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People and organizations

Robson, Rhena Victoria

  • Person
  • January 13, 1902-December 4, 1982

Rhena Robson (nee Kendrick) was a Victoria University graduate, class of 1923, and gold medalist. Robson continued her education at Bryn Mawr and the University of Chicago before returning to Toronto to teach in Classics at Victoria. Rhena married Donald Robson in 1931.

Awards won as a graduating student in 1923:
Governor-General's Gold Medal
The Edward Wilson Gold Medal in Classics

Teaching Positions held at Victoria:
Instructor in Ancient History, 1928-1929
Lecturer in Classics, 1929-1931

Robson, Donald Oakley

  • Person
  • October 27, 1905 - September 5, 1976

DO Robson was a respected Professor of Classics, born in Fenelon Falls, Ontario and raised there and in Toronto. He completed his undergraduate degree at Victoria in 1928, winning the Edward Wilson Gold Medal in Classics. Upon graduation he was named a Fellow and continued with his education, earning his MA in 1929 and PhD in 1932 (his thesis was "The Samnites in the Po Valley").

Robson taught at Western for seventeen years before returning as an Associate Professor of Latin at Victoria in 1947. He retired in 1975. Robson was not known for publishing, but instead believed that his most important function was teaching. In 1971, when he retired as Chairman of the Department of Classics, he said, "The greatest reward a teacher can reap is the love and trust of his colleagues and students."

Generous to Victoria, Robson made many financial donations to the University. In 1931, Robson married Rhena Victoria Kendrick, also a Victoria graduate.

Victoria University Positions Held:
Fellow in Classics 1928-1930
Associate Professor of Latin 1947-1956
Professor of Latin 1956-1960
Professor of Latin; Chairman of Department of Classics 1960-1971
Professor of Latin 1971-1975
Professor Emeritus of Classics 1975

Paikin, Marina Suzanne

  • Person
  • 1936-2023

Chairperson, Governing Council, University of Toronto (1976-1980)

Blissymbolics Communication Institute Canada

  • Corporate body
  • 1975 - present

Blissymbolics Communication International (BCI) was established in 1975, originally as Blissymbolics Communication Foundation (BCF). BCI is a non-profit organization with the worldwide authority, “to publish, teach and disseminate Blissymbols in any manner whatsoever for use by handicapped persons and persons having communication, language and learning difficulties.” (Legal agreement with C.K. Bliss, 1982).

Blissymbolics is an augmentative communication language, derived from an international semantic language developed in the 1940s by Charles K. Bliss (1897-1985), published in his book Semantography – Blissymbolics (1965). The language uses pictographic and ideographic symbols to convey meaning, with symbols representing specific words or concepts.

In 1971, Shirley McNaughton (1931—) within a clinical team working with children with cerebral palsy at the then Ontario Crippled Children's Centre (OCCC) – now the Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital – discovered the work of Bliss in a book called Signs and Symbols Around the World by Elizabeth Helfman (1967). The team was able to acquire Semantography which detailed the use of Blissymbolics as an international language. Then, the team introduced Blissymbols as a communication method for non-speaking students at the OCCC.

After the successful response to Blissymbolics in OCCC classrooms, the Blissymbol program was formalized as an OCCC service called Blissymbolics Communication Service (BCS) in 1975. This program gained international recognition as a breakthrough for persons who were non-speaking. The BCS was later renamed to Augmentative Communication Service (ACS) in the 1980s with a broader communication mandate, and was supported by the Easter Seal Society (ESS) until 1991, when the ESS program was closed. This augmentative communication service then became a program of Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital.

Blissymbolics programs have had many name changes through the decades. In 1975, BCI was established as the Blissymbolics Communication Foundation in order to separate the international administrative work of Blissymbolics from the services provided by the BCS. In 1980, BCF was renamed to Blissymbolics Communication Institute to clarify that the organization was not a foundation giving out grants. In 1987, the program was renamed to the Easter Seal Communication Institute (ESCI) to recognize the primary financial supporter of Bliss services, the Easter Seal Society. In 1994, the organization was renamed to Blissymbolics Communication International to recognize its primary mandate. In 2009, a process began in order to enable the Sweden Bliss organization to take on the international responsibilities. This agreement was completed in 2011, and the Sweden organization assumed the name, Blissymbolics Communication International, and acquired the worldwide authority to publish, teach and disseminate Blissymbols. The Canadian organization adopted the trade name of Blissymbolics Communication Institute – Canada (BCIC) in 2009, changing from its international mandate to providing resources and support for the Bliss community in Canada. Today, BCIC continues to support Bliss users and alumni.

Borring, Norman W.

  • Person

Captain Norman W. Borring was among the liberators of the Laufen Concentration Camp, 5 May 1945.

Walker, Sir Byron Edmund

  • Person
  • 1848-1924

Sir Byron Edmund Walker was a Canadian banker, art collector and philanthropist, president of the Canadian Bank of Commerce, co-founder of National Art Gallery of Canada, Art Museum of Toronto, Royal Ontario Museum, Champlain Society, and Chancellor of the University of Toronto.

University of Toronto. Faculty of Information (iSchool)

  • Corporate body
  • 1928-current

The University of Toronto's Faculty of Information (iSchool) was established in 1928 as Ontario's first formal library school with a full-year academic program in Library Science within the Ontario College of Education. In 1965, the department separated from the Ontario College of Education and became the School of Library Science. In 1972 the School of Library Science attained Faculty status, and became the Faculty of Library Science (FLS). In 1982, the Faculty was renamed the Faculty of Library and Information Studies (FLIS) and in 1994 became the Faculty of Information Studies (FIS). Finally, in 2008, FIS became the Faculty of Information, the iSchool at the University of Toronto. The name change reflects its closer alignment with the iSchool movement. Additional information on the Faculty's history, including a timeline, can be found here -

Raymond, Jocelyn Motyer

  • Person
  • 1930-2007

Jocelyn Motyer Raymond (1930-2007) was an educator and researcher at University of Toronto's Institute for Child Study (ICS). Born in Bermuda, Raymond first came to Canada in 1946 to study at McMaster University. She studied at Ontario College of Education from 1952-1954, then went on to teach at the Institute for Child Study between 1954-1964, working closely with Dr. William E. Blatz, Margaret Fletcher, Mary Northway, Gerry Leroux, and other key scholars in the burgeoning field of child study. During this time, she also wrote a weekly column for The Globe and Mail entitled "Living with Children." Raymond received her M.A. in Education from Dalhousie University, and later taught at the Faculty of Education, Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. There, she helped found the university's Early Childhood Education Department, set up the demonstration school, served on the ICS Archives Committee, and published her monograph The Nursery World of Dr. Blatz in 1991.

Bliss, Charles K.

  • Person
  • 1897-1985

Charles K. Bliss was born September 5, 1897 as Karl Kaisal Blitz into a Jewish family to parents Michael Antchel Blitz and Jeanette Jochewed Seidmann. Bliss was born in Czernowitz, the capital of the province of Bukowina in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, now a part of Ukraine. Bliss spent his childhood growing up and attending school in Czernowitz, and enrolled in the Army at the age of 18 to fight in World War I. After which, he studied chemistry at the University of Czernowitz, and then enrolled at the Technical University of Vienna to become a chemical engineer.

While living and working in Vienna, Bliss was arrested by the Nazi party and was transported to the Dachau Concentration Camp. Throughout September 1938 to April 1939, Claire, Bliss's wife who was German, attempted to negotiate his release from the camps.

In April of 1939 Bliss was released and able to flee to London, England, where he changed his name from “Blitz” to “Bliss” in response to the London Blitz bombings. Throughout the next year, Bliss attempted to negotiate a visa for Claire to leave Vienna and join him in England, but they were unsuccessful. In 1940, they were able to acquire visas to Shanghai, China where they were officially reunited in 1941. In 1946, Bliss and his wife moved to Sydney, Australia where they settled until their deaths.

Between 1941 and 1949 Bliss began a process of developing his own symbolic language, partly inspired by Chinese characters. His hope was to create a universal language where meaning and intent could not be misconstrued or manipulated by others. In 1949, Bliss published Semantography (Blissymbolics) which described his symbolic language, Blissymbolics. The book attracted little attention by the public until 1971, when it was discovered by teachers at the Ontario Crippled Children’s Centre, who began to use Blissymbolics in their classrooms for children with cerebral palsy.

Bliss died in 1985.

Brown, William Eberts Kenneth

  • Person
  • 1917-1948

William “Bill” Eberts Kenneth Brown (December 8, 1917-April 15, 1948) was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario. He graduated with an engineering degree from the University of Toronto. During the war, Bill served as a Lieutenant in the Royal Canadian Engineers, where his chief function was building Bailey Bridges, used to transport Allied troops over rivers when retreating Germans had bombed the original structures. He also worked on constructing roads that had been bombed out, but much preferred the challenges of bridge work.

Brown, Wilma Marion

  • Person
  • 1921-2003

Wilma Marion Brown (née Perry) (March 11, 1921- November 20, 2003) was born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba. She received training in nursing at the University of Manitoba and served as a Lieutenant in the Royal Canadian Medical Corps, where she was a Physio and Occupational Therapist.

Bittman, Roman and Belec Bittman, Marilyn

  • Family
  • 1941 - present

Roman Bittman was born on June 5, 1941, in Fort Vermilion, Alberta. He grew up in a hunter-farming community with his German father and Metis mother. He later moved to Hay River, Northwest Territories. He entered the world of media when he started the first northern radio station at 17. As he grew, he became a film producer, businessman and writer. His contributions to Canadian media and Indigenous cultural organizations are many, as he was involved in more than 100 films and was well-known for having designed and implemented the Film Industry Labour Tax Credit, which was an essential financial instrument that fueled the growth of the English Canadian film industry. Roman Bittman worked at CBC News and was the producer for the series he is most well-known for, The Nature of Things, CBC’s flagship natural history and science series. His involvement in various Indigenous productions includes his position as an early advisor to the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN). He served as President of the Nova Scotia Film Development Corporation and produced the awards show the National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation (NAAF), now known as Indspire today; he was the organization’s interim CEO. He died in 2017 and received special awards after his death, such as the Canadian Screen Awards in 2019.

Marilyn Belec Bittman is an award-winning film industry veteran for 32 years. She worked for the National Film Board and owned her company, Mobius Media. She worked alongside her husband, in Mobius Media. During her time as president of Mobius Media, she made and distributed films and acquired films produced outside her production company only if they had won awards. She was also a producer at the National Film Board’s Atlantic office. She helped found the first Canadian chapter of Women in Film and TV – Toronto.

Taipei Economic & Cultural Office (TECO)

  • Corporate body
  • 1993 -

The Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) was established in Toronto in 1993. In addition to consular services, its mandate is “to promote exchange and cooperation between Taiwan and Canada within its jurisdiction over Ontario, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.” A related TECO Culture Centre was established in Toronto in 1989, moving to a Scarborough facility in 1994.


Colin Campbell

  • Person
  • 1942-2001

Colin Campbell was born in Reston, Manitoba in 1942. He studied art at the University of Manitoba and Claremont Graduate School. He taught at Mount Allison University in the 1960s and 1970s before moving to Toronto in 1973. In Toronto, Campbell taught at the Ontario College of Art and then the University of Toronto. Campbell died in October 2001.
A prominent video artist, Campbell was a founding member of Vtape. His work was shown at the 1980 Venice Biennale and appeared at institutions including the National Gallery of Canada, the Musée National d’Art Moderne, the Museum of Modern Art, The Whitney Museum, the Melbourne Film Festival, The British Film Institute Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, The Festival of Festivals (now TIFF), and the Chicago International Film Festival. A retrospective of his work took place at the Winnipeg Art Gallery in 1990. In 1996, Campbell received the Bell Canada Award in Video Art.

“Colin Campbell – Video Artist.”
Gale, Peggy. “Colin Campbell.” Vtape. 2006.

Ray Jafelice

  • Person

Raymond Jafelice worked as an animation storyboard artist and director for Nelvana.

Bob Kain

  • Person
  • 1932-2021

Robert (Bob) Kain, born 1932, worked as a cartoonist, and illustrator in Toronto. He studied at the Ontario College of Art and the School of Visual Arts in New York. In Toronto, Kain lead Videoart, a commercial art studio. After retiring from advertising, he became an illustrator for Chirp, a children’s magazine, designing their mascot. Bob died in 2021.

Rob Bowman

  • Person
  • 1956-

Robert (Rob) Bowman, born 1956, is a music professor at York University. After studying ethnomusicology at York, he completed his PhD at the University of Memphis. Bowman is an expert in popular music. He has written liner notes for multiple albums and appeared in many broadcast documentaries and radio programs. Nominated for six Grammy Awards, he won Best Album Notes Grammy in 1996 for The Complete Stax/Volt Soul Sings, Vol. 3: 1972-1975. Among his many publications is the book Soulsville, U.S.A.: The Story Of Stax Records, a history of the record label.


Jerry G. Gray

  • Person
  • 1933-

Jerry G. Gray was born in Toronto in 1933. He graduated in Dentistry from the University of Toronto. In 1953, at Camp Naivelt, The Travellers, a folk music band, was formed by Gray, Sid Dolgay, Helen Gray, Jerry Goodis, and Oscar Ross. Initially associated with the United Jewish Peoples Order, the group was linked to the labour movement. Membership of the band changed over time, with Simone Johnston, Pam Fernie, Aileen Ahern, Marty Meslin, Ray Woodley, Ted Roberts, Joe Lawrence Hampson, and Don Vickery joining the group at various periods.
The Travellers debuted on television in 1954 on CBC. That year they adapted Woody Guthrie’s song “This Land Is Your Land” to a Canadian context, releasing the song as a single in 1957. In 1961, they performed at the Mariposa Folk Festival. In 1962, they toured the USSR, and in 1964 they performed for Queen Elizabeth II at the celebration of PEI’s centennial. In 1970, the band played at the Canadian Pavilion of Expo 70 in Japan. The group continued to perform into the 2000s. In 2001, an NFB documentary, “This Land Is Your Land,” was directed by Robert Cohen.
Beginning in 1999, Jerry Gray began teaching courses at the University of Toronto, Ryerson University (now Toronto Metropolitan University), Florida Atlantic University, and George Brown College. These courses covered Folk & Protest Music, as well as Yiddish Music.

“The Travellers.” The Canadian Encyclopedia. September 7, 2018.

Davies, Frank

  • Person
  • 1946-

The Hon. Francis (Frank) William Harding Davies, born 1946 in Northampton, England, was a prominent record producer and music publisher. In 1964, while studying at Strasbourg University, he started in the music business as a correspondent for Billboard Magazine. Davies then worked in England at EMI and Liberty Records. In 1970, he moved to Canada and established Love Productions and Daffodil Records (1971-1978) with Ronnie Hawkins. Davies was president of Partisan Music Productions (1978-1982), ATV Music Group Canada (1982-1985), and TMP – The Music Publisher (1986-1999). TMP was sold to Alliance Atlantis in 1994. In 1999, Davies began consulting as Let Me Be Frank Inc. He founded the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1998. He is the recipient of numerous industry awards, including multiple Junos. Prominent artists Davies has worked with include: Crowbar, King Biscuit Boy, A Foot In Coldwater, Fludd, Tom Cochrane, Klaatu, Chilliwack, The Rankin Family, and Serena Ryder.

Epstein, Edward

  • Local
  • Person
  • active 1983-

Edward Epstein, an ex-New Yorker active on the Toronto music scene since 1983, was the owner, curator, and music programmer of Gallery 345, an art gallery and performance space at 345 Sorauren Avenue, Toronto, Ontario.

Yoshida Family

  • Family

Shigeuki Edward Yoshida was born May 16, 1908 in Victoria, B.C. As a child he grew up in Chemainus, B.C. and became very interested in the Boy Scouts of America. He became a Lone Scout and quickly climbed the ranks. In 1925 he began the first Japanese Canadian troupe, unique to Canada and the British Empire at the time. He went on to work as a truck driver and insurance agent for Victoria Lumber & Manufacturer Co. in Chemainus, B.C. Edward Shige married Sumiko Yoshida (nee Takahashi), who was born March 16, 1915 in Canada (d. 2013). They would have four children together.

In 1942, the family were forcibly uprooted from Chemainus and sent to Hasting Park, Vancouver, B.C. From there they went to Tashme, B.C. Edward Shige Yoshida has been remembered for his time during Japanese Canadian internment and his forming of the first Boy Scouts group in Tashme, B.C. The popularity and success of this group, led to Yoshida aiding the formation of the Girl Guides group at Tashme as well. The Scouts group at its peak included about 200 boys and was well recognized within the Scouting community. In 1946, the Yoshida family moved east, eventually settling in Ontario.

McLuhan, Marshall

  • Person
  • 1911-1980

Herbert Marshall McLuhan was born in Edmonton, Alberta on 21 July 1911 to Herbert Ernest McLuhan, a salesman, and Elsie Naomi (Hall) McLuhan, an actress and monologist. The family moved to Winnipeg, where McLuhan attended the University of Manitoba from 1929 to 1934, receiving a Bachelor or Arts and a Master of Arts in English literature.

After teaching English at various American universities, McLuhan returned to Canada in 1944 to teach at Assumption College in Windsor. From 1946 until shortly before his death, he taught English at St. Michael's College, University of Toronto. In 1963, McLuhan became the director of the University of Toronto's newly-established Centre for Culture and Technology. The Centre conducted research on questions of sensory perception and other communications-related issues and offered academic courses.

McLuhan's books include the following: The Mechanical Bride (1951), The Gutenberg Galaxy (1961), for which he was awarded the Governor General's prize for critical prose; Understanding Media (1964); The Medium is the Massage (1967, with Quentin Fiore); War and Peace in the Global Village (1968, with Quentin Fiore); Through the Vanishing Point (1968, with Harley Parker); Counterblast (1969, with Harley Parker); Culture is Our Business (1970); From Cliché to Archetype (1970, with Wilfred Watson); Take Today (1972, with Barrington Nevitt); and The City as Classroom (1977, with Eric McLuhan and Kathryn Hutchon).

  • Adapted from Library and Archives Canada's biographical note for the Marshall McLuhan fonds.

Beckwith, John

  • Person
  • 1927-2022

John Beckwith (born March 9, 1927 in Victoria, British Columbia) is a composer, pianist, author, and teacher. He moved to Toronto in 1945 to study piano with Alberto Guerrero at the Royal Conservatory. He also studied composition in Paris with Nadia Boulanger (1950-1951) and has a Mus.B. (1947) and Mus.M. (1961) from the University of Toronto, where he studied with John Weinzweig, among others. He began lecturing part-time at the University of Toronto in 1952, taught full-time from 1955 to 1990, and was dean of the Faculty of Music from 1970 to 1977. He was also the director for the Institute for Canadian Music at the Faculty of Music and held the Jean A. Chalmers professorship in Canadian music.

His over 160 compositions include four operas, orchestral, chamber, solo and choral works, and he has published critical and scholarly articles in Canadian music studies. He was also a staff (1953-1955) and freelance (1955-1965) script-writer and programmer for Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) music series, and a critic and columnist for the Toronto Star (1959-1962, 1963-1965).

Beckwith holds five honorary doctorates from Canadian Universities, and received the Canadian Music Council’s annual medal (1972) and the Composer of the Year citation (1984), the Toronto Arts award for music (1995), and the Diplome d’honneur of the Canadian Conference of the Arts (1996). He was named a member of the Order of Canada in 1987.

Beckwith passed away in Toronto, Ontario on December 5, 2022.

Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Centre

  • Corporate body
  • 1958-

The Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center (CPEMC) was the first electronic music studio in the United States. The studio was founded by Otto Luening and Vladimir Ussachevsky at Columbia University. They received a Rockefeller Foundation grant (awarded in 1958) to create the studio, which became operational in 1959. Among the many composers who worked on compositions in this studio are Edgard Varese, Milton Babbitt, Jon Appleton, Bulent Arel, Luciano Berio, Wendy Carlos, Mario Davidovsky, Alfred del Monaco, Charles Dodge, Jacob Druckman, Halim El-Dabh, Paul Lansky, Alcides Lanza, Ilhan Mimaroglu, Pauline Oliveros, Ramon Sender, Alice Shields, Pril Smiley, Harvey Sollberger, Diane Thome, Michiko Toyama, and Barry Vercoe. The studio was renamed in Columbia University Electronic Music Center in the late 1980s, and the Columbia University Computer Music Center in 1996. Ussachevsky served as the studio's director from 1958 until 1980, followed by Mario Davidovsky (1980-1994); Fred Lerdahl and Brad Garton (1994-1996); and Brad Garton (1996-present).

Shand, Patricia Martin

  • Person
  • 1942-

Patricia Martin Shand was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba November 29, 1942. She started teaching music education at the University of Toronto Faculty of Music in 1968 and served as acting director of the university's Institute for Canadian Music in 1987. From 1973 to 1991, she was director of the John Adaskin Project.

Carlos, Wendy

  • Person
  • 1939-

Cross, Lowell Martin

  • Person
  • 1938-

Lowell Cross attended the University of Toronto from 1964-1968 as a graduate student in electronic music and musicology. His Bibliography of Electronic Music (University of Toronto Press) and his Toronto thesis, “Electronic Music, 1948-1953” were published during this period. He worked with the late Harry Somers on the 4 channel tape segments for the opera Louis Riel. Lowell later developed laser projection systems culminating in his invention of the “laser light show”. His installation at Expo ’70 , Osaka, Japan was the first major public laser-art projection system, which was seen by over 2,000,000 visitors. He later was Professor of Music and Director of Recording Studios at the University of Iowa.

Mercer, Ruby

  • Person
  • 1906-1999

Ruby Mercer was an American-born Canadian soprano, writer, and broadcaster. She made her debut at the Metropolitan Opera in 1936 and toured North America as an opera, operetta, and musical comedy performer for several years, before becoming the producer and host of WNYC's radio program Mr. and Mrs. Opera (1949-1958) and MBS's The Ruby Mercer Show (1954-1958).

Following her marriage to Geza Por in 1958, they moved to Toronto, where she founded Opera Canada in 1960 and remained its editor until 1990. In 1968, she co-founded the Canadian Children's Opera Chorus with Lloyd Bradshaw. As a radio broadcaster, she hosted Opera Time and its successor Opera in Stereo on CBC radio (1962-1979, 1979-1984).

Mercer also wrote various books, including a biography of Edward Johnson The Tenor of his Time (Toronto, 1976) and The Quilicos: Louis, Gino and Lina (Oakville, 1990).

Mercer was named a member of the Order of Canada in 1995 and received an honorary doctorate from the University of Toronto in the same year. She passed away on January 26, 1999 in Toronto, Ontario.

University of Toronto. Electronic Music Studio

  • Corporate body
  • 1959-

By the late 1950s, Electronic Music had become an accepted academic discipline. It opened new areas of musical experience and extended the modern musicians' traditional range of taste. It created an awareness of the perimeters of musical performance and composition to an extent that was impossible until the techniques and equipment of Electronic Music were developed. In order to make available the results and benefits of the research and instruction in this area, Dr. Arnold Walter, in his capacity as Director, established in May of 1959 the Electronic Music Studio (UTEMS) as an integral and permanent division within the Music Faculty of the University of Toronto. Dr. Hugh Le Caine, of the National Research Council of Canada in Ottawa, was the technical advisor who maintained a dominant role in the technical development of new equipment and studio techniques. The original staff consisted of Dr. Arnold Walter, Professor Harvey Olnick, and Professor Myron Schaeffer.

UTEMS was the second university studio in North America. It followed the creation of the Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center in 1958. The New York studio was funded by a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation. The initial proposal suggested a consortium that was to include the University of Toronto studio, but Rockefeller apparently intervened and rejected the plan.

The Electronic Music Studio of the University of Toronto was initially housed in an old house on Division Street, near Spadina and College—now the site of the CAMH building—pending completion of the new Edward Johnson Memorial Faculty of Music Building.

Myron Schaeffer was hired in 1958 to teach musicology and to develop the Electronic Music Studio. Correspondence from 1957-58 indicates that musicologist Harvey Olnick (an American, coming to the faculty via Columbia-Princeton) made enquiries about equipment purchases for the studio.

Following Schaeffer's death in 1965, Professor Gustav Ciamaga became the director of the studio. While Ciamaga was Dean of the Faculty of Music in the mid 80s, the position was passed to Professor Dennis Patrick. Since 2019, UTEMS has been under the direction of Professor Eliot Britton.

Viano, Víctor

  • Person
  • 1939-2000

Víctor Viano was born in Rio Primero, Córdoba, Argentina in 1939. In Argentina, he studied art, illustration, and other fields of creative production and expression including radio and television. In 1968, Viano moved with his family to Caracas, Venezuela after winning a contest to become the Art Director of the Ricardo de Luca Advertisement agency (a prestigious advertising and marketing firm working for high profile corporate clients such as Gillette). After a year, Viano left his role at the Ricardo de Luca Advertisement agency to focus solely on editorial and book design as a freelancer although he continued to take on additional artistic and corporate projects. During his time in Venezuela, he designed logos, newspaper mastheads, and some album covers. He worked for many Venezuelan publishing houses including Monte Ávila Editores (one of the most prestigious publishing houses in Latin America), Tiempo Nuevo, Letras Nuevas, The Magazine of National Culture, Editorial Arte, Simón Bolívar University, Zulia’s Culture Institute, and the Venezuelan government. Subsequently, Viano moved to Spain and continued his editorial and book design work in Europe. During his time in Spain, Viano designed the branding and book covers of the Ediciones Mandorla (an independent Spanish publishing house), completed artistic and corporate design projects, and contributed his designs to exhibitions. As described by Faride Mereb of Ediciones Letra Muerta, Viano’s editorial work in Venezuela and Spain is noted for its bold designs and visual metaphors, ornamented borders and capitals, and the use of large titles on dust jackets. According to Mereb, Viano’s style was undoubtedly influenced by his experience working in advertising and reflected a new era of bold marketing in the publishing world. Víctor Viano died in Spain in 2000.

Hidaka, Susan

  • Person
  • 1929-

Susan Hidaka (nee Kobayashi) was born in 1929 in Okanagan Centre, British Columbia. She was the youngest of seven children. Her father, Denbei Kobayashi (1878-1968) came to Canada and eventually began work as an orchard worker in Okanagan Centre. In 1913 he returned to Japan to marry Hiro Yanagisawa, coming to Canada together in 1914. They both became prominent members of the Japanese Canadian community in Okanagan Centre, and worked as fruit farmers.

Susan attended a one-room school in Okanagan Centre. Growing up during WWII, she and her family all had to register with the RCMP. They were not interned though, as they resided far already from the western coast. Many Japanese Canadians came to the area to work as help for the harvest, and Denbei Kobayashi helped many settle into life in the area. From 1943 to 1947 Susan attended Kelowna High School. The school was far from her family and she had to find board. She worked the last two years as a houseworker and maid, thus allowing her to obtain nicer board. With no hope for employment in the area after she graduated from high school, Susan moved to Calgary at her teacher’s recommendation to attend Garbutt Business College. From there she got a job with Imperial Oil Ltd and quickly moved up in the company.

In 1957 Imperial Oil Ltd was to open a new office in Toronto. Only men were being transferred, so Susan resigned and took a long holiday in Hawaii. After her return, she went to Toronto to be hired by Imperial Oil’s Public Relations Department with the help of a senior manager in Calgary.

The 1960s also saw Susan begin to work with the Japanese Canadian community in the Toronto area. She began volunteering to help with the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre (JCCC) project and in 1962 was elected to the Board as Secretary. Here she also met Kunio Hidaka, whom she married. The two moved to Washington D.C. in 1965 so that Kunio could study at George Washington University. Susan found employment with the Washington Hilton Hotel as an executive assistant to the Resident Manager. She worked here for only 3 years, but in that time crossed paths with many influential people, including Joan Crawford, and Ethel Kennedy.

Unsure about the future, the couple moved back to the Greater Toronto area in 1968. Susan continued her volunteer work, which included local politics, the JCCC and the planning for the Japanese Canadian Centennial. By the 80s the Redress movement was underway and though she was never interned, she felt strongly about the many injustices.
In 1985, her husband Kunio passed away suddenly. This loss led her to move back to the City of Toronto to be closer to friends and family in 1987. At the time the Momiji Seniors Centre was underway, and Susan moved in in 1994. From then, she’s been an active Board member and volunteer on many committees.

Sally Dundas

  • Person
  • 1953-2022

Sally Dundas was born in London, England in 1953. She moved to Canada in 1970 and started her film career at the National Film Board, at Women’s Studio D in Montreal. After a few years, she moved to Toronto and worked as a freelance production manager in the film industry, before joining IMAX in 1983.
Dundas co-produced many films at IMAX, including “Skyward,” (1985), “A Freedom to Move” 1985) and “Heart Land,” (1987). In 1990, Dundas produced three films for Expo ’90 in Osaka, Japan: the IMAX Dome stereoscopic film “Echoes of the Sun” (1990), the IMAX 3D film “The Last Buffalo” (1990) and “Flowers In The Sky”, the first film made for the IMAX Magic Carpet format. Dundas then produced “Mountain Gorilla” (1992), the first film by the IMAX Natural History Film Unit. This film received the 1992 Genesis Award for Outstanding Film Documentary in 1992. Dundas also produced “Fires of Kuwait” (1992), which was nominated for an Academy Award in the Feature Documentary category. Dundas then returned to 3D and stereoscopic film, producing “Four Million Houseguests” (also known as “The Hidden Dimension”) in 1997.
After IMAX, Dundas went on to work with the Motion Picture Bond Company. In her later years, she took up drawing and ceramics as another way of documenting the natural world. Dundas passed away in 2022.

Frank Ferguson

  • Person
  • 1905-1993

Frank Ferguson was born in 1905 in Stoughton, Saskatchewan, to George Ferguson and Elizabeth (Lizzie) Fairlie. After Elizabeth passed away in the 1919 influenza pandemic, George sent Frank and his siblings to live with their aunt in Beeton, Ontario. Frank attended school in Georgetown, Ontario, and went on to enroll at University College at the University of Toronto in 1923.
Frank planned to become a minister, and studied English and History, hoping that a strong background in both subjects would contribute to his success as a preacher. Frank spent two summers on religious mission in Saskatchewan, where he met his future wife, Grace Warner. Upon return to Toronto, Frank decided against the religious life, and instead decided to focus on teaching. He graduated with degrees in English and History in 1927, and went on to study at the Ontario College of Education, graduating in 1928. In the same year, Frank and Grace were married. Grace, a graduate of the University of Saskatchewan, also became a schoolteacher.
The couple lived briefly in London and Weston, where Frank accepted teaching positions. In 1933, the couple settled in Galt, when Frank was hired as the head of the English Department at Galt Collegiate Institute and Vocational School. Grace and Frank had four children, Graeme, Janet, Mary, and William. In 1945, the Ferguson family settled into their home in Puslinch, Ontario.
In addition to his teaching role in Galt, Frank Ferguson also had a keen interest in politics, and in 1945 ran as a federal candidate for the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) in Waterloo South, coming in second place. He was again named the CCF candidate in 1949 but dropped out of the race due to time constraints.
As a teacher, Frank had a particular passion for the works of William Shakespeare, and he taught The Bard and other classics of English literature with relish to generations of students. In 1959, Frank became one of the first secondary school teachers in Ontario to take a sabbatical leave. During this time, he spent a year in England researching, preparing, and editing a series of Shakespearean textbooks that would go on to be used in Ontario schools. In 1963, Frank was named the outstanding English teacher in the province of Ontario. Frank retired from Galt Collegiate Institute the following year, but he continued to teach and lecture part time at the University of Toronto’s Extension Department (now the School for Continuing Studies), the Cambridge Public Library, and the Workers' Economic Association in Galt, Preston, Kitchener, and Brantford. In 1979, Frank received the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federations Diamond Jubilee award for distinguished service to education and community.
Many of Frank’s students went on the achieve great success in their fields, including Peter Gzowski, a well-known Canadian broadcaster, as well as Graeme Ferguson (Frank’s son), Robert Kerr, and William Shaw, three of the founding members of the IMAX Corporation.
Frank Ferguson passed away in 1993, in Arundel, Quebec. In recognition of his work and dedication to his community, Frank Ferguson was posthumously inducted into the Cambridge Hall of Fame in 2002. His legacy at Galt Collegiate Institute also continues through the Frank Ferguson Award, a college scholarship for students who excel in English.

Phyllis Ferguson

  • Person
  • 1950-2021

Phyllis Marie Ferguson (née Wilson) was born in 1950 in Quetico, Ontario, a status member of the Algonquins of Pikwàkanagàn First Nation. At the age of 12, she was sent to live with her grandmother, Phyllis Tenniscoe, in Thunder Bay, Ontario. There, the young Phyllis attended Port Arthur Collegiate, where she excelled in sports and enjoyed working with the school’s audio-visual equipment, so much so that a school guidance counsellor encouraged Phyllis to pursue broadcasting as a career.
Upon graduation, Phyllis enrolled in Confederation College, in their new radio and television program. In 1970, Phyllis was hired to assist the location manager of “North of Superior,” one of the very first films shot in the newly invented IMAX format. The film’s director, Graeme Ferguson, would become Phyllis’ mentor, creative partner, and eventually, husband. After “North of Superior,” Phyllis went to host the National Film Board’s weekly “Challenge For Change” slot on local television. Later, she accepted a job with the CBC and became a radio announcer in Whitehorse. She also worked on an Indigenous community newspaper in Ottawa. In 1974, Phyllis rejoined Graeme Ferguson as the sound recordist on his film “Man Belongs to the Earth.” She later returned to television, working as the location manager for CBC’s “The Fifth Estate” and CTV’s “W5.”
Both Phyllis and Graeme eventually returned to the Thunder Bay area – this time to collaborate on a film that Phyllis was directing. Her 1977 documentary short “Nishnawbe-Aski: The People and the Land” explored the effects of change and northern development on the Cree and Ojibwa people of the Nishnawbe-Aski region, through interviews, lyrical vignettes of everyday life, and Phyllis’ own narration. Phyllis made the film pro bono, and it served as a way for indigenous community members to voice their opposition to clear-cutting in northwestern Ontario.
Phyllis and Graeme married in 1982, the same year that they launched another of their collaborative projects: “Hail Columbia!”, with Graeme serving as director and Phyllis co-producing. It was the first in a series of IMAX space films documenting NASA’s space missions in the larger-than-life format. Phyllis went on to co-produce “The Dream is Alive,” (1985) “Blue Planet,” (1990) and “Mission to MIR,” (1997) and was both co-producer and co-director of “Destiny in Space” (1994). Phyllis played a pivotal role in the IMAX Space team, particularly in winning the trust of the astronauts. With her disarming, unaffected style, her natural curiosity, and her regular presence at the Johnson Space Center, she came to be seen as the “glue that held the IMAX Space Team and the NASA 'extended family' together," according to former astronaut and associate administrator of NASA's Space Flight office, Bill Readdy.
After IMAX was sold to investors in 1994, Phyllis retired, and she and Graeme took up full-time residence at their summer home in the Lake of Bays area in Muskoka. She dedicated her time to community issues and charities, traveling, keeping in touch with her family, and taking up the sport of golf. She passed away on March 12, 2021, at the age of 70.

Graeme Ferguson

  • Person
  • 1929-2021

Ivan Graeme Ferguson was born in Toronto on October 7, 1929, to Frank and Grace Ferguson (nee Warner), both school teachers. His parents encouraged his creative pursuits, gifting him a Kodak Brownie camera when he was seven, and later, a Keystone 8mm film camera. Ferguson was raised in Galt, Ontario, and he attended Galt Collegiate Institute alongside his future IMAX co-founders Robert Kerr and William Shaw.
Ferguson enrolled at Victoria College at the University of Toronto in 1948, planning to study economics and political science. At U of T, Ferguson was active in the Students Administrative Council, the Historical Club, as well as the U of T Film Society. In 1950, Ferguson was selected for a summer filmmaking apprenticeship program at the National Film Board, where he met another IMAX co-founder and eventual brother-in-law, Roman Kroitor. Ferguson’s filmmaking career was further influenced by the avant-garde filmmaker Maya Deren. While teaching a workshop at U of T in 1951, Deren enlisted Ferguson as a lighting assistant, and convinced him to pursue film instead of economics.
Upon graduation, Ferguson was appointed the National Secretary of the World University Service of Canada. His job with WUSC took him to India, where he met the Swedish filmmaker Arne Sucksdorff. Sucksdorff hired Ferguson as an assistant director to work on his film, “En Djungelsaga,” (also known as “The Flute and the Arrow”) a dramatized documentary about the Muria people of central India. The film would go on to premier at the Cannes Film Festival. Ferguson eventually relocated to New York, with his first wife, Betty Ramsaur, a filmmaker he met while shooting in Alaska. The pair would go on to have two children, Munro and Allison, though they eventually divorced in 1974.
In New York, Ferguson found work as a freelance director, cinematographer, and editor. He edited the series ”Silents Please.” He also worked as the cinematographer on the short films “A Bowl of Cherries” and “Rooftops of New York” (that latter of which was nominated for an Academy Award). Ferguson also wrote and directed “The Legend of Rudolph Valentino,” a documentary about the legendary film star, and wrote and produced “The Love Goddesses”, a documentary about female film stars. Alongside Severn Darden and several members of the Second City, Ferguson wrote and directed the anarchic White House farce, “The Virgin President.”
It was around this time that Ferguson was also commissioned to make a documentary for Expo 67 in Montreal. Ferguson spent a year traveling and documenting the lives of Arctic peoples in Canada, Lapland, and Siberia. The resulting film was shown in a specially built theatre, in which audiences sat on a rotating turntable while viewing the film on 11 screens. In another pavilion, Ferguson’s brother-in-law Roman Kroitor was screening his film with Colin Low, “Labyrinth,” another immersive, multi-screen film experience. Both films were hugely successful, but both had technical challenges – particularly when it came to running and syncing multiple projectors across multiple screens. Kroitor and Ferguson at first commiserated with each other over technical issues, but then began to imagine an alternative method for producing an immersive, large-format viewing experience. The pair envisioned a single large screen – about the size of nine 35mm screens stacked in a three by three grid – projected from a single 70mm, 15-perf format moving horizontally. The idea for a new medium was born.
Ferguson moved back to Canada, and he and Kroitor began their new venture, Multiscreen Corp. They enlisted Ferguson’s former high school classmate Robert Kerr as a business manager. The group also tapped another one of Ferguson’s high school classmates, Bill Shaw, an engineer, to help build the technology needed for this new format. Within a few years, the team developed the 70mm format, commissioned a 70mm camera, and built the 70mm rolling loop projector. With the sponsorship of Fuji, they were also able to produce and screen the fist large-format film, “Tiger Child,” (directed by Donald Brittain) at Expo ’70, in Osaka, Japan.
But when the Expo closed, the future of the fledgling company was in doubt. That is, until the team learned the province of Ontario planned to open a new park with a multimedia theatre on Toronto’s lakeshore. Multiscreen struck a deal with Ontario Place, and Graeme Ferguson was commissioned to make a film for its new theatre. Ferguson’s “North of Superior” premiered at the Cinesphere, the first permanent IMAX theatre, on May 22, 1971. The venue would become a model for future IMAX theaters. Ferguson’s landmark film would further set the tone for future IMAX releases; while “Tiger Child” had featured multi-image filmmaking, Ferguson’s “North of Superior” predominantly featured sweeping vistas of nature in Northern Ontario in full-frame. The film was so popular that it quickly pushed all other Cinesphere films off the schedule, and even then, audiences lined up for hours to view it.
Over the next few years, Ferguson and his team focused on promoting and selling the IMAX format, while also continuing to make IMAX films. An IMAX theatre was launched at Circus World, in Florida, which featured Ferguson’s film of the same name. Another theatre opened at Cedar Point Amusement Park in Ohio. The first dome IMAX theatre (dubbed OMINMAX) opened at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center in San Diego, California. An IMAX theatre was built at Expo ’74 in Spokane, Washington, where Ferguson’s film “Man Belongs to the Earth” premiered. It was here that Michael Collins, a former astronaut and first director of the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum was sold on the IMAX concept. Collins agreed to incorporate an IMAX theatre at NASM, and the film “To Fly” (produced by MacGillivrary Freeman Films) premiered at the Samuel P. Langley IMAX theatre in 1976. The film was an enormous success. Not only did it break attendance records, it also set up a more consistent stream of revenue for IMAX, as other museums and institutions bought the system in order to replicate the NASM formula.
In 1980, Ferguson sought new filmmaking frontiers, and approached NASA with the idea of sending an IMAX camera to space with shuttle astronauts. NASA agreed, and the result was Ferguson’s “Hail Columbia!” in 1982. In that year, Ferguson also married his partner Phyllis Wilson, whom he had met while working on “North of Superior” several years earlier. Wilson, as well as writer-editor Toni Myers, were key members of the IMAX space film team. Over the next decade and a half, the team would go on to make eight space films in total, training astronauts to use the IMAX camera to capture breathtaking footage of Earth and space.
Ferguson and his founding partners sold IMAX in 1994, but he continued to consult on and produce a number IMAX films up to year 2016, with the release of “A Beautiful Planet,” on which he served as executive producer. IMAX now has over 280 theatres in 36 countries, showing traditional IMAX films as well as Hollywood features adapted to the format. Ferguson received many awards and honours for his work, as well as for his contributions to the film industry. In 1986, he received a Genie Special Achievement Award for outstanding contributions to the Canadian film industry. He received the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts Medal in 1990, and was named to the Order of Canada in 1993. Ferguson also received honorary doctorates from the University of Bradford (UK), as well as Victoria University (at the University of Toronto). In his later years, Ferguson also wrote and published a book on the Swedish-American inventor Frank Ofeldt. Ferguson passed away in May, 2021 at the age of 91.

Annette Mangaard

  • Person
  • 1956-Present

Annette Mangaard was born in 1956 in Vaerlose, Denmark. She and her family emigrated to Canada in 1960, and she grew up in Scarborough, Ontario. She attended the Ontario College of Art and design from 1977 to 1981, completing an honours degree in painting and printmaking. In 1981, Mangaard moved to Baker Lake, Nunavut, bringing with her a Super 8 camera and five reels of film. After a year of isolation, Mangaard returned to Toronto, determined to become a filmmaker.
Mangaard’s first forays into film were loose and intuitive Super 8 shorts, made nearly contemporaneously. Her first film, “Line Through Bath,” (1984) documented an art installation in Bath, England. “Nothing by Mouth” (1984) and “She Bit Me Seriously” (1984) followed, with the latter being screened at The Funnel, an experimental film collective where Mangaard was a member. It was at The Funnel that Mangaard began to explore 16mm filmmaking. While she enjoyed the immediacy of Super 8, there were fewer opportunities to exhibit small gauge films. Her next experimental works, “There is in power … seduction” (1985), “Her Soil is Gold” (1985), “The Tyranny of Architecture” (1987) and “The Iconography of Venus” (1987) were all made in 16mm.
Mangaard then branched out into scripted fare, with the “new wave road comedy” “Northbound Cairo” (1987), as well as the deeply personal “Let Me Wrap My Arms Around You.” (1992), for which she repurposed her footage shot in Baker Lake a decade earlier. During a residency at the Canadian Film Centre, Mangaard made the short drama “94 Arcana Drive” (1993). She then made her debut as a feature writer and director with “Fish Tale Soup” (1996), a sweetly comedic look at a couple dealing with infertility issues. She also returned to autobiographical themes with the film “Into the Night” (2006), a personal exploration of her struggle with insomnia.
Mangaard also turned her camera towards documentary subjects – in particular, artists and the process of making art. Notable works along these lines include “A Dialogue With Vision: The Art of Spring Hurlbut and Judith Schwarz” (1990), “The Many Faces of Arnaud Maggs” (2004), “General Idea: Art, Aids and the Fin de Siecle” (2007), “Kingaait: Riding Light into the World” (2010) and “Suzy Lake: Playing With Time” (2014).
Mangaard’s films and documentaries have screened all over the world. Notable festival credits include PAFID (Patagonia) in Argentina, Hot Docs and TIFF in Toronto, DOCSDF Mexico City Film Festival, Atlantic Film Festival, Halifax and Millenium, New York. Notable solo screenings include the Pacific Cinematheque in Vancouver, Canada and the Kino Arsenal Cinematheque in Berlin, West Germany. She was also honoured with a career retrospective of her film works at the Cinemateque Palais de Kino in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Alongside her filmmaking, Mangaard’s video installation work has appeared at Nuit Blanche, Toronto, The Confederation Art Gallery in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Olympic Park in Sydney Australia, South-on Sea, Liverpool and Manchester, UK, and Broken Hill, Australia. She is the cofounder of the Images Festival, and has sat on the board of The Funnel, The Toronto Arts Council, LIFT, and the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre. In 2017, she received her MFA in in Interdisciplinary Media, Art and Design from OCADU in 2017 and was awarded the gold medal for her outstanding graduate work.

Horney, Mary

  • Person
  • 1927-2014

Mary Margaret Horney (nee Pearson) graduated from Victoria in 1949 with a BA in Psychology. She later received a BEd in 1961, followed by a Masters of Education from OISE in 1975. She taught kindergarten in Scarborough, Ontario from 1961-1987 and was heavily involved with Victoria throughout her life, assisting with reunions and other events. In 1994 she organized a Tea Room Reunion for Annesley Hall residents and she also served as a member of the Victoria Women's Residences Reunion Executive Committee. Mary was married to Roy Horney (also a Vic grad from the class of 4T9) and had three daughters (Ruth, Elizabeth, and Cathy).

Hemmy, Jack Itsuo

  • Person
  • 1923-2000

Jack Itsuo Henmi was born February 3, 1923 in Victoria, B.C. He was the eldest child of Sokichi Henmi (1894-1967) and Tatsu Henmi, nee Uchimi (1895- n.d.).

Sokichi Henmi immigrated to Canada in 1913, following his father, Kanekichi Henmi (1872-1935) who had come in 1907. Sokichi most likely immigrated with his mother Toyo Henmi nee Okuda (1872-n.d.). The two men began as fishermen, though Sokichi briefly worked at the Gorge Tea Garden in Victoria, B.C. Later, he would take up a dry-cleaning business, “Central Cleaners and Dryers”. During WWI, Sokichi was conscripted into the army, but did not show up for the physical. Japanese were exempt from military duty, yet the conscription order still required a physical. At the request from his mother Kanekichi, Sokichi was allowed to return to his work thanks to Rev. Kosaburo Shimizu negotiating his release and the judge dismissing his case. Tatsu Henmi immigrated to Canada in 1919 to join her husband, whom she married in a ceremony in 1918 in Japan where the groom was absent.

Kanekichi and Toyo would later welcome two daughters, Cindy Eiko Henmi (1914-1990) and Yaeko Henmi (1917-2002). Eiko became a prominent figure in Japanese Canadian rights, and Canadian literature as a poet. She wrote for The New Canadian, and sometimes published under the pseudonym Cinderella. She, like her brother, would eventually make her way to Montreal after internment.

Sokichi was an active member in the Japanese Canadian community in Victoria. He, with the help of Kunio Uyede helped to fundraise for a Judo Club dojo. At the beginning of relocation when Japanese Canadians were being forced off Vancouver Island, he and other community leaders approached the British Columbia Securities Commission to help facilitate the move as it had been in limbo for months.

Tastu and Sokichi soon welcomed two sons, Jack Itsuo Henmi and Robert Hiroshi Henmi (1928-n.d.). The two boys grew up in Victoria B.C. and enjoyed a variety of activities including basketball, Judo, and playing music. Jack graduated Victoria Highschool, class of ’42. His life was turned upside-down with WWII. He tried to join the Canadian Army in 1941 but was rejected. When forced to move off of Vancouver Island, the Henmi’s made their way to Sandon, B.C. Jack was a young, single man and thus separated from them, and sent east to manual labor jobs. He worked at a sugar beet farm in Glencoe Ontario, then went on to Port Credit. By 1943, Jack found employment with Stark Electrical Instrument Company, which allowed him to move to Toronto, ON.

Jack Itsuo Henmi began using “Hemmy” as his last name after coming to Toronto. He quickly joined the growing group of Nisei and other Japanese Canadians who had made their way to the city after being interned and forced out of the West coast. On November 17, 1945 Jack married Mary Ruriko Okazaki (1919-n.d.). They had four sons.

Mary Ruriko Okazaki was the daughter of Seisuke Okazaki (1888-1965) and Tomeyo Okazaki nee Yamada (1887-1944). She also had a brother, Arthur Kiyoto Okazaki (1921-n.d.). Seisuke immigrated to Canada in 1907 and worked as a chauffeur. He later pivoted to dry-cleaning, and became the owner of Victory Cleaners in Vancouver, B.C. During internment, the family eventually moved to Toronto, ON.

Jack Hemmy’s first job in Toronto was with Stark Electrical Instrument Co. in 1943. He moved to the city and joined the many other Japanese Canadians who were also finding employment and community. He enrolled in Ryerson Institute of Technology’s Photography program, taking night courses. Jack entered a two-year apprenticeship with Clement Staila Co. Ltd, learning photostat operations and reproduction. After completing the apprenticeship, he continued to work there for 13 years. In 1967, he started Dyna Photostat Service Ltd. He continued to run and operate the business for 10 years. 1977 brought Jack to Leslie Advertising as Account Executive. By the 1980s Jack taught as a reprographer within the Technological Studies Department of Ontario College of Art (now Ontario College of Art & Design University), retiring in 1988. Throughout his career, Jack took on freelance work, primarily from the Japanese Canadian community. He worked for The New Canadian, photographed events held by the Japanese Consulate in Toronto, and covered many gatherings at the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre.

Azhaev, Vasilii

  • Person
  • 1915-1968

Vasilii Nikolaevich Azhaev (1915-1968) was born in the village of Sotskoye, Moscow province, in 1915. Arrested in 1934 for ‘counter-revolutionary activities,’ Azhaev was sentenced to four years as a prisoner in the Corrective Labour Camp of the Baikal-Amur Main Line of the People’s Commissariat of Internal affairs (BAMLAG NKVD) in Svobodnyi, in the Far East. Following his early release in March 1937, Azhaev remained in the camp as a ‘free labourer.’ He also contributed to and worked as a chief editor of various camp publications. These did not circulate beyond the camp’s limits. There he completed his novel Daleko ot Moskvy [Far from Moscow], which won the Stalin Prize for literature in 1949. The novel depicted construction of a pipeline in the Far East. He died in 1968 in Moscow.

Rush Productions

  • Corporate body
  • 1972-2010

Rush Productions was a corporate subsidiary of SRO/Anthem, specifically concerned with Rush’s touring expenses and coordination within Canada. Over the years, various other corporate entities were set up to handle American and International touring expenses, including ORS Management Corporation, By-Tour Inc., PLD UK, PLD Tourco, and LDP Entertainment. All of these activities were overseen by the creator of these records, Sheila Posner, who was SRO Management’s accountant and office manager.

Sandler, Robert

  • 2022.015
  • Person

Robert Sandler is a Canadian writer and producer with many memorable Television credits to his name. Sandler is credited as ‘Bob Sandler’ in some scripts and Television credits. He is most well-known for his writing in children’s programs such as Fraggle Rock, beginning in the second season, Sesame Street Canada, The Adventures of Moby Dick, and many television series and TV movies. His other work includes scripting various Canadian productions such as Under the Umbrella Tree, the law drama Street Legal, The Argon Quest with Terry Angus, and production duties on the investment banker drama Traders. He later served as co-creator and executive producer of the semi-documentary series 72 Hours: True Crime. Robert Sandler is also the President of the Video production company Creative Anarchy Inc. His production company, Creative Anarchy Inc., established in 1997, has made the pioneering documentary/re-enactment series on crime called Exhibit A: Secrets of Forensic Science.

Edie Steiner

  • Person
  • 195[?]-Present

Edith (Edie) Steiner is a Toronto based photographer, filmmaker, composer, writer, and teacher. Born in Germany, Steiner emigrated to Canada with her parents in the 1950s, and her family settled in Manitouwadge, in Northern Ontario. Steiner moved to Toronto in the 1970s and pursued a degree in Media Studies from the Ryerson Institute of Technology (now Toronto Metropolitan University), specializing in fine art photography.
After graduating in 1973, Steiner became a freelance photographer, and she focused on documenting Toronto’s burgeoning punk and new wave scenes, as well as portraits of musicians. Her photographs began to make the pages of “Night Out,” “Today,” and “Impulse” magazine. Some of her notable portrait subjects at this time included Patti Smith, Debbie Harry of Blondie, and Rough Trade.
In the early 1980s, Steiner joined the experimental film collective, The Funnel, where she became interested in Super 8 filmmaking. Here, she produced several experimental short films on Super 8. As she was also composing music and playing in musical groups at the time, her film screenings often had a live music or performance aspect to them. Steiner also continued her photography, exhibiting her work at the Funnel and other galleries in Toronto. Around this time, her focus began to shift from the music scene and portraits to urban objects and landscapes.
Steiner branched out into narrative filmmaking, joining LIFT (Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto) in 1985. She began to write, direct, and produce films on 16mm, including “Places to Stay,” a film about Steiner’s experience as a German émigré; “Roses are Blue,” a lush, surreal film about the healing power of music; and “Felicity’s View,” a mediation on aging and desire. Steiner continued to compose music for her films, and frequently collaborated with other musicians including Chip Yarwood, Malcolm Lewis, Colin Offord, and Daniel Rojas.
Through the 1990s, Steiner’s work in both film and photography began to focus on social justice and environmental themes. In “Northland: Long Journey,” Steiner revisited both her hometown, Manitouwadge, as well the death of her father due to work-related illness. Steiner’s further explored the environment of Northern Ontario in her photo series “Northland,” as well her documentary film “Conversations on the Lake.” In the early 2000s, Steiner began to document the changes to Toronto’s waterfront wrought by development, which became the film and photo series “Views from Home: Facing North.” Her recent film, “Borderland Memories” explores the natural and built environments of Eastern Europe, as well as the ideas of memory, family, and nation.
Steiner earned an MA (2006) and PhD (2014) in Environmental Studies from York University, in Toronto, and she has taught at several Canadian universities. She is a member of the Association for Literature, Environment, and Culture in Canada (ALECC); the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre (CFMDC); The Film-Makers’ Cooperative (NACG); Gallery 44 Centre for Contemporary Photography; the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN); and Vtape. Some of her early photographic works can be found at the National Gallery of Canada.

Cylla von Tiedemann

Cylla von Tiedemann is a world-renowned photographer and is one of Canada’s most sought-after performance photographers. She grew up in Germany and immigrated to Canada to expand her career in her early 30s. She has become renowned for capturing points in movement and dance. Von Tiedemann is a performing arts photographer, educator, and visual artist with an impressive and wide-ranging work. She is renowned for her works in dance portraiture and live theatre photography; she is also involved with film, music, and the visual arts. Von Tiedemann’s photography ranges from portraits of dancers and performers to production documentation for notable national and international organizations, including the National Ballet of Canada, Stratford Festival, Mirvish Productions, Toronto Dance Theatre, Toronto Symphony Orchestra and Yo-Yo Ma’s SILK Road Project, among many others. Beyond her usual works of performing arts photography, Cylla has collaborated on numerous multi-media projects, and her recent collections of work involve dancer-focused digital collages.


  • University of Toronto Media Commons Archives
  • Corporate body
  • 1980-2023

Cinemavault was a Toronto-based motion picture and television distribution company. After graduating from Toronto Metropolitan University’s School of Image Arts in 1978, company Chairman and CEO Nicholas Stiliadis began his career as a writer and film producer. Alongside business partner, Syd Cappe, Stiliadis founded SC Entertainment. The pair produced several industrial and educational films, including the Genie-nominated short Productivity and Performance by Alex K (1984). But Stiliadis and Cappe found their niche as producers of low-budget romps, thrillers, and action-adventure films such as The Pink Chiquitas (1986), Still Life (1990), and Gladiator Cop (1995). These films were often shot in Toronto, with principal photography sometimes starting before financing had even been secured. While widely considered to be B-movies (a 1990 MacLean’s article characterized them as “shlock”), these genre films had broad international appeal, and SC Entertainment found eager buyers on the international marketplace. Some critical successes followed, with the true crime drama Murder One (1988), which garnered some positive attention from American critics. Stiliadis also served as Executive Producer on Pump Up the Volume (1990), a title that was initially developed for SC Entertainment, with New Line Cinema brought on to co-produce and distribute. The darkly comedic teen movie starring Christian Slater was widely praised at the time and continues to enjoy a reputation as a cult classic.
Stiliadis and Cappe parted ways in 1994, and amidst expanding international film markets, the company’s focus gradually shifted from production to distribution. Under the Cinemavault banner, Stiliadis and company worked with both Canadian and international producers, financiers, and independent filmmakers to secure the distribution rights to a substantial catalogue of films. In some cases, Cinemavault would license these films to other companies to handle distribution in individual worldwide markets. In other cases, Cinemavault was brought on by filmmakers as the principal worldwide distributor. While representing international titles, Cinemavault also played a role in promoting Canadian cinema to the world. They were the international distributor of Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (2001), the first feature film in the Inuktitut language. They also represented the Genie award winner Savage Messiah (2002), as well as the Genie nominated film Histoire de Pen (2002). Cinemavault was a frequent participant in the international film festival circuit, taking their films to Cannes, Berlin, and Venice. Beyond feature film distribution, the company found many new sales avenues in DVD and VHS sales, pay television, free television, video on demand, and streaming video on demand.

Creative Anarchy

  • Corporate body
  • 1997-2008

Creative Anarchy is a Toronto-based film production company. Creative Anarchy co-produced the crime documentary series Exhibit A: Secrets of Forensic Science with Kensington Communications, and co-produced a similar series, 72 Hours: True Crime with Kensington Communications and Meech-Grant Productions.

Grant, Judith Skelton

  • Person
  • 1941-

Judith Skelton Grant (1941–) is a writer, editor and biographer, whose career has largely focused on the life and work of Robertson Davies. Notably, she is the author of the authorized biography, Robertson Davies: Man of Myth (Toronto: Viking, 1994). She received her BA, MA and PhD in English Literature from the University of Toronto in 1965, 1966, and 1974 respectively. Most recently, she wrote a comprehensive history of Massey College (Robertson Davies was the first Master of the College until 1981) from its inception in 1962/63 through to 2013, entitled A Meeting of Minds: The Massey College Story (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2015). She lives and works in Toronto.

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