Finalists for the 9th Okanagan Arts Awards

The Arts Council of the Central Okanagan has announced the 36 finalists going forward to the 9th Annual Okanagan Arts Awards.

These 36 Central Okanagan top artists, in 12 nomination categories, will be celebrated at the arts awards gala on Saturday May 28, at The Habitat in downtown Kelowna.

Response to the call for submissions for the award was so robust, going from 41 in 2015 to over 110 in 2016, that a new finalist category was created this year.

The 2016 Okanagan Arts Awards finalists are:

Visual Arts: Connor Charlesworth, Jane Everett and Laurie Koss

Dance: Kinshira Performance Troupe, Loretta Lachner and Janessa McGrath

Music: Alexandra Babbel & Opera Kelowna, Andrew Judah and Adam Meachem

Literature: Ronald Derrickson, Lesley-Anne Evans and Michael V. Smith

Theatre: Kinshira Performance Troupe, Robert Mason-Brown and Randall Robinson

Time Based Media: Benjamin Musgrave, Todd Ramsey and Nick Schafer

Applied Arts: Art Felt Collaborative, Missy Mackintosh and Bri Stein

Emerging Artist: Kelsie Balehowsky, Connor Charlesworth and Jolene Mackie

Innovation: Cool Arts Society, Opera Kelowna and Shimson Obadia

Community Impact: Lake Country Art Gallery, Okanagan Symphony Orchestra and Cool Arts Society

Art & Business: Brazen Edwards, Carrie Mayhew and Bramble Lee Pryde

Business Supporter: The Heritage Retirement Residence, Investors Group and Raymond James Ltd.

As well, a special Lifetime Achievement award will be presented to Sharon McCoubrey, celebrating her many years of support for the arts.

For more information on the finalists of the 9th Annual Okanagan Arts Awards, please visit

Beside celebrating the achievements of the Central Okanagan’s top talents, the awards night will also include performances by Wildson, Kelly Derrickson, Leah West, Anna Jackysyn, Loni Moger and Stephen Buck, Aaron and Graham Ord, Lucy Hazelwood and The Trips.

Hosted by actor and talent agent Peter Breeze, the awards will be followed up with an after party with DJ Wolfhous. Besides all the action on stage, the Okanagan Arts Awards will include a free pop-up exhibition of work by the nominees and finalists and local food trucks on-site for a mini rally.

Tickets the Award Gala evening are $20 per person (19+) available at