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Sydney J Risk Foundation


Business No: 888899275RR0001

Sydney J Risk Foundation


The Foundation exists to honour Sydney Risk – a pioneer of live theatre in Western Canada.  It was conceived before Sydney’s death in 1985; and was established early in 1986, and is sustained by his family, former students and many friends.

In 1946 Sydney realized his dream by forming the Everyman Theatre – a western Canadian professional repertory company – which flourished for seven successful years.  The Everyman was the first professional theatre company in Western Canada.  It offered young Canadian actors and playwrights a chance to pursue their careers without having to leave the country, and committed to producing at least one Canadian play a year.  It began as a touring company, producing three plays in 1947 in seventy locations from Vancouver to Winnipeg.

The Foundation was formed to celebrate and honour Sydney’s legacy.  He sent the first generation of professional actors, playwrights and directors out of Western Canada into the world.  Everywhere they thrive – a living tribute to his inspiration.

The Foundation continues to celebrate and honour Sydney’s legacy by encouraging and nurturing subsequent generations of aspiring, emerging actors, playwrights and directors, to pursue their dreams, as he did that first generation.

Each year, for more than three decades, the Foundation awards three scholarships, at present $2,500 each: one to a young actor, another to a young playwright, and a third to a young director to assist them to pursue careers as theatre professionals.  The actor is chosen by the faculty of Studio 58, the theatre school at Langara College.  The playwright is selected by a professional jury appointed by the Jessie Richardson Theatre Society, which sponsors the annual Jessie live theatre awards here in Vancouver.  And the director is chosen from Master of Fine Arts students by the faculty of the Department of Theatre and Film at UBC.

The Foundation rewards their passion; encourages their dreams.  Their passion drives their success.  Their success makes theatre compelling. Theatre enriches us all.  Their success is their ultimate reward, and the Foundation’s, and encourages our work.


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