Creative Mornings was born September 2009 in New York City in an effort to establish an inviting event driven by volunteers for people to come together, listen, share, and be inspired. Each event has a dedicated speaker selected based on their insight, experience, and commitment to creativity. The idea has spread to over 42 cities around the world and we are happy to boast that Toronto is one of them!
Behrouz Hariri, organizer for Creative Mornings Toronto, is still surprised it took so long to start a chapter in our city. Toronto is teeming with events, festivals, and awards that showcase and inspire the creative minds working across the GTA and beyond; including TIFF, Contact, Hot Docs, Luminato, Design Thinkers, Pecha Kucha and FITC to name a few. For Behrouz, “the void for a down to earth, cross-disciplined series of events was visible. After all, real inspiration often comes from people and ideas outside of our own bubbles of expertise and we are all eager to share and connect.” The vision for the Toronto Chapter is to establish Creative Mornings as “the defining community that enables Toronto to discover and share its endless creative resources. We sometimes lose sight of how much Toronto has to offer Canada and the world. Bringing this amazing potential to light is a big driving force for us,” explains Berouz.
The speakers have been instrumental to the growth of and excitement around the Toronto Chapter. The Toronto team works to select speakers from varied backgrounds; whether artists, entertainers, designers, activists, or entrepreneurs. The Creative Mornings team has been lucky to host such individuals as Nora Young, Dave Meslin, Paul Rowan and, just last month, Mark Surman. “There is something very neat in finding glimpses of a shared dedication to innovation and originality in talks from a group of speakers with such varied backgrounds,” says Behrouz. He highlights that “it is such a pleasure to organize an event and have it so well-received by more than 100 of our peers every time. We believe if we invite the best and brightest of Toronto to share their stories, everything else will take care of itself.”
Creative Mornings held its 15th event this morning at Herman Miller, with a presentation by Steve Frykholm and Clark Malcolm. The event is typically hosted by the Gladstone Hotel in a bright and welcoming space that quickly fills with people, both young and old, all eager to learn, connect, and be inspired. Assuming your schedule allows it, the monthly event is a great way to start a day. Coffee, croissant, creativity, and new connections – Toronto is awesome:)
To give you a taste of what Creative Mornings has to offer, we asked Behrouz to pick a favourite talk to share with you. It was tough, but he recommended Paddy Harrington’s insightful and compact talk on Art + Technology from last year.
For more information on Creative Mornings Toronto, there are a number of ways to connect. The team has built a dedicated community @Toronto_CM, on their Facebook page, and has a newsletter and blog that includes updates on upcoming events. Each works to keep the community informed of interviews, links to interesting works, and additional resources on upcoming and past speakers. In addition, team member Kyle Baptista is working on his own project to promote the hashtag #CreateTO in an effort to raise awareness on the various creative initiatives and events taking place across the GTA. Look for it on Twitter and engage by sharing the creative projects and events you know. For those who already watch talks on TED and Pecha Kucha, we recommend taking a peek at the line-up of talks available at Creative Mornings.
Creative Mornings is redefining Toronto by hosting an open event that fosters, showcases, and promotes our creative community. As Behrouz highlights, “Toronto is already doing a fantastic job at redefining itself. If anything we are here to accelerate and support that. More conversations, more interactions, more introductions, more collaborations and more happy accidents! That’s how we can help.” RedefiningTO looks forward to the upcoming Creative Mornings line-up and hopes to see you there!