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Attending the Toronto Fringe Festival is a phenomenal way to support the arts and to see theatre.

The Fringe further supports artists by providing a platform to enhance their craft through our Tent Talk series. Lead by industry-leading practitioners, The Tent Talks are designed to expose the insights of the industry, encourage open discourse and challenge our understanding of comedy, the storefront theatre movement, musical theatre development, and cinema.

The panel discussion series features key industry innovators such as Deb Clapp, Executive Director of the League of Chicago Theatres; Zaib Shaikh, Toronto’s Film Commissioner and Director of Entertainment Industries and Jacoba Knaapen, Executive Director of the Toronto Alliance of the Performing Arts.

New this year: All Tent Talks will be taking place at the Annex Centre for Social Innovation: The Garage (located at 720 Bathurst St., just north of the Randolph Theatre). All talks are free, though attendance is limited and on a first-come, first-served basis.

The 2015 Tent Talk Line-Up is:

PROFESSIONALIZING COMEDY
Thursday, July 2
6:00 PM – 7:00 PM

Have you heard the one about the improv troupe that couldn’t access a grant? How about the one about the comedian who is tired of being paid in beer? Join Julie Dumais Osborne, Artistic Director of Bad Dog Theatre Company, as she moderates a panel on professionalizing comedy with actors Anand Rajaram and Evany Rosen as well as Michael Jones from the Metcalf Foundation. It will challenge the way you look at the comedy world.

THE STOREFRONT MOVEMENT
Monday, July 6
6:00 PM – 7:00 PM

Join Deb Clapp, Executive Director of the League of Chicago Theatres, Jacoba Knaapen, Executive Director of the Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts, and Benjamin Blais from the Storefront Theatre as they discuss the surge of storefront locations in Toronto, what can be learned from Chicago’s model and how it affects audience development in Toronto.

SO YOU WANT TO WRITE A MUSICAL?
Wednesday, July 8
6:00 PM – 7:00 PM

Writing a musical can be daunting; its interdisciplinary nature means there are many cooks in the kitchen and many mouths to feed. Learn all about musical theatre development from our esteemed panel: Michael Rubinoff, Associate Dean at Theatre Sheridan; Mitchell Marcus, Artistic Director and Managing Director at Acting Up Stage, and Brian Goldenberg, Executive Director at Theatre 20.

IN CONVERSATION WITH ZAIB SHAIKH
Thursday, July 9
6:00 PM – 7:00 PM

Meet Zaib Shaikh, Toronto’s Film Commissioner and Director of Entertainment Industries for the City of Toronto. He is an acclaimed actor and director, best known as Amaar Rashid on Little Mosque on the Prairie, and worked internationally as a writer and producer. He also has Fringe street cred, having directed All I Remember is Leaving in the 1997 Toronto Fringe. Join the Fringe’s Executive Director Kelly Staughan as she interviews Zaib about his illustrious career both on stage and screen, and his transition to one of Toronto’s most recognizable commissioners.

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