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Sur Rodney (Sur)’s talks, presentations and writings

The subseries illustrates Sur Rodney (Sur)’s career as an artist and his involvement in the art scene, from the beginning of his career in the 1960s to today. It documents Sur Rodney (Sur)’s various actions and implications not only as an artist, but also as spokesperson for artists from marginalized groups and especially those living with HIV/AIDS.
The subseries includes material on various of Sur Rodney’s projects, such as, among others, the video production The Scary truth About Cockroaches & Landlords, various exhibitions, Sur Rodney (Sur)’s contributions to numerous publications, his participation in various panels and talks, especially his presentation at the CCA Panel : Art Minus Hype : American Art in the 1980’s (1997), and the television shows Sur Rodney (Sur) Show (1980) and All New Sur Rodney (Sur) Show (1981), both moderated by Sur Rodney (Sur). In these shows Sur Rodney (Sur) presented artists from the Manhattan's Lower East Side art scene.
The subseries also includes interviews with Sur Rodney (Sur).

The subseries contains, but is not limited to, scripts, notebooks, calendars, a scrapbook, photographs, flyers, newspaper articles, magazines and other publications, moving images, a press kit, posters, and a sound recording.

Works of fellow artists

The subseries illustrates the art scene around Sur Rodney (Sur), focussing especially on artists from the New York East Village, but including some international artists as well. It gives an insight in the artistic career of various artists, as there are, among others, Andreas Senser, Gracie Mansion, Geoffrey Hendricks, and photographer Timothy Greathouse. The sub-series covers subjects like Black Contemporary Art, performance art, Queer Art, and the problematic of Aids. The sub-series includes the documentary "I'll be your Mirror", screened at the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian film festival and featuring photographer Nan Goldin and the lower east side of Manhattan during the 1980s and HIV/AIDS. It also includes an Acker Award box from 2014, containing original art works and mementos contributed by the awardees.

The subseries consists of, but is not limited to, newspaper articles, exhibition catalogs, magazines, and other publications, correspondence, a poster, and an Acker Awards box.

Correspondence with fellow artists

The subseries illustrates the North-American and more precisely the New York East Village art scene around Sur Rodney (Sur) from the 1970s to 2009. It gives an insight in the life of various artists by the means of personal correspondence exchanged with Sur Rodney (Sur). The sub-series includes a scrap-book containing letters, photographs and drawings send to Sur Rodney (Sur) by artist Pauline Graham Leathem. The sub-series includes as well extensive correspondence with Ronald Heydon, photographer John Brill and artist Lorraine O'Grady. It also contains correspondence with artists Jordan Arseneault, Ann Fensterstock, Arnaud Gosselin, Angel Borrero, Carlo Pittore, Elspeth Duncan, Phyllis Wright, Al Hansen, Ruth Kligman, Adrian Piper, Ray Johnson, and others. Some of these artists were active, like Sur Rodney (Sur), with Visual Aids, an organization working on AIDS awareness through art projects, while supporting artists living with AIDS and archiving their work.

The subseries consists of, but is not limited to, correspondence, newspaper clippings, drafts, and a scrapbook.

History and constitution

This sub-series documents the historical development of the Black Theatre Workshop (BTW), from its beginnings in 1965 as the Trinidad & Tobago Association (TTA) Drama group, through its incorporation as the BTW in 1972, to today. It also contains material pertaining to the Negro Theatre Guild, formed by members of the Montreal Black community in the early 1940s.

The sub-series contains, among other documents, letters patent, programs, newspaper clippings, a constitution, historical outlines, photographs, notes, play scripts, letterheads, logos, poster, studies, a newsletter, membership lists, briefs, mission statements, and correspondence.

Documents textuels

La sous-série contient des documents concernant la fondation de la galerie Powerhouse et diverses expositions à La Centrale Galerie Powerhouse. Les documents portent principalement sur la première exposition de la galerie en 1973, intitulée "Windows: From the Inside Out: Painting, Photography, Ceramic and Sculpture". D'autres expositions documentées dans cette sous-série incluent Codpieces: Phallic Paraphernalia (1974), The Past to the Present (2001) et Powerhouse: Where Are We Now? (2001). La sous-série contient également des publications de La Centrale Galerie Powerhouse, dont Women’s Bookworks (1979) et Les Centrelles (2004).

Artistes et événements – dossiers individuels

La sous-série donne de l’information sur les évènements organises par La Centrale et sur les artistes participants. Les évènements ne comptent pas seulement les expositions et performances, mais comprennent aussi des conférences, des ateliers et des activités de collecte de fonds comme les ventes de rue et les ventes aux enchères. Les dossiers d’artistes ne documentent pas seulement l’implication de l'artiste aux évènements de La Centrale, mais comprennent aussi de l’information biographique et de la documentation de projets a l’extérieurs de La Centrale.

La sous-série comprend notamment de la correspondance, des brochures, des résumés, des contrats d’exposition, des déclarations d'artistes, des photographies, des articles de journaux, des publications, des affiches, des cartes d'invitation, des enregistrements sonores, des images en mouvement, et quelques objets.

Rencontres et committées

La sous-série fournit des informations sur les comités administratifs de La Centrale.

La sous-série comprends des procès-verbaux de l’assemblée générale, du conseil d’administration et de plusieurs autres comités, ainsi que des documents connexes.

Theater for Young Audiences program

This sub-series provides insight into The Black Theatre Workshop’s (BTW) contribution to education at the primary and secondary levels and contains documentation pertaining to The Theater for Young Audiences Program, which was first implemented in 1983. A number of plays were produced exclusively for this program and were shown to both elementary and secondary school audiences. These were generally presented in schools in the Greater Montreal area, but also shown in Nova Scotia and the United States among other locations. The sub-series contains documents pertaining to school tours, which took place from 1986 to 2011. Many of these tours took place during Black History Month. Materials document the plays that were part of the series, necessary preparatory work, the schools that hosted the performances, and finances, along with feedback from teachers, students and actors.

The sub-series contains correspondence, photographs, drawings, promotional material, educational material (teachers’ guides), play scripts, project outlines, reports, financial records, contracts, booking sheets, schedules, performance evaluations, newspaper clippings, and sheet music, among other documents.


The sub-series provides insight into the Black Theatre Workshop’s (BTW) many initiatives to support young performing artists. A first attempt to install a program to support young artists was the Beginners’ Workshop, which took place in January and February 1984, followed by an 11-week project known as the Summer Theatre, which took place during summer of the same year. The idea was revived with the installation of the Youthworks Program, which existed from 2002 to 2013. This workshop series offered free specialized theatre training for Montreal teenagers from 12 to 25 years old, who envisioned a career in the performing arts. Each spring the workshop series finished with the presentation of a play, as there were, among others, Shakin' the Mess Outta Misery ; Death of the Bourgeois Dream ; What If?, and Urban Legends / The Procrastin8r.

The sub-series contains play scripts, brochures, meeting notes, reports, program outlines, communications, photographs, schedules, photographs, and sound recordings, among other documents.

General audience

This sub-series documents plays produced by the Black Theatre Workshop (BTW) from the early 1970s until the 2007-2008 season. It also illustrates other events organized by the BTW, including festivals, workshops, and poetry jams, among others. It also documents the professional career of several actors involved with the BTW.

This sub-series contains photographs, programs, press releases, newspapers and newspaper clippings, drawings, floor plans, collages, flyers, project proposals, reports, invitations, entrance tickets, play scripts, meeting notes, box office records, correspondence, schedules, budgets, drafts, goboes, and the first issue of the Black Theatre Workshop News, among other documents.


The sub-series documents Peter Madden’s work as a playwright.

The sub-series includes Peter Madden’s theatre plays, screenplays as well as radio dramas. It contains drafts and final versions, photographs, newspaper clippings, ephemera and an audio reel.

Meetings and committees

This sub-series provides insight into the administration and organizational structure of the Black Theatre Workshop (BTW). The BTW is governed by a Board of directors, to which all committees and directors report. It includes documents related to meetings of the Board of Directors; Executive Committee; Management Committee; and the Planning and Priorities committee. It also contains documents concerning General meetings and meetings of temporary committees.

This sub-series contains, among other documents, meeting minutes, reports, correspondence, lists of board members, organizational charts, job descriptions, meeting notes, and various documents presented or discussed at the meetings, as well as newspaper clippings, and grant applications.

Histoire et documents fondateurs

La sous-série illustre la création de La Centrale en 1973 ainsi que son évolution dans le temps

La sous-série comprends des règlements, organigrammes, mandats, et autres documents relatifs au fonctionnement de la galerie.


La sous-série donne de l’information sur les membres de La Centrale à travers les années.

La sous-série comprends des formulaires d'adhésion, des listes de membres et des demandes d'adhésion.


This sub-series provides an overview of the Black Theatre Workshop's (BTW) financial situation from the early 1970s to 2008. It also provides insight into the resources required to produce plays and other programming at the BTW.

This sub-series contains financial statements, budgets, ledger pages, invoices, and other financial documents related to the activities of the BTW.


This sub-series provides insight into the financial support received by the Black Theatre Workshop (BTW) from the 1980s to 2008. It documents the BTW's two major sources of income: government support received by way of various grants and fundraising campaigns. Materials related to fundraising campaigns document both the financial and social aspects of these events. The sub-series contains materials related to the BTW's annual Vision Celebration (or Vision Gala), which has taken place every January since 1987. At this event, an important member of the community is honoured with the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Achievement Award. The first of these awards was given to musician Oscar Peterson, followed by Oliver Jones, Daisy Peterson-Sweeney, and Dorothy Wills, among many others. The sub-series contains biographical information of all award recipients from 1987 to 2008.

The sub-series contains grant applications, reports, newspaper articles and newspapers, fundraising plans, presentation folios, correspondence, photographs, invitations, programs, expense reports, and financial statements, among other documents.


The sub-series documents Peter Madden’s work as a poet.

The sub-series contains drafts and final versions of poems as well as some paintings used as illustrations.

Demandes de subvention – dossiers visuels

La sous-série livre une présentation neutre de la programmation et des évènements organisés par La Centrale, sous forme des dossiers visuels faisant partie des demandes de subvention. Le but initial
de ces présentations visuelles était de convaincre les organismes de financement de subventionner des projets ou d’assurer le fonctionnement général de la galerie.

La sous-série comprend notamment des demandes de subvention, des photographies, des communiqués de presse, des publications, et des rapports financiers.

Kamp Kanawana

The sub-series documents the administration, property, buildings, equipment, publicity, staff, campers, and program of Kamp Kanawana. The sub-series includes directors' reports, annual reports, correspondence, camper applications, blueprints, maps, photographs, publicity brochures and films, t-shirts, badges, ribbons, pennants, and other materials. The materials are arranged in the following sub-sub-series:

P0145/12B01 - General administration.
P0145/12B02 - Financial administration.
P0145/12B03 - Land, facilities, equipment, supplies.
P0145/12B04 - Communications.
P0145/12B05 - Staff, counsellors.
P0145/12B06 - Campers.
P0145/12B07 - Program.

Livres d’or

La sous-série donne de l’information sur les évènements qui ont eu lieu à la galerie La Centrale entre 1980 et 2003 au moyen des entrées du livre d'or écrites par les visiteurs de la galerie.

La sous-série comprend 10 livres d’or.

Informations sur l'adhésion

La sous-série renseigne sur l'adhésion et le recrutement des membres à La Centrale.

La sous-série comprends notamment des dépliants, des règlements et des procès-verbaux.

Annual Reports

The sub-series consists of annual reports issued by the Metropolitan Montreal YMCA and working documents used in their preparation.

Early life

Contents relating to his early life.


The sub-series documents Peter Madden’s work as a storyteller.

The sub-series includes drafts and final versions of stories for adults as well as for children.

Papers and manuscripts

Subseries includes papers and manuscripts given to John Gilmore to help with his research.

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