Recipients of the 2016-2017 Awards

Provincial Grand Prize

Commission scolaire Marguerite-Bourgeoys
Si l’Île était une œuvre d’art 
Associated schools: École Dorval-Jean XXIII, École Monseigneur-Richard, École Pierre-Laporte, École Saint-Laurent and École des Sources
Director General of the school board: Dominic Bertrand
Project coordinators: Brigitte Beaudry, Pascale Bouchard, Laurence Faidutti and Alice Fournier
Principal resources or partners: Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and Vision Diversité

Si l’Île était une œuvre d’art was designed to help more than 250 young people from five Montréal secondary schools discover the public art in their neighbourhoods as well as the public art collection of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. Taking turns as viewers, critics and artists, the students engaged in a long collective and creative process in which they were encouraged to reflect on the importance of green spaces in their city. Then, as planned, the sculptures were assembled into a gigantic work of art in the shape of the city. Museum resources were used throughout to ensure the success of the work, which incorporates a wide range of materials to express a plurality of visions and cultures. It was exhibited at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts for five weeks before moving to its permanent home in the head office of the participating schools’ school board.

Partnership Prize

École Curé-Antoine-Labelle, Commission scolaire de Laval
Associated school: École Le Baluchon
School principal: Stéphane Côté
Project coordinators: Anne Deslauriers, Martyne Despaties, Marc-Olivier Lacroix, Geneviève Lefebvre, Danièle Lévesque and Mélissa Nadeau
Principal resources or partners: Simon Ampleman, Olivier Labossière, Hugo Landreville, Café Graffiti, Grues Francoeur and Recycleur Duvernay Inc

Crash was a collective multidisciplinary work that led students to raise their social and environmental awareness and take a stand on traffic-safety issues. Inspired by contemporary art’s many forms of expression, this innovative project showcased the work of more than 375 Secondary Cycle II dance, music and visual arts students, as well as that of a class of Elementary Cycle One students. A graffiti muralist, a professional dancer and a painter contributed to the students’ work. The set included a wrecked car hanging from a crane and projections on the exterior walls of the school. The show ran for four days, including matinée and evening performances that the community and the media were invited to attend.

Culture Prize

École Saint-Joseph, Commission scolaire des Navigateurs
Je me souviens, la Nouvelle-France!
School principal: Sophie Turgeon
Project coordinators: Ann Renée Belzile, Gérald Charron, Martine Lemieux and Lyne Lessard
Principal resources or partners: Yolande Bernier, Francine de la Bruère, Carolyn Chouinard, David Gagné, Isabelle Gagné and Prouche

In order to carry out this creative project to commemorate Canada’s 150th birthday, Elementary Cycle Two students at the École Saint-Joseph formed committees, each working on one of eight of the country’s pioneers. The students analyzed biographical novels to create portrait sculptures and comic strips, inspired by their research and the cultural workshops they attended. They also used various computer applications to make a film. The cultural enrichment of the project, Je me souviens, la Nouvelle-France!, came about through, for example, meetings with a cartoonist, a historian and an author of children’s books, as well as a visit to Place Royale and the Musée national des beaux-arts de Québec. The works were shown during a seminar held at Guillaume-Couture Park.

Pedagogical Development Prize

École des Cheminots (L’Envol), Commission scolaire des Phares
Voyage à l’intérieur de moi
School principal: Jean-Pierre Doucet
Project coordinators: Philippe Cavanagh and Maryse Pellerin
Principal resources or partners: Karine Berthelette, Jean-Philippe Catelier and Brigitte Therrien

Voyage à l’intérieur de moi is a poetic meeting of arts and ethics. Introduced to philosophy through the study of classic and contemporary texts, the Elementary Cycle Two students reflected on who they are and who they want to become. Accompanied by a filmmaker and a storyteller, the students participated in workshops that gave them an opportunity to create personal works of art that included a totem sculpture, a cabinet of curiosities inside a suitcase and a musical composition reflecting their way of life. On the evening of the performance, residents of the village and neighbouring communities toured the spaces created to discover the imaginary worlds of the participating students.

Isabelle-Aubin Prize

École Sainte-Bibiane, Commission scolaire de Montréal
Nous sommes tous des héros
School principal: Sylvie Mimeault
Project coordinators: Geneviève Côté and Marie-Hélène Rochon
Principal resources or partners: Martin Carli, Élise Gravel, Caroline Ouellette, Mylène Paquette, François Tanguay and Les Petites Tounes

All the preschoolers at the École Sainte-Bibiane got a chance to discover that you don’t have to have a cape to be a hero. Their project, Nous sommes tous des héros, showcased nine Quebecers, each of whom was associated with one of the spheres of activity of the preschool education program. All of these “heroes” received a letter telling them about the special activities that concerned them. Field trips to the insectarium, an organic farm and the arena as well as classroom visits by an illustrator and a musical ensemble helped the students to grasp the cultural aspect of their heroes’ numerous achievements. Spread over the 10 months of the school year, this large-scale consciousness-raising project made each child, in turn, a hero too.

Arts Education Prize

École secondaire de Bromptonville
L’exposant X, galerie d’art adolescent
School principal: Simon Croteau
Project coordinators: Alain Lemire, Rachelle Mailhot, Barbara Meilleur and Danny Roussel
Principal resources or partners: Adèle Blais, Jean-François Dupuis, Mega Nan, Valérie Whissel and the Maison des arts et de la culture de Brompton

L’exposant X, galerie d’art adolescent is an exhibition space located at the school’s main entrance. The project enabled students to meet well-known artists and collaborate with them to stage an exhibition of contemporary art that was open to the public. This professional-level art space, where works by seasoned artists hang alongside those of the students, encourages the latter to explore various art techniques as forms of expression. The opportunity to produce and exhibit their works of art encouraged the students to draw on their talent and continue to pursue their passion. This gallery, which already has three major exhibits to its credit and is preparing another, is an ongoing project where each exhibit offers a new way of doing things and a fresh view of culture.

Sustainable Development Prize

École secondaire de Rivière-du-Loup, Commission scolaire de Kamouraska–Rivière-du-Loup
La « coloc-action » entre ma ville et mes passions!
School principal: Sylvie Soucy
Project coordinator: Karine Lévesque
Principal resources or partners: Simon Croz, Bureau d’information touristique de Rivière-du-Loup and l’Ensemble vocal La Meute

The École secondaire de Rivière-du-Loup took up the challenge of using the benefits of music to provide a memorable experience for 10 students with intellectual disabilities. After re-exploring their city, the students wrote lyrics to a song that they presented before the public, accompanied by students from l’Ensemble vocal La Meute. Principal players in different aspects of the project, they also had the opportunity to make an audio recording of their song and a short video. « Coloc-action » entre ma ville et mes passions gave each of these young people a sense of pride as they carried out activities in accordance with their abilities. This project succeeded in raising the school community’s awareness of the abilities and needs of these young people.

Exposure Prize

École secondaire Louis-Jobin and École Saint-Joseph, Commission scolaire de Portneuf
Une image vaut mille mots
School principal: Jean-François Garneau
Project coordinators: Luc Brousseau, Andréa Genois, Sandrine Cantin, Éloïse Dion and Nancy Frenette
Principal resources or partners: Luc Plamondon, La Fondation Plamondon and La Maison Plamondon

Une image vaut mille mots brought together some 100 students in a tribute to lyricist Luc Plamondon, who was born and raised in their community. Inspired by lyrics and scores from Plamondon’s repertoire, each student at the École secondaire Louis-Jobin created an image on a piece of wood similar in size to an album cover for a 33 rpm record. The students drew their inspiration from the works of artist Loui Jover. In the elementary school Plamondon attended as a child, students produced a collective work honouring his favourite song, “Hymne à la beauté du monde.” Plamondon himself attended the exhibition launch at the school. The exhibition then moved to La Maison Plamondon, in Saint‑Raymond. This unique meeting of visual arts and music enabled students to gauge the extent of this artist’s cultural contribution to the entire French-speaking world.

Host an Artist or Writer Prize

École Notre-Dame-de-Protection, Commission scolaire de Rouyn-Noranda
Les chiens-loups (Élève ta voix, toujours plus haut)
School principal: Kathy France Rollin
Project coordinators: Line Arsenault, Josée Lefebvre, Marie-Claude Noël, Isabelle Pilon, Sonia Rivard and Kathy France Rollin
Principal resources or partners: Jean-Philippe Rioux-Blanchette, Alexandre Castonguay, Valéry Hamelin, Dominic Leclerc and the Petit Théâtre du Vieux Noranda

Three hundred and fifty students took part in producing a poetic documentary film on the ambiguous nature of social status in a working-class neighbourhood. The goal of the project, Les chiens-loups (Élève ta voix, toujours plus haut), was to reduce inequality and add to the cultural heritage of the city. Visits from former students (who are now grandparents), a judge, a wolf trapper and a dog trainer helped the students to think about freedom in greater depth. The innovative approach of filmmaker Dominic Leclerc and actor Alexandre Castonguay enabled students to tap into their own verbal and physical creativity to produce the film. The finished product caught the public’s attention because of the cultural approach adopted by the school.

École du Coteau, Commission scolaire des Affluents
La forêt des mal-aimés
Associated schools: École Émile-Nelligan and École de l’Odyssée
School principal: Éric Cool
Project coordinators: Nadine Arsenault, Martine Bernier, Lyne Désilets, Caroline Desrochers, Claude Dionne, Camelia Draghici and Christophe Surget
Principal resources or partners: Simon Ampleman, Éric Bergevin, Jennifer Casimir, Richard Roy, the Centre d’art Diane-Dufresne and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA)

La forêt des mal-aimés was a collaborative and interdisciplinary project that brought together 235 students to create dances, photographs, 3-D trees and stories inspired by the eponymous Montreal Museum of Fine Arts collection, known in English as “The Forest of the Unloved.” Professional painters, dancers and photographers supported the students in their creative exploration of the chosen theme. The stories by students at the École du Coteau were staged in an imaginary forest created by students from the École de l’Odyssée. The project was exhibited at the Centre d’art Diane-Dufresne in Repentigny. The photographs and dance pieces were presented at the MMFA. This project will be included in the activities bank on the EducArt page of the website of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.

Essor Prizes

École Lanouette, Commission scolaire de Kamouraska–Rivière-du-Loup
Comédie musicale Plume-Rouge au pays de la Marmite  
School principal: Josée Michaud
Project coordinator: Maryse Durette
Principal resources or partners: Rémi Pouliot and the Centre culturel Berger

Every year, the staff and students at the École Lanouette work together to organize and present a musical comedy. This year, they chose a piece by French author Ann Rocard. The preparations for Comédie musicale Plume-Rouge au pays de la Marmite extended throughout the school year. This major production, made possible by the volunteer efforts of parents, was presented before an audience of 900 people at the Centre culturel Berger. In this show featuring fantasy, humour and daring, elementary students from all cycles were involved as actors, extras, dancers, singers, and lighting and sound technicians. Everyone was enchanted!

École Roy et Joly, Commission scolaire de Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup
Roy-Joly en chansons: Spécial Québec
School principal: Maryse Simard
Project coordinators: Marie Hélène Bourgoin, Louise Dumais, Sophie Jalbert, Stéfanie Pelletier and Raphaël Soucy
Principal resources or partners: Yves Desgagnés, Mélissa Labbé, Alex Poirier, Richard Sirois, Bongo Films and the Centre culturel Berger

Roy-Joly en chansons: Spécial Québec, a concert that brought everyone together, was performed before a packed house at the Centre culturel Berger. Accompanied by professional musicians, all of the students attending the Roy et Joly elementary school sang songs selected for their significant impact on Québec culture. A very important place was set aside for students in the special education class to sing a song. The artists represented ranged from Félix Leclerc to Les Colocs to Céline Dion, and this unforgettable show concluded with Raymond Lévesque’s Quand les hommes vivront d’amour, performed by 475 students gathered together onstage.

École polyvalente Jonquière, Commission scolaire De La Jonquière
Entre quatre murs 
School principal: Mario Bernier
Project coordinators: Jasmine Bergeron and Nathalie Pelletier
Principal resources or partners: Pascal Bouchard, Alexandre Dubois, Martin Giguère, Patrice Leblanc, Robert Maltais and Hélène Soucy

The Festival Deux jours à vivre au théâtre gave the Secondary Cycle Two students an opportunity to express their ideas and their vision of the world. In producing Entre quatre murs, their play about imprisonment, the students put their knowledge of drama to good use: writing, staging, scripting and acting. This project, made possible through close collaboration with Théâtre La Rubrique, included a meeting with the festival’s sponsor, workshops with various artists and cultural field trips. With its 17 years of experience, this festival knows how to generate enthusiasm among the students and the community in general.

École Madeleine-Bergeron, Commission scolaire des Découvreurs
Musiciens sans frontières
Associated school: École Saint-Louis-de-France–Saint-Yves
School principal: Maxim Pilote
Project coordinator: Marie-Dominique Boivin
Principal resources or partners: Isabelle Doré, Koriass, Annie Perron, La Fabrique culturelle, the Journées de la culture and the Québec Remparts

The École Madeleine-Bergeron, a school specializing in the education of elementary- and secondary-school students with disabilities, was the birthplace of Musiciens sans frontières. This project provided young people with various opportunities to perform in public. They had an opportunity to create and perform musical interludes during the Christmas festivities, and to interpret the national anthem at a friendly wheelchair hockey game against the Québec Remparts. They also composed a verse in sign language, memorized and interpreted the theme song for the Journées de la culture with rapper Koriass, with vocal support from students at the École Saint-Louis-de-France–Saint-Yves. This remarkable moment was featured in a video broadcast on the website of La Fabrique culturelle. 

Séminaire Sainte-Marie
Face Off IV: L’Institut Dudswell
School principal: Stéphanie Plante
Project coordinators: Hélène Bergeron, Pierre Duplessis and Isabelle Lemire
Principal resources or partners: RJ Haddy, Bryan Perro and Éric Zapata

Based on the American television show Face-Off, in which characters are created with the assistance of two special-effects makeup artists, Face Off IV: L’Institut Dudswell has become a tradition at the Séminaire Sainte-Marie. For the storyline this year, the teacher imagined a psychiatric hospital where patients suffer from a rare disease that causes serious deformities. From the sketches to the silicone prostheses, this project gave some 100 students an opportunity to make their characters come alive. Based on their research in the visual and musical archives of the period in question, the students created a fictional documentary in which to cast their characters. During the evening presentation at the Centre des arts de Shawinigan, the characters who appeared on stage kept the 450 spectators spellbound in this fantasy world.

École Sainte-Marie, Commission scolaire de l’Énergie
Soyez Carcajou
School principal: Éric Rivard
Project coordinators: Kim Laforce and Mélissa Racine
Principal resources or partners: Annie Ducharme, Mathieu Gélinas, Karine Lépine, Marie Milette, Martine Milette and the Parc récréotouristique Héritage Carcajou

In collaboration with the Parc récréotouristique Héritage Carcajou, 110 students from Elementary Cycles One to Three took part in a magical event that helped remind the community about this heritage jewel. To do so, the students used the knowledge and techniques acquired in their drama courses to create theatrical sketches based on six First Nations legends. They also designed the set and puppets. The evening of the event, a student choir welcomed more than 350 visitors who strolled along the park’s paths, transformed for the occasion into the torch-lit paths of legends. For the participants and guests alike, Soyez Carcajou was a memorable theatre experience in a woodland setting.

École des Quatre-Vents, Commission scolaire de la Région-de-Sherbrooke
Parcours migratoire et cinéma d’animation
School principal: Josée Poirier
Project coordinator: Sandra Hallé
Principal resource or partner: Centre en art actuel Sporobole

Students in the welcoming class of Quatre-Vents elementary school revisited the memorable moments of their immigrant experience to create an animated movie. This project’s uniqueness stemmed from the involvement of the students, who gave authentic accounts of their personal experiences of departure, arrival and adaptation. A collective story thus emerged from the collage of all these stories. The students received assistance from the Centre en art actuel Sporobole to produce their animated movie. They created their sets and animated characters in their visual arts classes. The screening of the film, a product of the Parcours migratoire et cinéma d’animation project, was open to the public and intended to raise awareness of the immigration experience.

École Saint-Cœur-de-Marie, Commission scolaire de l’Estuaire
Les deux frères
Associated school: École Nussim du conseil de bande de Betsiamites
School principal: Katia Létourneau
Project coordinators: Denise Labrie, Luc Lévesque and Meggie Savard
Principal resource or partner: Mario Deschênes

The students at the École Saint-Cœur-de-Marie drew on a cultural exchange with a welcoming class in an Indigenous community to create Les deux frères. The École Saint-Cœur-de-Marie students thought up and created the elements of a story about mutual help and reconciliation. All the students, from the youngest to the oldest, then illustrated a page of the story. Under the direction of the visual arts teacher, who is also a well-known painter in the region, the students also created a mural depicting all the facets of their story. Then, as a sign of friendship, they presented the story to the welcoming class. In this unifying project, the students of both schools came to the conclusion that, no matter where we come from or the colour of our skin, we are all brothers and sisters.

École Marcelle-Mallet
Écosystèmes numériques
School principal: Robin Bernier
Project coordinators: Anilou Lacroix-Marcotte
Principal resources or partners: Mélanie Bédard, Herman Kolgen, Mickaël Lafontaine and Productions Recto-Verso/Mois Multi

Écosystèmes numériques is an artistic and educational project that brings the arts and sciences together. In collaboration with two artists who work on the international scene, students created ecosystems using chemistry, light and sound. Thanks to various technological processes and custom-made state-of-the-art tools, the students learned to sculpt real micro landscapes and discovered the extent to which nature is comprised of fascinating shapes, textures and colours. Throughout the project, the students shared their experiences on a blog. The results of their research and experiments were presented as part of the program for Mois Multi, an international festival of multidisciplinary and electronic arts.

École Thérèse-Martin, Commission scolaire des Samares
Ebenezer Scrooge – adaptation libre d’Un chant de Noël de Charles Dickens
School principal: Bianca Sabourin
Project coordinators: Annie Gravel, Édith Robert and Raymond St-Georges
Principal resources or partners: Jean-Philippe Lebeau, Dominic Marion, Simon Mercier, Annie Sanschagrin, Kevin Venne and the Centre culturel de Joliette

The production Ebenezer Scrooge – adaptation libre d’Un chant de Noël de Charles Dickens helped 89 students at the École Thérèse-Martin to realize the impact that individual contributions have on the quality of a collective work. Intended for a young audience, this stage adaptation was performed before over 1 000 elementary school students in the region. With the help of their professional partners (an actor, an opera singer, a lighting designer and an illustrator), the students created and portrayed 108 characters and produced and performed ten musical numbers and three choreographed dance pieces, all punctuated by visuals and projections integrated into the setting. The play took the young spectators on a journey where they had fun discovering the many nooks and crannies of 19th-century London.

Collège Saint-Paul
La Vague
School principal: Cathie Bouchard
Project coordinators: Julie Gauvin, Sophie Laflamme and Marie-Claude Nareau 
Principal resource or partner: Festival Théâtre Action en Milieu Scolaire

La Vague brought together 170 students who staged a show on the themes of dictatorship and fascism in human history. This was an extraordinary theatrical experience in which the students had an opportunity to become involved in various aspects of theatre arts, including production, acting, choreography and music. This project, supported by artists, craftspeople and technicians in the community, concluded with a high-quality production that attracted the attention of local media. The 32 members of the graduating class adapted the show so they could present it during the Festival Théâtre Action en Milieu Scolaire, in Sudbury.