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2015 Symons Lecture by Paul Gross

Confederation Centre of the Arts, Canada’s national memorial to the founding of the country, is pleased to announce the awarding of the esteemed Symons Medal to Canadian actor, writer, director, and champion for the arts, Mr. Paul Gross.

Watch 2015 Symons Lecture

Gross will appear in Charlottetown for the Symons Medal Ceremony and Lecture on Monday, November 9 at 12:30 p.m. in the Homburg Theatre. The lecture is a national platform for an eminent Canadian to discuss the current state and future prospects of Confederation. Held each fall to mark the 1864 meetings of the Fathers of Confederation, this dialogue provides Canadians an opportunity to reflect upon their country and its future.

Gross is one of Canada’s most celebrated actors, known internationally for his role on the multi award-winning television drama due South. For this series, he was honoured with two Gemini Awards for Best Actor, and one for his writing on the final season. He also received two Gemini Awards for the critically acclaimed series Slings & Arrows and in 2008 released his own feature film, Passchendaele, a movie based on the famous Battle of Ypres in Belgium during the First World War. Gross wrote and directed the screenplay and starred as a character based on his own Grandfather. In addition to opening TIFF in 2008, Passchendaele was the highest grossing Canadian film of the year and won five Genie Awards, including Best Picture.

Gross’ many acting credits also include major roles at Stratford and on Broadway as well as starring in TV movies such as Murder Most Likely, Prairie Giant: The Tommy Douglas Story, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Tales of the City, and Chasing Rainbows. Gross also performed in the Oscar-winning film Barney’s Version, as well as feature films Aspen Extreme, Cold Comfort, Paint Cans, and Whale Music. He was recently appointed to the Order of Canada, was selected for the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award and the Pierre Berton Award, and was a recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television.

Tickets for this exceptional lecture will be available from the Confederation Centre Box Office on October 13, 10 a.m. There is no cost to attend but a printed ticket is required for admission.

Past recipients of the Symons Medal include His Royal Highness Prince Charles, Prince of Wales; His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston; Dr. David Suzuki; and Mary Simon, President of the national Inuit organization Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, 2009.

The Symons Medal and Lecture honours Professor Thomas H.B. Symons, a supporter of Confederation Centre for many years and also a Board Governor. Professor Symons, the founding President of Trent University, is widely recognized for his work in the field of Canadian Studies, particularly within public policy, heritage, and education.

Photo Cutline: Celebrated Canadian artist Paul Gross will receive the Confederation Centre of the Arts’ Symons Medal on November 9, 2015 in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island (submitted photo). Previous Symons Medal recipients:
• Mr. Stephen Lewis, Human Rights Activist, 2014;
• His Royal Highness Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, on occasion of the Royal Visit, marking Confederation Centre’s 50th anniversary, 2014;
• The Right Honourable Paul Martin, Canada’s 21st Prime Minister, 2013;
• Dr. David Suzuki, Canadian Scientist, Broadcaster, and Author, 2012;
• Dr. Ivan P. Fellegi, Canada’s Chief Statistician Emeritus, 2011;
• His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, 2010;
• Mary Simon, President of the national Inuit organization Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, 2009;
• The Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin, P.C., Chief Justice of Canada, 2008;
• Dr. Ian E. Wilson, Librarian and Archivist of Canada, 2008;
• The Honourable Peter Lougheed, Former Premier of Alberta and The Honourable John Crosbie, P.C., Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland and Labrador, 2007;
• Mark Starowicz, journalist and broadcaster, 2006;
• The Honourable R. Roy McMurtry, Chief Justice of Ontario, 2005;
• The Honourable Jean Charest, Premier of Quebec, 2004.

Media contact:
Fraser McCallum, Communications Manager, Confederation Centre of the Arts
T: 902.628.6135 (office) E: [email protected]
facebook.com/confederationcentre | Twitter/Instagram: @confedcentre
For more Centre news: confederationcentre.com/en/news.php

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Sometimes referred to as sensory-friendly experiences, Relaxed Performances give the opportunity for those with various sensitivities towards sensory stimuli to experience and enjoy live theatre.

These performances will be designed in a way to be more comfortable for audience members who may experience anxiety or are not comfortable with some aspects of a traditional theatre setting. This can include people on the Autism Spectrum and their families; those with sensory and communicative disorders or learning disabilities; people with Tourette’s syndrome; someone who might need to move often due to chronic pain or to use the facilities; or even parents with toddlers.



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