NORTH DURHAM: The creative economy of the Durham Region was thrown into the spotlight on Nov. 27, at the fourth annual Durham Art of Transition Creative Awards (DATCA) ceremony.
The ceremony kicked off at 6:30 p.m., with a welcome reception at the Heydenshore Pavilion in Whitby. The awards were presented by Kathy Weiss, Director of Economic Development and Tourism and event partner Dennis Croft, Executive Director at Spark Centre.
“Durham Region’s creative talent is thriving, and our judging committee was impressed by the quality of nominations submitted for this year’s Durham Art of Transition Creative Awards,” said Kerri King, Tourism Manager. “Our rich heritage, dynamic attractions, and thriving arts and culture scene make up a quality of life in Durham Region that is second to none.”
Carey Nicholson, who took home an award in the theatre category, is credited with helping to shape professional and community theatre in Durham Region. She is a director and performer in her own right, and has worked extensively with Oshawa Little Theatre, and more recently, her own newly formed company Theatre 3×60.
With training in classic and contemporary dance, she was a faculty member of the School of the Toronto Dance Theatre for 15 years, has participated as a board member for several community theatre companies in the area, and is the former Executive Director of the Scugog Council for the Arts. In addition to being the co-artistic director of Theatre 3×60.
Jennifer Hardie, Brigitta McLeod and Bonnie Thompson, the team behind the Meta4 Gallery on Queen St. in Port Perry received an award for the ‘Cultural Champion in Business’ category.
According to a Durham Region press release, “Meta4 plays a vital role in the cultural life within Durham Region, by finding and promoting the work of local artists. META4 offers an array of art and craft classes for various skill levels and interests, taught by top instructors from the local creative community.”
Being artists themselves, the staff at META4 understand the needs of the community and local artists looking to showcase their work.
Kent Farndale, long time matron of the arts in Scugog, took home the well deserved lifetime achievement award.
Born and raised in Port Perry, Kent Farndale has been supporting the local community for most of her life. Kent has dedicated her life to community volunteerism, and has been recognized and celebrated for her fundraising efforts and innate, unwavering love of the arts. Of the many local causes that have received her support over the years, her work with Lakeridge Health Port Perry and the Kent Farndale Gallery at the Scugog Public Library, are perhaps among the most well-known.
Conrad Boyce, an Uxbridge based renaissance man, recieved the DATCA literary award - but was unable to attend the ceremony.
Conrad Boyce has been sharing his writing talents, adventurous vision and passion for the arts with the Durham Region community ever since he arrived from the Yukon, almost 20 years ago. He founded the Onstage Uxbridge Theatre in 1997, where he wrote many of its plays, as well as his own one-man shows.
According to Lis Simpson, veteran artist and chair of multiple art exhibitions in the North Durham area, “We artists of Uxbridge are very excited that Conrad Boyce has won an award for his work and promotion of the arts in Uxbridge.”
Conrad Boyce will be signing his book, Jewel on the Hill, which speaks about the Thomas Foster Memorial on Saturday, Dec. 6, at the Uxbridge Library.