OAF News

Recipient of the 2010 Virginia and Myrtle Cooper Award in Costume Design Announced

Toronto – May 17, 2010 – Toronto based costume designer, Carolyn M. Smith is the 2010 recipient of the $15,000 Virginia and Myrtle Cooper Award in Costume Design. The award is given annually to professional Canadian costume designers in Ontario in mid-career to further enrich their careers through research and travel.


A graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada's design program, Carolyn M. Smith has been working as a set and costume designer throughout Canada for over 20 years. This is Carolyn's 12th season at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival where this year she is the designer for Peter Pan. Her credits at Stratford include the costumes for the premiËre of The Swanne (all three parts), set and costume design for The Duchess of Malfi, Othello, Shakespeare's Universe and Bartholomew Fair, and set design for The Odyssey.


Carolyn's other credits include Macbeth (NAC,Citadel), The Way of the World (NAC/Soulpepper), Atlantis (Grand Theatre), Picasso at the Lapin Agile (Grand Theatre/Vancouver Playhouse), Through the Eyes (Factory Studio Theatre), design work on over 17 new Canadian plays as well as the Canadian operas Beatrice Chance (Queen of Puddings Music Theatre) and The Gang (Autumn Leaf Productions), costumes for Neptune Theatre, Necessary Angel, the Shaw Festival, Broadway, and for film and television. In 1995 Carolyn M. Smith received the Jessie Richardson Award for outstanding costumes for Scary Stories (Alberta Theatre Projects/Vancouver Playhouse).


The Virginia and Myrtle Cooper Award in Costume Design was established through a generous gift under the will of the late Dr. Virginia S. Cooper of Toronto. The award is given "For the Love of Creation". Dr. Cooper served as a director of the Tarragon Theatre, and was a charter woman member of the Arts and Letters Club of Toronto and active in its activities. She had a keen interest in the performing arts, particularly in costume design, and was working on a book titled "Pins and Needles", which featured some of the dresses that her mother, Myrtle Cooper, designed and made for her.

The Ontario Arts Foundation manages the endowment that funds the Virginia and Myrtle Cooper Award. The Ontario Arts Council administered the selection process. A jury consisting of theatre director Claude Guilman, and set and costume designers Shawn Kerwin, John Pennoyer, Cameron Porteous and Teresa Przybylski selected Ms Smith as the winner from a field of nominated costume designers from across Ontario.


The Ontario Arts Foundation holds over 270 endowments established by individuals, private foundations, corporations and arts organizations in support of the arts.




For information, please contact:
Janet Stubbs, Executive Director, Ontario Arts Foundation
Tel: (416) 969-7413    jstubbs@arts.on.ca

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