2009 Okanagan Arts Award Winners

Visual Arts: Jock Hildebrandt

Jock Hildebrandt is an internationally renowned sculptor know primarily for his stone and bronze sculptures in Vietnam, China, Costa Rica, the Czech Republic, and the Okanagan Valley. Jock is also the founder and lead organiser of the Okanagan Thompson International Sculpture Symposium, an organisation which has brought over 100 sculptors into the Okanagan Valley to produce art in 8 communities totalling over 1.8 million dollars. He also spearheaded the first Arts Council in West Kelowna.

Dance: Ballet Kelowna

Since 2002, Ballet Kelowna has brought powerful and memorable dance to British Columbia and beyond. Under the leadership of Artistic Director and CEO Simone Orlando, Ballet Kelowna presents various styles of dance from Canada’s finest emerging and established choreographers.

Music: Susan Aylard

Susan Aylard is a professional violinist in the Shuswap and Okanagan Valley who performs classically, records, and teaches at her private studio in White Lake. Susan placed first at Senior Strings at the BC Festival of the Arts at the age of 18 and she is currently in the 1st violin section of the Okanagan Symphony.

Literary Arts: Sharon Thesen

Sharon Thesen is a poet, editor, anthologist, and teacher. Currently teaching at UBC Okanagan, Sharon’s bibliography consists of her books A Pair of Scissors, which won the Pat Lowther Memorial Award, and The Good Bacteria, which was a finalist for the Governor General’s Award, the ReLit Award, and the Dorothy Livesay Prize.

Theatre: Theatre Kelowna

Since 1973, Theatre Kelowna has produced high quality dramas, comedies, musicals, and pantomimes. By creating a stage for powerful performance, mistakes, and education, Theatre Kelowna has succeeded in becoming one of the most reputable arts organisations in Kelowna.

Arts Educator: Tina Siddiqui

Born and raised in Pakistan, Tina Siddiqui has exhibited in group and solo shows in the United Kingdom, USA, Canada, Pakistan, and Dubai. Mesmerized by the Okanagan landscape, Tina has since been compelled paint the area, which she say is “a true labour of passion”.

Media Arts: Rick Sagayadan

Rick Sagayadan is the owner/operator of SAGAcom Productions. Since its inception in 2003, SAGAcom Productions has striven to be an innovative company to service a multitude of clientele across the Okanagan Valley.

Supporter of the Arts: Mary Jo Schnepf

Lifetime Achievement: Francine Gravel

Francine Gravel is a painter born and raised in Montreal, Quebec. Having presented in her premier exhibit of etchings and engravings in 1967, Francine’s career has spanned nearly half a century in which she has enjoyed an international reputation with collectors and admirers across the globe.


Interested in some of our previous winners? Check them out below!