Marilyn Field

Founder & President, DAREarts

Topics: Arts & Entertainment, Charity
Interview Date: June-19-2012
Extraordinary Insights: "You just have to dare. The first two letters of “dare” are “d” for discipline and “a” for action. Just go for it. Think positively and take action.'Dare!'”

Audio-only version:

At age 23, while teaching in one of Scarborough’s toughest school districts, Marilyn began her lifetime of service that would lead to her changing the lives of over 110,000 at-risk children across Canada. There she learned that traditional tools did not work. She set about to change their minds by playing Mozart at the start of detentions. Arousing the students’ curiosity, she compared Mozart’s wild lifestyle to today’s rap artists. Kids started coming to detention just to listen. At recesses, her room was filled with kids as she shared with them her passion for excellence, compassion and discipline. She began reaching out further to other schools. Marilyn Field founded the charity DAREarts in 1996, as an expanded version of the program she initiated as a teacher. DareArts is a cultural education outreach program that provides at-risk youth with an intensive out-of-school immersion in the arts through history and world cultures. Engaging over 125 arts professionals as teachers, this unique approach enables participants, aged nine through 14, to discover their own strengths through music, drama, dance, visual arts and literature. Upon completing the five-year program, the students return to their respective schools as leaders, to share their new knowledge with their classmates. Thanks to DAREarts, Canadian disadvantaged children are empowered with confidence, courage and leadership skills to ignite change in high priority communities. DAREarts programs began in the GTA and have expanded to Vancouver’s innercity districts as well as remote Aboriginal communities where DAREarts flies into to deliver customized programs alongside Aboriginal artists. Field won international recognition when she conducted a world youth choir at the 100th Anniversary of Nobel Peace Prize concert in Oslo, Norway as part of the world-wide Children For Peace movement with NATO Peacekeeping forces. In 2003, she was awarded the Canadian Meritorious Service Medal by the Governor General. Marilyn is also a former Board member for Opera Atelier, Toronto Senior Strings, The Ontario Speech Foundation, Theatre Orangeville; President of the Esprit Orchestra and Chair of the first CD project of the Canadian Opera Company.