Cultura Festival

Cultura Festival

Stay tuned for 2021 updates! 

Cultura is a free family friendly outdoor festival presenting Music, Art, Food, and Film every Friday evening in July.

Cultura celebrates Toronto’s rich diversity, featuring world-renowned musicians, tasty international street food, explosive buskers, interactive art activities, and evening film screenings under the stars.

Co-presented by Councillor John Fillion and North York Arts, Cultura serves to benefit the local community.

Presenting Partner:

Photos taken by Kayla Wondergem

Fanny Martin | NYA Producer
John Filion | Founder
Derek Andrews | Music Consultant
Brant Matthews | Busker Consultant
Lila Karim | NYA Executive Director
Melissa Foster | NYA Program & Outreach Director
Cecilia Garcia | NYA Program & Volunteer Coordinator
Rachel Birnberg | NYA Development & Communications Coordinator

Date: TBD

Time: TBD

Place: TBD

Address: TBD

Price: Free

 

Cultura Festival History

Cultura Festival 2020

in 2020, NYA and the Cultura Team made the difficult decision to cancel Cultura Festival due to COVID-19. We know how important this festival is to the community and we plan on returning in 2021! 

Cultura Festival 2019

Dates: July 5, 12, 19, 26, 2019

Featured Music: Lemon Bucket Orkestra, The Circle Music Band, Delhi 2 Dublin, Arsenals 100% Kick-Ass Ska
Featured Busker: Nemesis, Hoop You LED Glow Show, The Greg Tarlin Juggling Show, Fireguy Show
Featured Film: Spider-Man: Into the Spider Verse, The Breadwinner, Ralph Breaks the Internet, Incredibles 2

Co presenting Partners: North York Arts, City of Toronto
Secondary Stage Sponsor: TD Bank
Presenting Sponsors: Sorbara Development Group, North York Centre 
Partnering Sponsors: TO Live, Longos
Supporting Sponsor: St. Louis Bar & Grill

Cultura Festival 2018

Dates: July 6, 13, 20, 27, 2018

Featured Music: Sharon Riley and the Faith Chorale, Persian All Stars: Amir Amiri and Friends, Songs of Leonard Cohen, The Lemon Bucket Orchestra
Featured Busker: The Fire Guy, Mike Wood, Isabella Hoops, Mighty Mike
Featured Film: Wonder, The Post, Lion, The Greatest Showman

Co presenting Partners: North York Arts, City of Toronto
Main Stage Sponsor: TD Bank
Government Partners: Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund (OCAF)
Cultura Festival Donors: Arthur Dalfen
Presenting Sponsors: Sobara Development Group
Supporting Sponsors: North York Centre, St, Louis Wings

About Us

North York Arts (NYA)  collaborates with artists, arts organizations, and partners to develop, strengthen, and promote cultural programming and initiatives for North York communities

Contact us 

North York Arts
5040 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON, M2N 6R8

info@northyorkarts.org

Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm

Join Our Network

Giving Tuesday: The Animation Project Online Premiere

Giving Tuesday: The Animation Project Online Premiere

The Animation Project Online Premiere

A LIVE Giving Tuesday event!

About the Program 

North York Arts and the Toronto Animated Image Society are excited to present The Animation Project Online Premiere! Tune in on December 1st to hear from participants and see their final projects.

This is an exciting opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes look at one of our programs that pivoted online in March. This event is also in the spirit of Giving Tuesday – we encourage you to donate to support our programs!

The Animation Project was a 12-week digital animation course for participants 55+ that began in the spring.  Not only were participants taught animation and design techniques, but they had the opportunity to share and collaborate with one another through meaningful storytelling and discussions.

This film is a final reflection piece to capture the creative process and self-expression journey.

Date: December 1st

Time: 6pm

Can’t make it at 6pm? Join TAIS on their YouTube channel at 8pm! CLICK HERE

Funded By:

Program Partner:

Program Part of: 

About Us

North York Arts (NYA)  collaborates with artists, arts organizations, and partners to develop, strengthen, and promote cultural programming and initiatives for North York communities

Contact us 

North York Arts
5040 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON, M2N 6R8

info@northyorkarts.org

Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm

Join Our Network

The Space Between (Nuit Blanche 2020)

The Space Between (Nuit Blanche 2020)

The Space Between 

Part of Nuit Blache 2020

“It had never before occurred to me that I too could cease to exist, and now a part of me feared being forgotten. How easy it would be to forget an invisible person.”

Date:  October 3, 2020

7 p.m. to 7 a.m.

North York Arts is excited to be participating in Nuit Blanche 2020! We’ve partnered with Cinematoscape, an award-winning local digital media company, to showcase The Space Between.

The Space Between, an award-winning play written by Simeon Taole, explores the theme of distance – physical, emotional, and cultural. A young boy in South Africa longs to reunite with his childhood sweetheart in Canada before the space between them separates them forever.

In 2016, Cinematoscape and North York Arts co-presented The Space Between in Toronto. Cinematoscape conducted interviews, in both Canada and South Africa, inviting people to share their experience of the space between. Today, we share these voices and new stories as part of a continued exploration of the space between, a theme with even greater resonance in 2020. Ultimately, the presentation showcases our shared humanity, and the resilience and hope within us all.

Tune in on October 3rd at 7:00 pm  as they meditate on distance and connection, and how people bridge the space between, pre and post pandemic. Through a collection of shared stories, they explore the ways people have experienced this space.

About Us

North York Arts (NYA)  collaborates with artists, arts organizations, and partners to develop, strengthen, and promote cultural programming and initiatives for North York communities

Contact us 

North York Arts
5040 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON, M2N 6R8

info@northyorkarts.org

Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm

Join Our Network

Toronto Mycelial Network

Toronto Mycelial Network

Toronto Mycelial Network

#InvisibleNetworkTO

An art project to participate in at home
Follow along here: @torontomycelialnetwork

The Toronto Mycelial Network is a city-wide art project to remind us that while we are physically distant – we remain connected as individuals, as communities, and as a city!

We invite all Torontonians to spend this time making any interpretation of a mushroom and post it on social media using the hashtag #InvisibleNetworkTO and tagging @torontomycelialnetwork.

Why a mushroom? Mushrooms can be a great distance apart but are connected to the same invisible network. So, like a mushroom, let’s connect while we remain physically apart!

See below for more information on the Mycelial Network and how to participate. 

HOW TO PARTICIPATE:

 

  1. Make a mushroom of any size, shape, or dimension! If you want, document your process!
  2. Post on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter with the hashtag #InvisibleNetworkTO and tag @torontomycelialnetwork
  3. Follow @torontomycelialnetwork to watch the invisible network grow!
  4. Sign up for our NYA Newsletter to be notified about more  Toronto Mycelial Network-related news.
What is a Mycelial Network?

“Underneath the soil a vast and interconnected network of life that links the trees and other plants through their root system. This network is made up of fungi (mushrooms) with massive and far-reaching threads called Mycelium” 

Want to learn more? Check out the 3 minute video:

How should I make my mushroom?

Mushrooms can be made from anything you’d like! It can be made from felt, papier-mache, origami or whatever art supplies (or non-art supplies!) you find in your cupboards. This is a chance to channel your creativity!

How do I share my mushroom?

Share your mushrooms on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter with the hashtag #InvisibleNetworkTO
and tag @torontomycelialnetwork It’s that simple!

Don’t have social media? Send your mushroom by email to info@northyorkarts.org – please include your name.

Check out the NYA staff creations! 

The Toronto Mycelial Network was created and initiated by East End Arts, and has been supported by our family of LASOs to expand and grow the network to all corners of Toronto! Members from any community in the city of Toronto and beyond are invited to join all of us in making a mushroom at home, and being connected in times of social distancing. the other LASOs: North York Arts, Arts EtobicokeLakeshore ArtsScarborough Arts and Urban Arts.

About Us

North York Arts (NYA)  collaborates with artists, arts organizations, and partners to develop, strengthen, and promote cultural programming and initiatives for North York communities

Contact us 

North York Arts
5040 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON, M2N 6R8

info@northyorkarts.org

Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm

Join Our Network

Uptown Kid Lit

Uptown Kid Lit

Uptown KidLit

Uptown KidLit is a new FREE children’s literary festival in North York for kids aged 12 and under, offering comic drawing and storytelling activities, kidlit and comic exhibitors, and feature presentations by top comic and literary artists!

Featuring George OConnor, Deborah Kerbel, Richard Scrimger, Britt Wilson, Ted Staunton, Lesley Livingston, Kean Soo, Lis Xu, John Martz, Tory Woollcott, Chad Solomon, Anoosha Syed, Brian McLaughlan, Hilary Leung, and many more!

Date: Saturday, Sept 28th

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Time: 9:30am – 4:00pm

Address: North York Central Library 5120 Yonge Street, North York

Price: Free

About Us

North York Arts (NYA)  collaborates with artists, arts organizations, and partners to develop, strengthen, and promote cultural programming and initiatives for North York communities

Contact us 

North York Arts
5040 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON, M2N 6R8

info@northyorkarts.org

Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm

Join Our Network

ThrowDown Dance Convention

ThrowDown Dance Convention

ThrowDown Dance Convention

UrbanArts is presenting the ‘ThrowDown’ Dance Convention– a 1-day annual urban dance platform aimed at promoting the importance of accessible and inclusive dance programs, highlighting the importance of physical literacy, offering new and exciting opportunities for growth and recognition to young performers, and encouraging community engagement through the vehicle of creative movement. Our 2019 theme is ‘Healthy Living through Dance’.

Through their dance showcase & competition, workshops & masterclasses, artist chats, and awards, ThrowDown promotes the development of artistic and life skills for youth in a supportive community atmosphere. Because of the generous contributions from key partners and supporters, Urban Arts is able to offer this dynamic dance platform 100% FREE for participants and attendees to experience.

Date: April 6th, 2019

Time: 10:30am – 5pm 

Place: Toronto Centre for the Arts

Price: Free

ThrowDown Dance Convention History

2018 ThrowDown Dance Convention

Date: May 13, 2018

Panel Discussion: “Creating A Balance As Communities Shift” – An expert panel will explore and exchange ideas on how to respond, advocate, and innovate in our schools, studios, and communities to provide dance programs and training for participants of all ages with different backgrounds, abilities, and evolving needs. How do we balance various cultural contexts, socio-economic conditions, and the varying landscapes in our communities? We welcome you for can-do thinking, deep discussion, and exchange of big ideas.

Dance Workshops & Masterclasses (For facilitators and dancers):  These workshops will focus on teaching dance-making skills to youth dancers, including creating movement themes and variations, exploring selected choreographic structures and utilizing elements of design to create exciting, meaningful and impactful work.

Community Dance Competition & Showcase: School & community dance programs, troupes, and local dance initiatives across the city come together to showcase in a main event that includes expert judges, hosts, prizes and loads of fun! ThrowDown will consist of a team dance/crew competition (16 teams). Performances will be scored by a panel of expert judges. (See ‘Rules & Regulations’ tab for scoring criteria). Various awards will be given out throughout the evening.

About Us

North York Arts (NYA)  collaborates with artists, arts organizations, and partners to develop, strengthen, and promote cultural programming and initiatives for North York communities

Contact us 

North York Arts
5040 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON, M2N 6R8

info@northyorkarts.org

Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm

Join Our Network

Art as Medicine

Art as Medicine

Art as Medicine

Hosted by: Veronica Johnny
Featuring Indigenous Workshop Facilitators: Joanne Okimawininew Dallaire and Veronica Johnny

Art as Medicine is a half-day workshop that focuses on both traditional and contemporary explorations of the relationship between health and art from an Indigenous perspective.

Par of the Emergence Symposium and NYA’s Beyond Access, Beyond the Creative Workshop Series.


Veronica Johnny
Veronica Johnny is a two-spirit, multi-disciplinary, Indigenous artist. She is Cree/French Metis on her mother’s side and Dene/Scottish First Nation on her father’s side. Veronica is a member of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation; was born and raised in Fort Smith, Northwest Territories and presently lives in Northern Ontario.
From humble musical beginnings, Ms. Johnny has emerged as a dynamic force in the Canadian music & arts industry, working as a performer, producer, manager, promoter, writer, arts educator, workshop facilitator, entrepreneur, youth mentor, cultural knowledge keeper and Cree language advocate.
She is a singer/songwriter, contemporary Indigenous hand-drummer and also the front woman, vocalist and manager of The Johnnys, a high-energy rock’n’roll band she founded with husband Dave Johnny. Veronica has become a seasoned performer as both solo artist and a member of groups, amassed studio experience on either side of the mixing console, manages several artists & facilitates workshops for hundreds of youth, each year.
Joanne Okimawininew Dallaire
Joanne Okimawininew Dallaire LLD is proudly Cree, her ancestry is Omushkego from Attawapiskat and Mattice Ontario and Hull Quebec, calling Toronto home. Joanne has dedicated her career to counselling, advising and educating on Indigenous concerns, empowering and capacity building and advocating for change in terms of broader societal relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.
Her over 30-year social service career has contributed to transforming the lives of individuals, and the culture of agencies and the recognition and respect for Indigenous people, concerns and contributions within mainstream society. Joanne facilitates and consults in the not for profit sector and Toronto District School Board, around hiring practices, staff training, group facilitation and policy and procedures development.  She sits on several councils and committees.
Joanne received an Honorary Doctor of Laws in the Community Service Faculty at Ryerson University in recognition of her life’s work, the Minaake Award for Leadership, Herbert H Carnegie Amazing Aces Award for Courage, the City of Toronto Access, Equity and Human Rights Awards – Aboriginal Affairs Award.
She sits as the Elder for Ryerson University, Ryerson’s Aboriginal Education Council, and the Truth and Reconciliation directive for 10 years. “Her presence on this council is essential to its ability to work as a cohesive, respectful body responsible for the infusion of Indigenous curriculum, worldviews and overall presence in Ryerson University as a whole. It is in no way an exaggeration to say the progress that is envisioned for Ryerson University in terms of the mandate of the Indigenous Education Council would not be possible without the support, guidance and active engagement of Joanne.”
Joanne’s approaches to working with individuals as well as small and large groups are not only comprehensive but creative, effective and unique.  Her work has transformed lives and improved relations between people and the community.  She openly shares her own life’s journey through all forms of abuse, intergenerational trauma from Residential School and finding her profound sense of self.   http://www.healingworks.ca/
Schedule
12:30-1:00: Registration and Light Refreshments
1:00-1:15:    Introductions and Welcomes
1:15- 2:30:   Workshop 1
2:30-2:45:    Break
2:45-4:00:    Workshop 2
4:00-4:30:    Closing and De-brief/Networking

 


Date: November 22, 2018

 Hours: 12:30pm-4:30pm

Place: North York Central Library

About Us

North York Arts (NYA)  collaborates with artists, arts organizations, and partners to develop, strengthen, and promote cultural programming and initiatives for North York communities

Contact us 

North York Arts
5040 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON, M2N 6R8

info@northyorkarts.org

Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm

Join Our Network

Volunteer Orientation: North York Arts Summer Festivals

Volunteer Orientation: North York Arts Summer Festivals

Volunteer Orientation: North York Arts Summer Festivals 

We’re thrilled to announce that Cultura Festival and Sunday Serenades, North York Arts summer festivals, are back! Are you looking for some fun event volunteer opportunities this summer? Join us for these free outdoor festivals at Mel Lastman Square.

Attending one volunteer orientation is mandatory for new volunteers!

More about our festivals:
Cultura Festival is a free family-friendly outdoor festival presenting music, art, food, and film every Friday evening in July. Cultura celebrates Toronto’s rich diversity featuring world-renowned Musicians, tasty international street food, explosive buskers and dancers, interactive art activities, and evening film screenings under the stars.

Sunday Serenades is a free outdoor concert series at Mel Lastman Square featuring some of Ontario’s best live swing bands, big band, and jazz acts.


 

Date: Jun 14 – Jun 21

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Time:  June 14, 5:30 – 6:30 | June 21, 6:30 – 7:30

Place: North York Civic Centre, North York Committee Room #1,

Address:  5100 Yonge St, North York, ON M2N 5V7

About Us

North York Arts (NYA)  collaborates with artists, arts organizations, and partners to develop, strengthen, and promote cultural programming and initiatives for North York communities

Contact us 

North York Arts
5040 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON, M2N 6R8

info@northyorkarts.org

Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm

Join Our Network

Walk Together Children: A Cross – Cultural Celebration

Walk Together Children: A Cross – Cultural Celebration

Walk Together Children

Musicians, dancers, and other artists from Toronto’s African, Jewish and Shia Ismaili Muslim diasporas unite in a joyful sharing of their cultural traditions.

Headlined by soprano Denise Williams, the event brings together some of our best-known performers – pianists Brahm Goldhamer and Nina Shapilsky, percussionists Sam Donkoh and Daniel Barnes, clarinettist Ben MacDonald; members of the Toronto Ismaili Muslim Youth Choir, directed by Adrian Savin and Salima Dhanani; and Ismaili dancers. Guest artists include tenor Mitch Smolkin, dub poet Clifton Joseph, dancer Shakeil Rollock, and pianist Babak Naseri.

The program will include songs of inspiration, evocative melodies of yearning, lively dances from Africa, and joyous klezmer numbers, sung in many languages.

The afternoon will also honour Canada’s First Nations by having singer/songwriter Aqua Nibii Waawaaskone open the event.

The event dovetails with the Diamond Jubilee of His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan, and his aspiration for global pluralism: that the peoples of the world collaborate and learn from one another, and live together in peace.

Presented by the Children of Abraham Collective under the ageis of No Strings Theatre in partnership with North York Arts (NYA).


Pop Up exhibition by Art Ignite: 

To compliment Walk together Children, we will be hosting a pop-up exhibition by Art Ignite’s workshop Repainting Perceptions.

Repainting Perceptions was a photo and painting workshop where residents from the Flemingdon and Thorncliffe Park communities had the space to share their stories, challenge religious and cultural stereotyping, and break through social isolation.

 

Date: Sunday October 14, 2018

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Time: 3PM

Place: George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts

Address: 5040 Yonge St, North York, ON M2N 6R8

About Us

North York Arts (NYA)  collaborates with artists, arts organizations, and partners to develop, strengthen, and promote cultural programming and initiatives for North York communities

Contact us 

North York Arts
5040 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON, M2N 6R8

info@northyorkarts.org

Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm

Join Our Network