Meet the 2021 Dora Ancillary Award Winners

The Dora Ancillary Awards were streamed on Wednesday, June 16.

As previously reported, the Dora Ancillary Awards were streamed on YouTube on Wednesday, June 16 at 10:00 AM. 

Rather than centering on a single season of work (a season which, in this year’s case, has largely been cancelled due to COVID-19), the Dora Ancillary Awards celebrate entire bodies of work across both artistic and administrative roles in the performing arts. In a “normal” year, the Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA) announces these awards at the Dora Mavor Moore Awards initial press conference. This year, however, TAPA elected to host a streamed celebration of this year’s recipients, even in the absence of the standard Dora festivities. 

Andrea Vagianos, current Managing Director at Tarragon and longstanding champion of the performing arts, received the Leonard McHardy and John Harvey Award for Outstanding Leadership in Administration. Vagianos named emerging arts manager and educator Danielle Parris as the recipient of the associated Victor C. Polley Protégé Award for her work creating inclusive and accessible spaces in the arts.

Jani Lauzon, a multidisciplinary artist of Métis ancestry and current Associate Director of the National Theatre School’s English-language acting program, received the John Hirsch Director’s Award, given every three years to an Ontario-based director who shows great promise, a strong personal vision, and a willingness to take risks in their work. Lauzon has enjoyed an illustrious career across disciplines, including playwriting, puppetry, and music.

Soheil Parsa, an award-winning theatre artist and educator, received the Barbara Hamilton Memorial Award for excellence in the performing arts and strong advocacy for the arts in Canada. In his acceptance speech, Parsa noted the importance of collaboration in his work, noting that “theatre is a collaborative art form. I would not have been here today receiving this recognition without the collaborative contribution of many remarkable Canadian [theatre artists and administrators].”

Dillon Orr, an emerging Franco-Ontarien director and producer, received the Pauline McGibbon Award for his passionate work in the realm of Franco-Ontarien theatre. Orr is the deputy Artistic Director of Théâtre du Nouvel-Ontario in Sudbury and an associate artist for Vox Théâtre in Ottawa.

The Dora Ancillary Awards presentation is available to watch here.


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Written By

Aisling is Intermission's Senior Editor and a graduate student at the University of Toronto. She has bylines at Maclean's, The Fulcrum, The Theatre Times, and Critical Stages, and is a board member for the Canadian Theatre Critics Association. She likes British playwright Sarah Kane, most songs by Taylor Swift, and her cat, Fig.