2006 was the year of Creativity in Toronto as declared by Mayor Miller – and with that came the launch of the Live With Culture campaign which – in my opinion – was a lack-luster attempt to get Torontonians involved in the artistic fabric of the city. The only event that really sparked any interest was Nuit Blanche – and that was a resounding success!
2006 was also a busy year for the Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA). The arts service organziation which is “the voice of theatre, dance and opera in Toronto”, produces the Dora Mavor Moore Awards (the annual performing arts awards in Toronto), and owns and operates T.O.TIX (see post beneath), launched its own city-wide arts marketing campaign called Go Live Toronto.
This marketing campaign is a call to action for the citizens of Toronto and the tourists visiting the city to step outside the box and try something different be it an independent production at the Theatre Centre, a modern dance piece at the Toronto Dance Theatre, or listen to the beauty of Baroque opera with Opera Atelier. There are several calls to actions in the campaign to check out:
- goliveto.ca – the digital hub of the campaign, this website offers an online listing of upcoming shows in all genres and allows visitors to search by any field to find out what’s playing in the city (and there’s always something going on). It also links to T.O.TIX so you can purchase your tickets through the online box office.
- hipTIX – this is a great new initiative for all students! hipTIX allows any student in high school or post secondary (up to the age of 25) with a valid ID (ISIC too!) to purchase $5 tickets to select shows through T.O.TIX! This is a fantastic way for students to see some great shows. You can buy them in-person at T.O.TIX at Yonge-Dundas Square or online at totix.ca.
- 5 Star Experience – If you’re looking for a really neat experience, you have to check out these discount theatre packages! They are pretty amazing and incredibly well priced. The 5 Star Experience offers buyers these amazing packages:
- Barrel of Laughs: a beer tasting and tour of Steamwhistle Brewery, dinner at The Red Tomato, and tickets to The Second City
- Fusion: choose a show from each of these amazing companies – CanStage, Tarragon Theatre and Buddies in Bad Times Theatre
- Kidding Around: if you have kids, this is a great package – tickets to the Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People, dinner at the Old Spaghetti Factory, and a trip up the CN Tower
- Stepping Out: A chance to see some fantastic dance shows at Harbourfront Centre, access to The Power Plant Contemorary Art Gallery, and dinner at Il Fornello.
- NEWorld: If you want to enhance your visit to Harbourfront’s New World Stage Festival, check out this package which gets you into select New World Festival shows, access to The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, and dinner at Il Fornello.
- The Theatre Guide – this is published every two months and distributed throughout the City at various hotels and attractions – pick one up if you see it as there is a theatre map (also found online here) and listings of upcoming shows.
- Write On! – If you’ve ever wanted to play your hand at being a journalist, now’s your chance. If you see a show and feel like telling the world about it, you can post your comments on this bulletin board and help spread the word about a show you’ve seen.
This is a fantastic marketing campaign that is still in its infant stage and will surely grow as the year continues on so best to check back for updated information, new packages and new initiatives!