The Centre for All Canadians

Confederation Centre Announces Date for 2019 Symons Medal Ceremony

Annual medal ceremony and lecture on the state of Canadian Confederation returns this fall

Confederation Centre of the Arts announced today that the 2019 Symons Medal will be awarded on Friday, November 1 in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island.

The Symons Medal is one of Canada’s most prestigious honours, recognizing an individual who has made an exceptional contribution to Canadian life. Held each fall, the medal ceremony and its associated lecture create a national platform for a prominent Canadian to discuss the nation’s current state and future prospects.

The award is presented at Confederation Centre of the Arts—Canada’s living monument to Canadian Confederation—in honour of the meetings of the Fathers of Confederation, who first gathered at Province House in the fall of 1864.

The Centre also announced today that the 2019 recipient of the Symons Medal will be revealed on Tuesday, May 7. The Symons Medal Ceremony also includes an hour long address in which the medalist reflects upon the current state of Canadian Confederation using themes related to their professional pursuits.

Photo: Historian Margaret MacMillan (2018 Medallist). Photo courtesy of Terrence McEachern/The Guardian).

Since 2004, the Centre has honoured 18 distinguished Symons Medalists. These include: the Prime Minister of Canada, the Right Honourable Justin Trudeau; His Royal Highness Prince Charles, Prince of Wales; historian Margaret MacMillan; human rights activist Stephen Lewis; the Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin, P.C., former Chief Justice of Canada; and the former President of the national Inuit organization, Mary Simon.

The 2019 Ceremony will take place in the Homburg Theatre and will also be live-streamed on the Centre’s YouTube channel. Tickets for this important ceremony will be available via the Box Office at a later date. Stay tuned for further event updates on social media: @confedcentre and via hashtag, #Symons2019.

In related matters, the annual Symons Medal Student Essay Contest for the 2018-19 school year is still active, with prizes totalling $2,000. Organizers are accepting submissions until April 30, 2019 and the top three award recipients will be recognized during the 2019 Symons Medal Ceremony. For complete details, visit Confederation Centre’s website.

About the Symons Medal Ceremony and Lecture:         
The Symons Medal and Lecture Series is named in honour of Professor Thomas H.B. Symons, a long-time supporter of Confederation Centre of the Arts and 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.

Previous Symons Medalists: (chronological order, from most recent):

The Right Honourable Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (2017 Medallist).
  • Historian Margaret MacMillan;
  • The Right Honourable Prime Minister Justin Trudeau;
  • Novelist Antonine Maillet;
  • Actor/director Paul Gross;
  • His Royal Highness Prince Charles, Prince of Wales;
  • Human rights activist Stephen Lewis;
  • Former Prime Minister Paul Martin;
  • Environmentalist David Suzuki;
  • Canada’s Chief Statistician Emeritus, Ivan P. Fellegi;
  • Former Governor General David Johnston;
  • Former President of the national Inuit organization, Mary Simon;
  • The Right Hon. Beverley McLachlin, P.C., former Chief Justice of Canada;
  • Ian E. Wilson, Librarian and Archivist of Canada;
  • The Hon. John Crosby, former Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland and Labrador;
  • The Hon. Peter Lougheed, former premier of Alberta;
  • Mark Starowicz, broadcaster and journalist;
  • The Hon. R. Roy Murray, former Chief Justice of Ontario; and,
  • The Hon. Jean Charest, former premier of Quebec.

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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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