Midsummer Gratitude Recap

Graphic illustration of a raven flying through the sky carrying a berry.

Banff Centre celebrates Artists and Supporters at Midsummer Event; Raises $830,073 Net

July 20, 2020, Banff, AB -- On Saturday evening, July 18th, Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity hosted an online Midsummer Gratitude Event featuring artist alumni in online performances and videos which raised $830,073 net. The event was scheduled in place of the 41st annual Midsummer Ball - a weekend gala event bringing together artists and patrons from across Canada.

Funds raised through the online Midsummer Gratitude Event will be used for Banff Centre's sustainability over this challenging period. The event was held to thank the many corporate and individual supporters for their steadfast commitment to Banff Centre during the temporary suspension of activities on campus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


The host of the event was Alberta stage and film actor, Fred Keating, who welcomed performances by Banff Centre alumni and faculty including a blessing by Daryl Kootenay; thoughtful songs from Banff local singer-songwriter, Amelie Patterson; Indigenous classical electro cellist, Cris Derksen; classical performance by the Gryphon Trio; rousing tunes by trumpeter Jens Lindemann and saxophonist Matt Catingub, and band. A spirited finale was provided by Barry Shaw and Friends from their kitchen. Guest also saw videos featuring alumni across disciplines including author Lawrence Hill, visual artist Emmanuel Osahar, musician Iskwe, and an update on the ongoing construction of the new Jenny Belzberg Theatre.

"Thanks to those of you who, through your generous contributions, are ensuring a vital future for one of Canada’s most important cultural institutions and certainly a jewel in the cultural crown of Alberta for over eight decades.

Banff Centre has done so much to put Alberta on the global map as a centre for creative industries and cutting edge thinking in so many areas, celebrating mountain culture, and being a crossroad for so many people while celebrating the magnificent natural beauty of our province and the Banff park."

-Jason Kenney, Alberta Premier via video message

Sponsors + Supporters

Banff Centre, including the Board of Governors, Foundation Board, and Midsummer Ball Committee members, thanks Presenting Sponsor Husky Energy, Showcase Performance Sponsor RBC Capital Markets, Kim and Jeff van Steenbergen, Azimuth Capital Management, Banff Centre's Board Chair Adam Waterous and Jan Waterous, President and CEO Janice Price and Ian Findlay, and all sponsors and supporters for contributing to Banff Centre through the Midsummer Gratitutde event.

"To our alumni and faculty, and to our supporters: thank you for your generous contributions. Thank you for your devotion to Banff Centre through your support of this online Midsummer Gratitude event. We are so pleased that we could find a way to showcase so many of the fabulous Banff Centre alumni from across disciplines.

We eagerly await the resumption of on-campus programs and events when it is safe to do so as we continue to fully realize our mission of providing artists the support and freedom to make their unique contributions to the world. We will never forget the loyalty demonstrated by our supporters during one of the most trying times in Banff Centre’s 87-year history."

- Janice Price, Banff Centre President and CEO

Looking Ahead

As Banff Centre moves through the many impacts of the pandemic and looks to the resumptions of activities on campus, work is also underway to offer a selection of limited online programs across all disciplines in the Fall. The offering of online programs is part of Banff Centre's evaluation and consultation on the needs and desires of artists during this period of change in the arts sector, and into the future. Select education programs in Visual arts, Literary Arts, Performing Arts, Indigenous Arts, Indigenous Arts, and Indigenous and Cultural Leadership will be offered online beginning in September 2020.

Many of Banff Centre's marquee annual events have been and will continue to be offered online including National Indigenous Peoples' Day (June 21), the Banff International String Quartet Festival (September 1-4), and the Banff Centre Mountain Film and Book Festival (October 31 - November 8).

The 42nd Midsummer Ball weekend is optimistically scheduled for July 23-25, 2021.