Toronto Arts Foundation Announces 2018 Awards Finalists

Local Artists Impress Jurors with Innovation and Influence

In a city that pulses with arts and culture, Toronto Arts Foundation is proud to celebrate outstanding artists and visionary supporters. This year’s Toronto Arts Foundation Awards recognize both emerging artists and those who have enriched the city’s cultural scene for many years. Also being honoured are organizations that engage youth through the arts and those who contribute to Toronto’s musical life. Dancers, publishers, musicians, theatre practitioners and multidisciplinary artists, they reflect the astonishing diversity and brilliance of Toronto’s artistic landscape. These groups and individuals are being recognized for the paths they’re blazing, and the inspiration they spark.

The winners of the 2018 Toronto Arts Foundation Awards will be announced at the annual Mayor’s Arts Lunch, Wednesday May 16, 2018 where a record total of $62,000 in prize money will be distributed.

The finalists are:


  • RISE Edutainment
  • The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery
  • UforChange


  • Ritesh Das – musician, composer, and founder of Toronto Tabla Ensemble
  • Ruth Howard – founding Artistic Director of Jumblies Theatre
  • Dan Yashinsky – storyteller, author, and community animator


  • Britta Johnson – composer, lyricist and writer
  • David Norsworthy – choreographer, performer and teacher
  • Jivesh Parasram – multidisciplinary artist, researcher, and facilitator


  • Mitchell Marcus – founding Artistic & Managing Director of The Musical Stage Company
  • Musicworks – magazine of Canadian contemporary work in music and sound arts
  • The WholeNote – print and online guide of Southern Ontario’s musical activity

The recipient of the TORONTO ARTS AND BUSINESS AWARD will be announced at the Mayor’s Arts Lunch May 16. 

“This group of inspiring finalists are not only leaders in the arts community, but are leaders in our city, contributing to the vitality, equity and vibrancy of Toronto, and sparking creativity everywhere we look,” said Claire Hopkinson, Director & CEO, Toronto Arts Foundation.

The 2018 finalists were selected by a panel of Jurors who are themselves celebrated artists and cultural leaders: Maddie Bautista, Denise Bolduc, Maureen Dodig, Loie Fallis, Patty Jarvis, Mafa Makhubalo, Nikki Shaffeeullah, Geneviève Wallen.

This is the 13th year of the Mayor’s Arts Lunch awards ceremony, a gathering that brings together artists, cultural leaders, government and business to celebrate the outstanding benefits that the artistic community and its many generous benefactors bring to Toronto.

For more details about the finalists and the Toronto Arts Foundation Awards, go to or refer to the Media Kit

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Toronto Arts Foundation is a charitable organization that sparks creative connections, spotlights artistic excellence, and supports vibrant cultural growth throughout our diverse city, through private sector investment. 

For more information or to book an interview with the finalists or Claire Hopkinson, please contact: Sarah Gladki, Communications Manager at or 416-392-6802 x217