A drawing of a young boy with an oversized head, a character from BLA BLA, an interactive website produced by Vincent Morisset in 2011.

Press Releases & Media Kits

National Film Board of Canada honours excellence at the 2011 Governor General's Performing Arts Awards

Press release

2011/05/12


Canadians can view unique online tributes at NFB.ca starting May 14 at 10:30 p.m.


Montreal, May 12, 2011 – For the fourth consecutive year, the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) has brought together acclaimed Canadian filmmakers and NFB producers to craft a series of short signature works paying tribute to the laureates of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards, Canada’s most prestigious performing arts awards.

These films will premiere at the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Gala at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa on May 14, 2011, honouring eight of Canada’s most distinguished artists, starting at 8 p.m. ET.

Canadians from coast-to-coast will also be able to share in this momentous occasion, with these unique films available online as of 10:30 p.m. ET at the NFB Screening Room at nfb.ca/playlist/governor-general-awards-2011/ and on its acclaimed apps for the iPhone, iPad, Android and BlackBerry PlayBook platforms.

This year, the Gala will be honouring Yvon Deschamps, Jean André Élie, Margie Gillis, William Shatner, Howard Shore, Leslee Silverman, Paul Thompson and Denis Villeneuve.

The annual Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Gala is the result of a dynamic partnership between three of Canada’s major arts organizations. The Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Foundation is responsible for the nominations and selection of the recipients. The National Arts Centre plays a key role by fundraising and producing the Gala. The NFB is a key creative concept partner, bringing together some of the country’s most talented filmmakers to create signature films that capture the essence of each of the 2011 laureates and serve as a testament to their creative genius.

Films

Yvon Deschamps honours the legendary Quebec monologuist and humourist, recipient of the Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award. This short film is co-directed by Luc Bourdon, director of the acclaimed NFB feature The Memories of Angels, and editor Mattieu Bouchard. It is produced for the NFB by Nathalie Cloutier.

Jean André Élie profiles a passionate and lifelong supporter of the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, who is being presented with this year’s Ramon John Hnatyshyn Award for Voluntarism in the Performing Arts. The film is directed by Marie-Julie Dallaire, a filmmaker first discovered in the 1993 Course destination monde series, and is produced for the NFB by Nathalie Cloutier.

Source pays tribute to Margie Gillis, legendary dance artist, choreographer and teacher, and recipient of the Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award. It is directed by Pepita Ferrari ( Capturing Reality: The Art of Documentary) and produced by Kat Baulu for the NFB.  

William Shatner Sings O Canada honours one of Canada’s most celebrated cultural icons, recipient of the Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award for his work as an actor, director, producer, writer, spokesman and philanthropist. It is directed by actor, filmmaker and former DreamWorks animator and stand-up comedian Jacob Medjuck, and produced for the NFB by Paul McNeill.

What If? celebrates the life and work of Leslee Silverman, a leader in theatre for young audiences, on the occasion of her Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award. It is directed by Noam Gonick, filmmaker, artist and member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, and produced for the NFB by Alicia Smith and Bonnie Thompson.

A Composer's Dream salutes Howard Shore, composer and musician, and recipient of the Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award. This film reunites filmmaker and Rhombus Media co-founder Barbara Willis Sweete and producer Gerry Flahive, who had collaborated on an NFB film for the 2009 Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards.

Uncommon Hero offers a portrait of Paul Thompson, recipient of the Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award for his career as theatre creator and, in his own words, “animateur and ideal audience.” It is directed by John L’Ecuyer ( Curtis's Charm) and produced for the NFB by Lea Marin.

Acclaimed Quebec filmmaker Denis Villeneuve ( Polytechnique; Incendies), recipient of the National Arts Centre Award, has stepped behind the camera to direct his own short film, provocatively entitled “ Rated R for Nudity.” It is produced by NFB Animation and Youth Studio executive producer René Chénier.


About the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards

The Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards (GGPAA) are Canada’s foremost distinction for excellence in the performing arts, recognizing a stellar array of artists and arts volunteers for their outstanding lifetime contribution to Canada’s cultural life. The Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards were created in 1992 under the patronage of the Right Honourable Ramon John Hnatyshyn (1934–2002), then Governor General of Canada. Today, His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston is the Awards’ patron.

Six Lifetime Artistic Achievement Awards are given each year for excellence in the fields of theatre, dance, classical music, popular music, broadcasting and film. Two complementary awards are also conferred: the Ramon John Hnatyshyn Award for Voluntarism in the Performing Arts, which recognizes outstanding contribution by an individual or group in voluntary service to the performing arts in Canada; and the National Arts Centre Award, which recognizes work of an extraordinary nature by an individual artist or company in the past performance year.

About the NFB

Canada's public producer and distributor, the National Film Board of Canada creates interactive works, social-issue documentaries, auteur animation and alternative dramas that provide the world with a unique Canadian perspective. The NFB is breaking new ground in form and content through interactive and mobile media, community filmmaking projects, programs for emerging filmmakers, stereoscopic film and more. It works in collaboration with creative filmmakers, digital media creators and co-producers in every region of Canada, with Aboriginal and culturally diverse communities, as well as partners around the world. Since the NFB's founding in 1939, it has created over 13,000 productions and won over 5,000 awards, including 2 Webbys, 12 Oscars and more than 90 Genies. Its NFB.ca Screening Room features over 2,000 productions online, including high-definition and 3D films. The NFB also puts the experience of cinema into the hands of Canadians everywhere through its acclaimed mobile apps for the iPhone, iPad and Android platforms, as well as a pre-loaded app in the new BlackBerry PlayBook.


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For more information, please contact:

Pat Dillon, NFB Publicist
Telephone: 514-283-9411
Cell: 514-206-1750
E-mail: p.a.dillon@nfb.ca