In partnership with the Vancouver Fringe Festival and generously sponsored by TD Bank Group, the Fringe Forward Award recognizes a production that centres the work of artists from historically marginalized communities. Selected by jury, this Award includes a performance opportunity, rehearsal space, mentorship, and cash for future development.

We’re thrilled to announce our fantastic jury has presented the inaugural 2019 TD Fringe Forward Award to tadpole : the last episode written and acted by Eddy van Wyk: “A prophet in the hospital. A psycho in the village. The Age of the Medicated. What’s going on? Is stigma blinding us? Are we sick? Is this part of the evolution of consciousness? Is this a dramatic collective nervous breakdown? Meds, drugs, doctors, healers, remission, recovery, numbing, awakening and sensation… Eddy guides you in this under an hour journey physically and through her own writings about her experience navigating mental health in a western medical system. Eddy creates beautiful images, stories with her voice and her body to make you re-examine what you know about mental health and how we encounter it.”


How we got here

In 2015, David Jordan, the Vancouver Fringe Festival’s Executive Director at the time, thought up a new award that celebrated excellent shows created by artists from historically marginalized communities. The Fringe has a long history of seeing shows by able-bodied white people rise to the top, a pattern they are genuinely working to shift. David approached Marcus about Neworld partnering on the award and we were into the idea. We assembled an advisory committee (Omari Newton, Landon Krentz, Tai Amy Grauman, Adam Grant Warren, Dominique Wakeland, Davey Calderon) and the first thing the committee talked about was that in an ideal world we wouldn’t need this award and that the long term objective should be to make initiatives like this unnecessary. So, with the generous support of TD Bank Group and the goal of planned obsolescence, we are launching the TD Fringe Forward Award (named by the ingenious Christine Quintana during her time as Neworld’s Interim, Interim Artistic Director) at the 2019 Vancouver Fringe Festival. Four years since the seed of an idea was planted, here we are.


You are eligible for this award if:

  • The work is created by individuals who identify as being from a historically marginalized community (Indigenous, African, Asian, Middle Eastern, Latin American, or mixed heritage that includes one or more of these groups and/or; d/Deaf, living with a disability, LGBTQ+)
  • You are in search of further development opportunities for your project and are interested in remounting your production

What we are looking for:

  • You approached the work from a place of authenticity and meaningfully engaged with the subject matter
  • Your production centres the work of artists from historically marginalized communities
  • The work’s potential for future development or remount

Additional Information:

  • This does not have to be an ‘issues’ play. Your piece can be about anything. You can do whatever drives you creatively
  • Community engagement initiatives were, when appropriate, integrated into your work
  • Accessibility for all audience members was thoroughly considered and, when possible, implemented


  • A performance spot as part of the Pick of the Fringe week at Performance Works or a 3-night run as part of the Fringe’s Theatre Wire season (dates and venue to be mutually determined). Venue, technicians, front of house staff, ticketing services, and marketing all provided
  • A $5000 cash prize to go towards further development and/or remounting your production
  • One week of free rehearsal space at Progress Lab 1422
  • Mentorship customized based on the goals of the artists. Scope to be negotiated with the Fringe and Neworld Theatre