Sarah Conn Appointed Artistic Producer of the NAC’s National Creation Fund

The National Arts Centre today announced that Sarah Conn has been appointed Artistic Producer of the NAC’s National Creation Fund, effective immediately. 

One of the NAC’s major national initiatives, the National Creation Fund invests up to 2 million dollars a year in the development of compelling new creations in the performing arts.  Fuelled by donors, the Fund has invested more than $13 million in projects over the last six years. The 88 productions supported by the Fund Since include the acclaimed productions of Why Not Theatre’s Mahabharata, Mani Soleymanlou’s epic Un. Deux. Trois., Kidd Pivot’s Revisor, and Kid Koala’s The Storyville Mosquito.

Sarah Conn is an award-winning performance creator, producer and curator. She has been part of the National Creation Fund team since it started and has been the Fund’s Acting Artistic Producer since the departure of Sarah Garton Stanley at the start of the season. 

Sarah has played a leadership role in developing relationships with artists and companies across the country over the past six years. From initial conversations to collaborating with creators and producers in the months leading up to opening night, Sarah has shared her passion for creation, deep experience in creative development, and extensive network to support the hundreds of artists and dozens of ambitious projects that have received Fund investments.

“I’ve been so fortunate to work with Sarah since the Fund opened its doors,” said Chris Dearlove, Managing Director of the National Creation Fund and Professional Development. “Sarah is a thoughtful and generous collaborator and is passionate about engaging with artists and fostering a sector where everyone can thrive.  In recent years, she has led the Fund’s work on strategic initiatives centered on accessibility, sustainability, equity, and international partnerships, and has developed exciting relationships with industry innovators.  All of us at the Fund look forward to working with her in this new role.”

“I am deeply honoured to step into the Artistic Producer role, at a moment where sustaining time and space for artistic creation feels increasingly urgent,” said Sarah. “Artistic creation is a critical response to the questions facing our world. It needs latitude to breathe, to iterate, to transform. The National Creation Fund is uniquely positioned to champion dreaming, to dare us to reimagine, and to carve out space for risk-taking and transformation. I am excited to build on the rich legacies of my predecessors Heather Moore and Sarah Garton Stanley. And, with our incredible curators, National Advisory Committee, and the entire NAC team, I look forward to supporting new models of creation, encouraging the beautifully bold creative dreams of Canadian artists, and inviting audiences to fall in love with creation.”


Sarah Conn is an interdisciplinary performance creator, producer, and curator. Her practice is centered in collaboration across disciplines, and the creation and dissemination of new performance. Her career layers together institutional and independent practice, collaborations with local communities and high-profile artists, international touring and hyper local work, and traditional and experimental productions. Her creative work includes site responsive performance installations and live art rooted in relationship and community, which have toured to festivals and galleries in Canada, Ireland, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, and England. Her research and writing focus on curatorial frameworks, creative process design, interdisciplinary collaboration, and the politics of co-existence. Her writing has been published in Canadian Theatre Review, Dance Research Journal and TURBA.

She is a passionate collaborator, and has supported hundreds of Canadian artists of all disciplines in the creation, presentation, and touring of work on national and international stages. As the National Creation Fund’s inaugural Artistic Associate and Senior Manager of Artist Engagement, she has collaborated with artists across Canada to create 88 bold new performance works, develop new creation methodologies, and drive emergent curatorial practices. The resulting productions have toured to 33 countries and won many awards, including the UK’s Olivier Award. She has developed partnerships with industry leaders including artEquity, Centre for Sustainable Practice in the Arts, and Fogo Island Arts.

Sarah holds a Master of Arts in Performance Curation from the Institute for Curatorial Practice in Performance. She is a recipient of the Ontario Arts Council’s Pauline McGibbon Award and is a Siminovitch Prize Protégé.


The NAC’S National Creation Fund is dedicated to the alchemy of artistic creation and driven by a conviction in the power of creation as a means of evolving culture, sparking innovation, and shaping our world. The Fund champions creation through transformative investments in the development of bold new music, dance, theatre and interdisciplinary performances, and through our work as a home for research and experimentation on the conditions required to create ambitious work.

The Fund invests up to $2 million per year in the development of 10 to 12 compelling new Canadian performance works. Fuelled by donors, the Fund has invested more than $13 million in 88 projects since it opened in 2017.

The Fund is a catalyst for Canadian artists to take their creations to a new level.  Fund investments provide the time, space and resources necessary to make inspiring and impactful work for national and international stages. It invests in both new work, and in promising productions that need additional development after their initial run before going on tour.

The Fund invests in work that reflects the vitality and diversities of Canada, and supports bold and ambitious work representing a diversity of disciplines, abilities, genders, ethnicities, languages, cultures, and regions.  


The National Arts Centre (NAC) is Canada’s bilingual, multi-disciplinary home for the performing arts. The NAC presents, creates, produces, and co-produces performing arts programming in various streams—the NAC Orchestra, Dance, English Theatre, French Theatre, Indigenous Theatre, and Popular Music and Variety—and nurtures the next generation of audiences and artists from across Canada. The NAC is located in the National Capital Region on the unceded territory of the Anishinaabe Algonquin Nation.

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Carl Martin
Senior Advisor, Strategy and Communications
National Arts Centre

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