Emerging Creators Unit

education partner 

education programming supporter


What is the Emerging Creators Unit?

The Emerging Creators Unit offers an intensive, process-focused opportunity to develop your artistic practice and producing skills through the creation of a new project with the opportunity to share your work as part of Buddies’ Queer Pride Festival in June. 

The Emerging Creators Unit is an artist-driven, mentor-supported creative model; we look for strongly motivated emerging queer and/or trans artists who have an ability to work independently, are interested in creating original, theatrical work, and are ready to take their practice to the next level. The Emerging Creators Unit supports a wide definition of “performance”, and is open to a variety of themes, form, or content.

2021 Emerging Creators Unit

This year’s Emerging Creators unit is led by Tawiah M’Carthy in association with Philip Geller. In addition to bi-weekly meetings with Tawiah, Philip and guest mentors, this year’s program includes a paid development period, and a public sharing at Buddies Queer Pride Festival in June.

If you have any questions about the program or the application process, please email Tawiah, Philip, and/or Daniel (Interim Programming Director) at ecu@buddiesinbadtimes.com

For accommodation requests, please contact Tawiah, Philip and/or Daniel at ecu@buddiesinbadtimes.com. If you would like to direct your question or request to a specific person, please include their name in the subject line (For example: Attn Philip: Request).

The deadline for submission is Monday, November 23, 2020 at 11:59pm.

For the full call for submissions, please click here.

Office Hours

Program leaders will be hosting office hours on November 13 and 20 from 4:30–5:30PM. These will take place on Zoom, which allows you to phone in or video call in. We will post the Zoom information here on the day of each event. Registration is not required, but if you would like the link e-mailed to you on the day of, please register for a reminder.

*November 13th + 20th sessions will be ASL-interpreted

November 20 Zoom login:

Join online here.

Meeting ID: 977 6080 9907
Passcode: 666988

One tap mobile:

Sign up for a reminder


Q: What if I don’t have a presentation ready to share by Pride 2021?
A: A “sharing” at Pride doesn’t have to be a finalized presentation, it could be a reading, an artist talk, etc. The shift this year in the program is moving away from something that is product-driven. Instead, we are looking at the process and building the capacity of the artist for what happens after this program. 

Q: How available do I have to be//what is the time commitment?
A: ECU meetings will happen every other week, starting in February 2021; these are 4-hour sessions (most likely in the morning), however specific times/dates are still TBD. There may be one or two dates that break from this pattern to allow for masterclasses. Also, there is a two-week rehearsal period at the end of May 2021/ beginning of June 2021 that leads into the Festival/showcase. It is important to note that in between sessions, there is an expectation that participants are working on their project to progress it. 

Q: What does two years of experience mean/what if I don’t have professional credits?
A: The idea behind this criteria is that participants have been exposed to the current performing arts industry and have developed an awareness of processes, terminology, and practices. This working knowledge will become the foundation of the program and assist in identifying learning objectives and inform program activities.

Q: I have more than one idea for a project – should I choose one or can I apply more than once?
A: You can submit more than one project within the same application – no need to apply twice. That said, the program has a finite number of resources at its disposal, and so a project (or an excerpt of a project) that can be scaled would allow us to properly support the work. 

Q: Can I apply with my collective?
A: If you are a member of a collective, we advise you to apply as an individual and outline how this program may support your growth as an artist/producer within the collective. Your project may involve your collective, but again, think about how the project can be scaled to address your own learning objectives.

Q: Is this a paid program?
A: Yes. Participants will be offered payment for the program itself, and receive payment for the rehearsal/showcase process come May/June 2021.    

Past Participants

2020 // Rochelle R, Gabe Maharjan + Merlin Simard
// Ophira Calof, Brock Hessel, Shohana Sharmin, Jade Walker & Kasden Leo Indigo
 // Rhiannon Collett, Erum Khan, Kwaku Okyere, Heath V Salazar
// Bilal Baig, Teiya Kasahara, François Macdonald, Sofia Rodriguez
// Marina Moreira, Joshua Middleton, Chase Lo, Monica Garrido
// kumari giles, Faith-Ann Mendes, Andre Prefontaine, Brian Postalian
2014 // Jackie Rowland, Ramon Vitung, Rory Jade Grey
2013 // Sina Gilani, Shaista Latif, Aemilius (Milo) Ramirez, Mx. Sly
2012 // Jamie Ebbs, Daniel Jelani Ellis, Michael David Lorsch, cassy walker
2011 // Meg Gennings, Olive-or-Oliver, Andrew Robinson, Evan Vipond
2010 // Cassandra Moore, Flerida Pena, Zita Nyaraty, Jonathan Schuster
2009 // Cole J. Alvis, Kim Crosby, Tawiah M’carthy, Rob Salerno
2008 // Jessica Michael Reynolds, Mark Shyzer, Alisha Stranges, Jordan Tannahill
2007 // Andrew Bathory, Shannon Curry, Waawaate Fobister, Dawn Nearing, Jay Stewart

Program Supporters

Education Partner:
TD Bank Group

Additional Program Support:
The NigE Gough Shine On Foundation at the Toronto Community Foundation

photo of the 2019 Emerging Creators Unit by Greg Wong