What is SPARC?

SPARC is a network whose purpose is to ignite and help sustain performing arts communities in rural and remote Ontario. In order for the performing arts scene to thrive we believe there needs to be people, services and systems that allow us to communicate with each other effectively. The SPARC network

has been designed so that it is owned, developed and controlled by YOU, the individuals, groups and organizations that make the performing arts happen in rural and remote areas.  Your networking needs, development goals, and artistic interests will inform the growth and evolution of SPARC over the next few years.


SPARC, c’est quoi?

SPARC est un réseau dont le but est justement de faciliter et de promouvoir les arts de la scène dans les collectivités rurales et éloignées en Ontario. Pour y arriver, nous avons besoin de gens, de services et de systèmes qui permettent une meilleure communication entre ces différents intervenants.

Le réseau SPARC a été conçu pour que les arts de la scène dans les communautés rurales et éloignées soient votre affaire et que vous, les individus concernés, les groupes et organismes en contrôliez le développement. Ce sont vraiment vos besoins de réseautage, vos objectifs de développement et vos intérêts artistiques qui assureront le croissance et l’évolution de SPARC.


The SPARC team currently consists of two staff members (a Network Coordinator and Northern Outreach Consultant), and a dedicated group of volunteers that form the SPARC Network Steering Committee. Learn more about these individuals here.


Who does SPARC serve?

Creators: Musicians, actors, dancers, directors, choreographers, animators, videographers, singers – the people creating and performing.

Presenters: Venues, programmers, organizations, festivals – the people selecting the artistic programming for public presentation in their communities.

Producers: Individuals, companies, troupes, collectives, organizations – the people handling the administrative side of the creation and presentation processes.

Animateurs: Movers and shakers, volunteers, committee members, board members, patrons – the people who are enlivening and encouraging the growth of performing arts in their communities.

Working in the performing arts (theatre, dance, music, and film/media arts) in rural and remote communities across Ontario!



How does SPARC Bring People Together?


Our online communications and platforms aim to provide space for those engaged in the performing arts in rural and remote communities to exchange ideas, troubleshoot challenges, and share success stories.

Our member network website is where members can access information about SPARC services, access resources, and learn more about other members – where they’re from and what kind of work they’re doing.

Our private, members-only Facebook group is where discussion takes place; where our members can brainstorm together, ask each other questions, provide advice, share resources, etc.

Our e-newsletter keeps subscribers up to date with the latest news from the SPARC team.

On our blog and social media platforms we share stories from our members about successful initiatives in their communities, and also share information about upcoming workshops and funding deadlines that may be relevant to our members.

In Person…

Community Gatherings

It is our belief that a strong, vibrant network will significantly raise the profile of the performing arts in our rural communities and, as a result, will increase our capacity to make awesome performing arts projects happen. SPARC has been, and will continue to hold gatherings with friends old and new; learning about local initiatives, challenges, and existing collaborations with a mind to finding new opportunities for collaboration – locally, regionally and provincially – to continue increasing capacity for creators, producers, presenters, and animateus to do the work they love in a sustainable way.

To date, SPARC has held consultations in Wellington County, Prince Edward County, Pelee Island, Owen Sound, Simcoe County, Norfolk County, Brockville and Thousand Islands, Minto/Harriston, Kawartha Lakes, and Almonte.

Please get in touch if you would like to learn more about what our community gatherings entail or are interested in having us visit your community!


Every two years SPARC seeks to create the space for the presenters, creators, producers and animateurs of the performing arts world to gather in a specific location for a creative weekend of networking, problem solving and strategizing.

For information about our past and upcoming symposiums, click here.

How Can You Get Involved?

Become a Member – it’s Free!

Membership Benefits:

  • Access to our member database and map
  • Access to our members’ only Facebook Group
  • Member’s discount on your Symposium Registration Fee
  • Access to SPARC services – including our Collaborative Community Initiatives funding
  • Access to valuable resources

SPARC’s ‘for us by us’ approach to the rural and remote performing arts is based on the constellation model.  A ‘constellation’ in this sense is a local network ranging from 1 or 2 people in an area to a group of thousands. These local constellations then connect and feed into the larger, Ontario-wide constellation.

SPARC’s goal is to make contact and build relationships with local networks, linking them into the broader network we are building across the province. After signing up yourself, please invite others in your community to do the same so that we might pursue this goal together.

Connect with Us

Join our mailing list

Like us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter

Follow us on Instagram 

Blog for SPARC

We are currently seeking guest bloggers and/or vloggers from rural performing arts backgrounds to contribute their experiences, wisdom, struggles and ideas to our online blog.  Please get in touch if you feel like you have an article, story or hot topic to share.

The Youth Caucus at the 2014 Symposium


Have we missed something?

SPARC has been designed by performing arts organizers for performing arts organizers.  If you feel there is something SPARC is missing or a role SPARC could be playing, please get in touch.  We would love to hear from you. Whether you’re just starting out or are well established we look forward to meeting you and we hope you will join us on this exciting journey.

The SPARC team.