catalyst Theatre recognizes that where we create, share and tell stories is located on Treaty 6 territory as well as Region 4 of Métis Nation of Alberta, the traditional territories of the nêhiyawak, Saulteaux, Niisitapi, Nakota Sioux, Dene, Métis, and other peoples. In doing so, we recognize that we are a part of a larger journey of growth, creation and working alongside all voices that call this place home.

Catalyst Theatre is also grateful to Hunter Cardinal and Jacquelyn Cardinal of Naheyawin for the exceptional consultation they offered as Confluence was first taking shape. Their thoughtful guidance and support in the preparation of this call for submissions was invaluable.

We’d also like to thank your previous Confluence artists: Tia Kushniruk, Berend McKenzie, and Sue Goberdhan. And our previous panelists: Christine Sokaymoh Frederick, Nadien Chu, Kenneth Williams, Gina Puntil, and Patricia Darbasie.

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