The Canadian Arts Summit (“CAS”) is a virtual organization that was founded in 1998 by Business / Arts (“B/A”) and The Banff Centre for Arts & Creativity (“Banff”).
The CAS hosts annually a unique, national leadership forum (the “Summit”) in late March/early April of each year that brings together the chief executives, artistic directors, and board chairs of Canada’s largest not-for-profit arts and cultural institutions, including symphony orchestras, theatres, opera and ballet companies, heritage and art museums, as well as other key stakeholders with a vested interest in nurturing and fostering a thriving arts ecosystem in Canada.
The Summit is founded on the core principle that it is a gathering of leaders, the outcome of which is shaped by the participants. For that reason, the Summit has become, over its history, not just a weekend event in the spring, but an ongoing network of arts leaders working together, throughout the year.
The Canadian Arts Summit aspires to contribute meaningfully to human health and happiness through understanding, engagement and participation in arts and culture.
The mission of the Canadian Arts Summit is to inspire meaningful engagement in the arts by all Canadians by:
a) Creating a forum where institutional leaders in the arts and culture sector can meet, network, exchange ideas, share best practices and collaborate; and
b) Leading interactions and initiatives that contribute strategically to the advancement of key issues in the arts and culture sector; and
c) Championing the benefits of arts and culture to government, business and the wider public.
The Summit is a virtual organization that operates as a partnership between Business / Arts and The Banff Centre. The activities of the Summit are guided by a Steering Committee composed of Summiteers and coordinated by a Secretariat, currently Business / Arts.
The Summit does not operate with a formal membership structure. The stakeholders of the Summit include organizations that meet a set of qualifying criteria. Generally, Summiteers include the lead artistic, executive and board representatives of charitable, government-funded arts and culture organizations with annual operating budgets of $3 million and over. Organizations represent performing arts, visual arts, film, museums, producing venues and festivals. At times, exceptions are made in order to ensure diverse representation across artistic disciplines and geographies.
The primary activities of the Summit include hosting the annual Summit event, as well as ongoing advocacy on behalf of its stakeholders. From time to time, the Summit may also undertake special projects such as research. The advocacy activities of the Summit are undertaken by the Advocacy Committee of Summit members and other stakeholders. The Advocacy Committee operates separately from the Summit Steering Committee.
The annual Summit is attended by eligible Summiteers, as described above under ‘Who are the members of the Summit?’. Each year, external speakers and presenters involved in the Summit program also attend. A small number of additional guests who don’t meet the qualifying criteria are also included among the invitees on a one-time basis, at the discretion of the Steering Committee. The inclusion of external guests is intended to encourage a dynamic exchange of ideas within the wider arts ecology, adding value to Summit discussion.
If you are interested in attending the Summit, you may submit an application to attend as an invited guest, for consideration by the Committee. Applications are generally available in January at www.canadianartssummit.com.
An Advocacy Committee comprising Summiteers and other stakeholders with specialized knowledge, expertise or relationships guides the Summit advocacy activities and is accountable to the Summiteers. Advocacy is typically undertaken in collaboration with the wider arts sector through participation in the Canadian Arts Coalition and other collaborative initiatives. Advocacy priorities are determined by the Advocacy Committee in consultation with Summiteers, and a report on advocacy initiatives is tabled and discussed at the annual Summit event.
Part of the content of the Summit is made available publicly via livestream through the Summit website, www.canadianartssummit.com. Each year, the Steering Committee of the Summit determines what content to make public based on balancing two important objectives: (1) to offer a safe space for candid conversations between eligible summiteers – to discuss challenges, failures and opportunities of mutual interest; and (2) to create a forum for engagement and participation by other stakeholders who are deeply affected by and who may benefit from the discussion of issues and topics applicable to the arts and culture sector as a whole. For example, the valuable insights offered by keynote speakers and external presenters may be made available through the livestream or by posting recordings of event sessions online following the Summit.
Summiteers may invite their significant others to audit the Summit event, with the exception of any designated in-camera sessions. Full registration fees apply to the accompanying guest. For all social events, Summiteers may invite one guest at an additional charge.
For the Summit itself, a $150.00 administration fee will be charged per person for cancellation of registration up to thirty days prior to the start of the event. The remaining registration fee will be refunded. After the cutoff date, no refunds will be processed. For hotel bookings, all accommodation changes or cancellations are processed directly through the host hotel and refunds or fees are subject to the hotel’s own guidelines.
Registration is available online at www.canadianartssummit.com. It typically opens in January. As the Summit is an invitation-only event, you must receive an invitation with a corresponding passcode in order to register for the event. Invitations are not transferrable.