LSM Newswire

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Opera.ca: Make arts part of our global advantage

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Opera.ca calls on Government of Canada to make arts part of our global advantage

Opera.ca and its members, opera companies and professionals across the country, deeply regret the cancellation of federal programs to support for international cultural diplomacy: the $4.7 million/year PromArt program of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) as well as the $9 million/year Trade Routes program of the Department of Canadian Heritage (DCH).
Through these two programs, Canadian artists and arts organizations, including opera companies, have been able to forward Canada's diplomatic and trade objectives on the international stage. The excellence of Canadian artists and the distinctive quality of Canadian art-making has long been used to make the case for the calibre of Canadian leadership in other fields, notably government and business. In 2006-07, the Department of Foreign Affairs invested in bringing The Queen of Puddings Music Theatre Company to England for the first ever presentation of a Canadian opera at Covent Garden; it contributed to bringing Opera Atelier to South Korea to perform its unique and highly acclaimed baroque opera; and helped bring Academy Baroque de Montą©al to Germany to perform. "Canada's artists and arts organizations help us put our country's best face forward", said James W. Wright Opera.ca Chair and General Director of Vancouver Opera. As the Government looks ahead to maximize Canada's global advantage, we urge it to consider the meaningful and important contribution that the arts make to cultural diplomacy." Opera.ca is the national association for opera companies and professionals in Canada. It works with members across the country to advance the interests of Canada's opera community and create greater opportunity for opera audiences and professionals alike. Opera.ca is a founding member of the Canadian Arts Coalition, the largest group of artists, arts executives and business leaders ever assembled from across the country who are united in the view that greater investment in the arts is essential to Canada's future.

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