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Sandra Oh, BBC America. Photo provided.

Sandra Oh returns home to receive the National Arts Centre Award—04.27.19

By Leah Geller on April 22, 2019

I wasn’t too surprised when my request to interview Sandra Oh for a preview of the 2019 Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards was respectfully declined. After all, Sandra Oh is a big deal.

While probably best known for her role as Cristina Yang in the medical drama Grey’s Anatomy, Oh has also starred in hit films like Double Happiness and Sideways, and more recently has been killing it with the British murder-mystery series Killing Eve.

There’s no question—Oh is at the top of her game.

There’s no question—Oh is at the top of her game. Just months into 2019, Oh has already won a Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Female Actor in a Drama Series, and has hosted the Golden Globe Awards and Saturday Night Live.

So, it’s pretty exciting that Oh will be in Ottawa this weekend as part of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards. She’ll be receiving the 2019 National Arts Centre Award, which recognizes “work of an extraordinary nature and significance in the performing arts in the past year.”

Oh will be joining fellow Canadians including comedian Rick Mercer, actor Colm Feore and dance educator Mavis Staines who are recipients of this year’s Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award.

The event provides an opportunity to be in the presence of Canadian greatness and to appreciate the contributions of our top artists.

Held annually at the National Arts Centre, the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards ceremony includes tributes, guest performances, a black-tie reception and the ever-popular red carpet.

The event provides an opportunity to be in the presence of Canadian greatness and to appreciate the contributions of our top artists. There’s also the fun of checking out the audience’s fancy outfits and sharing sightings of famous folk. Last time I went, I rubbed shoulders with Gilles Duceppe and stood in line for canapés behind George Stroumboulopoulos.

It is an amazing event and I think everyone in Ottawa should try to go at least once. This year, with Oh in the room, I suspect it will be the most exciting yet.


The 2019 Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards takes place Saturday, April 27 at the National Arts Centre. Tickets are available online from the National Arts Centre.