Dora Awards skipping annual bash for performing arts due to curtailed season

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TORONTO — The annual Dora Mavor Moore Awards says it’s skipping its annual celebration of Toronto’s past theatre season because of a dearth of live shows amid the pandemic.

Organizers say Dora jurors have nothing to adjudicate after COVID-19 restrictions prevented live professional productions from being staged indoors in the past year.

The Doras celebrate excellence in theatre, dance and opera.

The Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts, which produces the Dora Awards, says the city’s professional theatre, dance, and opera organizations have lost more than $900 million in revenue since the start of the pandemic last March.

However, organizers say the Dora Mavor Moore Ancillary Awards will proceed virtually June 16 because they are not based on a specific performance season like the Doras are. They are typically a smaller affair announced at the press conference for the Dora nominees.

The ancillary honours include the Leonard McHardy and John Harvey Award for outstanding leadership in administration; the Victor C. Polley Protégé Award; the Pauline McGibbon Award; the John Hirsch Director’s Award; and the Barbara Hamilton Memorial Award.

That presentation will stream on TAPA’s YouTube channel.

“We have advocated for relief measures at all levels of government,” TAPA executive director Jacoba Knaapen said Wednesday in a statement.

“We remain fluid and responsive to ever-shifting pandemic circumstances and look forward to some form of a safe restart in the not too distant future.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 19, 2021.

The Canadian Press