T he RISER Project is a new collaborative producing model for theatre artists and companies to create and present new work. It was developed by Ravi Jain, Owais Lightwala and Kelly Read of Why Not Theatre in order to address some of the challenges of producing independent theatre in Toronto, including the high cost of production, difficulty of building audiences and inefficient use of resources and infrastructure. The first three years of testing the model have been made possible with the generous support of the Toronto Arts Council’s Open Door Program and the Government of Canada.
F or the 2019 round of RISER, we will be supporting 4 productions at The Theatre Centre, and once again bring together a community of Senior Partners, established theatre companies that have larger capacity than independent artists. The Senior Partners contribute in kind resources, cash and mentorship support to the model, and over the course of the year we will facilitate long-term relationships between them and the RISER artists.
Find out more about how RISER works in this feature Canadian Theatre Review Article. RISER was also included with Generator in a research paper on sector developers for independent theatre, commissioned by The Metcalf Foundation and Toronto Arts Foundation, which you can read in full here.
Why Not Theatre are the true champions of the independent artist. I'm constantly floored by their commitment to truly giving me and all the other artists a platform. They provide what we need, they'r so accommodating. d'bi's been in theatre for 20 years and she's never seen anything like it. This is a little independent theatre company and they're so thorough. It blows my mind. I'm so super grateful to be a part of the RISER Project.
- daniel ellis -
The RISER project is going to help shape the future of theatre in Toronto. Instead of waiting around for existing systems to evolve, Why Not Theatre has taken it upon themselves to bust shit apart and look at it from a different angle, to actively try to actually change things. It’s brave and it’s damn exciting.
- Amy Nostbakken and Norah Sadava -
It allows us to take an idea and fast track it into a production. we can just focus on making the show and the creative side rather than the administrative side.
- Adam Paolozza -