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CPAMOs news Issue 15 - June 2012

Welcome to the 15th Cultural Pluralism in the Arts Movement Ontario (CPAMO) newsletter. This is a regular digest that will introduce you to, and keep you updated on CPAMOs initiatives, and act as a portal to relevant research in the field of pluralism in the arts, innovative artists, and links to interesting talks about pluralism in the arts. The newsletter is intended to be your go-to resource for information on cultural pluralism in the arts. You have received this e-mail because you are a member of the CPAMO listserv. Please let others who share our professional and artistic interests know about this listserv and encourage them to subscribe by visiting The listserv is moderated and is for sending out newsletters and CPAMO updates. You may unsubscribe at any time. For more information, you can look us up here: Website: Facebook: search CPAMO or click here! Twitter:

Content 1) What is CPAMO? 2) Pluralism In the Arts in Canada: A Change is Gonna Come 3) Scarborough Arts, Soulpepper and the Royal Conservatory of Music 4) CPAMO in Ottawa 5) CARFAC National Conference on Art & Law 6) Canadian Dance Assembly National Dance Campaign and Conference 7) Capacity Building for Artists and Arts Organizations 8) Outreach and Volunteer Recruitment 9) Upcoming Events 10) TED Talks on Diversity 11) Who We Are 12) Contact Us

CPAMOs news What is CPAMO?

Cultural Pluralism in the Arts Movement Ontario (CPAMO) is a movement of Aboriginal and ethno-racial artists working with presenters to empower the performing arts communities of Ontario. CPAMO seeks to open opportunities for Aboriginal and ethnoracial performers to engage with presenters across Ontario and to enable presenters to develop constructive relationships with Aboriginal and ethno-racial performers. CPAMO is supported by Aboriginal and ethno-racial artists who are involved in theatre, music, dance and literary arts. They are members of CPAMOs Roundtable and include representatives of Sampradaya Dance, Nathaniel Dett Chorale, Little Pear Garden Theatre Collective, Centre for Indigenous Theatre, Kaha:wi Dance, Sparrow in the Room, b-current, why not theatre, urban arts and backforward collective, TeyyaPeya Productions, Culture Days, Canada Council Stand Firm members, Obsidian Theatre, the Collective of Black Artists, CanAsian Dance and others. With the involvement of artists from these organizations, CPAMO is working with Community Cultural Impresarios (CCI) and its members to build their capacities, cultural competencies and understanding of pluralism in performing arts so that CCI and its members engage performers from these communities and, thereby, enable audiences across Ontario to access artistic expressions from diverse communities on a regular basis. CPAMO gratefully acknowledges the funding support it has received for its activities from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus and the Ontario Ministry of Tourism and Culture. With funding received from the Ontario Trillium Foundation and the Canada Council for the Arts Equity Office, CPAMO will continue its work and build on its past activities. As part of this. CPAMO will be working with the former co-Coordinators of the Canada Council Stand Firm initiative, Helen Yung and Anita Agrawal. While the Stand Firm initiative is no longer in operation in Ontario, CPAMO is pleased to involve Helen and Anita in continuing some of the work they were doing as part of the CPAMO project. With the renewed funding, CPAMO will be working with communities in the GTA, Ottawa and Kingston. This newsletter describes some of the work well be doing and provides information on how you can contact us if you want more information and/or wish to get involved in our work.

CPAMOs news Pluralism In The Arts In Canada - A Change Is Gonna Come:

This is a timely book. There has been so much change in the Canadian cultural landscape, especially in the performing arts. When I first started Red Sky Performance, I looked for dialogue around diversity and artistic expression, form, and performance. It is now exciting to see the increasing activity by Indigenous artists, people of colour, immigrants and new generation peoples who were (and perhaps still are) considered marginal in their communities and in public spaces where performance takes place. This book captures some of the key moments of this exciting growing dialogue. Ive participated as a panelist in two CPAMO sessions with presenters and other artists. Such forums have been very helpful to creating understanding between and enhancing the relationship between presenters and artists. Well done! We need to continue this and align ourselves with an exciting future in the performing arts. Sandra Laronde, Founding Artistic Director, Red Sky Performance

As Artistic Director for Sampradaya Dance Creations, I have been active in planning and presenting at CPAMO sessions. Ive also had the privilege to have my company perform at the first CPAMO Town Hall. CPAMO is an important project, one which has breathed life into the dialogue between Aboriginal and ethno-racial artists and presenters. It is clearly a sign of the future and an important marker in the rapidly changing world of performing arts. This book, then, is an important contribution both because it chronicles a contemporary dialogue and points in the direction the performing arts must go. Yes, as the title suggests, a change is gonna come. Lata Pada C.M., Artistic Director, Sampradaya Dance Creations

At long last! For five years, the Cultural Pluralism in the Arts Movement in Ontariohas worked closely with a select group of presenters within the Community Cultural Impresarios (CCI) Ontario Presenting Network. This collaboration created a context in which artists (particularly Aboriginal, people of colour, immigrants and others) have been able to meet with and speak directly to presenters about inclusive community building. At the same time, presenters have been able to speak about the challenges they face, risks they take, and successes they achieve in bringing diverse cultural expressions to their stages. The CPAMO process has opened and needs to continue to keep this dialogue alive. Warren Garrett, Executive Director, CCI These are the attributes given to this book, compiled and edited by charles c. smith and published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. With articles by award

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winning poet George Elliot Clarke and award winning presenter Ajay Heble, it is clear that the time is now to enhance work being done on promoting pluralism in the arts. In this context, this book contains three (3) toolkits by the Independent Media Arts Alliance/National Indigenous Media Arts Collective, the Neighbourhood Arts Network (NAN) of the Toronto Arts Foundation, and by CPAMO. The book also contains several articles by performing artists such as Amanda Paixao, Natasha Bakht, Kevin A. Ormsby, Shahin Sayadi, Charmaine Headley, Helen Yung and the catalysts for the NAN toolkit, Leah Burns and Skye Louis. In the introduction to this book, charles c. smith writes: The book you are holding in your hands leaps to you from the curb stones of the experiences shared by artists, particularly Aboriginal and racialized artists, with individuals representing venues theatres and stages offering a diverse menu of peformances to audiences. When I say that this book leaps, I mean that the words and experiences generated through open conversations between artists, presenters, community builders and others over a sustained period of time has led to several concrete and, yes, as well, remarkable and immeasurable outcomes. In addition to the articles and toolkits, there are online resources on the website of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives ( These resources include a listing of community organizations and funding bodies gathered by the IMAA/NIMAC project and a bibliographic essay and annotated bibliography prepared for CPAMO based on its research on evidence-based case studies of initiatives to promote pluralism in performing arts. To order a copy of the book, contact Erika Shaker at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (

Scarborough Arts, Soulpepper and The Royal Conservatory of Music:

In December (2011), May and June (2012), CPAMO Project Lead, charles c. smith, provided educational and training sessions for Scarborough Artss Kaleidescope Program, Soulpeppers Education and Outreach Program and for the Royal Conservatory of Music Arts Educators. These sessions addressed working with diverse communities and strategies to engage them in creative activities as well as on cultural appropriation and voice in contemporary arts curation and creation. While there were common threads in these sessions, each was uniquely tailored to the interests of the groups. For example, Scarborough Arts and Soulpepper were more engaged in outreach initiatives while the Royal Conservatory (2 sessions) wanted to discuss cultural appropriation and diversity in artistic creation. Scarborough Arts and Soulpepper explored demographic changes in the communities they are working in, the history of barriers facing these communities, their challenges and accomplishments and

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the implications of these issues to their work. The Royal Conservatory session addressed concerns regarding cultural appropriation, what it is, how it manifests in artistic work and the societal and individual roles and responsibilities in addressing this critical issue. If your organization is interested in specific educational opportunities, feel free to contact CPAMO to discuss. charles has provided education and training on such issues for over 25 years and has worked with such arts organizations as the Toronto International Film Festival, Etobicoke and Lakeshore Arts, Scarborough Arts

CPAMO in Ottawa:
In the beginning of this year, CPAMO began meeting with a number of organizations in the Ottawa community. With such groups as the Coalition of New Canadians for Arts and Culture (CNCAC), Shenkman Hall and Centrepointe Theatre, the Canadian Friends of Museums, the Multicultural Arts in Schools and Communities (MASC), the Ottawa Art Gallery (OAG), the Great Canadian Theatre Company, CARFAC National, One World Dialogue and a number of individual artists, CPAMO is working together with them to plan a series of workshops and a Town Hall for the fall and winter. After introductory meetings in December and February, CPAMO met with representatives of these organizations for a full day planning session in April. The meeting was preceded by a night of performances hosted by MASC and featuring some artists from CNCAC. The full day planning session featured presentations by Alexandra Badzak (OAG), Maria Gomez and Gabriella Lopez (CNCAC) and Audrey Churgin (MASC). These presentations are now on CPAMOs website. In addition to these presentations, those at the meeting spent time getting to know each other and their individual and organizational interests in pluralism in the arts. This was followed by a plenary session that discussed several ideas for workshops to take place in the fall of this year. These ideas included: 1) gaining a better understanding of demographic changes in the Ottawa region and the implications of this for arts organizations; 2) identifying and accessing resources (e.g., manuals, toolkits, reference materials) that address matters relating to engaging diverse communities; and 3) enhancing capacities of Ottawa arts groups to work together to promote pluralism in local arts activities. The fall workshops will be convened to address each of these goals and an additional workshop will be held to explore the uses of digital technology and its uses in arts administration, e.g., data base development/maintenance, outreach, marketing/promotion and communication.

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The essential details for these sessions was discussed at a meeting in June and the sessions will take place one per month starting in September and coinciding with arts display and performances hosted by One World Dialogue, MASC and CNCAC.

CARFAC National Conference on Art & Law

On Saturday June 9, 2012, charles c. smith made a presentation to the CARFAC National Conference entitled The Changing Face of the Arts In Canada and Income/Labour Disparities. This presentation was a contribution to CARFACs Art and Law conference ( charles presentation covered such topics as the history of discrimination in Canadian society and in the arts, demographic changes both current and projected for Aboriginal and racialized peoples, the labour and income disparities facing these artists and the rates of engagement of these communities in the arts. charles full text and PowerPoint presentation can be found on CPAMOs website (

CPAMO and The Canadian Dance Association (CDA): Launching National Dance Week And The Town Hall on Pluralism in Dance and Digital Arts
Over the past half year, CPAMO has been working with the CDA to support its efforts to engage Aboriginal and ethno-racial dance artists in its activities. This has resulted in CPAMO assisting CDA in the launch of its exciting National Dance Week in April ( and in the planning and implementation of a Town Hall on Reinforcing Pluralism in Dance and Digital Art, a session that will be part of the CDA annual meeting in October. For more information on the National Dance Campaign, please contact the Canadian Dance Assembly (

Capacity Building for Ethno-Racial and Aboriginal Artists and Arts Organizations
CPAMO is pleased to announce that Helen Yung is now working with us to coordinate opportunities for interested ethno-racial and Aboriginal artists and arts organizations in several areas. Ask Helen about organizing group sales for you

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Since April, Helen has been building on the research, relationships and ideas that Anita Agrawal and she had developed under the Canada Council for the Arts Stand Firm program. Helen met twice with Sally Han, Cultural Development Officer at the City of Torontos Economic Development and Culture office, someone whom many in the ethno-racial and Aboriginal arts communities already, a great resource full of useful information and advice. Helen and Sally reviewed a number of audience building and partnership ideas, including a possible fundraising opportunity, seniors engagement strategy, ways to tailor engagement strategies for condo communities, and group sales. To follow up on these ideas, Helen is lining up consultations to help test, shape and refine them. If youre interested, heres how you can help! 1. Do you know someone who lives in a seniors home, or belongs to a community group for seniors? Do you or someone you know live in a condo building? Id like to talk to you about your impressions of such communities (seniors or condo dwellers). A quick 10-minute chat by phone is all Helen needs to discuss this with you! 2. Its hard to arrange group sales without knowing what youre selling. Send Helen marketing information on major highlights in your upcoming season (fall /winter/spring) or let Helen know when your website is been updated with all the details. As you can imagine, the earlier Helen gets your information, the better your chances of lining up the right community partners to bring groups in to see your show. (If you arent selling tickets, e.g. its a gallery show, let Helen know if youd like to offer a special artists talk or guided tour to the event.) Some of you have innovative ideas for selling more tickets. And for some of you, its just that youve never had the time or energy to pull all the pieces together. Give Helen a call and let her know your idea. If its a project that can be replicated or expanded in the future for other members, Helen might be able to help you realize your idea as a pilot project. Ways to reach Helen: By phone 416 602 3612 By email By Twitter - @helenyung

Outreach and Volunteer Recruitment:

CPAMO is pleased to be joined by Anita Agrawal who is an anthropologist by training, a business person, jewellery designer as well as an experienced not for profit worker, passionate about the arts and committed to fostering learning between communities and people. Anita firmly believes that beyond just an 'experience', the arts offer a bridge to enable sharing and educating at a multitude of levels. For the past 2.5 years Anita was

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the co-facilitator of the Stand Firm Central Network, a privilege she shared with Helen Yung. At the Stand Firm Central Network Anita was responsible for creating outreach tools and resources for our more than 40 arts organizations. These included an events listing, a blog, a calendar and email blasts to these groups and to ethno-racial community papers. She was also responsible for hosting an annual volunteer and community outreach event in Toronto, called Spring Fling which received good media coverage. CPAMO is excited that Anita has joined our team and we look forward to having Anita continue working in the areas of outreach and volunteer recruitment. With Anitas expertise, CPAMO will be convening a volunteer recruitment event in the GTA this fall/winter and will be working with such groups the Maytree Foundations Divercity On Board initiative, Community Cultural Impresarios, CARFAC Ontario and MANO, and reaching out to involve the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants, the Institute of Canadian Citizenship and the Toronto Arts Foundation Neighbourhood Arts Network. If you have suggestions or ideas to assist in meeting CPAMOs outreach and volunteer recruitment objectives, Anita can be reached at or by cell at 416.836.3470.

Upcoming Events
The 3.11 Portrait Project June 1 - June 30, 2012 The Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre 6 Garamond Court, Toronto, Ontario, M3C 1Z5 Supporting earthquake recovery efforts in Japan through the power of photography In March 2011, a powerful earthquake left eastern Japan in a state of unprecedented destruction. Almost one year later, an extraordinary Japanese photography exhibition has come to Toronto to celebrate the power of the human spirit to endure through emotional and environmental devastation. The 3.11 Portrait Project showcases a collection of traditional family portraits taken by volunteer photographers in the midst of one of the largest natural disasters in Japans history. Through the combined efforts of volunteer photographers, makeup artists, hairstylists and non-profit organizations, families in shelters and temporary housing centres were styled and photographed on-site against a plain white backdrop. The intentional simplicity of this setting allows the remarkable tenacity of each survivor to shine with a smile, turning grief into optimismdespite being surrounded by conditions that continue to test their ability to move forward. Shiseido (Canada) Inc. is proud to sponsor the 3.11 Portrait Project, which unites victims and global audiences through photographic memories and serves as a bridge of support

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that connects people to each other. 100 percent of proceeds raised through the sale of commemorative t-shirts ($25) sold at the exhibit through the Japan Foundation will be donated to ongoing earthquake relief efforts. For more information see: Monitor 8 on Tour: Mississauga Thursday, June 21 at 7:30 pm Living Arts Centre 4141 Living Arts Drive Mississauga, ON L5B 4B8 SAVAC will be presenting Monitor 8: South Asian Short Film & Video at Living Arts Center, Mississauga. Programmed by Jacob Korczynski. Featuring works by Promotesh Das Pulak (Bangladesh), Kistum Cheng (Canada), Ekta Mittal & Yashaswini Raghunandan (India), Tahireh Lal (India), Panchal Mansaram (Canada), Sukanya Ghosh (India), Natasha Mendonca (India), Ashiq Khondker (Netherlands) and Tal Amiran (UK). Monitor 8: South Asian Short Film & Video is an annual short film and video screening program that showcases new and innovative work by artists from Canada and internationally. Monitor 8 is a unique platform for independent work that brings together poignant films and videos that explore the ways in which human bodies interact with the rapid industrialization and mechanization of South Asian cities. The works in Monitor 8 employ architectural assemblages of the changing South Asian landscape impacting the bodies that locate themselves within that space. Monitor 8: New South Asian Film & Video is programmed by Jacob Korczynski who is an independent curator. Having recently participated in the De Appel Curatorial program in Amsterdam, Korczynski is now the assistant curator at the Art Gallery of York University in Toronto. Highlights of Monitor 8 include Bangladeshi artist Promotesh Das Pulaks photo series Echoed Moments in Time (2011), which begin the program to shed light on the recognition and resistance of the body within a changing landscape; the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971. First Peoples Cinema: 1500 Nations, One Tradition Presented by TIFF Film Programme: June 21 - August 11 Home on Native Land Exhibition: June 21 - August 19 Spanning Canada, the United States, Australia and New Zealand, this programme presents an unprecedented survey of the work of First Peoples filmmakers, from activist documentaries and narrative features to daring avant-garde experiments and fascinating

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historical discoveries. With an exciting roster of special guests, live musical performances and a new gallery exhibition, First Peoples Cinema is a celebration of Indigenous art, creation and unity of spirit across nations. For more information and schedule:

Home on Native Land Exhibition, a Free exhibition at the HSBC Gallery. Curated by Jesse Wente and Steven Loft. New media work by contemporary First Peoples artists For more information:

Tanya Tagaq in Concert with Nanook of the North Presented by: TIFF June 21, 2012 at 7pm Regular Adult Ticket $18.75 TIFF Bell Lightbox 363 King St. West, Toronto, ON, Acclaimed throat-singer Tanya Tagaq debuts her new composition to accompany Robert Flaherty's Nanook of the North, created especially for this one-night only event For more information contact:

TD Toronto Jazz Festival 2012 June 2426, 2012 Enwave Theatre 231 Queens Quay West, Toronto The TD Toronto Jazz Festival has presented some of the biggest names in jazz. When the festival kicks off this summer from June 22 - July 1, 2012, more than 500,000 music lovers will be entertained as 1,500 musicians take over the city performing 350-plus concerts in 10 days. From the young lions to the legends to undiscovered gems, the TD Toronto Jazz Festival is yours to discover. Let the music be your playground this summer. Please visit for the complete 10-day festival schedule. Zhang Huan: Ash Paintings and Memory Doors May 5 August 19, 2012 Art Gallery of Ontario 317 Dundas Street West Toronto Ontario Canada M5T 1G4


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Internationally acclaimed Chinese artist Zhang Huan is best known for provocative performances that subjected his own body to challenging tests of endurance. Zhang now uses symbolically charged materials to explore issues around identity, spirituality and history. Both political and highly personal, this exhibition addresses a disjunction between collective memory and official historical record in the postCultural Revolution era.

TED Talks:
Reggie Watts disorients you in the most entertaining way About this talk: Reggie Watts beats defy boxes. Unplug your logic board and watch as he blends poetry and crosses musical genres in this larger-than-life performance. Reggie Watts creates unpredictably brilliant performances on the spot using his voice, looping pedals and his giant brain About the speaker: The winner of TED's Full Spectrum auditions, Reggie Watts works on the edge of improv performance -- at a place where you can almost visibly see his brain moving, as he pulls spoken and musical snippets from the sonosphere and blends them into a stream-of-consciousness flow. On screen, Reggie has appeared on The Conan OBrien Show, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, HBOs The Yes Men Save the World, Comedy Centrals Michael and Michael Have Issues and PBS Electric Company. Last summer, he opened nightly on Conan O'Briens sold-out North American Prohibited From Being Funny on Television tour. "Good comedians are great philosophers. You can either just have fun with the joke or you can have fun with the joke and think about the implication of it. Its totally up to the listener." - Reggie Watts Link: ay.html Dalia Mogahed: The attitudes that sparked Arab Spring About this talk: Pollster Dalia Mogahed shares surprising data on Egyptian people's attitudes and hopes before the Arab Spring -- with a special focus on the role of women in sparking change. About the speaker: Dalia Mogahed is the director of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies. From her observatory as the head of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies, Dalia Mogahed leads analysis of surveys of Muslims worldwide. She has recently studied the meaning and impact of the past year's events across the Middle East. Link: html


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Naif Al-Mutawa: Superheroes inspired by Islam About this talk: In "THE 99," Naif Al-Mutawa's new generation of comic book heroes fight more than crime -- they smash stereotypes and battle extremism. Named after the 99 attributes of Allah, his characters reinforce positive messages of Islam and cross cultures to create a new moral framework for confronting evil, even teaming up with the Justice League of America. About the speaker: Naif Al-Mutawa has created a group of comic superheroes based on Islamic culture and religion. They derive their superpowers from the 99 attributes of Allah. Widad the Loving, Bari the Healer, Mumita the Destroyer and friends, all working together to fight evil -- the virtues of Islam are embodied in the characters of the thrilling new comic The 99. Naif Al-Mutawa, a clinical psychologist by training, created the characters with a team of artists and writers to showcase traditional, tolerant and enlightened Muslim values in the guise of good old-fashioned superheroes, ordinary mortals who acquire special powers and crisscross the globe on missions. Soon, the 99 heroes will be saving the world alongside all-American heroes Superman, Wonder Woman and Batman in a crossover comic with the Justice League. The 99 comic is the corner stone of an expanding family (moving toward videogames and theme parks) that will bring these characters into the mainstream; an animated cartoon series has been announced for fall 2010 on US cable channel The Hub. And US President Barack Obama recently commended The 99 for capturing the imagination of young people through their message of tolerance. "All the characters in 'The 99' are the epitome of kindness, generosity, wisdom and honesty, which are core Islamic values. Al-Mutawa uses 'The 99' to spread a message of peace that the world really needs to hear." - Sumayyah Meehan, Muslim Media Network Link:

Who We Are
CPAMO Roundtable Members As a resource to plan and coordinate its activities, CPAMO has set-up a Roundtable comprised of individuals involved in the performing arts from ethno-racial and Aboriginal creation-based arts organizations and those involved in performing venues.The members of the Roundtable are: Anahita Azrahimi, Sparrow in the Room Farwah Gheewala, Education Coordinator, Soulpepper Theatre Denise Fujiwara, Canasian Dance Charmaine Headley and Bakari Eddison Lindsay, Collective of Black Artists Lata Pada, Sampradaya Dance Creations


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Andrea Baker Nova Bhattacharya, Ipsita Nova Projects Seema Jethalal, Manifesto Festival of Community and Culture Cian Knights and Anne Frost, Cultural Pluralism in the Arts/University of Toronto Scarborough University of Toronto Scarborough Campus Phillip Akin, Obsidian Theatre Marilo Nunez, Almeda Theatre Mae Maracle, Centre for Indigenous Theatre Brainard Bryden-Taylor, Nathaniel Dett Chorale Emily Chung, Little Pear Garden Theatre Collective Spy Denome-Welch, Aboriginal Playwright Sedina Fiati, Actor Ravi Jain, why not theatre Shannon Thunderbird, Teya Peya Productions Olga Barrios, Olga Barrios Dance Santee Smith, Kahawi Dance Menaka Thakker, Menaka Thakkar Dance Company Kevin Ormsby, Kashedance Sandra Laronde, Red Sky Performance Mark Hammond, Sony Centre for Performing Arts Ahdri Zena Mandiella, b-current Jenna Rogers and David Yee, fuGEN Theatre Sandra LeFrancois, Cahoots Theatre Cindy Yip, Korean Canadian Dance Studies of Canada Wanda Nanabush, Association for the Development of Native Arts Michelle Kopczyl, Fuse Magazine charles c. smith, wind in the leaves collective

Contact Information
charles c. smith Project Lead of CPPAMO Lecturer, Cultural Pluralism and the Arts/University of Toronto Scarborough Victoria Glizer Project Assistant Website: Facebook: search CPAMO or click here! Twitter: Mailing Address: 32 Costain Avenue Toronto, ON M4E 2G6 416-686-3039