The committee of the Gina Wilkinson Prize is pleased to announce that Christine Brubaker of Toronto, Ontario is this year’s prize recipient. The announcement came on March 10 — Gina’s birthday. Ms. Brubaker was chosen from a list of 22 nominees from across Canada.
“Saying I’m honoured feels too easy somehow, but honoured I am: honoured to be in the company of Charlotte, Liz and Dayna and honoured to receive a prize inspired by the indomitable Gina Wilkinson. As a seasoned actor, but fledgling director, this affirmation is inestimable. It tangibly supports an act of risk, an act of process, change and transformation: not on what I have achieved, but what I hope to achieve,” said Ms. Brubaker upon learning she was this year’s beneficiary. “Thank you to Sarah Phillips for nominating me; Eric Woolfe and Severn Thompson for trusting me take the helm on your projects; Jill Keiley, Allen MacInnis and Kelly Thornton for your mentorship; and my family, Robert, Ruby and Arlo for helping me keep my keel in the water; and, of course, the committee for deeming me worthy. And thank you Gina. Your light continues to shine.”
Christine Brubaker has been working as a theatre artist for twenty years. Primarily an actor, she has performed nationally and internationally working in small theatres and large. She began directing three years ago when friend and colleague, Eric Woolfe from Eldritch Theatre, hired her to direct his puppet spectacle Madhouse Variations. Originally from Guelph, Ontario, Christine studied Theatre and Arts Administration at the University of Waterloo, and went on to train as an actor at the National Theatre School of Canada. Currently, she is pursuing her MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts from Goddard College in Vermont. This spring, she is part of the Michael Langham Workshop for Classical Direction at the Stratford Festival. Christine is a teacher, musician and a regular theatre instructor at Young People’s Theatre and Sheridan College.
The Gina Wilkinson Prize honours a female theatre artist who is transitioning from one theatre discipline (acting, stage managing, playwriting, administration, etc.) to that of directing. The Prize pays tribute to actor/playwright/director Gina Wilkinson whose dedication, vision and indomitable spirit imbued her work and her life. An actor for over twenty years, Ms. Wilkinson began turning her attention to both writing and directing and, in the last few years of her too-short life, established herself as a daring, strong, inventive director and collaborator in the Canadian theatre community. In the spirit of Ms. Wilkinson’s appetite for life, the prize of $2,000 is a gift to be used in any way the recipient chooses. The past recipients of Gina’s Prize were Ann-Marie Kerr of Halifax and Krista Jackson of Winnipeg.
The committee would also like to thank Alan Walker and the Ontario Arts Foundation for their administration of the Gina Wilkinson Prize. Anyone wishing to make a tax-deductible donation to the Gina Wilkinson Prize can do so through the Ontario Arts Foundation at www.ontarioartsfoundation.on.ca.