The New Incubator Project 2020

The Incubator Project has come a long way. It began as a one-year development process that culminated in a SPARK Festival presentation. It was then reconfigured as a two-year development process, leading to a production during SPARK. Eventually the goal of the Incubator was adjusted, placing creative exploration at the heart of the program. Artists were encouraged to embrace the possibility of failure, as the pressure to create a SPARK-ready production was eliminated. At this point, we also began accepting three companies or individual artists, as opposed to one, and the group of participants became a feature of the project: meeting together, sharing ideas, supporting one another. 

The New Incubator Project 2020 is spreading the net even wider, in order to encourage and nurture as many of our exciting local theatre artists as possible. As the demography of this region becomes more varied, we strive to ensure that the New Incubator Project 2020 is increasingly inclusive and diverse. With nine new projects in development, it is a larger and more diverse Incubator than ever before; five projects come to us from independent theatre companies, and four are from individual artists. 

Participation in the New Incubator Project promises the use of either the Belfry’s BMO Studio Theatre or Studio B as a workshop and rehearsal space; mentorship from Artistic Director Michael Shamata and Taiwo Afolabi, the Belfry’s Artistic and Community Liaison, as well as administrative mentoring from Executive Director Ivan Habel and other members of the Belfry staff; use of the Belfry Tower as a writing studio; and participation in the Belfry’s newly formed Creators’ Circle, facilitated by Governor General’s Award-winning playwright Kevin Kerr.

Next season, we hope to feature the Belfry’s first “mini SPARK festival”— a week-long festival of works-in-development—which will throw a spotlight on the creative projects being developed by the participants of the New Incubator Project and the Creators’ Circle. 

Applying for The New Incubator Project 2021 


Priority will be given to applicants from diverse communities, applicants wanting to challenge their traditional artistic practice, and projects that provide participants with opportunities to explore new creative territory. 

  1. Please submit an outline of your project or idea. 

 Please explain why you are drawn to this project, what form you have chosen for its realization—and why. 

  1. Please limit your outline to two pages—including a short biography. 
  1. Please articulate clearly how you envision making use of the resources offered, and what kind of mentorship you most desire. 
  1. An interview will be scheduled in order to discuss your proposed project in detail. 



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