Friday, March 24th, 2023


A Full Day Program Of Speakers, Workshops, & Entertainment To Feed Your Creative Spirit!

Morning speakers will share their expertise, their own challenges, creative problem-solving solutions, and engage with audience members. Afternoon discussion groups and hands-on workshops as well as artist engagement opportunities will be followed by a concert by Aysanabee to close out the day.

Greg Frankson

Award-Winning Poet, Author & Speaker

A. Gregory Frankson, a.k.a. Ritallin, is an educator, activist, consultant, and award-winning literary artist. Since 2004, Greg has been featured in numerous audio recordings, video poems, public speeches, articles, and literary journals. He appears in five anthologies, including the award-winning collection The Great Black North, published four poetry collections, and is the editor of the critically acclaimed AfriCANthology: Perspectives of Black Canadian Poets. His debut work of creative nonfiction, Alphabet Soup, will be published by Rare Machines (Dundurn Press) in 2024.


Greg is a 2012 national poetry slam champion, a 2013 inductee to the VERSe Ottawa Hall of Honour, and won Best Author in the 2021 ByBlacks.com People’s Choice Awards. He is the past poet laureate of the International Initiative for Mental Health Leadership, appeared on CBC TV’s Canada’s Smartest Person, and is the former poetic commentator on Here and Now Toronto on CBC Radio One.

Greg is the founder and CEO of Voice Share Inc., which helps individuals and teams strengthen their inclusive leadership and effective communication skills. He serves on the board of directors for Prince’s Trust Canada and as chairperson of the Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) Council at Abilities Centre. He is also a co-founder of AfriCANthology Canada, which produces BlackLit Durham and other projects that highlight and amplify the stories of Black Canadians.

Greg is passionately dedicated to living according to his personal mission statement – to present the vision that inspires others to positively change the world.

Georgia Fullerton

Expressive Arts Therapist & Arts Educator

Georgia Fullerton is a Jamaican Canadian professional visual artist, expressive arts therapist, arts educator, and public speaker. Studying at Red Deer College and earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Fine Arts at York University, Georgia is the first black female practising visual artist to be appointed board director and Acquisitions and Collection Management Chair of the largest contemporary art museum in Durham Region – the Robert McLaughlin Gallery.


Engaging all sides of her creative prowess, Georgia deepens her understanding and practise of arts in health as an expressive arts therapist in her private practise. Georgia creates abstract expressionist artworks and facilitates online arts-based healing workshops at her home studio in Ajax, Ontario.

As an arts professional working closely with communities, Georgia sits on the Program Advisory Committee for the School of Media Art and Design at Durham College (Oshawa). Her original artworks are held in private collections across Canada, the United States, and the Caribbean.

Lynne McIlvride

Contemporary, Visionary Artist

Lynne McIlvride is a mixed media contemporary visionary artist who has lived and worked in Durham Region for over thirty years. Her work is a riot of colour, shape and texture expressed through mixed media, sculpture, painting, print-making and woodcarving. Lynne’s distinctive style explores themes of joy, faith, life, grief and love.

She has persevered through challenging life experiences by processing her grief through her creative practice and she will speak about this journey at the symposium.


Lynne earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from York University and has exhibited her work extensively in solo and group exhibitions in public and private galleries including Robert McLaughlin Gallery, Propeller Art Gallery, Station Gallery, Latcham Art Centre and David Kaye Gallery. She has opened her studio to the public numerous times for studio tours and solo exhibitions. Lynne’s work is held in the art collections of galleries, churches and universities as well as by many enthusiast private collectors.

In addition to creating and exhibiting her work, Lynne has been concentrating on turning her house and studio into an interesting environment and eventually, a work of art in itself. Colour is her first language.

Photo credit: Kenneth Welsh

Featured Art credit: Lynne McIlvride, Epiphany,  acrylic on carved basswood, hand beadwork 


The full day program of speakers, workshops and entertainment is designed for amateurs and professionals alike – listen, learn, be re-inspired and have fun!

Includes refreshments & a delicious lunch.

Friday, March 24th, 2023 – 9:30 am to 5 pm (doors 8:45 am)

Scugog Community Recreation Centre

1655 Reach St, Port Perry 

Enjoy a New Experience, Network With People In The Arts,

& Get The Creative Juices Flowing


Morning speakers Greg Frankson and Georgia Fullerton will be joined by actor, comedian, and improv instructor, Steve Hobbs; drummer and wellness practitioner, Tanya Porter; and mixed media artist, Holly Dean, in a series of fun and interactive afternoon workshops.

Participants will meet other creatives and experiment with an art form that they haven’t tried before in a welcoming atmosphere.


Artist. Teacher. Inspirer.

“I grew up in the rolling hills of Uxbridge, Ontario, where my lovely mom fed my creative imagination and my British father instilled in me his love of England. I possess a romantic soul, relating to the world around me through myth and legend.

It’s surprising that I am an artist since I decided to drop art in high school. My grade 9 art teacher pointed out that I hadn’t drawn a tree “correctly” and I thought, “Forget this! Obviously, I’m no good at art and, anyway, it’s so boring.”  Of course, I did realize that art is SO much more than this and I am enjoying a life filled with creative expression!

My life as an artist was shaped by an enduring love of books, words, and letter forms. Through the exploration of typography, calligraphy, and bookbinding I found a way of expressing my creativity. As an art educator, I love encouraging others to be creative and give themselves permission to play… every day.”

Holly Dean has exhibited in numerous galleries, art fairs, and studio tours have taught for many years and is an active member of the Merrickville Artist Guild.


The Host For The Day

Greg Murphy is an artist and retired educator with over 35 years experience in colleges and universities in Canada and the US. For 13 years he served as Executive Dean of the School of Media, Art & Design at Durham College until October 2022. His paintings can be found in many public and private collections including the Robert McLaughlin Gallery in Oshawa.

Murphy is Past President and Treasurer of the Heads of Media, Arts and Design (HOMAD) for Colleges Ontario and served on the boards of the Durham Region International Film Festival (DRIFF) and the Oshawa Cultural Leadership Council. He is currently a member of the Professional Advisory Council for the Visual & Creative Arts Program at Sheridan College.

“I am very excited and honoured to act as the host for the upcoming Energize! multi-arts symposium and am really looking forward to hearing speakers from various arts backgrounds, meeting other members of the creative community, and facilitating what promises to be a meaningful and inspiring day.”


Enjoy a Concert By Oji-Cree singer songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist — Aysanabee

Contemporary Indigenous Artist of the Year 2023 Juno Nominee

Aysanabee is a multi-instrumentalist, producer and singer songwriter currently based in Toronto. He is Oji-Cree, Sucker Clan of the Sandy Lake First Nation a remote fly-in community in the far reaches of Northwestern Ontario.

He began creating music under his mother’s maiden name during the pandemic when the stillness allowed him to slow down and create music, he says, more directly represents himself as an artist.

Solemn and soaring, backed by a swirling blend of indie, soul and electronic soundscapes, mournful saxophone and pulse-quickening finger-picking, Aysanabee’s striking sound is equal parts hypnotic and melodic which has been compared to Bon Iver, Matt Corby, Don Ross, Kim Churchill, Kings of Leon and Sam Smith.


His debut album, Watin (2022) named after his grandfather, includes 10 tracks and nine interludes featuring the voice of his grandfather and is both part music and journalism, artistry and expression.

“Watin actually started out as a series of conversations between myself and my grandfather,” says Aysanabee. “We spent the first year of the pandemic talking about things we’ve never spoke about, his life on the trapline on Sandy Lake First Nation, falling in love, his life in residential school and then leaving everything behind..we never spoke of it until now. Even though we were over 1,000 kilometres apart, it was probably the closest we’ve ever been.”

In a short amount of time, three singles were released including “Ego Death” (Oct 2022), “Nomads” (Aug 2022) which charted on Billboard Canada and became #1 on CBC Music and finally, “We Were Here” (July 2022), which charted on the Indigenous Music Countdown and featured in an episode of Station 19.

In a whirlwind year, Aysanabee performed nearly 100 shows on major stages and festivals and venues across the country and across the ocean including Ottawa Bluesfest, Montreal Jazzfest, Mariposa, Riverfest, Summerfolk, Mission Folk, Alianait, Wake the Giant and many more.

The artist has shared the stage with such notable acts including The National, Digging Roots, Amanda Rheaume, Sam Roberts, Our Lady Peace, DJ Shub, Julian Taylor, Jeremy Dutcher, Dan Mangan, Mavis Staples, July Talk, Half Moon Run, Tokyo Police Club, Steven Page, Aqua, and more.

The album was released through Ishkode Records, founded by Amanda Rheaume and Shoshona Kish, one of the first Indigenous and women-owned labels in the country.

Thank You

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