OSCAR PETERSON’S REQUEST
The road to the ArtsGames began with a request from Oscar Peterson to his niece, producer Sylvia Sweeney, to stage an event which would bring cultures together.
BLUEPRINTS ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT FESTIVAL 1999
After a series of events were staged in response to Oscar Peterson’s request, Sweeney was researching the Olympic and Paralympic movements and discovered that arts were once part of the Games and artists used to be awarded medals alongside athletes. She knew she would have to demonstrate a proof of concept for this idea and so staged the Blueprints Arts & Entertainment Festival in Toronto, Canada in 1999.
BLUEPRINTS 2000, OLYMPIC AND PARALYMPIC DEMOS
In 2000, the second Blueprints Festival was staged but this time in collaboration with the Harbourfront Centre in Toronto. This organization has demonstrated excellence in its programming of cross-cultural art forms. As a result of this, a presentation was made to the International Olympic Committee in 2001 and the Canadian Paralympic Committee in 2003. Further demonstrations were also delivered at the 2004 Paralympic Games in Athens and between the Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2008.
BEIJING 2008 GAMES
The Beijing 2008 Paralympic and Olympic Games was the destination of the final demonstration. Performing artists from around the world toured under the banner of the Samsung Marriage of Excellence as a demonstration of excellence and cross-cultural exchange.
The ArtsGames has a solid platform upon which to launch the future home of cross-cultural understanding.