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IMPACT Staff Profiles: Amanda Lowry
Submitted by meganh on Tue, 08/18/2015 - 3:15pm
For our second blog profile series, we sat down with IMPACT15’s Festival Producer, Amanda Lowry, and got a peek at the festival through her eyes!
In 2011, Amanda was first exposed to IMPACT as a summer student who assisted the festival producer at that time, Heather Majaury.
“Prior to IMPACT I had only ever experienced the type of theatre they teach in high school – Shakespeare, Death of a Salesman, et cetera” she said.
“But after day one of IMPACT 11 my eyes were opened to a whole other world of what theatre had the potential to be.”
From her first day, the IMPACT team embraced Amanda. “It was an amazing experience for me; Heather was really a mentor, she made a huge effort to make sure I was always learning new skills and was as involved as possible in the whole process.”
Though the festival has rapidly evolved and expanded since its second run in 2011, one thing has remained the same: the close connection of festival staff.
After experiencing the unique collective of international and national works that MT Space and IMPACT brought to the community, Amanda returned in 2013 as the Box Office Coordinator. She recalled, “last IMPACT was extremely challenging because I was entering my second year of a Master’s degree in Toronto, where I also had 3 other jobs. It was probably crazy to say yes when I was offered the position, but I couldn’t imagine saying no, and I have no regrets!”
As a University of Laurier and University of Toronto grad in music, Amanda stated, “my background is in music rather than theatre. In IMPACT 11 and 13 my role was entirely administrative; unlike most of the IMPACT staff, I only wore one hat.”
However, IMPACT 15 presented Amanda with the unique opportunity to integrate some of her amazing talents -- “this year I have had the opportunity to write some music for the IMPACT launch video, and will be performing at one of the after parties!”
Perhaps most rewarding to our Festival Producer is watching the transformation in theatregoers that she experienced herself at her first IMPACT festival.
She explained, “from the dedicated passholders who come to every single event to the people who attend a single show...there is something about the festival that is contagious and it is wonderful to watch the transformation from when someone walks into the theatre to when they walk out.”
With help from Amanda to foster experiences like this, IMPACT has quickly grown into a mainstay of the KW landscape.
Though she has not always been a Kitchener-Waterloo resident, Amanda concludes, “I think IMPACT was a large part of the reason why I knew I wanted to make KW my permanent home. The fact that we have a community here that can sustain festivals like IMPACT is wonderful. I wanted to be part of a vibrant community of artists, and that is exactly what I have found in KW, in MT Space and in IMPACT.”