Grand Prix winners

The list of winners since 1985 paints an impressive picture of the quality of arts organizations that help define Montreal today: creative and innovative.

Katsi’tsakwas Ellen Gabriel the 38th Grand Prix!

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Katsi’tsakwas Ellen Gabriel remporte le 38e Grand Prix du Conseil des arts de Montréal
Katsi’tsakwas Ellen Gabriel

Katsi’tsakwas Ellen Gabriel is highlighting 45 years of activism and artistic work with this piece echoing the overlooked and sometimes ostracized voices of Mohawk women during the 1990 Resistance using a new medium: documentary film. Produced in a spirit of light and kindness, her short film titled Kanatenhs – When The Pine Needles Fall won Best Canadian Short Film during Montréal First Peoples Festival (2023), was nominated or awarded prizes at some thirty festivals in a dozen countries, and is a legacy to new generations and all First Peoples, a commitment to memory driven by an unshakeable drive for truth. 

Marguerite à bicyclette wins the Jury Prize offered by the Desjardins Caisse de la culture and the Audience Award offered by Télé-Québec.

Sisyphe, Lemieux Pilon 4D Art

Innovation, uniqueness and authenticity. The desire to act, the desire to have an impact and the originality of the means of reaching the Montréal community. These are the criteria that guided the jury in determining the winner. Overriding inevitability and suffering, Victor Pilon of Lemieux Pilon 4D Art created beauty and shared it with the public through an artistic approach of rare authenticity. For his powerful, philosophical and ephemeral initiative that brought together multiple partners in support of a unique work inspired by Albert Camus. For having invited the arts into the unlikely venue of the Olympic Stadium. For having transcended the loss of a loved one in an absolute catharsis, the 36th Grand Prix of the Conseil des arts de Montréal is awarded to Sisyphe – marathon performance by Victor Pilon –.

Productions Nuits d’Afrique wins the Jury Prize offered by the Desjardins Caisse de la culture.

Réalisatrices Équitables wins the Audience Award offered by Télé-Québec.

Drôldadon | Écoscéno | Librairie Racines | Never Was Average | Nigra Iuventa | Web of Virtual Kin

For their actions, outstanding gestures and inspiring initiatives that have brightened the long tunnel of the pandemic. To celebrate the initiatives that marked 2020, the traditional Grand Prix was exceptionally replaced by Our Essentials Artists.

The jury selected the winners in the Our Essential Artists categories of equity, innovation, community spirit, solidarity and the Jury Prize. For the first time in the Conseil’s history, the public was invited to vote for Our Essentials of Caring, the Prix du public.

Audience Award :  Never Was Average
Our Essential Artists Equity : Nigra Iuventa
Our Essential Artists Innovation : Écoscéno
Our Essential Artists Community Spirit : Drôldadon
Our Essential Artists Solidarity : Web of Virtual Kin
Jury Prize : Librairie Racines



for the outstanding quality of its 2019 edition. The 2019 edition of the MUTEK festival drew record audiences to a magnificent line-up of artistically excellent performances featuring a rich blend of styles and disciplines. Women figured prominently on the program. The schedule included a wide range of international artists and was designed to create encounters between emerging and well-established performers. Firmly lodged on the borders of music and digital, MUTEK delighted audiences with an array of innovative human experiences, both physical and contemplative.

Segal Centre for Performing Arts wins the Jury Prize offered by the Desjardins Caisse de la culture



for its integration of murals in Montréal, in particular for the Tribute to Montreal’s Great Artists series, which this year honoured iconic figures such as the Abenaki filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin and the teacher and musician Daisy Peterson Sweeney. Transforming Montréal into an open-air museum, MU’s inclusive process brings visual art into Montréal neighbourhoods, where it can be experienced by citizens. An inspiring model of social inclusion.

ZH Festival wins the jury prize offered by the Desjardins Caisse de la culture


L'Orchestre Métropolitain

for its remarkable European tour, led by artistic director and principal conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin, which took the ensemble to many of Europe’s most prestigious concert halls. The orchestra’s important educational work among young people and its extraordinary presence across the Island of Montréal were also recognized. The jury pointed out that the OM’s musicians are largely the product of Montréal and Quebec City music schools, indicative of the excellent musical training available in Québec.

The inaugural Prix du jury, awarded by the Caisse Desjardins de la Culture, went to ATSA, Quand l’Art passe à l’Action.


Cas Public

for the quality of the organization’s productions and its ability to reach all age groups. It also underscored its remarkable year, during which it presented 117 performances (88 abroad) in seven countries. In 2016, Cas Public performed at such prestigious venues as Covent Garden in London, the Lincoln Center in New York, and the Opéra national de Paris, resulting in extraordinary international visibility, particularly for its works for young audiences.

Recognition Awards : Culture pour tous, le Festival BD de Montréal, la Galerie B-312 and the MainLine Theatre / Festival St-Ambroise Fringe de Montréal.


Les 7 doigts de la main and the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal

Ex aequo Les 7 doigts de la main for Triptyque, a magnificent exploration combining circus and dance, and for its prestigious Drama Desk Award for Queen of the Night and to the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal for David Altmejd’s exhibition Flux, whose dazzling, vertiginous world attracted record numbers in 2015.


Lemieux Pilon 4D Art

for its exceptional presence in 2014, crowned by 30th anniversary activities of all shapes and sizes, culminating in a retrospective immersive exhibition held at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts: Dreamscapes: 30 Years of Innovative Performances.

Recognition Awards : Agence Topo, ARCMTL, Biennale de Montréal, Orange Noyée – Mani Soleymanlou, Quasar Quatuor de Saxophones, Rencontres internationales du documentaire de Montréal (RIDM) and Zab Maboungou – Compagnie Danse Nyata Nyata.


Louise Lecavalier - Fou glorieux

for her legendary contribution to contemporary dance, for her creation So Blue, for winning the Léonide Massine 2013 prize for dance in Italy, in the category of “Most Outstanding Female Dancer of the Year on the Contemporary Scene” and for being named “Personality of the Week” by the newspaper La Presse.


Le Festival TransAmériques (FTA)

for its exceptional work in increasing the scope and visibility of theatre arts worldwide.

Recognition Awards : ACREQ | Elektra (digital arts); Les 7 doigts de la main (circus arts); Art actuel 2-22 (Artexte, le Regroupement des centres d’artistes autogérés du Québec (RCAAQ) and VOX, centre de l’image contemporaine) (visual arts); Wapikoni Mobile (film/video); BJM – Les Ballets jazz de Montréal (dance); Terres en vues (multidisciplinary presentation); the Association des libraires du Québec (ALQ) (literature); and the Bozzini Quartet (music).


Festival du nouveau cinéma

for its 40th anniversary, which provided an opportunity for the festival to present original programming, the renewal of its team and collaborations with increasingly committed business partners.

Recognition Awards : En Piste (circus arts), Society for Arts and Technology (SAT) (digital art), Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal (visual arts), Compagnie Fortier Danse-Création (dance), Liberté magazine (literature), Orchestre Métropolitain (music), PME-ART (new artistic practices), Aux Écuries (theatre).


Cirque Éloize

for iD, its remarkable production that inaugurated the first edition of the international festival, Montréal Complètement Cirque, as well as for its outstanding world-wide reputation.

Recognition Awards : Eastern Bloc (digital arts), Association des galeries d’art contemporain/Art Souterrain (visual arts), Coop vidéo de Montréal (film/vidéo), Agora de la danse (dance), L’Inconvénient (literature), L’OFF Festival de jazz de Montréal (music), Théâtre La Chapelle (new artistic practices), and Compagnie Jean-Duceppe (theatre).


Elektra and Mutek Festivals

ex-aequo because of their complementarity, these two organisms have made Montreal the digital art capital of North America.

Recognition Awards :  Oboro (visual art), Rencontres internationales du documentaire de Montréal (film and video), Regroupement québécois de la danse (dance), revue esse (literature), Ensemble Caprice (music), Les Filles électriques (new artistic practices and circus) and Théâtre PàP (theatre).


Orchestre symphonique de Montréal

for its unforgettable performance of the opera Saint-François d’Assise, by composer Olivier Messiaen, the crowning achievement of the orchestra’s 75 years of artistic excellence.

Recognition Awards: Perte de Signal (media arts), Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (visual arts), Kino’00 (film), Fortier Danse-Création (dance), 24 Images (literature), DARE-DARE (new artistic practices), and Théâtre d’Aujourd’hui (theatre).



for the way this dance presenter constantly renews its role since 1980.

Recognition Awards: The Groupe Molior, Optica, the Festival international du film pour enfants de Montréal (FIFEM), the Blue Metropolis Foundation, the Festival Montréal Baroque, 4D art Lemieux/Pilon and Sibyllines (Brigitte Haentjens).


La Compagnie Marie Chouinard

for bODY_rEMIX / les_vARIATIONS_gOLDBERG, une œuvre subtile et admirable au rayonnement international remarquable.

Recognition Awards: Société des arts technologiques, Musée McCord d’histoire canadienne, Cinémathèque québécoise, Festival international de la littérature, Productions Totem Contemporain, L’Usine C et Centaur Theatre Company.


Le Théâtre Bouches Décousues

pour son apport immense à la vitalité et au développement du théâtre d’ici.

Recognition Awards: Artexte, le Festival du nouveau cinéma, Louise Bédard Danse, la Maison de la poésie, l’Orchestre Métropolitain du Grand Montréal, Silophone et le Théâtre La Chapelle.


Espace Go

for the unique role it plays on the theatre scene in Montreal and across Quebec.

Recognition Awards: Graff, the centre for graphic creation; media arts event Mutek; cinema festival Vues d’Afrique; the Flak dance company (José Navas); Les Filles électriques which organized the Festival Voix d’Amériques; and the Nouvel Ensemble Moderne.


La La La Human Steps

for Amelia, an outstanding choreography and a dazzlingly beautiful film.

Recognition Awards: Oboro centre for art and new media, the Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal, the Rendez-vous du cinéma québécois, Lettres québécoises magazine, the festival of contemporary music Montréal/Nouvelles Musiques, and the Théâtre de La Manufacture.


Ensemble contemporain de Montréal

for the magical and stimulating event “Cage en liberté”.

Recognition Awards : the Association pour la création et la recherche électroacoustiques du Québec (ACREQ), the Association culturelle Quartier Éphémère, the Rencontres internationales du documentaire de Montréal, Danse-Cité, the literature magazine Mœbius, the Coups de théâtre 2002-Forum international des arts jeune public.


Cinéma Parallèle

for its original and innovative independent film and video programming and for its unstinting support of independent filmmaking.

Recognition Awards: Centre d’art public; Fortier danse création; the cultural magazine Spirale; Ensemble Arion; Fondation du Théâtre du Nouveau Monde.


International Festival of Films on Art

for its renewed tribute to creators around the world and artistic creation in all its forms.

Recognition Awards: Centre international d’art contemporain; Lock Danseurs; the Blue Metropolis Foundation; Molinari Quartet; Fondation du Théâtre du Nouveau Monde; Compagnie de théâtre Il va sans dire; Parachute, the contemporary art magazine.


Compagnie Jean-Pierre Perreault

for the outstanding quality of its latest creation.

Recognition Awards: VOX, Centre de diffusion de la photographie; Main Film; Association des écrivaines et des écrivains québécois pour la jeunesse; Studio de musique ancienne de Montréal; Théâtre de l’Opsis in co-production with Théâtre de Quat’Sous.


I Musici de Montréal Chamber Orchestra

for its outstanding contribution to making music flourish on MUC territory.

Recognition Awards: Association des galeries d’art contemporain de Montréal; Festival international du nouveau cinéma et des nouveaux médias de Montréal; O Vertigo Danse; the cultural magazine Spirale; Fondation du Théâtre du Nouveau Monde.


Grands Ballets Canadiens

on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of its founding by the late Ludmilla Chiriaeff.

Recognition Awards: Optica, a centre for contemporary art; Cinémathèque québécoise; Festival interculturel du conte de Montréal; Les Idées heureuses; la Maison québécoise du théâtre pour l’enfance et la jeunesse.


Montreal Museum of Fine Arts

for the quality of its programming in 1996 and the prominent place reserved for 20th-century art.

Recognition Awards: International Festival of Films on Art; Sylvain Émard Danse; Arcade magazine; Compagnie lyrique de création Chants libres; and Théâtre UBU.


Festival international de nouvelle danse

for its exceptional success after 10 years of existence.

Recognition Awards: Centre copie-art; Zone Productions; Cahiers de théâtre JEU; Nouvel Ensemble Moderne; Espace Go.


Carbone 14

for its entire body of work, particularly La Forêt.

Recognition Awards: Atelier circulaire; Compagnie Marie Chouinard; Académie des lettres du Québec; Montreal Symphony Orchestra.


Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal

for its resoundingly successful new facilities in downtown Montréal.

Recognition Awards: Fondation Jean-Pierre Perreault; the cultural periodical Vice Versa; Nouvel Ensemble Moderne; Fondation du Théâtre du Nouveau Monde.


O Vertigo Danse

for its creation of La Chambre blanche.

Recognition Awards: Centre international d’art contemporain de Montréal; Union des écrivaines et écrivains québécois; Productions Traquen’Art; Théâtre de Quat’Sous.

Beginning in 1992, a $5,000 Recognition Award was given to each of the Grand Prix finalists, while the winner received a purse of $25,000 and a commemorative artwork.


Société de musique contemporaine du Québec

the dean of Canadian contemporary music organizations, celebrating its 25th anniversary.

Also nominated: Vox Populi; Fondation Jean-Pierre Perreault; Revue XYZ; Théâtre de la Marmaille.


Vie des Arts magazine

after 40 years, the most long-standing visual arts magazine in Canada.

Also nominated: I Musici de Montréal Chamber Orchestra; Carbone 14.


Canadian Centre for Architecture

one of the most important architecture museums in the world.

Also nominated: Gratien Gélinas, a pioneer of Québec theatre; Édouard Lock, artistic director of La La La Human Steps.


Fondation du Théâtre du Nouveau Monde

the Théâtre expérimental des femmes and Omnibus, for the event Printemps Shakespeare.

Also nominated: I Musici de Montréal Chamber Orchestra; Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.


Cirque du Soleil

for its spectacular success.

Also nominated: dancer and choreographer Margie Gillis; composer Gilles Tremblay.


Louis Lortie

one of the most outstanding pianists of his generation.

Also nominated: Anik Bissonnette and Louis Robitaille, lead dancers with the Ballets de Montréal Eddy-Toussaint; Société de musique contemporaine du Québec.


Théâtre Sans Fil

for its outstanding production of the Seigneur des Anneaux.

Also nominated: Centre international d’art contemporain; Festival international de nouvelle danse; Montreal Symphony Orchestra.