Canadian theatre icon Robert Lepage and dancer-turned-filmmaker Veronica Tennant will present new original works next summer as part of the Pan Am Games festivities in Toronto.
Both are among the dozens of established and emerging artists commissioned for the Games' arts and culture festival, which will run from July 10 to Aug. 15, 2015.
The festival will feature more than 25 unique works by Canadian artists in theatre, photography, dance, music, spoken word and visual arts on the themes of Canadian identity, immigration and water.
The projects will be staged or displayed throughout the city, in locations such as Nathan Phillips Square and the Distillery District, as well as online.
Lepage will both direct and star in his piece titled 887, an exploration of memory.
Tennant's production, Niagara, dramatizes the story of the Cuban poet Jose Maria Heredia, whose seminal poem bears the same name.
The festival aims to celebrate the "vibrant culture and heritage of the Americas and the Caribbean" and "embrace the cultural diaspora within the community of Toronto and the greater Golden Horseshoe," its creative director Don Shipley said in a news conference Tuesday.
Like the athletes competing at the Games, the chosen artists "are great risk-takers" and constantly strive for excellence, he said.
The artists shared $1.5 million in seed money from the Games' organizing committee's innovation fund.