Co-creator and director of Hirsch.Paul Thompson was a recipient of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement in 2011. Here is the citation: (he) “is one of the undisputed founders of English-language theatre in Canada. Writer, director, producer and maverick, co-founder and former Artistic Director of Toronto’s Theatre Passe Muraille and former Director General of the National Theatre School of Canada, he was a pioneer of ‘collective creation,’ in which plays are developed by the actors themselves from their own experiences and improvisations. He has directed across the country and around the world, brought over two hundred productions to the stage, mentored several generations of Canadian theatre artists and helped establish such influential theatre companies as Newfoundland’s CODCO, Saskatoon’s 25th Street Theatre and Toronto’s Nightwood Theatre.” Paul recently received an honorary doctorate from his alma mater, the University of Western Ontario; he is the proud holder of a Dora Mavor Moore Silver Ticket and has been appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada. The present play, Hirsch, has been created through his collective techniques, and it may be worth noting that forty years ago this August, his extraordinary production The Farm Show was created in a barn less than sixty miles from this very building.Meet Paul Thompson at Meet the Festival on Friday, July 6.