OAF News

The 2004 K.M. Hunter Artists Awards

The 2004 K.M. Hunter Artists Awards
-  "Supporting the emerging artist." -

Toronto, April 26, 2004 ó The K.M. Hunter Charitable Foundation is proud to announce the winners of the annual K.M. Hunter Artists Awards.  

DANCE CO-WINNERS: Kate Alton and Michael Trent    
LITERATURE:                  Nila Gupta
MUSIC:                              Quinsin Nachoff
THEATRE:                        Marjorie Chan
VISUAL ARTS:                 June Pak

Host Laurie Brown introduced this year's winners at a reception at The Indian Motorcycle Club.  The evening included video performances of this year's recipients and the mention of a new category film/interdisciplinary creation to be added to the five pre-existing categories in 2005.  The six artists join the more than thirty previous recipients who have gone on to distinguish themselves in their respective fields. 

Now in its ninth year, The K.M. Hunter Artists Awards are five awards of $8000 each for artists living in Ontario in each of the fields of dance, literature, music, theatre and visual arts.

Martin Hunter, the son of Kenneth Martin Hunter and a theatrical director keenly interested in the arts, established The K.M. Hunter Artists Awards in 1996 as a way to support younger artists at a critical point in their development.  They are awarded annually to artists who have completed their professional training and have begun to establish themselves and make an impact in their chosen field.  Unlike many awards that are for the well-established artist, these awards are intended to give younger artists the recognition and encouragement to continue with their work. They are given to people who have demonstrated both talent and the potential for further development. Imagination, originality and the determination to achieve are taken into consideration.

The K.M. Hunter Charitable Foundation is named after the late Kenneth Martin Hunter, a Toronto businessman who was the major shareholder in the Buntin Reid Paper Company Limited, as a means of contributing to the welfare of the community in which he had lived and worked for the majority of his life. This foundation is well-known for its regular and generous grants, donations and awards primarily in the areas of medical research and social welfare. Since the Foundation's inception in 1966, approximately $6 million has been given out in grants, donations and awards.  Martin and his daughter Sarah Hunter are continuing to support these fields, and have added with projects in the areas of nature conservation, international development and cultural activities.

The K.M. Hunter Artists Awards are administered by the Ontario Arts Council Foundation, a public charitable foundation that encourages and facilitates private giving to the arts. Winners are selected by juries of experienced artists from applicants recommended by Ontario Arts Council juries.

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For more information, please contact:
Kirsten Gunter, OAC Communications  (416) 969-7403 or
toll-free in Ontario at 1-800-387-0058 ext.7403
email kgunter@arts.on.ca


Short List for National Childrenís Book Award Announced

Toronto, March 23, 2004 ó The Ontario Arts Council Foundation today announced the shortlists for the Ruth Schwartz Children's Book Award (See attached list). This national award ó one for a children's picture book and one for a young adult/middle reader book ó recognizes writers and illustrators from across Canada who demonstrate artistic excellence in children's literature.

Two juries of schoolchildren from Nelson Mandela Park Junior and Senior Public School, in Toronto, Ontario, will review the books and announce the winners on May 11, 2004 at a special event at the school.

The young adult/middle reader book category is judged by students in grades 7 and 8.  The winning author will receive a $5,000 prize.  Students in grades 3 and 4 will award the $5,000 children's picture book prize, which is split between the author and illustrator.

The Ruth Schwartz Children's Book Award was established in 1976 by Sylvia Schwartz in honour of her sister, the late Ruth Schwartz, a respected Toronto bookseller. The administration of this award is shared by the Ontario Arts Council Foundation; the Ontario Arts Council, which selects the juries; and the Canadian Booksellers Association, whose members choose the short list of books.

Short List for the 2004 Ruth Schwartz Children's Book Awards attachment (94 KB)

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For more information, please contact:
Kirsten Gunter, Communications Manager, Ontario Arts Council
(416) 969-7403 or toll-free in Ontario at 1-800-387-0058 ext.7403
email kgunter@arts.on.ca


Mezzo-Soprano Judith Forst Wins $15,000 Award

Toronto, December 1, 2003 - Vancouver mezzo-soprano Judith Forst is the first winner of the $15,000 Paul de Hueck and Norman Walford Career Achievement Award for Classical Singing.

Established by Norman Walford, the former Executive Director of the Ontario Arts Council (OAC), and his partner Paul de Hueck, former Production Manager for arts programming at CBC television, the awards recognize career achievement in three artistic disciplines:  keyboard artistry, photography, and classical singing.  These awards are made possible through a fund set up in 1995 at the Ontario Arts Council Foundation (OACF).

The Ontario Arts Council manages the selection process.  The members of this year's jury are: Rosemarie Landry, Head of the Voice Department, L'Université de Montréal; William Littler, arts critic; and Timothy Vernon, conductor.

In choosing Ms. Forst as this year's award recipient, the jury recognized not only her stellar stage career but also her commitment to new composers, fellow performers, directors, and conductors, as well as her mentoring of young professionals and students.  Hailed as ìone of the greatest singing actresses on the contemporary operatic stageî by Time Magazine, Judith Forst has sung with major opera companies throughout North America and Europe, including 17 seasons with the New York Metropolitan Opera. 

Previous winners of the Paul de Hueck and Norman Walford Career Achievement Award are pianist Robert Silverman in 1998 for keyboard artistry, and photographer Jeff Wall in 2001 for art photography.

Established in 1991 as a public charitable foundation, the OACF manages funds given by individuals to support the arts, and administers the Ontario Government's $50,000,000 Arts Endowment Fund Program.

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For further information, please contact:
Janet Stubbs
Ontario Arts Council Foundation
416-969-7413 / jstubbs@arts.on.ca


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