Staging Change | Toronto

An adaptive capacity building program for performing arts organizations in Toronto, Ontario

The George Cedric Metcalf Charitable Foundation and EmcArts proudly announce the launch of Staging Change, a multi-year strategic investment program geared to strengthen Toronto's performing arts organizations by promoting adaptive change efforts.

Staging Change is designed as the next iteration of Metcalf's current Creative Strategies Incubator program and will incorporate key elements of the New Pathways program model developed by EmcArts. This model celebrates and advances organizational innovations as responses to complex challenges during times of rapid change in the nonprofit arts sector.

Staging Change will ground a cohort of up to 15 Toronto-based performing arts organizations, aimed at strengthening their adaptive capacity and resilience. The program is designed to welcome organizations over four stages, with opportunities to stimulate new thinking and action through interactive workshops, coaching, individual organizational facilitation, and tiered capital investment. Funding will be staged, beginning with small participation grants ($3,000) and, if an organization is successful through all four stages, culminating in substantial scaling grants of up to $75,000 a year for two years.

In addition to launching Staging Change, we are also introducing an accompanying Associate Facilitator Program. Led by EmcArts' process facilitation team, this program will engage Toronto's facilitators to build a robust community of practitioners. Focused on a facilitation toolbox for complexity and adaptive change, this will be an opportunity to both enhance facilitative skills and actively observe other program components of Staging Change. Participating also confirms eligibility to be hired as a lead facilitator in the Incubating Innovation process.  

Metcalf is extremely pleased to be working alongside EmcArts to support and incent bold new ideas that will have long-lasting impact on our grantees. Art making and connecting it to the public in meaningful ways in the 21st Century requires a new set of capacities that will push the status quo and re-invigorate our visions. Staging Change will do just that.

Michael Trent, Performing Arts Director, Metcalf Foundation
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Program Components

  • A series of six linked half-day workshops with leadership teams from up to 15 performing arts organizations
  • On-site Coaching for up to 10 organizations, accompanied by $5,000 experimentation grants
  • Incubating Innovation: A year-long "deep dive" process for up to 5 organizations to incubate a specific, larger-scale innovation initiative, supported by $25,000 prototyping grants
  • Training for local facilitators with the opportunity to work as a lead facilitator in the Incubating Innovation process
Application Process

Please click here to view the full application guidelines. Key dates are listed below:

March 7, 2018: Associate Facilitator Prospectus released
April 23, 2018, 1–4pm: Public information session
June 11, 2018, 2pm: Application deadline (Stage 1 only)
June 27, 2018: Notification of participation

Applicants to Staging Change must:

- be professional theatre, dance, music, or opera organizations (including companies, festivals, professional training institutions and service organizations);
- maintain a professional staff (organizations of all sizes are encouraged to apply; the minimum required staff capacity is 1 FTE);
- be based in the City of Toronto (organizations who are located in the GTA may be considered if they have a signifcant presence in the City of Toronto);
- have a minimum of three years’ of organizational/production history;
- have a current, valid charitable registration from the Canada Revenue Agency;
- not be current grantees in CrSI 2015, 2016, or 2017.

We encourage equity-seeking organizations to consider this opportunity.
ABOUT THE METCALF FOUNDATION
The mission of The George Cedric Metcalf Charitable Foundation is to enhance the effectiveness of people and organizations working together to help Canadians imagine and build a just, healthy, and creative society. The foundation creates meaningful change by leveraging opportunities for new approaches and shared learning in the performing arts; building a low-carbon, resource efficient, and resilient Canada; and improving economic livelihoods for low-income people in Toronto.