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Meet the players behind Toronto's fashion week

Under new owner IMG, Toronto's World MasterCard Fashion Week aims to create one unified voice for Canadian fashion

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The man with the plan: Jarrad Clark, IMG’s director of global production, shown here at the site of Istanbul Fashion Week, presides over the brand’s fashion events worldwide. For Clark, shortening Toronto’s scattered fashion calendar is at the heart of the company’s strategy for strengthening the event. ‘[It’s about] making sure that designers have the ability to show with us onsite at any one of our locations, but also to show on location anywhere around the city that may be triggering their creativity,’ as long as it’s during the same week.

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The woman on the ground: ‘One of my first days here, [IMG managing director] Peter Levy reached out and said, “We want you to call every designer and build better relationships with them on an ongoing basis,” ’ says Carolyn Quinn, the director of IMG Fashion Events & Properties Canada, and the conglomerate’s key player in Toronto.

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The optimistic veteran: As the executive director of the Toronto Fashion Incubator, which supports up-and-coming designers, Susan Langdon sees a cohesive calendar as an important step in delivering Canada’s fashion industry to an international audience. Langdon has added TFI’s press and buyer’s brunch, a boutique trade show, to the official World MasterCard Fashion week schedule on March 20 and 21. ‘It’s a great opportunity for our emerging designers to meet influential buyers and media – international and national – and make those connections face to face,’ she says.

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The rising-star makers: The Collections, a privately held designer management and production company that comprises (from far left) managing director Mel Ashcroft, fashion director Dwayne Kennedy and production director Brian A. Richards, represents some of Toronto’s most exciting emerging talent. They will be producing shows for labels such as Chloé Comme Parris and Sid Neigum at Toronto’s David Pecaut Square, the official World MasterCard Fashion Week venue.

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The creative force: Sid Neigum, last year’s winner of the TFI New Labels competition, poses above with a piece from his self-described ‘optimistic post-apocalyptic’ fall 2013 collection. This will be his first season showing with IMG. ‘I’m excited to build new relationships and work with many talented people,’ he says of IMG’s plans to unify the event.

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