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Tomo Suru Players

303-828 Gilford Street, Vancouver, BC, V6G 2N6

tomosuru@gmail.com

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Tomo Suru Players Society is a BC registered society. © 2015 by Tomo Suru Players.

About Love Festival

About love – Festival of Short Plays 2016 has ended and we couldn’t be more excited by the results.

Every performance was sold out! The energy and excitement each night existed both in the audience and on the stage. It wasn’t just theatre, it was an event!

Our Wednesday night performance was dedicated to one of our actors, Jeff Hoffman, who lost his family home in the recent fires that devastated Fort McMurray. We are happy to report that we were able to offer him $730.00 as the proceeds from that evenings ticket sales.

 

One of the writers, Ronit Rubinstein, was able to attend the during the week and the cast were thrilled to be able to meet their writer and discuss their experience with her script.

 

Awards
Notable actors and notable directing were not initially going to be awarded a cash prize. However, a very enthusiastic audience member stepped forward and donated $150.00, or $50.00 for each of those who were recognized.

 

The judges had a very lively discussion and choosing, and their effort was deeply appreciated.

 

Notable performance by an actor 
Susan Backs for her role as Mary, in Richard Manley’s,  Tell Me What You See.

Meghan Somerville as Younger Woman, in Ronit Rubinstein’s, Anniversary.

 

Notable Direction
John Dickinson for his work with Square Footage by Jessica Moss

 

Winning Play
Square Footage by Jessica Moss

 

About Love

How About Love works

 

8 short plays will be performed every night from June 14th to 18th.

 

Each night audiences will be asked to vote for

Best Play

Notable performances

 

Closing night, June 18th, in addition to the audience vote, our panel of Judges will make the final decision on

Best Play (1 selection)

Notable Performance (2 selections)

Notable direction (1 selection)

 

Where did we get our plays?

 

An open call for submissions was announced.

198 plays from 6 countries were submitted between January and March 2016. 16 readers read each and every play and made a short list. Our Directors reviewed all the plays on the short list to determine the 8 selected.

About love – a message from our artistic director

The genre of the 10-minute play requires character development, convincing story lines and conflict resolution in the time it takes many of us to find our seats. Some writers specialize in 10-minute genre and many famous writers use this genre to explore characters and ideas. For directors, this genre tests the ability to tell stories without the luxury of time. They work to ensure that an audience sees a full story arc delivered in a compelling and entertaining way. A bit like speed dating; the actors have to get their character across to the audience in minutes and then convincingly follow through as sudden storyline changes occur.

 

If this is your first time exploring the world of ten-minute plays, don’t be afraid, it’ll be over soon, too soon in fact. Audience members are invited to vote for their favourite play and notable performance by an actor. On June 18th, Judges will tally the votes, determine the winning play, select two actors for their performance, and recognize a notable director.

 

It has been a great pleasure working with these 8 emerging directors.
Selected from over 200 submissions, these 10-minute plays are now being premiered in Vancouver. The professionalism and energy each director has brought to the process has made this experience deeply satisfying. I hope that you will see sparks of the future of theatre when you come.

 

Gerald Williams
Artistic Director, Tomo Suru Players

 

When

June 14th TUE to 18th SAT 7:30PM (7PM DOOR OPEN)

Where

Havana Theatre

1212 Commercial Dr, Vancouver, BC

V5L 3X4

 

 

How Much
Ticket available at Brown Paper Tickets

Ticket prices

 

Tickets are on a sliding scale.

You choose the price that fits your budget.

 

Tuesday | Sold Out

Wednesday - Tickets are $10, $15, $20, $25, $30

Thursday | Sold Out

Friday - Tickets are $15, $20, $25, $30

Saturday | Sold Out

 

(Any difficulty using your credit card on-line, please email us for alternatives)

 

 

 

 

 

FREE RUSH tickets for students

 

10 FREE RUSH tickets will be available EVERY NIGHT.

One ticket per person, per current ID.

First ten people in line get a ticket!

Line up begins at 6pm in front of Havana theatre.

Please be respectful of the Havana space if arriving very early.

 

 

A night to help out...

June 15th all proceeds will go to one of the actors in our show whose family home was destroyed in the recent fires in Fort McMurray. This is a small token of our support for him, and his family. Theatre is about community, bringing people together, and acknowledging life that exists around us.

Our Eight Plays (in no particular order)

Northern Lights

by Jordan Henry

Directed by Georgia Johnson

A close encounter with death shines light on irreconcilable differences between two newlyweds-to-be

With
Allie Pev as Candice
Allie is an actor, director and filmmaker living in Vancouver. After studying acting and directing at Seacoast Studios in West Vancouver she appeared in various theatre and film productions. She is thrilled to be back in the theatre as an actor and director in the festival this year. 

Heather Evens as Lisa
Heather loves theatre. And she loves festivals. And she loves that gets to be in a theatre festival about love. Thanks to Georgia for giving her the opportunity to be a part of the world premiere of Northern Lights. Heather has been involved in theatre for over 20 years in most capacities, including producing, stage managing, assistant directing, props and set design, running lighting and sound boards, front of house, publicity, and her favourite and first love, of course, acting. She is a co-founder of That Other Theatre Company, and blogs for the GVPTA. "We do it because we love it."

Tell Me What You See

by Richard Manley

Directed by Allie Pev

What do you make of the stranger beside you? What do you make of them when they surprise you? What do you make of yourself?

With
Sue Backs as Mary
Sue has been loving living in BC. She and her loving family moved here about 5 years ago. Her heart also lies with acting and directing. In the last century she attended The Neighbourhood Playhouse School of the Theatre in New York and received their only scholarship to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London. Loved that. Right now she's still learning about love in the wonderful About Love festival.

Ashley Michaels as Elizabeth
Ashley Michaels began her acting career in Calgary.  Since moving to Vancouver she has been in theatrical productions Lily Alta, Voices of the Fraser, and NDN Acts.  She was selected out of many across Canada to appear in the NBC’S Four Directions Showcase (The Baby Blues) in New York City.  She has worked on Da Vinci’s City Hall, Edna Brown, Elsewhere, Edison and Leo, Snare, Tornado Valley, Strange Empire and Stories of the ER.  Ashley currently plays Aunt Velma in the Canadian Screen Award nominated TV show Mohawk Girls.

 

Anniversary

by Ronit Rubinstein

Directed by Nick Heffelfinger

 

A young couple celebrates their first wedding anniversary and can't keep their hands off each other. An older couple celebrates thirty years together, and can’t keep their bickering off each other. Four lovers, major differences, but they have something in common...

With

Meghan Somerville as Younger Woman, 

Meghan is thrilled to be a part of the About Love Festival. She has a Performing Arts Diploma from Douglas College, and spent a year at SFU in the Theatre Program. She has recently been involved in productions with Gallery 7 Theatre, Beachhouse Theatre, and played the role of Mary Shelley in the independent short film ‘Invisible Girl.’ She would like to thank you, the audience, for supporting local community theatre and emerging artists.

 

Adam Beggs as Younger Man,  

Adam is just a year out of high school, and thrilled to be a part of Anniversary. Previously Adam has played George Banks in Theatre in the Grove’s Mary Poppins and more recently he was in the Vagabond Players’ production of Tea and Sympathy. Adam plans to return to school this fall to further pursue his study of acting.

      

Sarah Seekamp as Older Woman,

Theatrically trained actor/ dancer/ singer, Sarah Seekamp has recently found herself calling Vancouver home and is thrilled to be joining its rich acting community. Some of her favourite credits include performing as Velma Kelly in the musical Chicago and touring North America as a dancer with The Magic of Ireland. Next you will be able to see Sarah in a new play called ‘The Dance Teacher’ in the Vancouver Fringe Festival.

 

Andre Fex as Older Man

Andre has done theatre, independent films, television, and commercials over the past 15 years. His previous plays include Fawlty Towers for Theatre West Van, The Butler Did It for Deep Cove Stage, Driving Miss Daisy for North Vancouver Community Players, and Woody Allen’s Central Park West and David Mamet’s An Interview at the Havana Theatre. His television work includes roles on Masters of Science Fiction and The L Word.

Square Footage

by Jessica Moss

Directed by John Dickinson

 

Space is fleeting, space is finite and, ultimately, space is what you need to love a person. Watch Maggie and Nate contend with the space for everything that needs space in Square Footage.

With

Amy King as Maggie

Amy King​ is an actor and lover of life who searches for the meaning of life through interpretative dance on public transit and meditation in public spaces. Her performance in About Love comes from the darkness of the soul that inhabits those who have seen a deeper truth only to discover that peanuts should not be fed to wild animals. She is currently the president of her local potting soil club and can identify 19 varieties by taste.

 

Jeffery Hoffman as Nate

Jeff is the consummate performer appearing in over 9000 plays in the past 4 months, but you may remember Jeff for his role in Lord of the Rings, collaborating with Andy Serkis, where Jeff played the green screen for the character Gollum.

Morning

by Jesse Nepivoda

Directed by Johnny Wu

Lovers caught in the midst of a struggle between staying or leaving. Man wants Woman to stay with him. Woman wants to stay but can’t. Woman has a life. A whole life of her very own and none of it is here. Man could go with her but will he?

With    

Madelyn Osborne as woman

Madelyn Osborne is a Vancouver based theatre actor, director and creator. She is passionate about discovering the darker side of the human mind and why we are brought to do the things we do. She is a graduate of the University of Wales and upon her return founded Monster Moon Theatre. Madelyn runs a monthly open disciplinary emerging artist event called Epiphany and wants to establish a career in supporting local artists. You can check out her work coming up in the Vancouver Fringe Festival and more at madelynosborne.com

 

Darcy Stobbe as man

Darcy is an actor living in Vancouver.  He has been acting for the past 14 years.  He has appeared onstage in many stage projects. Darcy Moved to Vancouver a few years ago to also get into acting for film and television.  He is a graduate of Vancouver Film School's acting program.  He loves to give characters life and seeks to remind people what it is to be human.

Is This Seat Taken

by Brad Sytsma

Directed by Ariel Martz-Oberlander

Two people with a long history meet for what is supposed to be the last time. Perhaps this is a chance to finally lay aside their egos and their past. Where is the line between putting in the necessary effort, and forcing something to work that doesn't? It looks like it runs right down the middle of this park bench.

With

Amanda Sum as Charlie

Amanda just finished her first year as a Theatre Performance student at SFU’s School of Contemporary Arts. She was last seen as Rose in Dogfight (Semper Fi Collective). An avid tap dancer, she toured for several years with TAPCO, Vancouver Tap Dance Society’s Youth Tap Ensemble. In 2013 she won Vancity Idol, and she continues to strum her guitar and sing in her spare time.

 

Jill Zavazal as Nat

Jill is very excited to be a part of the About Love Festival and to join the cast of “Is This Seat Taken.” A graduate of the Acting for the Stage and Screen Diploma Program at Capilano University, she moved to the big city from small town Penticton five years ago to pursue her acting career and has loved every moment of it. She loves working with Amanda Sum and her director Ariel Martz-Oberlander.

Standing Room Only

by C.J. Ehrlich

Directed by Michael Q. Adams

 

What happens on a crowded ferry with a woman who is so distraught about love that she won’t give up a spare seat? Add a stranger and you have a funny, touching story that explores the human side of people’s lives.

With    

Tara Webster as Charlene,

A graduate of Gastown Actors Studio and a student of Mel Tuck, Tara has been acting on stage and screen for most of her life. A powerful presence on stage she deftly maneuvers from character to character. She is currently represented by Leo Management.“The artists must be sacrificed to their art. Like the bees, they must put their lives into the sting they give. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)”

 

Kenneth Tynan as Cameron

Kenneth started his acting journey at St Patrick's High school doing plays. He then graduated from SchoolCreative with a diploma in comedy. From there it was all uphill as he has done multiple plays and is starting his film/tv career steadily. This likeable thespian hopes you enjoy the show!

Small Talk

by David MacGregor

Directed by Shelby Bushell

 

In great moments it may be that success is in the small points. Sometimes we need help finding the greatness among the small.

With    

Nicola Rough as Rachel,

Nicola is thrilled to be working with so many talented theatre creators in the about love festival. She is currently studying theatre at Simon Fraser University and is particularly interested in human behaviour. In her acting experience on stage and screen it has always been a goal of hers to understand why we do what we do. She is interested in exploring theatre that pushes the limits of both the audience and the actors and plans to experiment with this through her visual art and theatre training in the upcoming future.

 

Yvette Lu as Dr. Cooper,

Yvette Lu is an actor, filmmaker, and family physician. As an actor, she has appeared on various shows including FOX's Gracepoint and BBC America's Intruders. She has a particular interest in projects related to health and wellness, and has written a research-based play about chronic illness called "Stories from the Closet". Her unique perspective as both doctor and artist imbues her work with depth, integrity, and compassion. http://yvettelu.com

 

Bradley Bergeron

Brad Bergeron is a graduate from the Grant MacEwan Theatre Arts Program and is thrilled to be part of this fantastic festival. A huge thank you to everyone who made this show possible.

 

A.J. Birtwistle as Matt

A.J. Birtwistle LOVES entertaining, which is why he couldn't be happier to be entertaining you in this series of short plays About Love. If his little bit of Small Talk isn't enough to satisfy your A.J. fix, then you'll probably be able to find him telling jokes to friends and strangers, making people laugh at Geeks Versus Nerds Vancouver shows, or auditioning for everything he can so that he never has to stop acting.

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Our Directors

Ariel Martz-Oberlander

Ariel is a theatre artist, writer and community organizer living in Vancouver, unceded Coast Salish Territories. She is a recent graduate of the Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies at the University of Toronto. Favourite credits include a new adaptation of Les Enfants Terribles by Jean Cocteau (directing), This Is For You Anna (acting) and Katie of Heilbronn by Heinrich von Kleist, directed by Banuta Rubess, for which Ariel assistant directed. Ariel's work seeks to answer how the principles of drama and scene study can help us connect to each other and communicate in a way that fosters resistance to the things that divide us, such as race, education and gender presentation. Her play exploring how feminism is important in addressing climate change can be seen at this year's Vancouver Fringe Festival.

Nick Heffelfinger

Nick is delighted to be part of About Love 2016. A native of Fort McMurray, AB, Nick cut his teeth on the boards at Keyano College Theatre before moving to Victoria to attend the Canadian College of Performing Arts in 2012. After graduating from the Company C Program in 2015, Nick made a pitstop in Rossland for the Gold Fever Follies before moving to Vancouver to do the whole artist thing. Though you may recognize him from his work as Cameron in Seeing Dark at the UBC Brave New Play Rites, he assures you that the instability was merely an act. He couldn't be happier to have his directiorial debut in Vancouver with Tomo Suru Players. See you at the festival!

Michael Q Adams

Michael trained at the Stella Adler Studio of Acting in New York City.

Selected film credits include Jackhammer and A Fairly Odd Christmas. 

Selected T.V. credits include The Man in the High Castle, Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, Cult, Supernatural, and Smallville.

His extensive stage work includes About Love Festival (Trevor & Margaret), Elephant Sighs, Four Dogs and a Bone, K2 and The Boys Next Door. 

Allie Pev

Allie is a director, actor and filmmaker living in Vancouver. After studying acting and directing at Seacoast Studios in West Vancouver she appeared onstage in Fractured (Seacoast Studios), Aurora (Brave New Play Rites). Film credits include All Things Wanting (UBC), and Milk Chug (Capilano University), Retail Robins (Nachowifeys Productions). She in the midst of wrapping her first short film directing debut Friends (Polkadot Rocket Productions) and is thrilled to be back in the theatre. She is most likely sitting with a coffee somewhere right now.

John Dickinson

Originally from Toronto, John Dickinson is an emerging director in Vancouver. While at UBC he studied directing under Lois Anderson, John Cooper and Tom Scholte. He has directed short plays in the UBC Players Club's Festival Dionysia, UBC Creative Writing Department's Brave New Playrites Festival and Tomo Suru Players About Love Festival. Other Credits include Herm and Gertie (Director; Brain Apple Theatre), Burning: A Bridge (Director; Monstrous Nights Theatre) and The Laramie Project (Assistant Director; Tomo Suru Players).

Georgia Johnson

Georgia Johnson is a multi-disciplinary artist from Vancouver, BC. A graduate of NYU's Tisch School of the Arts with a BFA in Theatre, Georgia has worked with performing arts organizations locally and internationally. Most recent collaborations include LEIMAY (Brooklyn),  PuSh International Performing Arts Festival (Vancouver),  Live Source (New York), and NYC Seed Group of the Open Program of the Workcenter of Jerzy Grotowski and Thomas Richards (NYC/Italy). Georgia appeared in Tomo Suru's production of The Laramie Project earlier this year, and will play the role of Marilyn in the upcoming Fringe Festival play Dance Teacher in September. This is Georgia's first time directing a short play. website: georgialjohnson.net

Johnny Wu

Johnny is a Taiwanese-born Canadian raised performer, collaborator, and multidisciplinary artist. He is currently studying Contemporary Theatre and Criminology at Simon Fraser University. Johnny recently began to ventures into the world of directing. He's recent credits include directing Bluebeard's Castle as part of SFU's Directing Projects and assistant artistic directing  SFU's Blackbox Theatre 2016. As an artist, Johnny seeks to intersect social discourse and contemporary arts. Johnny hopes to illuminate the invisible. He wants to use art as a platform to start discussions about topics that are seen but not heard.

Shelby Bushell

Shelby Bushell is a graduate from UBC with a double major BFA in English Literature and Theatre Production and Design. Since graduation, she has been working in Vancouver’s theatre industry as a stage manager, tour coordinator, director and designer. She is thrilled to be joining the Tomo Suru Players for the About Love Festival. Recent credits include Coleen Osborn’sTripping with Trump for the Brave New Play Rites Festival 2016 and Elena Kaufman's Divine Monster with the UBC Players Club.

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Our Judges

David Geary

David Geary is of Māori and European blood, originally from New Zealand and now a citizen of Canada. He is a writer, director, dramaturge, filmmaker, and educator. He lives in North Vancouver and teaches at Capilano University in the Indigenous Independent Digital Film, Documentary and Communications programs. He also teaches playwriting at the Playwrights Theatre Centre

Marc Gaudet

Has been a working union actor in Vancouver for over 15 years having appeared in such TV shows as The Flash, iZombie and The Killing. He is the founder of Actorvan where he teaches and coaches at Shoreline Studios. His theatre experience includes a director’s stint at the McGill Drama Festival in Montreal as well as on stage in the lead role as Shannon, a defrocked priest in Tennessee Williams'  Night of The Iguana (White Rock Players). He is excited to be part of the Tomo Suru About Love Festival.

 

WWW.ACTORVAN.COM

 

marc@actorvan.com

Brittanny Downey-MacDonald

Vancouver based artist, writer and editor Brittanny Downey-MacDonald studied English Literature and Creative Writing at UBC. She held positions with Calgary Magazine (Red Point Media) and Transcontinental Media before striking out on her own as a freelance copywriter and editor. She is the owner and chief designer at Off You Go Paper Co. Brtittanny is also founder of the Judy Jamieson Foundation, which builds better communities through localized grants, and has established the Play For EveryBody organization, which is dedicated to building universally accessible playgrounds within educational environments across Canada.

David Whitmey

David Whitmey founded Moving Pictures Talent & Entertainment Group in 2011 after 15 years of experience in Vancouver’s Film, TV and Commercial Industries.

David’s background as a classically trained actor, 1st assistant director, production manager, and acting instructor primed him to manage the careers of the Moving Pictures Talent roster. He prides himself on working with a select group of talent who are passionate about their craft and diligent in the pursuit of their career goals.

David’s diverse skill set, passion for story & character along with his connections in the industry set him apart from the pack. His thorough understanding of all the stages of production, knowledge of the acting process and record of success, makes him a sought after talent representative

Edward Rea

Edward Rea’s broad industry experience includes everything from production to talent management, consulting to casting….and pretty much everything in between. His production credits include the development of a network series, a MOW and directing a pilot for market.  Edward has over 100 casting credits in film, TV and multimedia projects.  Notable credits include "X Men 2", "Smallville" and more recently the critically acclaimed series "The Romeo Section" by veteran showrunner Chris Haddock. During the span of his career in casting he has worked with such artists such as Madonna, Bryan Singer and Guillermo Del Toro to name a few. 
Edward has assisted in the management of talent for almost a decade at various top talent agencies. His comprehensive experience in the area of talent management and development has made Edward a sought after commodity in many forums across Canada.  Over the past year alone Edward has cast films with premiers at the Toronto and Vancouver International Film Festival. Currently Edward has acquired an Emmy nominated popular children's series for Awesomeness TV and Netflix while also prepping casting for numerous arthouse features and will also adding Producing to his list of credits.

Andy Toth

Andy Toth, Musical Director Awkward Stage Productions

Andy has been directing, coaching, teaching and performing in Vancouver for 15 years.  Directing credits include The Fantasticks, Assassins, and Last Call…a Post-Nuclear Cabaret with Quintessence Musicals, West Side Story with the Chilliwack Academy of Music, and Anne of Green Gables for the Kamloops Symphony Orchestra. Andy also had the pleasure of directing Canadian Icon and CBC radio legend Jurgen Gothe in his hilarious wine show Up Your Glass… a wine entertainment.
As director of the Pre-Professional Musical Theatre Troupe at Arts Umbrella, Andy has directed Dear Edwina, Lucky Stiff, Pippin, Little Women and is directing the upcoming production of Bring It On.
Andy is also in demand as an adjudicator, workshop leader and coach for individuals and groups of professionals and community performers alike. He has been a guest speaker for auditions, courses and conferences at SFU, UBC, and Capilano University. Andy also served as Musical Director for the smash hit production of Spring Awakening at Studio 58. In all, its Andy’s dedication to the development of new talent in Vancouver’s theatre scene that has him thrilled to be serving as Awkward Stage’s Artistic Director.

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Our Writers

Brad Sytsma

Brad Sytsma is a playwright and actor living in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Brad attended Olivet Nazarene University where he studied Theatre and Business, it was there he began writing plays.  Brad's work has been produced across the United States, and now Canada.  Most notably, Brad received an honorable mention for his "Most Unique Style" during the 2015 Detroit Fringe Festival.  When he's not writing, Brad can frequently be found onstage performing with Pigeon Creek Shakespeare's repertory company or with one of West Michigan's other performance groups.

C.J. Ehrlich

C.J. Ehrlich is a NY-based playwright whose award-winning one-acts have enjoyed dozens of productions around the US and on five continents, and now finally in BC. Published: Smith & Kraus’ annual Best Ten-Minute Plays anthologies (2011-2015); Applause’s Best American Short Plays of 2014-15 (THE LILAC TICKET); Heuer Publishing. Some favorite collaborators: Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Fest (NYC), Little Fish Los Angeles, Aloha Performing Arts Center (HI), Grin Theatre (Liverpool).  C.J.’s full-length comedy-farce (with Philip J. Kaplan), THE CUPCAKE CONSPIRACY:Terrorism is Easy. Marriage is Complicated is available to fun theatres everywhere. A proud member of the Dramatists Guild, C.J. lists among her greatest achievements teaching her sons the fine art of the spit take. Please visit at CJ-Ehrlich.com.

David MacGregor

David is a playwright and screenwriter.  He is a resident artist at Jeff Daniels' Purple Rose Theatre in Michigan, has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in Drama, and his plays have been performed from New York to Hobart, Tasmania.  His work has been published by Samuel French, Playscripts, and Heuer Publishing.  He wrote the screenplay for the dark comedy, Vino Veritas (2013), which stars Carrie Preston (Emmy-winner for The Good Wife), and his screenplay In the Land of Fire and Ice is a 2016 Athena List Winner (best screenplays featuring female protagonists).  His street-soccer screenplay, Shadowplayers, was just optioned by Fishbowl Films, and one of his many dark and disturbing secrets is that he was once one of the top hundred Scrabble players in the world..  He teaches film and writing at Wayne State University in Detroit, but does not pack heat.  Usually.  (http://david-macgregor.com)

Jessica Moss

Jessica Moss is an actor, playwright, and producer from Toronto, Canada. She is the creator/performer of solo shows Modern Love (Next Stage Festival, Toronto), and Polly Polly (Toronto/Edmonton Fringe; Patron's Pick, Best of Fringe, Ed Mirvish Award for Entrepreneu