A grant from the Helen Davidson Foundation has provided a bonus feature to the Credit Union Spark Centre in the form of a portable modular stage.
The inaugural use of the stage was the Karissa Hoffart concert, which capped off the grand opening day of the Spark Centre, as she and her band performed on Mainil Field as families could sit on blankets on the turf to listen.
When fully opened, the stage covers an area of 16 by 16 feet, and it can be folded up to four-by-eight foot sections, noted Regan Lanning, arts program coordinator and curator for the Spark Centre.
The stage was bought from a Saskatchewan company based in Humboldt, and it was a perfect setup, coming on a mobile trolley enabling it to be used anywhere in the centre, or even outside in Jubilee Park if they wished.
“We looked all over and did a lot of research for something that we could use,” she said. “We were able to afford it with grant funding from the Helen Davidson Foundation.”
Lanning noted it can even be used for a small concert in the art gallery, which will help to expand the focus of the department from just the visual arts to include the performing arts as well.
“We want to make it a more fully rounded representation of the arts,” she said. “Now we can have small intimate concerts in the gallery.”
Ryan Dale, leisure services manager for the Spark Centre, noted their crew was able to have the stage set up for the Karissa Hoffart concert in about 22 minutes. The cart that stores the stage can go through any of the doors in the centre, he added, so even a section of the stage could be used in any size room.
Lanning said she was able to get a $10,000 grant from the foundation, of which $8,600 went towards buying the stage, and the remainder will be used for sound and lighting equipment that can be used with the stage.