ArtReach Toronto, in partnership with Manifesto, City of Toronto Cultural Services and Toronto Community Housing Corporation hosted a Youth Arts Pitch Contest on Tuesday, September 15, 2009, from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., at Whippersnapper Gallery – a Toronto-based youth art collective and hub for young talent.
This event provided young artists, aged 16-24, with the opportunity to pitch their artistic and entrepreneurial ideas to a live and interactive panel of judges including Canadian Idol’s Farley Flex, Nawa Simon (ArtReach Toronto Grant Review Team, Actress, Dancer), Rich Kidd (Rapper, Producer), Sora Olah (Host, SUN TV’s Street Eats), and Adrian McKenzie (Co-Publisher / Creative Director, Urbanology Magazine). The pitch contest is part of ArtReach Toronto’s commitment to innovation in providing young artists with resources and support to pursue their artistic goals. It is an opportunity to fund new and emerging arts forms such as fashion arts, while also supporting youth arts entrepreneurs who often find securing funding challenging.
Of the many applicants, eleven finalists were short-listed and invited to attend a workshop called “How To Make a Pitch”. At the pitch contest, hosts FAMOUS and Hustlegirl allotted five minutes to each group to deliver a pitch that would inspire and excite the panel of industry leaders. The groups were competing for three $5000 cash prizes in the following categories: “Individual Artists”; “Community Arts Groups” and “Youth Arts Entrepreneurs”.
In addition to compelling pitches, other entertainment included performances by DJ Dalia, an open mic session and an array of artistic, musical, dance, theatre, spoken word and literary arts performances. David Lawrence took home a pair of Raptors tickets for his incredible performance during the open mic and ArtReach Toronto Program Manager, Shahina Sayani, won the hearts of all attendees with a moving Bollywood dance performance.
The finalists were recognized for their creative and inspiring concepts and presentations. They include:
Individual Artist Category:
First: Memo (Spoken Word)
Second: The Real Sun
Third: Yiwei Hu, Redway, KG Makaglo
Youth Arts Entrepreneur Category:
First: N.I.S.E. (Fashion Clothing)
Second: Nicolas Denny
Third: Trisha Henson
Thanks go to all of our sponsors for supporting this initiative; Gully Klassics, Hightop, Royalz Clothing, WIT Solutions, Urbanology Magazine, Peter Franco Sneakers, Bene-Fete, The Tech Zone, C*Mango Design, Moog Audio, Stolen From Africa, Big-It-Up, Good Boy Clothing, Manifesto One City Series and Musebox.