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Nominations for the fifth annual Gina Wilkinson Prize are now being accepted.

Established in memory of Gina Wilkinson – a valued member of the Shaw Festival company – the annual prize pays tribute to Gina and her unyielding dedication, vision and the indomitable spirit that imbued her work and her life. An actor for over twenty years, Gina transitioned to directing and this prize recognizes an experienced female theatre artist making a similar shift from one theatre discipline to directing. This year’s nomination deadline is December 15, 2015 with the prize awarded on March 10, 2016.

In the last few years of her too-short life, Gina established herself as a daring, strong, inventive and important director, writer and collaborator in the Canadian theatre community. Shortly after she passed away in December 2010, the Gina Wilkinson Prize was established due to the generous support it received from across Canada. Additionally, a substantial gift was made to the fund in 2014 by the beneficiaries of the Estate of Elsie V. Adamson, a long-time friend and client of Martin Wilkinson, Gina's brother. In the spirit of Gina's generosity and appetite for life, the prize is a gift to be used in any way the recipient chooses.

Previous beneficiaries of the Gina Wilkinson Prize include: Valerie Planche of Calgary (2015), Christine Brubaker of Toronto (2014), Krista Jackson of Winnipeg (2013) and Ann-Marie Kerr of Halifax (2012).

Award Details
Eligibility: Nominees must be members of the Canadian professional theatre community and Canadian citizens or have permanent resident status, as defined by Citizenship and Immigration Canada. The re-nomination of previous candidates are welcomed.

Preference will be shown to nominees who have spent several years in a theatre discipline other than directing (acting, stage management, design, theatre administration, etc.) and who are now transitioning into directing.

Nomination deadline: December 15, 2015. The recipient will be announced on March 10, 2016 and a prize of $5000 will be awarded.

The Process:
The nomination should consist of:

  1. A letter of support for the candidate by a recognized theatre professional.
  2. An acknowledgement of the nomination by the candidate, along with a brief outline of their artistic vision, and how the Gina Wilkinson Prize might assist them in furthering their practice in this time of transition.
  3. The nominee’s resume.
  4. Applications must be submitted electronically to

Submissions will be reviewed by the Gina Wilkinson Prize jury: Micheline Chevrier, Bonnie Green, Eda Holmes, Krista Jackson, Jackie Maxwell, Tom Rooney and Bob White.

The Gina Wilkinson Prize Fund is administered by the Ontario Arts Foundation. Anyone wishing to donate to the fund may do so by visiting the Ontario Arts Foundation website at

Bio: Gina Wilkinson
Gina Clare Wilkinson was born March 10, 1960, in Victoria, B.C. to visual artist, Jack Wilkinson, and ballet teacher, Marie Wilkinson. Gina graduated from the National Theatre School in Montreal and spent the first 20 years of her career as an actor working in theatres across Canada. Her innate understanding of storytelling in the theatre was an invaluable asset when working on new plays and made her transition from actor to director a natural one. Her incredible ability to communicate with everyone involved in the making of a play – actors, designers, technicians – made her a successful director and theatre collaborator. Her dedication, imagination, humour and unique visual sensibility were some of Gina’s many strengths, but it was her understanding and compassion for all things human – both the beautiful and the ugly – that made her a true artist.

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