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  • Status:
    Non-profit, Community arts charitable organization 
  • Main Communities Served:
    Adults, All Ages, Children, Seniors, Youth, Jumblies focuses on reaching out to people who don’t usually have creative opportunities. 
  • Main Catchment Area:
    Ontario, Mostly Toronto, Jumblies Studio has run activities in Vancouver and North Bay 
  • Languages:
  • Arts Focus:
    Much more than a theatre-based company, Jumblies explores visuals arts, new media, film, poetry, puppetry, dance, community arts and many cultural traditions. 
  • Main Community-Engaged Arts / Arts for Social Change Activities:
    It offers three main components to their work:
    Jumblies Ventures takes on multi-year art residencies in diverse communities. Through a multi-disciplinary artistic process, a team of artists research, create and produce a theatrical production while forming community partnerships involving several hundred community residents and dozens of skilled artists while providing hundreds of art workshops and art outreach opportunities.

    Jumblies Offshoots maintains relationships with people and communities they have previously worked with by supporting new leadership and sustainable community arts initiatives.

    Jumblies Studio trains and mentors artists in community arts practice and provides internships for trainees in community arts organizations. Jumblies is “known for creating wonderful products, having a genuine engagement process and providing unique learning/mentorship/training opportunities”, says Keith McNair, Managing Director.

    One of Jumblies’ activity locations in Scarborough is the Lido Motel Arts Suite. This motel houses families in need of temporary residence (the city rents motel space to use for overflow shelter needs). Since February, Jumblies has been conducting drop-in art workshops at the Lido one to two afternoons per week, in collaboration with the City of Toronto’s Family Residence.

    The Studio has run a six-day intensive training course in community arts in Toronto each year since 2006 and in Vancouver in 2009 (in partnership with Vancouver Moving Theatre), with a 2010 session planned in Nipissing First Nation (near North Bay). Students include artists from diverse disciplines and traditions, arts administrators, community workers, art therapists and scholars. Jumblies have also hosted 32 Interns – visual artists, writers, musicians, composers, actors, directors, clowns, puppeteers, designers, producers, administrators, photographers, dances, choreographers and community workers.

    Jumblies’ two Offshoot Projects: Arts4All in Davenport West and MABELLEarts in Central Etobicoke have developed from previous residencies. These are independent community arts ventures, under the leadership of former Jumblies Studio interns. 
  • Mandate/Mission:
    Jumblies Theatre is a community arts charitable organization that was founded in 2001 by Ruth Howard. Its mandate is to make high-calibre art with people about where they are, what they’re about and where they want to go. 
  • ArtBridging Section:
    Jumblies’ goals for 2010 include sustainability of the work, especially the training, mentorship and professional development practice. Keith says, “there’s always the question of how we sustain our projects? Who knows how to do it? Can we find and nurture more people who know how to do this or who are drawn to learn?” If Jumblies could find more core-funding, it would expand its mentorship, internship and professional development practice both in and outside of Toronto. Jumblies is always looking for volunteers and would love to hear from anyone who would like to get involved. They could particularly use some support with developing private and earned fundraising areas. Jumblies Theatre is interested in exploring connections with other community arts initiatives.
  • Additional Info:
    Jumblies’ projects are inclusive, diverse, multi-cultural, multi-lingual, accessible and intergenerational. Much more than a theatre-based company, Jumblies explores visuals arts, new media, film, poetry, puppetry, dance, community arts and many cultural traditions. 
  • Main Contact Name:
    Ruth Howard, Artistic Director 
  • Secondary Contact:
    Keith McNair, Managing Director 
  • Phone:
    (416) 203-8428 
  • Main Contact Email: 
  • Website:
  • Address:
    9 Second St.
    Toronto, ON  M5J 2A7 

Last updated on 2013-08-30 00:13:37. Photos credit of: K. Fleitas - Submitted by: Keith McNair, Managing Director, Jumblies (ArtBridges interview, June 17th, 2010).