The Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Foundation is pleased to announce this year’s recipients of Canada’s highest and most prestigious performing arts awards.
The 2015 laureates of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards (GGPAA) for Lifetime Artistic Achievement are:
- Walter Boudreau, C.M.
Composer, conductor and artistic director
- Atom Egoyan, O.C.
Film and stage director, visual artist and screenwriter
- Diana Leblanc
Actress and director
- Sarah McLachlan, O.C.
Singer, songwriter, musician and humanitarian
- R.H. Thomson, C.M.
Actor, director, producer and arts advocate
The Lifetime Artistic Achievement Awards are accompanied by two complementary awards. The Ramon John Hnatyshyn Award for Voluntarism in the Performing Arts will be given this year toMichael M. Koerner, C.M., while filmmaker Jean‑Marc Vallée will receive the National Arts Centre Award, which recognizes exceptional achievement over the past performance year.
The 2015 laureates were announced today at events held in Montreal, Victoria, Vancouver and Toronto and via live stream.
“We are thrilled to honour and celebrate each of these exceptionally talented Canadians who have made an indelible contribution to the Canadian imagination,” said Douglas Knight, Chair of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Foundation (GGPAAF). Added Paul‑André Fortier, Co-chair of the Foundation, “These prestigious awards continue to demonstrate the extraordinary pool of artistic talent in this country, as well as the extent to which the performing arts are truly part of who we are as Canadians.”
“Audiences across the country and around the world recognize the brilliance of Canada’s performing artists,” said His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada. “I am pleased to have this opportunity to recognize the efforts of some of Canada’s leading performers, arts professionals and volunteers, and to reflect on the role of creativity and artistic expression in our lives.”
“The Canada Council is proud to fund, and partner with the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards,” said Simon Brault, Director and CEO, Canada Council for the Arts. “The public celebration of our artists’ accomplishments is a wonderful reminder of the value and the importance of the arts for us all!”
In addition to honouring the 2015 laureates, the Awards feature a unique Mentorship Program, a partnership inaugurated in 2008 between the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Foundation, Canada’s National Arts Centre (NAC) and The Keg Spirit Foundation. Designed to unite past Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award recipients and talented mid-career artists, the program serves as a creative catalyst and as an investment in future Canadian artistic achievement. This program is a unique opportunity for the potential laureates of tomorrow to benefit from the creativity and experience of icons who have blazed the trail before them. This year’s mentor is Howard Shore, internationally renowned Canadian composer and conductor and 2011 Governor General’s Performing Arts Award recipient, and the protégée is Montreal‑based composerNicole Lizée.
The 2015 laureates will be honoured at various events in Ottawa in May, culminating in the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Gala presented by Enbridge at the National Arts Centre onSaturday, May 30 at 6:30 p.m. “Our investment in arts and arts organizations is tied to our commitment of providing the energy we need to foster strong communities and quality of life,” said D’Arcy Levesque, Enbridge’s Vice President, Enterprise Communications and Corporate Social Responsibility. “It is our privilege to share in the celebrations of such inspiring and talented individuals and we applaud their decades of contributions to the Canadian cultural landscape. On behalf of Enbridge and our over 11,000 employees, I’d like to offer our congratulations to each of this year’s laureates.”
The gala, produced by the National Arts Centre, will feature superb performances, evocative short films about the Award laureates (created by the National Film Board of Canada), and personal tributes by guest stars. “The National Film Board of Canada is honoured to be working with the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards once again this year. For the NFB, this partnership is a rare opportunity to pursue some of our great passions: our love of Canadian arts and our commitment to showcasing this country’s achievements,” said Claude Joli‑Coeur, Government Film Commissioner and Chairperson of the National Film Board of Canada. “To create these signature films, we’ve worked with accomplished directors, who in turn draw inspiration from our laureates to create unique audiovisual works. I believe this is the best tribute we can offer these distinguished individuals―to celebrate them and their achievements in lasting works of cinematic art. I hope everyone enjoys watching these films as much as we enjoyed making them.”
Created in 1992 under the distinguished patronage of the late Right Honourable Ramon John Hnatyshyn, then Governor General of Canada, these prestigious awards are presented annually to Canadians whose accomplishments have inspired and enriched the cultural life of our country. Nominations for these highly acclaimed awards are submitted by members of the public to recognize artists who have made a lifetime commitment and contribution to the performing arts in Canada.
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