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Philip Sexsmith To Receive 2010 Playhouse Honours

by on March 14, 2010

The founder and director of Characters Incorporated has been named the 2010 recipient of the Playhouse Honours. Philip Sexsmith’s contributions to the community will be celebrated at the Fredericton Playhouse’s annual Onstage Gala Dinner scheduled for Saturday, May 1st.

Sexsmith, an educator with School District 18, founded and lead Characters Incorporated, a youth-based performance troupe which produced high-quality music and theatrical productions. They travelled internationally, representing New Brunswick and Canada throughout the 1980’s and 90’s. In addition, he has worked on numerous other youth productions with Leo Hayes High School and the Theatre New Brunswick Theatre School.

Kim Hill, President of the Playhouse’s Board of Directors, explained why the board selected Sexsmith as this year’s honouree. “His work with Characters has left a huge legacy in the performing arts and in our community. He built Characters into an organization that bred some of our community’s best performing arts practitioners,” said Hill.  

Under Sexsmith’s leadership, countless young people benefited from their involvement in Characters Incorporated. His approach to creating and developing the troupe not only resulted in producing high level performances, but also developed discipline, social skills, and artistic development in its young members. The “Characters” legacy includes numerous professional artists, arts educators and administrators including Leigh Rivenbark, Caleb Marshall, Melanie Murray, Tania Breen, Derrick Paul Miller, Measha Brüggergosman, Amber Bishop, and many others.

“I am sincerely honoured and humbled to receive this recognition,” says Sexsmith. “Some of my fondest memories are linked to working with many of New Brunswick’s most gifted and talented children. The synergy of our performances took us around the world but of all the stages we ever performed on not one matched the anticipation and excitement of performing at the Playhouse. This was home.”

The Playhouse Honours program, now in its third year, was established to honour the contributions of individuals to the performing arts in Fredericton. The purpose of the program is to foster a deeper appreciation of the value that individuals make to community life through their work in the performing arts. The honouree is feted at the annual Onstage Gala Dinner and will be recognized in a permanent display located at The Playhouse. Previous recipients of the Playhouse Honours are Ilkay Silk and Brent Staeben.

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