Film Festival planned for 2014 – Art centre to host the event.



August 19, 2013

By Staff

BURLINGTON, ON.  As we get ready to move into September those of us who love film organize our calendars to get as much time in Toronto at TIFF as possible.

And if you don’t know what TIFF stands for – read no further – we don’t have much that will interest you.

But if film is a medium matters to you, if you make a point of getting to at least two or three films during the Toronto International Film Festival – then read on –we have a treat for you.

Ever heard of the Tottering Biped?  You have?  But you didn’t know what the words meant – we understand.  Trevor Copp who put the two words together explains them this way:  “Tottering Biped” was inspired by Phillip Tobias’ landmark study on human development, Man: the Tottering Biped, which contends that the human skeleton is not entirely bipedal, it is still in transition from a quadrupedal structure. This thought: that we are deeply incomplete; that the basic act of standing upright and living a conscientious life requires constant effort, informs everything we do.”

The Biped is planning a Film Festival for next January – right here in Burlington – not Toronto, not Hamilton – here in Burlington.

Trevor Copp, founder of Tottering Biped Theatre and one of the partners planning on holding a Film Festival in Burlington.

Trevor Copp and Christopher Giroux, Owner of Red & White Productions, are partnering to create a Canadian based film festival in Burlington. They are seeking new voices and supporting local and Canadian work by providing emerging artists with the opportunity to showcase their short films. It is the long-term goal that the Tottering Biped Film Festival will become an annual event.  The “first annual” will be one-night festival on January 17, 2014 at The Burlington Art Centre.

Copps produced and performed in “First Dance”; a production that pushed the edges of dramatic theatre.

Copp has come to the realization that he doesn’t have to truck into Toronto to make a living as an artist – he can make a go of it in Burlington and has emerged as one of the best known artistic figures in the city.  He founded Tottering Biped Theatre (TBT) in 2009, Burlington’s first professional contemporary theatre company.  The company’s productions have toured throughout Ontario and been featured in Theatre Aquarius’ current TA2 season. 

“I’ve become fascinated with the problem of art in suburbia,” says Copp, the performer and co-creator of  TBT.   “Suburbanites allocate their sense of culture to the city. They feel like we’re just an adjunct of the city, that our life is just sort of a surrogate thing, a temporary life between commutes. And I have a problem with the sense that our stories are not legitimate.”

Copp aims to change that, founding what he believes is the city’s first professional theatre company. Over the two years leading up to the company’s first original production, Copp and TBT have committed to presenting controversial, risky and award-winning scripts. They’ve tackled plays on incest (Home Free), mental illness (To the Ends of the Earth), sexual abuse (Blackbird) and terrorism (My Name is Rachel Corrie), topics that affect people nationwide, but that are usually only presented theatrically in larger cities.
Copp is also the founder of the Artist’s Collective of Burlington which is looking forward to becoming a force that will be heard as Burlington begins public discussion of a Cultural Plan.  He was awarded one of the prestigious Chalmers Fellowships and was named Burlington’s Arts Person of the Year designation in 2012.

Santaland Diaries – another Copps production

His passion is “to see artists of all stripes see this place as a home, not a place to sleep between commutes. This town has every potential to be a thriving arts centre and this Film Festival will take us there.”

Chris Giroux – the film side of the team planning on bringing a Film Festival to the city.

Christopher Giroux has been working in the film industry for 10 years.  A graduate  of  Sheridan’s Advanced TV and Film program he has worked as a producer, production manager, camera operator, gaffer and technical director.

His “oeuvre” includes associate producer on the coming feature film “Antisocial” from Breakthrough Entertainment and Black Fawn Films. 

This team has been looking forward to working on this project together. As Copp puts it:  “Chris brings tremendous credential both as an artist and producer to the Festival; he has both managed large professional film projects and slogged it out in the emerging film field. He’s a rising star in the Film world and we’re lucky for the Festival to hitch a ride.”

A  panel of jury members will select a handful of works to show for the one-night festival on January 17, 2014 at The Burlington Art Centre. Shorts of any genre are welcome and must be under twenty minutes in length.  More detail on  submission deadlines and further information on the Tottering Biped Film Festival visit their web site.   

The group also announced a poster competition for this year’s event.

 The Festival is currently looking to expand their sponsors.  If you or your company is interested in becoming part of this innovative event, contact them at   



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