Tara Taylor | Executive Director, Charles Taylor Theatre
From part-time passion to full-time creator
For Tara Taylor, theatre and the arts are an outlet to express all of her creative personalities. Growing up in East Preston, Nova Scotia – among the trees, land and water, was nurturing to Tara’s creative spirit. Years later, it’s where she finds herself living now as a playwright, educator and creator.
“I feel entirely blessed and honoured that I get to make sense of my craft as an artist and be able to draw that out of other artists.”
From a young age, Tara explored art in all forms, from taking painting and drama classes, to joining the children’s choir at her local church. Tara’s many interests only lacked the necessary guidance to turn her part-time passion into full-time creative expression.
It was when she joined a drama club, while at university, that she noticed a lack of actors and creative professionals that looked like her. Without the example of how to make it in the creative industry, Tara she believed she could only give part of her time to her art. When she was later accepted into the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Tara balanced studies with her job, while producing plays. In 2018 she produced Viola, a stage play on the life of Viola Desmond, expressed through song.
“When you’re telling a story about a certain group of people, you need to have those people involved behind the scenes and behind the stage.” All of this pointed in one direction, Tara needed to be a full-time creator. She wanted to use her skills to help develop opportunities and the talent of creatives from the African Nova Scotian community.
“It’s the passing the torch, I grew up not having those resources,” says Tara. “What our group is trying to do is find those youngsters in grades six, seven, eight and nine, so that they realize being in this industry, you can do it full time.”
To Tara, funding the arts sector is extremely important and shows artists that their intellectual and physical work is valued, that they are valued. “Without Support4Culture we would not be able to pay for mentors to harvest the artists in our community. It’s vital.”
Thanks to this support, Tara is thriving as a full-time creative with her production company, Charles Taylor Theatre, developing training for budding young artists.