The Grant Burnyeat Student Series is a new initiative developed by the Arts Club’s Education Department in collaboration with long-time theatre supporter, former Arts Club board member, and Supreme Court Justice—Grant Burnyeat. The intention of this program is twofold: to provide meaningful opportunities for youth to participate in the arts on a more frequent basis and to strengthen relationships between the Arts Club and local Vancouver secondary schools and youth organizations.

The Grant Burnyeat Student Series will offer 30 free tickets annually to all 18 Vancouver public high schools, affording students the opportunity to attend Arts Club performances free of charge. We can also provide a complimentary workshop that will explore the themes, style, and/or content of the show that students will be attending, enhancing their overall experience and understanding of the production.

In addition to providing secondary school groups with a complimentary theatre experience, students who attend Arts Club productions through this program are also invited to participate in the Grant Burnyeat Annual Writing Competition.

To book your group, contact and indicate your first and second choice of shows. You will then be contacted with potential performance dates.

Grant Burnyeat Annual Writing Competition

This writing competition asks students to consider the following questions:

  1. Why is it important that students have access to live theatre?
  2. What contribution does live theatre make to our society?
  3. What was it about the production that you saw that meant the most to you?

All essays submitted will go through an adjudication process. The two essays that best demonstrate considerable thought and insight regarding the impact of live theatre on youth today will be selected to receive cash prizes. The first place essay writer will be awarded $750 and second place writer will receive $250.

2020 Finalists

The awards ceremony was held digitally in July 2020. Congratulations to our winners!

1st place: Rachel Tan from Killarney Secondary, "Impactful and Inspiring Change"

2nd place: Lola Ross-McLennan from Point Grey Mini School, "My Battle with Theatre"

Watch the winners read their essays!

“What an amazing day, the tour, workshop, and show were amazing. My students loved the show, me too, so funny and amazing writing. Lots to talk about in class. Susan Bertoia was dynamite and the kids want her to come to our school to do more workshops. Great! And Ace’s tour was an eye opener, it so opened their eyes to ‘behind the curtain’, and that whole world.”
–Matthew Thiessen, Long Byng Secondary

“I wanted to offer a heartfelt thank you, on behalf of myself and our students, for organizing an amazing day. The tour and workshops were informative and inspiring and they really gave the students an insight into all of the hard work that goes into creating theatre. Please extend a thank you to the Hon. Grant Burnyeat. It truly was an a generous gift and we sincerely thank him for facilitating a love a theatre in future generations.”
—Maria Dimas, Winston Churchill Secondary

“Thank you SO MUCH for the tickets. I was so proud of my students yesterday. They were in awe of the sets and staging, they were on the edge of their seats during the whole show, and a couple of times they gasped and yelled at what was happening. During the intermission they were a buzz talking about every detail. Thank you, thank you, thank you.”
—Brendan Sangster, Brittania Secondary

“In name of the Gladstone students and myself I wanted to thank Arts Club Theatre Company for providing us with a wonderful day! The pick-up by bus, the tour, the workshop, and the performance were great! I sincerely hope we can do this again.”
—Ineke Lievens, Gladstone Secondary


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