Banks Prize

Dillan Chiblow, Banks Prize Winner 2020-21. Photo by Dahlia Katz
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The Syd & Shirley Banks Prize

This annual opportunity is open to musical theatre artists under 30 years of age who are under-exposed in Toronto and its surrounding areas. The Syd & Shirley Banks Prize for Emerging Musical Theatre Artists generously provides two musical theatre artists the opportunity to advance their careers through financial assistance, mentorship, and increased exposure.

For all Banks Prize-related questions please contact Artistic Director Ray Hogg at rayhogg@musicalstagecompany.com.

Submissions for the 2021-22 Syd & Shirley Banks Prize for Emerging Musical Theatre Artists are now closed.

Sponsors

Leading Lights
The Banks Family

The Syd & Shirley Banks Prize

This annual opportunity is open to musical theatre artists under 30 years of age who are under-exposed in Toronto and its surrounding areas. The Syd & Shirley Banks Prize for Emerging Musical Theatre Artists generously provides two musical theatre artists the opportunity to advance their careers through financial assistance, mentorship, and increased exposure.

For all Banks Prize-related questions please contact Artistic Director Ray Hogg at rayhogg@musicalstagecompany.com.

Submissions for the 2021-22 Syd & Shirley Banks Prize for Emerging Musical Theatre Artists are now closed.

The Prize

Two emerging artists are awarded the prize through an annual open audition process, each winner receives:

1. A $1,200 cash prize.
2. A cabaret created by and starring both winners.
3. An opportunity to perform alongside leading professional artists as a part of The Musical Stage Company’s season.
4. Mentorship with industry experts throughout the 2021-22 season.

For all Banks Prize-related questions please contact Artistic Director Ray Hogg at rayhogg@musicalstagecompany.com.

Who is Eligible?

All musical theatre artists are eligible if they meet the following criteria:

  • They are under 30 years of age
  • They reside in Ontario
  • They are under-exposed in theatre in Toronto & GTA

This opportunity is open to both Equity members and non-members who are emerging musical theatre artists under 30 years of age, and who are under-exposed in Toronto and its surrounding areas.  The two artists selected for this prize will be contracted under the Independent Theatre Agreement.

We are actively seeking submissions from actors of all backgrounds, abilities, and ethnicities as we are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion within this selection process.  We especially encourage folks who identify as Black, Indigenous, People of Colour, LGBTQ2S+, d/Deaf, Mad, Disabled/People with Disabilities, and/or Neurodiverse to submit.

For all Banks Prize-related questions please contact Artistic Director Ray Hogg at rayhogg@musicalstagecompany.com.

Submissions

Submissions for the 2021-22 Syd & Shirley Banks Prize for Emerging Musical Theatre Artists are now closed.

We are actively seeking submissions from actors of all backgrounds, abilities, and ethnicities as we are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion within this selection process.  We especially encourage folx who identify as Black, Indigenous, People of Colour, LGBTQ2S+, d/Deaf, Mad, Disabled/People with Disabilities, and/or Neurodiverse to submit.

Please submit one pdf file which contains your: 

  • updated headshot
  • updated resume, and
  • your one-page (max) cover letter which outlines your views on the role of musical theatre in the performance art landscape, how you would use this prize to support your career aspirations, and why you are the best candidate for this prize. We hope to learn about you and your unique artistry from your letter. Specifics about you and your art/practice are more helpful to us than generalized statements about a love of theatre.

Please ensure that your submission package is received no later than June 4th, 2021 at submissions@musicalstagecompany.com with the subject line “BANKS PRIZE SUBMISSION.”

NOTE – Successful candidates will be asked to prepare two contrasting songs for an audition video. Callbacks will take place digitally. Artists invited to callbacks should be prepared to perform live.

The Musical Stage Company prioritizes adaptability and a human-centric work environment.  If you require an accommodation to make your submission please contact submissions@musicalstagecompany.com to discuss your access needs.

 

The 2021-22 Banks Prize Winners

 

Rosie Callaghan, a white woman with red shoulder-length hair, looks at the camera with a small smile. She wears a green turtleneck.ROSIE CALLAGHAN (she/her)

Rosie Callaghan is an award-winning performer originally hailing from Tiohtià:ke (Montreal, Quebec). She is a proud graduate of both Dawson College’s Professional Theatre program and Randolph College for the Performing Arts. Since graduating, she has been part of the development of many new theatre pieces, including THE HOCKEY SWEATER (Segal Centre), FRANKENSTEIN (Kidoons/Geordie), THE CAPTAIN AURORA SAGA (Kaleidoscope/Montreal Fringe), and several pieces for Playwright’s Workshop Montreal.

Selected Credits include: LAST NIGHT AT THE GAYETY (Centaur Theatre), IT SHOULDA BEEN YOU (Segal Centre/DWYT), OMEN: THE MUSICAL (Creation Coffin/Toronto Fringe), SPRING AWAKENING (Persephone Productions), HEATHERS: THE MUSICAL (We Are Here Prod.), TICK TICK … BOOM! (Rentrobuff), and HAIR (In The Wings). She was also selected as a participant in Eclipse Theatre Company’s inaugural Emerging Artists Showcase. Most recently, she spent the summer in Mi’kma’ki (Antigonish, Nova Scotia), working with Festival Antigonish on their immersive show, ROBIN HOOD: THE GREAT ESCAPE. Rosie is extremely passionate about immersive and site-specific theatre and hopes to be able to continue to create theatre pieces in those genres.

 

 

Matthew Joseph (he/they), a black non-binary artist with dark brown eyes and a fade, delivers a warm but subtle smirk to the camera. He is wearing a white crew neck shirt and standing against an eggshell white background.MATTHEW JOSEPH (he/they)

Matthew “Nova” Joseph, is a non-binary singer/songwriter, actor, mover, and recording artist with Haitian roots and life experience across Turtle Island. They also hold citizenship between the US and Canada. They are incredibly passionate about using storytelling as a vehicle for authentic expression, connection, and healing, and are specifically focused on deconstructing the conventional parameters of ‘Manhood’. They are also a neurodiverse artist and welcome further specific questioning for those that they come in contact with.

Matthew attended Sheridan College for the Honours Bachelor of Music Theatre from 2017 – 2021. While he was pursuing his degree, he was part of the Charlottetown Festival’s, Young Company (2018 & 2019). There he made lifelong friendships, learned valuable industry lessons and became invested in bolstering and supporting the voices of indigenous creators. In 2019 Matthew and two friends formed the singing trio ‘CZN’. They have since released 12 singles and a 4 song EP on all major platforms, and recently appeared on America’s Got Talent, getting all 4 yes’ from the judges. CZN was also the winner of the 2020 Canadian Families Got Talent competition, where they were hand-picked out of thousands of submissions across Canada, by Simon Cowell.

In their free time, Matthew loves learning new skills (like the guitar), lifting up unheard voices, writing music and playing video games like League of Legends! They hope that by living a fully authentic life and creating exciting art that others will be inspired to do the same, and they are committed to providing that space for others whenever possible! Currently they are performing in two shows at StageWest Calgary, FEELIN’ GROOVY – THE BEST OF FOLK ROCK & CANADIAN SUPERSTARS – FROM THE NINETIES TO NOW.

Past Recipients

2020-21: Dillan Chiblow & Germaine Konji

2019-20: Eva Foote & Kale Penny

2018-19: Brandon Antonio & Michelle Bouey

2017-18: George Krissa & Celine Tsai

2016-17: Jahlen Barnes & Arinea Hermans

2015-16: Brittany Banks and Colin Simmons

2014-15: Alessia Lupiano and Graham Scott Fleming

2013-14: Dana Jean Phoenix and Jordan Till

2012-13: Alexis Gordon and Ana Ceréna Sierra