Why mix together theatre and music and visual art? And why the name, “Cultivate”?

You might have already picked it up, but we love growing things.

If you wandered down to the Commons, you’re going to see a lot of growing things – gardens, right in the heart of the festival grounds.

In those gardens there’s fruit trees, veggies, flowers. Things grow in the ground and in the air. There’s all sorts of people growing things for all sorts of reasons.

So just like in a garden, we’re bringing together all different kinds of art.

We’re watering and tending artists and performances that express our humanness in unique ways.

The harvest is laughter, dance, tears, imagination, wonder, and connection.

What a feast!

Do you love growing things, too? Then you know:

1. Diversity keeps things fresh and alive.

One of our greatest memories of Cultivate18 was our three family shows.

The first day, gaggles of wonder-eyed kiddies and parents watched magician Leif David. The second, they grooved to the Kerplunks’ on the Main Stage. The third, they giggled and laughed at Birdmann and Egg’s surreal performance.

This year’s lineup is just as unique and diverse. And we’re appealing to all generations.

Come on out and try something new this year. Get cross-pollinated. You’re going to leave feeling inspired, relaxed, creative.

2. Nothing grows on its own. Life is interdependent.

Plants depend on each other to thrive. Some plants only grow in the shade of others. Some plants help the soil become rich for other plants.

Just like plants are fed by other plants, art is fed by other art.

Art is about allowing in new energy. Music, theatre, and all kinds of performance feed on each other.

At Cultivate, we look for artists who are constantly drawing from different sources.

We want you to come and feel art planted in your life too.

Why not cultivate your own creativity at the festival? Bring your crayons, juggling balls, or guitar. Make or create something while you enjoy the fest. Let your creative side out.

3. Location changes everything.

What you can grow depends on the ground beneath your feet, the environment where you are.

For 9 years, we had a successful Theatre Festival, that grew and flourished in the parking lot of Folklife Village. In 2017, Folklife Village changed hands.  The new owners respectfully asked the Arts Council to consider other locations for our theatre festival.

That same year, we hosted our first Music Festival, at Twin Beaches Mall, in answer to a long-standing community desire for an annual music festival. We saw the glowing faces, dancing round the stage, and we knew we had to keep a music fest going

When we proposed hosting a new festival at the Commons that would combine these two events, many thought we were crazy! (and probably still do).

But we knew that moving to the Commons changed everything. So we grafted our festivals, planted some new seeds.

There’s a special feeling at Cultivate, of art and performance rooted in a place so abundant with natural beauty and magic.

Just like a garden, Cultivate is meant to feed your body and soul. We’d be honoured if you came and helped us grow this festival.