Friday, February 5, 2016

Our touring manager is moving on after 14 years with Prologue!

Wednesday February 3 was Stéphanie Filippi's last day at Prologue after 14 years as our touring manager! It's been quite a ride!

In the evening, artists, colleagues and board members showed up at a private party to say goodbye. Many who couldn't attend the event sent their message for Patty to read out loud. It appears Stéphanie made the same strong impression on all of them!

We are sure she will step into her new career with the same gusto!  

"Oh no, that is sad news for us! I so much enjoyed being represented by you over the years and cherished our working relationship, your support for all of the Prologue artists and our work and of course your sweet disposition! We shall miss you. However I'm sure this is a great new change for you and I wish you all the very best in your new position. "   – Jack Grunsky

Émilie Charlebois and Patty Jarvis, from Prologue
Patty, chatting with Kurt Sampson from Cadence
Stéaphanie with Ann and David Powell from Puppetmongers Theatre
Our ex-colleague Mary Beth MacMillan surpised Stéphanie!
Leslie McCurdy with Rukshana Khan

"Please share my best wishes with Stephanie. She has been a great advocate for Prologue, for the arts and particularly for French Arts programming. Her influence has been far reaching. We can never really know how many others we have influenced in our roles in the arts and education but Stephanie has surely been responsible for inspiring thousands of children in Ontario. Her dedication and tireless work on behalf of Prologue has earned the respect of all those who have been fortunate enough to connect with her professionally. I feel very honoured to have worked with her and I wish her all the best in her future endeavours."  – Steve Russell

Patty starts to read the messages to Stéphanie

Anne Harper (in the middle), member of the Programming Committee
Steephanie showing the gift hand-made by Rob Faust from Faustwork Mask Theatre

Rob Faust could not come but he made a character just for Stéphanie, representing a very excited girl! Incidently, he's not the only artist to have made something for her. Jack Grunsky came to the office this week to give her one of his paintings featuring a Toronto scene.

"Dites à Stéphanie que je l’admire beaucoup et que je souhaite un bel avenir à St Catharines. Lucky them." – Jeanne-Marie Robillard (previously with Prologue)
Bilingual Émilie did honour to the lovely message from Sylvain Grenier of CréaSon
"Salut Stéphanie, j’aimerais te dire comment nous avons apprécié travailler avec toi. Par ton intelligence, ton respect des autres et ton ouverture d’esprit, on ne peut que t’apprécier! Tu as bien sûr toujours travaillé pour améliorer les choses chez Prologue et aussi tu as cherché à donner aux jeunes le meilleur spectacle possible. Ta grande sincérité et ton honnêteté n’ont d’égaux que ton sourire et ta grande sensibilité à mordre à belles dents dans la vie. Comme tu dis si bien, et que je dis maintenant: « de bonne heure de bonne humeur! » Je te souhaite du fond du cœur d’être heureuse dans tes nouvelles fonctions."  – Sylvain Grenier

"From everyone here at TorQ, thank you for all of your expertise in tour management and best wishes on your next endeavors. May your rhythm continue to invigorate and inspire!  inspire!" – Rich, Dan, Adam and Jamie (from TorQ Percussion Quarter
In the back, Karl (Cadence), Mel Hurst (Chair of the Board) and Pat McCarthy (Board member and Education consultant)

"Many thanks for your dedicated and wonderful work over the years at Prologue!  You have been intstrumental in helping to grow DuffleBag Theatre over the years.  Everyone here at DuffleBag wishes you all the best going forward! Un grand MERCI et Bon Voyage!" – Marcus & DuffleBag Theatre
Stéphanie got very emotional when patty read her the soulful message from Motus O (published at the end of this post)

What do you get after 14 years of dedication at Prologue? Certainly not a gold watch (we're a non-profit organization, remember?). Artists and colleagues contributed to a collective gift of... shoes! 

"The gift is a great idea... I still remember when I hired Stephanie and took note of her beautiful and funky looking shoes at the interview.  I thought that I would like to work with this person and of course, she had many other sterling qualities, but the shoes...oh my!  Please feel free to convey these comments to Stephanie. All the best!" – Susan Habkirk (Prologue's previous Executive Director)

Stéphanie, as she recognizes the gift bag from John Fluevog (the cool shoes store at The Distillery)

Soles with a soul!

In the back, Ann Rankin from Shoestring Opera

Ross Lynde gives a hug to Stéphanie
Stéphanie with Nathalie Vachon

Motus O Fance Theatre's message says it all
Our Tribute to Stephanie Filippi

How do you describe Stephanie?  This is how WE describe her…… She is always 120% in! She gives her heart and soul to everything she does. She commits to something and then follows through and makes it happen. She is a doer. She is NOT a complainer. People are first. She is supportive and is full of laughter and joy. She is sensitive to others.  

We are thankful to have had the opportunity to know her and work with her. We are so grateful for all the work she has gotten on our behalf to ensure successful tours. She gets on the phone and makes it happen…. all the time.

We thought it would be fun to define her by giving a meaning to each letter of her name:
S  stands for Stupendous -  Above the madding crowd
T  stands for Tumultuous -she builds whirlwinds; in a good way!
E  for Effervescent – her ‘joie de vie’ bubbles out all over
P  for Passionate  -She does not hold back
H  for Hilarious  -  A lover of laughter
A  for Accent  -a beautiful French one
N  for Never Failing -  Keeps going when times are tough
I  for  Irrepressible  -  You can’t keep her down
E  For Energized  - She brings refreshment wherever she goes

Stéphanie gets the last word

"It's been a privilege and an immense pleasure to have been a part of 14 seasons with such a great organization. I am grateful to Prologue, its board of directors, all the staff, artists, the many wonderful educators, administrators, school boards representatives, presenters, and arts education partners for such an incredible journey! My best wishes to each and everyone! I look forward to crossing paths with many of you again soon."  
– Stéphanie Filippi 

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