2001 Lifetime Achievement Award Christopher Newton

Shaw Festival

At the time of award, Christopher Newton had been the Artistic Director of the Shaw Festival for 22 seasons, the longest such tenure at any major theatre company in Canadian history. This tenure represented a period of stability, prosperity and sustained artistic achievement that is without precedent in Canadian theatre.

Under his leadership The Shaw became an internationally respected company and “home to one of the finest acting ensembles in North America” (Cambridge Guide to Theatre). The success of the Shaw Festival under Christopher Newton has contributed to its economic growth and to the success of many local industries.

Christopher’s career as an artistic director began in 1968 when he was appointed the Founding Artistic Director of Theatre Calgary. In 1972 he became Artistic Director of the Vancouver Playhouse, and later founded the Playhouse Acting School. It was in 1979 he became Artistic Director of the Shaw Festival.

Among his major initiatives at The Shaw was the creation in 1985 of The Academy, the company’s professional development and public education wing. He also created The Shaw’s “Toronto Project” enabling the company to work on new plays as well as classic ones, and established alliances with other leading theatre companies in Russia, Poland and Australia.

In addition to being Canada’s leading Artistic Director, Christopher is also a playwright, dramaturge, actor and historian, a gifted teacher, a nurturer of emerging talent, a mentor to many leading Canadian artists, and a tireless promoter of the arts in Canada. His achievements at the Shaw Festival have already brought him seven honorary degrees, the Order of Canada, the Chalmers Award for Artistic Direction, and the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Achievement.


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Lifetime Achievement Award Alumni

Paul House

Tim Hortons

2013 Lifetime Achievement Award

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John Howard

2007 Lifetime Achievement Award

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Bill Goertz and the late Abraham (Ed) Regier

Niagara Credit Union

2003 Lifetime Achievement Award

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Ed Werner

Horn Abbot Ltd.

2000 Lifetime Achievement Award

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The late Adriaan Olsthoorn

Lakeshore Inc.

1999 Lifetime Achievement Award

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John and Millicent Gruyich

Michael’s Inn

1999 Lifetime Achievement Award

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Jack Berkhout

Land Development

1998 Lifetime Achievement Award

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Donald Ziraldo

Inniskillin Wines Inc.

1998 Lifetime Achievement Award

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George Yerich Sr.

Skylon Tower

1997 Lifetime Achievement Award

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The late Louis J. Cahill

OEB International

1996 Lifetime Achievement Award

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The late John Holer

Marineland of Canada Inc.

1996 Lifetime Achievement Award

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The late Roy Cairns

1995 Lifetime Achievement Award

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The late Ken Fowler

1995 Lifetime Achievement Award

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The late Edward J. Freeland

1995 Lifetime Achievement Award

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