Celebrating the Professional Theatre in Edmonton

Top right: 2014 Sterling Gala hosts Beth Graham and Andrew MacDonald-Smith

Top to bottom above: Thomas Peacocke gives Patricia Casey her Sterling for Outstanding Contribution to Theatre in Edmonton, 2008

Elizabeth Sterling Haynes

2015 hosts; Edmonton’s own first lady Sarah Chan and favourite leading man John Ullyatt

Leah Paterson, Amber Bissonnette and Jason Hardwick perform Tap Your Troubles Away from musical nominee Mack and Mabel at the 2014 Sterling Gala.

PricewaterhouseCoopers & the 2016 Sterling Committee are proud to present the 29th Annual Elizabeth Sterling Haynes Awards, celebrating the professional theatre in Edmonton.The Sterling Awards were created in 1987 to enhance the profile of live professional theatre and bring about a greater awareness of the performing arts in this remarkably dynamic city. Elizabeth Sterling Haynes, or Mrs. Haynes as she was known to her many students, was a pioneer in the development of theatre and theatre education in Alberta, and is the perfect example of the dedication and achievement we seek to celebrate.

  1. The 29th Annual Elizabeth Sterling Haynes Awards will take place at The Mayfield Dinner Thea- tre, 16615 - 109 Avenue on Monday June 27th beginning at 4:30pm for cocktails with dinner at 5:00pm and show promptly at 6:30pm.After the show we will celebrate with dancing and regaling in the Mayfield Ballrooms, where DJ Chris Bullough will be spinning the tunes!

  1. The show will be written by Ellen Chorley, and directed by Kate Ryan and Belinda Cornish. Ariel Spanier will be production manager.

  1. This year’s Sterling Hosts will be putting together a sensational evening with our creative team: we’re delighted to announce that this years gala will be hosted by one of the stars of Thou Art Here’s “The Complete Works of Shakespeare: Abridged” who is about to step into some fierce lady shoes in Freewill’s production of Love’s Labours Lost, accompanied by the Carmen Miranda of the Mayfield Theatre’s “The Last Resort” - Mary Hulbert and Garett Ross!

  1. Tickets are $65+GST, include full buffet, a spectacular show & dance, and are available by calling the Mayfield Dinner Theatre box office (780-483-4051) starting Tuesday June 7th.

• Questions? Interviews? Need more info? E-mail us at or call Judy Unwin at 780-484-6003.

Outstanding Contribution to Theatre in Edmonton


The award for Outstanding Contribution to theatre in Edmonton is the greatest honour that we can bestow, and this year’s recipient is an institution which has provided support, education and in- spiration to our province’s remarkable pool of young talent for more than 55 years - Artstrek.

Founded in 1960, what was then the Olds Drama Seminar, a one week program with 43 participants, was the first official

provincially-run summer drama school to continue hence.This tiny, fierce endeavour grew exponentially into the program we know today, and, in 1997, moved to the state of the art performing arts facilities at Red Deer College, where more than 300 teens now congregate every summer to explore the exciting world of theatre and stagecraft.

Theatre Alberta’s Artstrek offers young performers the opportunity to work with a team of leading theatre educators and working professionals from across the province, to create alongside other young artists, and discover the tools theatre professionals use to shape stories on stage. Acting, voice, movement, directing, design, sound/music, crea- tion, and collaboration are all part of a mix that includes stage time along with studio instruction.Though the program centres around a single play each year - be it a musical, classical or contemporary drama, or a new Canadian play - Artstrek’s focus has long been on the learning, exploration, and process of theatre – not simply the rehearsal of lines and blocking of scenes.This enables Artstrek to provide a community setting which promotes the development of not only of theatre skills, but also competencies including problem solving, leadership, negotiation, awareness, self-esteem, respect for others, and evaluation of choices.

Artstrek’s legacy is demonstrable through the impact of its alumni on the wider theatre community. Just some of the luminaries who call Artstrek their alma mater are Marianne Copithorne,Jeff Haslam,Jonathan Christenson,Albert Schultz, LarryYachimec, Stephanie Wolfe, Ron Pederson, Chris Bullough, Stewart Lemoine,Trevor Schmidt, Mieko Ouchi, Cathleen Rootsaert, Luc Tellier, Mat Hulshof, Geoffrey Brumlik, Greg Dowler-Coltman and Laurie Blakeman. Many many more Artstrek students go on to become ardent thea- tre patrons and supporters.

Theatre Alberta’s Artstrek has, for fifty years, provided both a lush well-spring of talent and theatrical verve, and the underpinnings of the strong, supportive and vivacious crea- tive community of which we are lucky to be a part.

The 2016 Elizabeth Sterling Haynes Awards committee is delighted to honour Artstrek.

The Margaret Mooney Award for Outstanding Achievement in Administration

Marian Brant

The Margaret Mooney Award for Outstanding Achievement in Administration honours an administra- tor who has most embodied the hard work and excel- lence the professional theatre demands.

Marian’s professional career spans over 4 decades. She has worked as a stage manager, production manager, general manager and technician. In 1999, she joined the Theatre Production faculty at MacEwan University. Her extensive stage-management credits include small and large-scale productions for companies such as the Catalyst Theatre, Citadel Theatre, Concrete Theatre, Edmonton Opera, Green Thumb Theatre (Vancou- ver),The International Street Performers Festival,The Second City, University of Alberta - Timms Centre for

the Arts,Workshop West Theatre and the Mayfield Din- ner Theatre. National and international touring credits include The House of Pootsie

Plunket (Catalyst Theatre’s UK tour), All My Relation (Catalyst Theatre’s Western Cana- dian tour), No’Xya - Our Footprints (Vancouver’s Headlines Theatre Canadian tour) and the Second City Expo ‘86 (Western Canada tour). Her production management credits include working with the Sunshine Theatre (Kelowna), River City Shakespeare Festival (Edmonton) and the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra. From 2001 to 2007, she adminis- tered Edmonton’s award-winning Theatre for Young Audiences Company, Concrete Thea- tre. She has served on the Board of Directors of Catalyst Theatre, L’UniThéâtre, Per- forming Arts Coalition of Edmonton (PACE) and PAL-Edmonton. She has also partici- pated on committees for the Canada Council for the Arts and the Edmonton Arts Council. She is a member of Canadian Actors’ Equity Association and the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees. In 2013, she joined Workshop West Playwrights’ Theatre as General Manager, having already received the 2012 Sterling Award for Career Achievement in Production - making this extraordinarily generous, versatile woman the first person to be the recipient of both the Ross Hill Award and the Margaret Mooney Award.

The Elizabeth Sterling Haynes Awards Committee is delighted to honour Marian Brant.

The Ross Hill Award for Outstanding Achievement in Production

Robert Montgomery

The Ross Hill Award for Outstanding Achievement in Production honours the experts behind the scenes for a body of work exemplifying a career of distinction and ac- complishment.This year’s recipient is a man whose sup- port of our industry, commitment to education and in- valuable expertise have been an inestimable boon to our community for many years: we are delighted to celebrate Robert Montgomery.

Robert was born into the production industry - his father, Monty, was head of lighting at Victoria School and started his company, Lighting by Monty, out of the family garage. Robert and his siblings were immersed in theatre life from childhood, as designers, technicians, musicians, all manner of theatre artists dropped by at all hours. It seemed fate that Rob would be drawn into the entertainment industry, and sure enough, at sixteen years old, he began working

as a stagehand at the Jubilee Auditorium, before going on to complete the Electrical pro- gram at NAIT. During Rob’s time with Lighting By Monty, he developed rich connections with venues big and small, expanding the company throughout Alberta, working with the Jube and the Coliseum, the Folk Festival and the Edmonton Fringe, with whom he has a 30 year relationship. Lighting by Monty, in fact, became so in demand that Rob found himself missing the design and integration work he loved; so, just a few years ago, he moved the company into the capable hands of a frequent associate, west coast company Allstar Show Industries, freeing himself to return to his passion.Two years ago, he re- turned to his alma mater, taking on the position of Head of Lighting at the Jubilee Audi- torium, where he lends his considerable skill in helping his team to realize stunning de- signs for incoming shows. He has also launched Lightspeed Productions, a consulting firm through which he lends his expertise to smaller theatres and cultural institutions throughout the province, and spends his precious free time traveling to gigs with musi- cian friends, lighting their shows as a hobby.

The 2016 Sterling Committee is thrilled to honour a true luminary of Edmonton theatre - Robert Montgomery.

2016 Sterling Committee

Kristi Hansen, Jason Hardwick, Mathew Hulshof, Judy Unwin, Ellen Chorley, Belinda Cornish

Show Committee 2016

Belinda Cornish, Kate Ryan, Pat Burden, Ellen Chorley, Mat Busby, Kristi Hansen,Ariel Spanier, Rachel Rudd

Our Sterling Sponsors

Without the following award sponsors we would not be able to put on the tremendous celebration of the theatre in our city that the Eliza- beth Sterling Haynes Awards has become:

Canadian Actors’ Equity Association
The Canadian Institute for Theatre Technology
Edmonton Arts Council
Players de novo
Theatre Alberta
The Nasty’s (a group of avid theatre goers and rabid Die-Nasty fans) Rapid Fire Theatre
The Mayfield Dinner Theatre
Dimensions Graphics
Monarch Exterior Centre
Exterior Pride
Loie Unwin & Drumawillan Management Inc
Mosaic Entertainment
Production World
de Villars Jones, Barristers & Solicitors, LLP
Victoria School for the Arts
PriceWaterhouse Coopers

The Sterling Awards were created in 1987 to celebrate outstanding professional theatre in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. They are named in honour of Elizabeth Sterling Haynes, director, actress, educator and architect of innumerable theatre programs and schools throughout the province. As renowned western playwright Gwen Pharis Ringwood wrote, Elizabeth was a force, a creative energy unleashed at a time when creativity was suspect and at a place where creativity was often ignored in the hope that it would go away....Her theatre exists in the people whose lives she touched.

We seek to honour the outstanding legacy of Mrs. Haynes every season here in one of Canada’s most vibrant theatre cities. Click around above, check out our updated archives in History, biographies of Mrs. Haynes. Margaret Mooney and Ross Hill as well as our Sterling guidelines and contacts.

Click Here for the 2015 Nominees and Recipients!


The 29th Annual Elizabeth Sterling Haynes Awards will take place Monday, June 27, 2016 at the Mayfield Dinner Theatre!

Click Here for the 2016 Nominees and Recipients!