Fresh Meat is an artistic playground that gives local theatre creators a unique opportunity to test new ideas in front of an audience. Each year, 10 Ottawa theatre makers are invited to create and perform a brand new 20-minute performance piece at our two-weekend festival in October. We look for ideas that are original and innovative, and that test the traditional boundaries of theatre. No idea is too out there and no idea is too simple; what matters is the artist’s passion for and dedication to their own project.
Founded in 2012, Fresh Meat has housed over 60 20-minute world premieres and paid out more than $30,000 to local creators in direct exchange for their work. By giving artists a place to experiment, Fresh Meat plays a key role in the steady stream of exciting new work being created in Ottawa. Seedlings planted at Fresh Meat have grown into full length productions and have been produced at undercurrents, The NAC, Fringes across Canada, and more. Others live their three nights at Fresh Meat and are never seen or heard from again. Both are equally valuable outcomes when creating from a place of experimentation and play.
Fresh Meat supports and showcases a diverse group of local artists each year by providing an accessible platform on which to create and perform new, innovative short works. The festival brings together local artists of all backgrounds, theatrical practices, and levels of emergence, and makes space for the lived experiences of all Canadians.