The Festival At a Glance


From 2007 to 2015, Creative Age Edmonton has presented an annual festival during Alberta’s Seniors Week (first full week in June). The festival is on hiatus in 2016. The North Edmonton Seniors Association is hosting creative age events on June 8 and 9, 2016. We encourage you to check out their arts workshops and displays.
Below is an overview of festival events held in previous years. Watch a video overview of the festival. View a clip from one of GeriActors and Friends' 2012 productions.

 


Opening/Launch

 


a short program including dignitaries to provide the media and the public with a snapshot view of the programming to be expected in the coming festival. Keynote speakers have included Susan Perlstein, founder and director of special projects for the National Center for Creative Aging in Washington, DC, and Senator Tommy Banks. Performances have included mid-level to professional artistic performances by bell choirs, bands, dance groups, theatre groups and storytellers

Arts Community Cafes

 


featuring local senior choirs, musicians, writers, dancers and drama groups

Film Screenings

 

of documentaries about extraordinary seniors


Arts Workshops

 

led by professional artists and instructors in a wide range of mediums throughout the week for a low-cost at various venues, and a Discover the Arts: Come Dabble for the Day event enabling older adults to sample a wide range of artistic experiences all offered at a single venue


A Professional Development Symposium/Forum

 

including a mix of training and presentations by speakers such as the late Gene Cohen, director of the Center on Aging, Health & Humanities at George Washington University, cultural teachings, film screenings and networking opportunities that promote understanding of the significance of arts and aging

FEST, the Festival of Edmonton Seniors Theatre

 

showcasing original theatre produced by Edmonton seniors and offering workshops led by internationally acclaimed instructors

Choral Festival

 

featuring professionally led community choirs as well as choirs from local senior centres, cultural centres and churches

Cabaret Dance

 

featuring demonstrations by ballroom dancers and connecting the dance community with the festival

Art Exhibitions

 

showcasing the work of artistic seniors who may be members of senior centres and art clubs

Community Partnerships

 

such as free senior admission to the Art Gallery of Alberta during the festival, limited seating at a special final rehearsal by the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra and Aboriginal open mic session at The Carrot Community Arts Coffeehouse

Storytelling by members of TALES

 

(The Alberta League Encouraging Storytelling) and established senior writers

Closing Celebration Party

 

Featuring a full variety arts program from mid-level to professional artists.

Each year, the festival also includes a Community Calendar of Events to promote other arts and aging community events occurring during the festival. Efforts to connect seniors with year round arts opportunities are also encouraged through promotion of program directories and online resources such as the Arts and Aging Toolkit (Edmonton Seniors Coordinating Council).

Venues for festival events have included the Winspear Centre, Art Gallery of Alberta, Royal Alberta Museum, Timms Centre for the Arts at the University of Alberta, The Citadel Theatre, Edmonton City Hall, Stanley A. Milner Library, Robbins Health Learning Centre at Grant MacEwan University, Enterprise Square, City Arts Centre, Cosmopolitan Music Society, seniors centres in Edmonton, Alberta Avenue Community Hall, The Carrot Community Arts Coffeehouse, and Sutton Place Hotel.

Hundreds of seniors have performed in the various festival events, ranging from those who have made significant contributions to the arts to those who are just beginning to discover the benefits of the arts in their senior years, from professional to amateur. Evaluations given out to participants each year document their experiences of the festival, their feedback and suggestions, and their level of involvement and interest in creative aging.


 

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