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MITCHELL MARCUS Honoured with Leonard McHardy and John Harvey Award.


The Leonard McHardy and John Harvey Award (LMJH Award) was inaugurated in 2008 and recognizes the important work of theatre, dance and opera administrators. Recipients of the LMJH Award have at least 10 years of demonstrated commitment to the performing arts, in addition to having made an impact on the industry in Toronto. The award is named after Leonard McHardy and John Harvey, the celebrated former owners of Toronto’s Theatrebooks, which they co-founded in 1975. Until its closure in July of 2014, it stood as one of the longest surviving independent bookstores in the country.

The Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA) announced that this year’s recipient is the theatrical visionary, arts producer and administrator Mitchell Marcus, one of Toronto’s foremost cultural leaders and Artistic and Managing Director of The Musical Stage Company (until recently known as Acting Up Stage Company). For more than a decade, Mitchell Marcus has proven his exceptional leadership and unwavering commitment to Toronto’s arts and culture
landscape in a myriad of artistic, management and mentoring positions, making abundant and significant contributions. In 2004, Mitchell founded The Musical Stage Company. For the past 13 years, he has strategically balanced programming fundraising, production and administration to create a respected and thriving arts organization that has produced a highly respected body of work. Under his watch, the company has earned 10 Dora Mavor Moore Awards and 10 Toronto Theatre Critics’ Awards, as well as mentoring young producers and artistic directors along the way. Additionally, The Musical Stage Company presents a full complement of developmental and educational programming. And as an Associate Producer for the inaugural six years of Luminato, he helped establish one of the preeminent arts festivals in North America.

Unwaveringly committed to the performing arts, his generosity of spirit and passion for collaboration is reflected in his achievements as an organizational builder. He is a trusted advisor to organizations such as the Metcalf Foundation’s Creative Strategies Incubator program (since 2012), the Advisory Committee of the Canadian Musical Theatre Writers Collective (since 2014), Sheridan College’s Performing Arts Committee (since 2010), and the Dora Mavor Moore Award Eligibility Committee (since 2012).

Mitchell’s gifted leadership is further exemplified through his deep commitment to community initiatives. As an educator and mentor, he has held positions in the arts management departments at the University of Toronto Scarborough and Ryerson University, inspiring up and coming future cultural leaders. And he has twice been the Creative Producer for the Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize as well as the producer for four years of It’s Always Something, working with a team that raised over $500,000 annually for Gilda’s Club Greater Toronto.

The previous winners of the LMJH Award are Nancy Webster, Sue Edworthy, Meredith Potter, Paul Templin, Leslie Lester, Ghislain Caron, Natasha Parsons, Naomi Campbell and Jim Lefrancois. The LMJH Award is administered by the Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA). Candidates for the LMJH Award are nominated by TAPA members and then reviewed by a committee. The LMJH Selection Committee is Sandy Tulloch (Chair), Ghislain Caron, Derrick Chua, and Leonard McHardy. The award winner receives a plaque and a cheque for $1,000 through the generous sponsorship of the late Elizabeth Comper.

The Dora Mavor Moore Awards are administered by the Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA). In addition to the Doras, other programs and services provided by TAPA include: the city-wide arts app TOnight “a box office in your pocket”; Toronto.spacefinder.org; Toronto's Official Theatre Guide; hipTIX, offering $5 tickets to students between the ages of 14 and 29; citySPECIAL, offering free tickets to newcomers and marginalized communities; the Commercial Theatre Development Fund; and the Travel Retreat Initiatives Program - TRIP. For more information visit www.tapa.ca.

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