Professional development and training

The arts and the production of cultural content are at the core of creative industries. These industries are growing and becoming vital economic drivers. Acquiring new skills and training — particularly those pertaining to the digital transformation — is key to ensuring that Ontario's talent remains competitive and continues to thrive.


Banff Centre for the Arts

The Banff Centre delivers training and professional development programs for artists in all mediums, including theatre, writing, visual and media arts, and film.

Canadian Film Centre

This Toronto-based centre is Canada's pre-eminent training institution for professionals in film, television and new media. It also invests in film and television's future creative and business leaders.

Gardiner Museum

The Gardiner Museum in Toronto is Ontario's foremost museum for ceramics. It offers clay classes and art camps for children, young adults and adults.

National Aboriginal Arts Animator Program

This three-year training program is for students from a cross-section of Canadian indigenous cultures. Its overall focus is storytelling and its core revolves around performing arts practice. It also provides support for related interests, such as new media, film/video, music, dance, spectacle, writing, photography and visual arts/design.

National Ballet School

Canada's National Ballet School is one of the world's foremost training institutions for aspiring young dancers and teachers. It is the only ballet academy in North America to provide elite dance training, academic instruction and residential care on the same campus.

National Screen Institute

This Winnipeg-based organization provides innovative and focused professional training that helps people build careers as writers, directors and producers in Canada's film and television industry.

Ontario College of Art and Design

This College is Canada's largest university for art and design, specializing in creativity and innovation. Its Integrated Media Program, for instance, challenges students to explore the technical and creative possibilities of robotics, film, video, performance art and script writing, digital, electronic and web-based art, animation, audio and sonic arts, and holographic art. Its Material Art and Design program offers courses in ceramics, jewellery/metalsmithing and fibre.

Royal Conservatory of Music

The Royal Conservatory of Music has an extensive music education and training program, as well as a performance centre.

SAW Video

This Ottawa video production cooperative supports independent filmmakers by giving them access to equipment, grants, resources, training and other programs. Development and Other Production Challenges, a guidebook for producers, and Club SAW, a space dedicated to film and video, performance and music are on this site.

Sheridan College

Sheridan College's School of Animation Arts and Design is one of the world's leading animation training institutions. The Crafts and Design Program is the largest program in Canada devoted exclusively to craft education. It provides training in ceramics, furniture, glass and textiles.

Schulich School of Business, York University

The Schulich School of Business at York University offers an MBA in Arts and Media Administration.

Textile Museum of Canada

This Toronto-based museum offers workshops and classes in textile techniques and history. Instructors are professionals in their fields.

Professional development


This program, funded by the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation, pairs artists with teachers to infuse arts across school curricula. Ontario artists interested in working with schoolchildren could look into projects at the Durham School Board or Multicultural Arts for Schools and Communities in Ottawa.

Book Publishers' Professional Association

This association provides a meeting ground and a resource to professionals in the Canadian book trade.

Canadian Crafts Federation

This website provides crafts artists with links to provinces with craft programs.

Canadian Filmmaker

This website, developed by WIFT-T and DGC-Ontario and funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation, among others, provides guidance to people who are new to the business of filmmaking, including:

  • Comprehensive and authoritative information about how to develop, produce, market and distribute a film or television programs
  • Information about international sales
  • Links to important resources and production funding programs.

Cultural Careers Council Ontario

Cultural Careers Council Ontario develops, facilitates and promotes human resources and career programs, publications, services and partnerships for Ontario's arts and culture community. It also provides a job board of work and volunteer opportunities in the cultural sector.

Cultural Human Resources Council

The Cultural Human Resources Council brings together representatives of arts disciplines and cultural industries to address the training and career development needs of cultural workers — artists, creators, technical staff, managers and all other such professionals, including those who are self employed. Its website includes information and publications of interest to professional artists.

Dance Ontario

This organization's website provides the most comprehensive and searchable list of schools in Canada as well as information about dance classes for independent professional dancers.

Dancer Transition Resource Centre

This centre was founded in 1985 to help dancers make necessary transitions into, within, and from professional performing careers. Its counselling services, skills grants and retraining grants are available to members. It also makes some resources, and workshops and programs it organizes, available to all dancers and professional dance students.

Hot Docs

In addition to its position as North America's largest documentary festival, Hot Docs provides a full range of professional development, market and networking opportunities for documentary film professionals.

Liaison of Independent Filmmakers

A membership-based, non-profit organization that provides affordable access to equipment, education and space for filmmakers, particularly those working with celluloid. It offers a variety of programs, including workshops, equipment rentals and screenings.

Ontario Crafts Council

The Ontario Crafts Council works to foster recognition and appreciation of craft and craftspeople by building a strong, talented, distinct craft community. They offer awards and scholarships, as well as other professional development opportunities.

Theatre Ontario

This website has extensive information for people involved in theatre and performing arts, including workshops, individual counselling services, mentorships and professional development courses offered by Theatre Ontario. The site also has links to other training resources of interest to professional artists.

Women in Film and Television: Toronto

This organization provides year-round training programs, industry events and professional awards for women and men in Canadian screen-based media.