Montréal – Monday, June 1, 2020 – The CRITAC, affiliated with the National Circus School, today launches an Entrepreneurship and Innovation Lab dedicated to the development of creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship in the circus, culture and performing arts industries. The three-year pilot project will lead to establishing a permanent support program.

In making the Lab available, “priority will be given to the School’s 2020 graduating class in order to contribute to the circus and cultural industries’ sustainability in a completely new global reality,” says Patrice Aubertin, director of CRITAC. Although the Lab was conceived well before the start of the pandemic, the pilot project’s deployment is extremely timely given the current context in which the circus world must evolve rapidly.

The first cohort will participate in learning and support activities held from June to December 2020. They will take place in two stages: First, the Parcours entrepreneurial (Entrepreneurial Pathways) component will allow participants to explore traditional and modern approaches to design thinking, and entrepreneurship fundamentals, and to develop authentic and impactful leadership skills. Next, the Émergence de projets (Emerging Projects) module available in the fall will support select participants through prototyping and commercialization phases of their ventures. The first foray will conclude with a public pitch night in December 2020.

The implementation and realization of the program is made possible thanks to the support and savoirfaire of institutional partners such as École des entrepreneurs du Québec, FOL!E (Ryerson University), HEC Mosaic, Percolab, La Piscine and Pôle entrepreneuriat culturel et créatif, as well as experts Miguel Aubouy and Hubert Maison, two exceptional collaborators recognized for their respective expertise in design thinking, innovation and creative entrepreneurship.

About the National Circus School (NCS)

International in scope, the National Circus School is an institution dedicated to preparing professional circus arts artists, educators, creators and artisans. The NCS also devotes considerable resources towards research and innovation as well as acquiring, conserving and curating circus arts archival materials.

About the Center for Circus Arts Research, Innovation and Knowledge Transfer (CRITAC)

CRITAC’s mission is to both advance and transfer knowledge in the fields of circus and performing arts, and human performance. It not only promotes the evolution and diversification of practices, teaching and aesthetics, but the enhancement of their benefits for society. Taking a partnership approach, the Center offers applied research services, technical assistance, training and information to companies, artists, organizations and institutions. CRITAC is recognized as a Centre collégial de transfert de technologie (CCTT), and its director holds an Industrial Research Chair for Colleges from the NSERC.

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