March 8, 2018 – Montreal – National Film Board of Canada (NFB)
For the 10th consecutive year, the National Film Board of Canada is bringing together acclaimed Canadian filmmakers to create short cinematic tributes to Canadian performing arts legends, as the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards (GGPAA) gets set to honour laureates at its 26th annual Awards Gala, taking place June 2, 2018, at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa.
“Ten years ago, we began a partnership with the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Foundation, with the hopes of doing something special to celebrate excellence and dedication in Canadian performing arts,” said Claude Joli-Coeur, Government Film Commissioner and NFB Chairperson. “The result of a creative collaboration between filmmakers and laureates, these short film portraits are true works of cinematic art in their own right, and a legacy for all Canadians.”
The NFB is producing eight new films to bring the GGPAA film collection to a staggering total of 84 titles. These works are produced by the NFB in collaboration with the National Arts Centre and the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Foundation. The NFB has been a partner of the GGPAA since 2008.
All completed GGPAA films can be streamed free of charge at: nfb.ca/channels/governor_generals_awards.
Unique film portraits of Canadian performing arts excellence
Lifetime Artistic Achievement:
Legendary recording artist Murray McLauchlan, CM, is being profiled by Michael McNamara, a Toronto-based documentary filmmaker whose honours include the 2014 Don Haig Award from the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival.
One of Canada’s foremost choreographers, Ginette Laurin, CM, is the subject of a short film by acclaimed Quebec director Jean-François Caissy, whose latest feature doc Premières armes (First Stripes) recently premiered at the Berlin Film Festival.
Winner of the Canadian Screen Award for Best First Feature for Blackbird, Jason Buxton directs Portrait of Angela Hewitt, a glimpse into the creative process of Angela Hewitt, CC, one of the world’s leading pianists and interpreters of Bach’s music.
A prolific theatre, film and television producer best known for his stewardship of legendary comedy troupe The Second City, Andrew Alexander is being profiled by Josh Raskin, an Academy Award nominee for his animated short I Met the Walrus, which was based on 14-year-old Jerry Levitan’s 1969 interview with John Lennon.
Robin McKenna, whose upcoming GIFT is a feature-length documentary and cross-media project inspired by Lewis Hyde’s classic book, is directing Geneviève Bujold art = life, a portrait of one of Canada’s most accomplished actresses.
Lifetime Artistic Achievement—Special Award:
This year the GGPAA will also be conferring a Special Lifetime Artistic Achievement to Peter A. Herrndorf, CC, who as head of the National Arts Centre worked tirelessly to fulfil the centre’s mandate, playing a leadership role in fostering artistic excellence in the performing arts. This short film is being directed by Tara Johns, whose 2012 debut feature The Year Dolly Parton Was My Mom received the LA Femme Filmmaker Award.
Ramon John Hnatyshyn Award for Voluntarism in the Performing Arts:
In a career spanning over 45 years, Florence Junca Adenot has held leadership roles in arts and culture, university administration, public transit, and heritage preservation. Ms. Junca Adenot will be honoured in a film co-directed by two acclaimed media artists: IDFA DocLab-winning designer and artistic director Mathieu Léger and film, multimedia, interactive and stage director Thibaut Duverneix, founder of the creative studio Gentilhomme.
National Arts Centre Award:
Multi-award-winning musicians, songwriters and activists Tegan & Sara are the subject of an upcoming short film by Anne Marie Fleming, an acclaimed BC filmmaker whose previous work, the 2016 animated feature Window Horses (Stickgirl Productions/NFB), was named to the Toronto International Film Festival’s Canada’s Top 10 list.
These short cinematic tributes are produced by the Ontario Studio, the Quebec & Atlantic Studio, the Documentary Studio, the British Columbia & Yukon Studio, the Canadian Francophonie Studio, the English Animation Studio, the Digital Studio and the Special Projects Studio.
About the NFB
The NFB is Canada’s public producer of award-winning creative documentaries, auteur animation, interactive stories and participatory experiences. NFB producers are embedded in communities across the country, from St. John’s to Vancouver, working with talented creators on innovative and socially relevant projects. The NFB is a leader in gender equity in film and digital media production, and is working to strengthen Indigenous-led production, guided by the recommendations of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission. NFB productions have won over 7,000 awards, including 18 Canadian Screen Awards, 17 Webbys, 12 Oscars and more than 100 Genies. To access NFB works, visit NFB.ca or download its apps for mobile devices.
Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards
National Arts Centre
NFB GGPAA channel