FLEX: Collaboration

FLEX (Festivals Learning Exchange) Program

As arts and heritage festivals move beyond crisis management and enforced isolation, cancellations, and closures, strategic collaborations will be crucial in their ability to adapt, recover, and prosper post-pandemic.

Work in Culture, working closely with a topic specialist and regional delivery partners, has developed and piloted a FREE virtual training intensive focused on providing the skills and knowledge required to form and implement effective collaborations among arts and heritage festivals, located in Toronto, Kingston, Ottawa, and Sudbury.

The project objective is to provide non-profit arts and heritage festivals with the tools, expertise and processes to create and implement an effective collaboration strategy.

Watch our program report video to learn more about how and what we accomplished in the 2021–2022 FLEX (Festivals Learning Exchange) program.

If you have any questions about the project please contact:
Stephanie Draker, Program Manager at [email protected]

Funded by the Government of Canada.

Government of Canada wordmark

2021–2022 Program


Patrick Breton from Centre franco-ontarien de folklore
Kimberly Dolan from Blue Canoe Theatrical Productions Inc.
Liam Karry from Kingston Theatre Alliance (Kick & Push Festival)
Tricia Knowles from Calliope Collective
Katya Kuznetsova from Dance Together Festival
Kristen Leboeuf from Kingston Theatre Alliance
Mark Mannisto from Sudbury Performance Group
Pierre Paul Mongeon from Concerts La nuiit sur l’étang (Les)
Lisa O’Connell from Pat the Dog Theatre Creation
Krishna Patel from Northern Lights Festival Boreal
Brandon Patry from Cinéfest Sudbury International Film Festival
Colleen Renihan & Dean Burry from The Watershed Festival – Reimagining Music Theatre
Suzanne Wilkie & Isabela Solis-Lozano from Toronto Fringe Festival


Ontario Culture Days – Advisory Committee
City of Toronto Economic Development and Culture Division – Advisory Committee
Economic Development, Tourism and Culture – City of Greater Sudbury – Advisory Committee and Delivery Partner
Ottawa Festival Network – Advisory Committee and Delivery Partner
Kingston Arts Council – Advisory Committee and Delivery Partner

Fanny Martin

Fanny Martin is an international creative producer & facilitator specialised in festivals, networks, interdisciplinary projects and art in public space. Born and educated in France, she developed an eclectic freelance project portfolio in the UK before moving to Canada and founding Art of Festivals, a creative company that designs transformative events to spark change and enchant everyday life. In collaboration with artists, educators, researchers, technologists and activists, her work focuses on producing memorable shared experiences, shaping change strategies, experimenting with participatory frameworks and designing learning & evaluation programmes. Visit artoffestivals.com for more information.

Welcome to the FLEX Coffee Break Series – a series of short insights from past FLEX participants on the overarching topic of collaboration. Four festival leaders share how they approach collaborating with Peers, Artists, and Society.

Check out the interviews.

Learn how to create and implement a collaboration for your festival or organization in these FLEX: Collaboration toolkits. Each toolkit offers learning content and resources from the 2021–2022 program that will help guide you through the basics of how to collaborate with Peers, Artists, and Society.

Check out the toolkits.

The FLEX Spotlight Sessions are a three-part series of videos and summary documents focused on how Canadian arts and heritage festivals can build and implement stronger collaboration strategies through international and local examples.

Check out the sessions.