ELAN History (2004-2015)

2015 – Lundi Pluriel panel on cultural diversity and networking event held in partnership with MAI (Montréal, arts interculturels), Diversité Artistique Montréal (DAM) and Culture Montréal. Second Getting Media Attention workshop held with CBC Montreal. Canada Council Visual Arts Market Access Project brings three gallerists to Montreal in February with studio visits, panel discussion, and 5-à-7. Grantwriting workshops featuring ELAN members held in partnership with YES Montreal. Collaboration with DAM to edit an issue of the revue TicArtToc on linguistic and cultural diversity in Montreal arts. Canada Council-funded Cultivate project sees development and delivery of grantwriting workshops to spread Montreal artists’ expertise. Arts Alive! Québec project launched at the Rialto Theatre in Montréal, receives coverage in La Presse, CBC, Gazette and others. Workshop and information session held with RIDEAU (arts presenters’ network). Six community cultural/artistic weekends held in Hudson, Québec, West Island, Knowlton, Huntingdon, and Wakefield. Schmoozers held with Montreal Fringe/QDF (June) and QWF (October).

2014 – Getting Media Attention workshop held with CBC Montreal. Crowdfunding and the Arts panel discussion held in collaboration with Studio XX. PCH-funded YEAH! (Youth, Education, Arts, and Health) project connects English-speaking communities to professionals using the arts to work with youth on health & education issues. Re-launch of ASK (Arts Services Kit). Core funding from PCH stabilized and increased for 2014-16. Canada Council-funded Digital Shift project explores solutions for arts coverage and event listings in the changing media landscape. 10th Anniversary Celebrations include joint Schmoozers with QWF, Fringe, Montreal Film Group and McGill Schulich School of Music/CaPS, and a 10th Anniversary Celebration/AGM at Eastern Bloc. Regional Schmoozers in Laurentians and Outaouais (Chelsea). Membership drive conducted. Modest fee increase for all groups except students (free). Targeted outreach to student groups at McGill and Concordia.

2013 – Launch of Made au Québec aggregation website received record amount of coverage from francophone media, completion of 2014-2019 Strategic Plan, community TV project developed in collaboration with Vidéotron and two public meetings held, Representations made to CRTC re CBC licence renewal and Bell's application for English-language video-on-demand service in Quebec, re-election for a two-year mandate to board of Culture Montréal, meetings with several government departments to improve ELAN's funding situation, on-going tours stimulated by ACCORD site, collaboration with CEDEC and Riverside School Board on ArtWorks careers day, collaboration with Ministries of Culture and Education for a Culture in the Schools information session.

2012 – ACCORD (Arts and Community Culture On The Road) phase II, four workshops for 12 regional associations, launch of website, organization of touring events; Schmoozers in Montreal, Wakefield, Quebec City, Townships and Laurentians, receive funding for a linguistic duality project to promote English-language artists to francophone community, assist Quebec Anglophone Heritage Network to solicit documentary proposals and select jurors, assisted Quebec Community Groups Network to promote and adjudicate my Quebec Roots Video Contest. The Community Broadcast and Media Strategy meeting brought together community partners to forge alliances, leveraging opportunities and resources. Representations to CRTC, the Parliamentary and Senate Standing Committees on Official Languages. Participation in Montréal, Métropole Culturelle Forum.

2011 – Second phase of State of the Arts: Artists Summit in September; panel discussions on the place for English-language culture in Quebec; Socalled Musical; launch of Minority Report: An Alternative History of English-Language Arts in Quebec. Workshops funded by Conseil des Arts de Montreal: writing with Dimitri Nasrallah and Julie Barlow; visual arts with Nadia Myre and Max Wyse; theatre with Johana Nutter and Paul Van Dyck; music with Paul Cargnello and Katie Moore. Portfolio Days workshops for visual artists (two days). Created Community Broadcast Working Group. Facebook employed as a tool for aggregating and redistributing arts community news. ACCORD (Arts and Community Culture On The Road) phase I: making connections with artists and regional associations. Second meeting of Interdepartmental Working Group in Arts and Culture with the department of Canada Heritage, Canada Council, Telefilm, NFB, National Arts Centre, CBC and Industry Canada. Schmoozers in Montreal, Townships and West Quebec. ELAN elected to sit on board of Culture Montréal. Three representations for CRTC concerning licence renewals and broadcast policy.

2010 – First phase of State of the Arts, recruiting partners for showcases; preparing of content and format for Artists Summit. Professional Development Panel Discussions for visual artists at Articule; dancers and choreographers at Studio 303; and filmmakers at the Segal Centre's Cinemaspace (see transcripts and audio recordings in website archives). Second half of Residency Exchange Program took Townships artist to Montreal. Article on arts and culture written for the Association of Canadian Studies (see Quebec’s English-speaking Artists: Reinventing a Cultural Landscape in website document archives). First schmoozer in Gatineau region at Wakefield. Working relationship established with Deux Montagnes arts community. Mentorship program created for emerging artists in all disciplines. Language Exchange Program created to partner English-speaking and French-speaking artists to increase language skills. Second phase of Recognizing Artists: Enfin Visibles! created video profiles of artists. Website completely rebuilt. Created Interdepartmental Working Group in Arts and Culture with the department of Canada Heritage, Canada Council, Telefilm and NFB.

2009 – First half of Residency Exchange Program took Montreal artist to the Townships. First Professional Development panel served musicians. Partnered with YES Montreal for artists conference and mega Schmoozer. Began making regular representations to the CRTC and other broadcasting regulators/funders (see briefs in document archives.) Collaborated with the Quebec Community Groups Network to draft a policy framework for community development. (See Policy Framework in website document archives). Five year strategic plan drafted (see 2009-2014 strategic plan in website document archives). Offices moved to 460 Ste-Catherine West.

2008 – Music and Dance communities surveyed for needs and priorities (see MAAP II report in website document archives). ELAN began chairing arts and culture table of the Greater Montreal Community Development Initiative. First regional Schmoozer in Townships. Board members organized Art Storm - multi-disciplinary performance evening. Advisory Board created. Wrote article on arts and culture for the Canadian Institute on Linguistic Minorities (s­ee The Artistic and Cultural Vitality of English-speaking Quebec in website document archives). Collaborated with Office of Commissioner of Official Languages on culture report (see Federal Government Support for the Arts and Culture in Official Language Minority Communities in website document archives). Membership fees introduced for professionals.

2007 – First Schmoozer organized for Valentine's Day, becomes monthly networking event. Arts Services Kit (ASK) completed and incorporated into website. Strategic Plan produced (see 2007 strategic plan in website document archives) Canada Council Grant Writing Workshop attended by 100. (see Workshop Notes in website document archives)

2006 – Visual Arts community surveyed for needs and priorities (See MAAP I report in document archives). Website expanded with funding from Canadian Content Online: Artist's Showcase, Events Calendar. First issue of ELANews. Moved offices to Lachine Canal Complex.

2005 – ELAN incorporated (April), received funding from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Department of Canadian Heritage, created small website. Offices located in the Atwater Library with the Quebec Writers' Federation.

2004 – Quebec Arts Summit (November 25-27) launched a process of creating a multi-disciplinary network for Quebec's English-speaking artists.



In 2000, the Department of Canadian Heritage (PCH) advised the Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN) that they were negotiating a matching grant agreement with Canada Council to increase support for minority language communities. PCH asked QCGN if English-speaking artists would be interested in negotiating a similar agreement.

In May 2001, several dozen representatives of the English-speaking artistic community were invited to a meeting at the McCord Museum. The problem for English-speakers in Quebec is not language retention but population retention. During the preceding three decades, hundreds of thousands of English-speakers chose to move away from Quebec in a steady exodus that left the community enfeebled, fragmented and vulnerable. The challenge in Quebec was to build a sustainable community so that artists and cultural workers could stay in Quebec rather than leave. A consensus was reached that, in some areas at least, English-speaking artists are a minority in need of assistance.

In October 2001, a draft agreement (Memorandum of Understanding) for an initial three years of support was signed by PCH and Canada Council. The resulting IPOLC program distributed a considerable amount of extra money to English-speaking artists via regular Canada Council programs. Six volunteers were appointed to a committee to negotiate with Canadian Heritage and Canada Council. During their regular meetings, the idea of an English Language Arts Network began to emerge.

On November 25-27, 2004, the Quebec Arts Summit, held in Montreal, assembled more than 200 artists, government officials and community partners. It was the first time that representatives of the entire English-speaking arts community had been brought together. They concluded that the creation of an English Language Arts Network could help create conditions to empower English-speaking artists to live and work in Quebec.