A great fit! The Okanagan School of the Arts and The Shatford Centre together in one place

oook contributor Katie Brennan sat down with Shatford Centre Executive Director Jane Shaak to learn more about how the Shatford Centre came to be and its relationship to the Okanagan School of the Arts.


oook: What is the Shatford Centre?
JS: The Shatford Centre is a creativity centre and community gathering place situated in the historic, 90 year old Shatford building on the Pen High Campus in the heart of the city of Penticton, at 760 Main Street to be exact. It is a place for the arts, culture and heritage of the South Okanagan.


oook: The Shatford centre itself is fairly new? How did this institution come to be?
JS: The Shatford Centre came about through the stimulus of the Community Adjustment Funding of the Federal Government. This initial funding provided the spark that was needed to arrange for additional funding from the Province of BC, City of Penticton, Regional District and School District 67. These Phase One funders provided funding for upgrades to bring the building up to code and to allow the Shatford Centre to open its doors. We are now into Phase Two, which involves enhancing the facilities, studios, equipment, furnishings and programming. This allowed for the Okanagan School of the Arts, which has been around for 50 years, to find its first real bricks and mortar home.


oook:What is Shatford’s relationship to the Okanagan School of the Arts? How did this collaboration come about?
JS: The two organizations are intrinsically tied. The Okanagan School of the Arts (OSA) actually operates the Shatford Centre and helped Shatford to come into being many  years of community meetings, strategic planning and dedication of the OSA board.


oook:Who else does the Shatford Centre collaborate with?
JS: We have relationships with many organizations in the creative community of the South Okanagan; such as the Penticton Arts Council, to bring in the Spirit Festival and Strings the Thing Program to the Shatford; the Penticton Museum and Archives, on exhibits and artisan projects. And we recently collaborated with the three Federation of Canadian Artists chapters of the Okanagan and Similkameen, to present the “Triptych Exhibition”.  Part of our mandate is to work as an entrepreneurial creativity centre; we also invite partnerships and collaborations with our community.


oook: How has the Shatford Centre affected the local arts community?  
JS: A great example of the effects the Okanagan School of the Arts, and now the Shatford Centre, is the OSA’s 50th Anniversary Celebration that is being held on September 24th  2011 . This event will showcase the pioneers and innovators, such as OSA faculty, staff and students, who have influenced the arts in the South Okanagan over the last 50 years.


oook:What’s coming up at the Shatford Centre, beside the 50th Anniversary of OSA?
JS: At our next event, Ann Mortifee and Paul Horn will be at the Shatford on September 23rd for ‘In Love With the Mystery’. Ann taught at the Okanagan School of the Arts for 5 summer sessions and is looking forward to returning with her husband, Paul Horn, who is known as the Father of New Age Music.

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