Toronto, ON - Luminato is excited to announce the immediate appointment of Naomi Campbell as the company’s new Artistic Director.
Born in Toronto, Campbell grew up in Sackville, New Brunswick and Ottawa, and has called Toronto home for the last 35 years. She has over 30 years of programming, producing and executive-level experience on both a national and international level. She joined Luminato as Company Manager in 2011 and then went on to produce large-scale productions for the festival including The Life and Death of Marina Abramović and Apocalypsis. In 2013 she was appointed Luminato’s first-ever Director of Artistic Development where, working closely with then Artistic Director Jörn Weisbrodt, she developed and commissioned new and existing works for the festival and was part of the team that staged Luminato’s 10th year anniversary at the Hearn Generating Station. She was appointed Deputy Artistic Director in 2017.
“I am thrilled that Naomi is Luminato’s next Artistic Director. Beyond presenting irresistibly exciting programming, the work of the greatest artistic directors also radiates a passionate moral and intellectual integrity, both of which I know Naomi will bring to the table as Artistic Director,” says Anthony Sargent, CEO of Luminato. “Naomi has enormous wisdom, profound humanity and a wonderful appetite for artistic adventure. Her artistic leadership opens the door to a thrilling new chapter in Luminato’s journey and an excitingly fresh view of the festival’s role in our city.”
An award-winning producer, director, stage manager and curator, Campbell has worked across all performing arts disciplines staging over sixty new Canadian performance pieces with companies including Nightswimming, Mammalian Diving Reflex (the international hit Haircuts by Children), DVxT Theatre, the late Paul Bettis' Civilized Theatre, VideoCabaret and numerous independent artists. She has also produced national and international tours, was the Industry Series Producer for the 2008 (Vancouver), 2009 (Ottawa) and 2010 (Kitchener-Waterloo) Magnetic North Theatre Festivals and curated the 2003 Rhubarb! Festival at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre.
“I’m very excited by the opportunity to take on this new role at Luminato and look forward to building on the incredible legacy of my predecessors. Luminato has much to offer the city, its citizens, and all the people who make what we do possible,” says Naomi Campbell. “The festival has an ever-deepening relationship with our audience which I am eager to expand and develop. With a commitment to inclusivity and accessibility, through deep collaborations between staff, artists and audiences, I hope that we will continue to question and challenge our assumptions about the world through the presentation of provocative and relevant works of beauty, wit and intelligence in a context that inspires discussion and creates lasting resonance.”
Currently a Support Lead on Audience Engagement and Community Building for the Metcalf Foundation’s Creative Strategies Incubator, Campbell also teaches producing at The National Theatre School and Generator, and is a champion for accessibility and inclusivity within the performing arts. In 2016, she trained as an Access Activator through the British Council and is part of a small cohort that encourages and implements Relaxed Performance methodology within the Canadian cultural sector.
“Naomi’s career has interwoven with Luminato’s own history; she has enriched the festival in different ways in the various different roles she’s taken on,” says Tony Gagliano, Luminato’s Founding Board Chair. “There is a wonderful feeling of coming full circle with Naomi now taking on the artistic leadership of the festival. She not only brings a bountiful knowledge that she’s gained over an extraordinarily impressive career, but also an exceptional reputation as a generous collaborator, trusted friend and creative partner to artists throughout the country and beyond. Luminato’s Board is very excited about where Naomi’s artistic leadership will take the festival in its second decade.”
Peter Herrndorf , Chair Designate of Luminato’s Board says: “I’m excited to be able to start my tenure as Chair of the Luminato Board working alongside one of Canada’s most well-respected and well-rounded arts professionals. Taking into account Naomi’s clear artistic vision, exemplary track record as a performing arts leader and mentor, and work championing inclusivity and accessibility, there’s no limit to Luminato’s growth and possibilities under her tenure.”
Campbell takes over from Josephine Ridge who stepped down as Luminato’s Artistic Director in August after programming two successful seasons (2017 and 2018) of the festival. Luminato 2019 will also reflect several of Ms. Ridge’s programming initiatives.
Dates for Luminato 2019 will be announced soon.
About Naomi Campbell
Naomi Campbell was appointed Deputy Artistic Director of Luminato 2017, where she led the development of new works from ideas to production and worked as part of the programming and production team to curate the festival. She began her tenure at Luminato as Company Manager in 2011, then produced large-scale productions in the 2012 festival. In 2013 she was appointed Luminato’s first-ever Director of Artistic Development where she produced, commissioned and programmed work for the festival including Luminato’s 10 year anniversary at the Hearn Generating Station in 2016.
An award-winning producer of over sixty new Canadian performance pieces with companies including Nightswimming, Mammalian Diving Reflex, DVxT Theatre, the late Paul Bettis' Civilized Theatre, VideoCabaret and numerous independent artists. She has produced national and international tours, was Industry Series Producer for the 2008 (Vancouver), 2009 (Ottawa) and 2010 (Kitchener-Waterloo) Magnetic North Theatre Festivals and curated the 2003 Rhubarb! Festival at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre.
Over the past 15 years Naomi has consulted with independent companies and individual artists on touring, board development, visioning, and organizational transformation. She has worked with companies from coast to coast: Artistic Fraud of Newfoundland, Zuppa Theatre Co., Eastern Front Theatre, Playwrights Workshop Montreal, Urban Vessel, Public Recordings, hum dansoundart, Human Cargo, Alameda Theatre, b current, Crow’s Theatre, Ghost River Theatre, Neworld Theatre, Rumble Productions, The Only Animal, Theatre Replacement and Theatre SKAM.
She is currently a Support Lead on Audience Engagement and Community Building for the Metcalf Foundation and teaches producing at The National Theatre School and Generator. Through the British Council, Naomi acts as an Access Activator, disseminating Relaxed Performance methodology to the Canadian cultural sector.
Naomi sat on the boards of the Toronto Theatre Alliance (now TAPA) and Small Wooden Shoe, and was President of the Board of the Alexander Street Theatre Project (home of Buddies in Bad Times Theatre) for 9 years.
Naomi has received 2 Dora Mavor Moore Awards, a 2005 Vital People Award from the Toronto Community Foundation, the 2009 Leonard McHardy and John Harvey Award, the 2010 Mallory Gilbert Leadership Award and the 2011 Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award, for her contributions to the national theatre community.