Funding boost for Ontario Arts Council

The Government of Ontario has announced an increase in funding for the Ontario Arts Council (OAC). It will receive an additional CAD50m (€33.6m) over the next four years, with OAC receiving CAD80m annually by 2020-21.

New funds will go towards arts programmes and activities across arts education, community arts, dance, literature, media arts, music, theatre and visual arts. Support will also be increased for Indigenous and Francophone arts.

Projects to receive additional funding include Hot Docs International Documentary Festival in Toronto; The School of Dance in Ottawa; the Tony Award-winning musical Come from Away; Near North Mobile Media Lab; and A Tribe Called Red’s Rez Tour, which showcases Indigenous music.

Observed Ontario premier Kathleen Wayne: “Throughout my life, I have always believed in the transformative power of the arts — to change people’s lives, connect communities and challenge us to think in new ways and explore new ideas. When we invest in the OAC, we are investing in much more than our thriving arts sector. We are investing in our young people, our communities, and our capacity to build a more creative, more inclusive, more innovative society.”

Ontario’s culture sector currently employs 280,000 people and generates CAD25bn in revenue. In 2016–17, OAC funded 1,657 individual artists and 1,098 organizations across Ontario.