And the nominees are
Gala will recognize artistic talent
By: Anna Borowiecki
| Posted: Saturday, Mar 02, 2013 06:00 am
Telus Award for Youth Artist
• Andrew Boyd, actor-singer
• Carlee Ryski, actor-singer
St. Albert Cultivates the Arts Award for Emerging Artist
• Lauren Boyd, actor-singer
• Samantha Williams-Chapelsky, visual artist
• Madelaine Knight, actor/singer
• Moriganagh McNally, fashion designer and creative artist
• Lesley Roy, painter-photographer
Standard General Established Artist Award
• Peter Belec
• Maureen Rooney and Paul Punyi
Don’s Piano Showroom Award for Excellence in Arts Teaching
• Joan Bilau, vocal instructor
• Darrell Marko, dance instructor
• Laura Watmough, painting instructor
ATB Financial Community Arts Group Award
• St. Albert Community Band
Quantz Law Group Arts Leadership Award
• Peg McPherson
• Alan Murdock
MDO Corporate Patrons of the Arts Award
• Don’s Piano Warehouse
The Mayor’s Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts
• Recipient’s name to be announced later
Who better to usher in the rebooted 2013 Mayor’s Celebration of the Arts Gala as host than Josh Classen?
Known across the province for the past nine years as CTV’s charismatic weatherman, he has made a career of demystifying our volatile climate changes in an entertaining way.
Most recently, the St. Albert resident participated in the second annual Edmonton Comedy Festival and gives generously to every event he is asked to host.
But in the wake of Seth McFarlane’s hosting of the Academy Awards, audiences may wonder what Classen will present.
“It won’t be as risqué as Seth McFarlane. It’ll be a tamer version than the Seth McFarlane show. It’ll probably be 75 per cent tamer,” chuckles Classen.
Organized by the cultural services department and the St. Albert Cultivates the Arts Committee, the fourth annual Mayor’s Celebration of the Arts Gala pays tribute to the diversity of homegrown artistic talent that creates beauty and enriches our lives.
The awards ceremony, which in past years was the kick-start event for the September StArts Festival, was switched to a separate spring event. CityTV roving reporter Bridget Ryan hosted the last gala in September 2011.
There are not a lot of sweeping changes in the revamped bash. However, the tweaks emphasize more pizzazz and a greater spotlight on local talent.
For gala chair Nancy Watt, the shift to a spring festivity was a major improvement.
“Moving it as a stand-alone event is a step in the right direction,” Watt says. “This time of year is a terrific time to celebrate the arts. It allows us to involve many artists such as dance studios that spent the year working on dances. At this time of year you are able to capitalize on younger folk in the community. We weren’t able to do that when we held it in the fall.”
This year a total of 16 nominees – mostly in theatre, visual arts, fashion design, photography, dance and music – are listed in seven categories. There is one additional, as yet unnamed nominee, as the non-competing recipient of the Lifetime Achievement in the Arts.
All winning recipients receive an individually designed piece of art created by potter and raku artist Julie Hage. Each winner, except the Corporate Patron of the Arts, also receives a $1,000 cash award.
Andrew Boyd, 18, founder of No Tomatoes Theatre, was nominated for the Telus Award for Youth. He is applying to theatre schools across the country, and admits the award would go a long way toward paying tuition.
But on a broader scope he adds, “It’s always nice to acknowledge the artists in the community and it shows we have a lot of involved people. Being nominated shows appreciation for arts and a nomination can help an artist turn a few heads and you may get noticed a bit more.”
The tab for the award ceremony runs at about $25,000. Business award sponsors, individual donations and ticket sales pay the primary costs, Watt said.
The gala will be held Tuesday, March 19 at the Arden Theatre. A reception starts at 6:30 p.m. followed by the gala. Dress is semi-formal. Tickets are $35. Call the Arden box office at 780-459-1542.