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October 2011 Archives

WAM October 29-30 Lorna Goodison

Lorna Goodison is a Jamaican - Canadian poet who has won the Commonwealth Writers Prize for her poetry and the BC Award for Non-fiction for her memoir, From Harvey River. That book was a finalist for the Charles Taylor Prize and the Trillium Book Award.

Lorna Goodison has just released a new collection of short stories, By Love Possessed, a loosely linked series that looks at life through a microscope, and by seeing that which is small, she also see that which is big.

Lorna Goodison will be reading from her new book next week in St. John’s as part of Memorial University Visiting Authors series. I spoke with her this week and seeing as how most people know her for her poetry and her award-winning memoir, I asked Lorna Goodison how long she’d been writing short stories.

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WAM October 29-30 The Outsiders John Rao

S. E. Hinton wrote The Outsiders in 1967, but the book still resonates with young people.

It’s a production with a twist, though. John Rao, the producer / director of AOR, has turned the production into what he calls a scholarship opportunity for student performers. Roughly half the cast and crew of The Outsiders are students, with the other half being made up of professionals who act as mentors to the students. All the student participants are eligible for a scholarship awarded by the mentors at the end of the production.

John Rao, and his student production assistant, Jordan Steinhauer, joined me in the studio this week to talk about the whole project, and I asked John to give me a summary of the play.

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WAM October 29-30 Anita Singh

“Painting” with wax, encaustic, is an ancient art-form - pieces created centuries ago remain bright and vivid today, like new.

That’s one of the characteristics of encaustic, because beeswax is impervious to moisture.

Another quality of the method is that you can build layers that become or appear to be transparent. This helps the pieces to become more complicated than they first appear.

Anita Singh is a local artist who has recently become enamored of encaustic. The Leyton Gallery of Fine Art is mounting a small exhibit of Anita’s art as New Encaustic Work. It opened in the Gallery this past Thursday, and I joined Anita in the gallery the day before the opening.

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WAM October 29-30 Nicole Lundrigan

Writer Nicole Lundrigan moved away from Newfoundland when she was seventeen. Her work has been selected as a top ten pick by the Globe and Mail, long-listed for the Relit Award, and given honourable men-tion for the Sun-burst Award. Glass Boys is her fourth novel, and all four books have been set in Newfoundland.

Glass Boys has an unforgivable crime, an oozing mystery and enmity between families. And more. The two drunken Trench Brothers decide to pull a prank on Eli Fagan and the results are disastrous and deadly. The community of Knife’s Point, Newfoundland then becomes the setting for a story of love and vengeance.

I spoke with Nicole by phone this week about Glass Boys and asked her why she continues to write about Newfoundland.

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WAM October 29-30 God of Carnage

Nothing On Productions is a brand new theatre company who present their premiere show this upcoming week in St. John’s - they’re staging Yasmina Reza’s The God of Carnage. The God of Carnage won the Olivier Award for best new play in London in 2008, and in 2009, all four Broadway actors were nominated for best actor Tony awards in New York.

The three principals of the company, Katherine Elliot, Jill Kennedy and the director for their first show, Janet O’Reilly, joined me in the studio. I asked Katherine why Newfoundland and Labrador needs another theatre company.

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WAM October 29-30 WGB

WGB, in all its incarnations with all its marvellous characters and musicians, holds a special place in the hearts of many Newfoundlanders.

Whether you enjoy a bellylaugh with Mr. Hynes, want to scuff your shoes off whirling to a fiddle-jig, sing along with one of their well-known tunes, or be captivated by an entertainment of the highest calibre, you will enjoy a performance from this group.

I mean … Greg Malone? Ron Hynes? Sandy Morris? Glenn Simmons? What’s not to like when they join forces with Jamie Snider, Ian Perry and Boomer Stamp?

You’ll get the chance over the next two and a half weeks as WGB goes on the road, touring the province’s Arts and Culture Centres.

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And they bring swag! New DVD’s!

Greg Malone and Sandy Morris sat down with me this week to talk about the band and the upcoming tour.

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WAM October 29-30 Shanneyganock

There are bands that, when they take to the stage, make you realise you are in for something different. Shanneyganock is one of those bands. They turn the largest venues into the most intimate of parties … and everybody is invited.

Chris Andrews and Mark Hiscock of Shanneygannock dropped by the studio yesterday with news of a new cd and a new tour. I trapped them in studio for a brief gab.

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October 29-30 on Weekend Arts Magazine

Visual artist Anita Singh has been bitten by the encaustic bug, and opens a new show of nature studies at the Leyton Gallery of Fine Art. Award-winning poet and memoirist Laura Goodison travels to Newfoundland next week to read from her collection of short stories By Love Possessed, she talks to you about writing. Nothing On Productions is a new theatre company and is excited about their first show, The God of Carnage, you’ll hear a scene and catch the buzz. The Wonderful Grand Band is back on the road, and back on DVD! Greg Malone and Sandy Morris talk tour and television. Liner Notes features The Forgotten Bouziki.

The Weekend Arts Magazine with Mack Furlong airs from 6 to 9:30 island time - 5:30 to 9:00 in parts of Labrador - on Saturday and Sunday mornings on CBC Radio 1.

If you miss an interview or a show, then check our podcasts and streaming interviews, available at cbc.ca/wam. Or follow @CBCWam on Twitter. Or listen live from anywhere in the world. Go to cbc.ca/nl and choose the Listen Live to Radio One button.

If you’d like to comment on the show or anything you hear on the show, email us; our address is wam@cbc.ca; or visit CBC WAM on Facebook and join the conversation there; or call us at 576.5245, 1.877.576.5245 toll-free from anywhere.

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WAM October 22-23 Saltwater Moon/ Jamie Mac

David French and his Mercer-cycle plays rest in the highest reaches of the Canadian theatre pantheon. He and they are amongst the most appreciated of stage works.

Salt-Water Moon, the romantic comedy about young love and the first in the 5-play series, has received regular production across the country and around the world since its premiere in 1984. It is a script that speaks about the universal while looking at the provincial.

The National Arts Centre in Ottawa opened its 2011-2012 season on Friday with a new production of Salt-Water Moon starring Newfoundlander Jamie Mac as Jacob Mercer, the 18-year old boy returning to Coley’s Point from Toronto to discover his sweetheart, Mary Snow, is now betrothed to another, the wealthy Jerome.

I spoke with Jamie on Friday morning and asked him how it felt to play Jacob Mercer on the stage of the National Arts Center in this seminal work.

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WAM October 22-23 Dr. Bronwen Walter

Doctor Bronwen Walter from Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge, England, visits Memorial University this week and wants to meet with you to enter into a dialogue on questions about the recognition of Irish heritage in Newfoundland. This is all part of a larger project Dr. Walter is working on, exploring the issue of Irish heritage in parts of the world where people experience major connections with Ireland. She is looking at England, New Zealand, and Newfoundland.

Her own research to date has focussed on Britain, and especially England, where she has been involved in both academic projects and policy-related areas (especially connected to emigrant welfare needs and anti-Irish discrimination).

Dr. Bronwen Walter joins me this morning in the studio. Welcome to the Weekend Arts Magazine.

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WAM October 22-23 Darren Whalen

Emma Butler Gallery opens a show this afternoon of New Works by two young men - Dave Sheppard and Darren Whalen.

I visited the gallery yesterday and had a look at the work and while there took the opportunity to talk with one of the young artists, Darren Whalen.

Darren is a graduate of the Visual Arts program at Sir Wilfred Grenfell in Corner Brook and sites Alex Coleville and Lucian Freud among his influences. And when you have a gee at Darren’s Terry Sawchuck portrait, for instance, you can see the Freudian significance. The exhibit is full of faces.

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WAM October 22-23 Barbara Walsh

The Newfoundland hurricane that thrashed the south coast of Newfoundland in 1935 rivalled Igor in intensity. It blew through and left tragedy in its wake. Sailors lost at sea.

Some of those sailors were Paddy Walsh and his sons Jimmy, Jerome and Francis.

Paddy’s brother Ambrose moved off to the United States in the wake of the storm, and led a stormy life himself.

Many years removed from that, Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Barbara Walsh heard of this story, a story linked to her through her father, Ambrose’s son.

And there was a storm in that world, too. Barbara Walsh tells the story in her new book, August Gale: A Father and Daughter’s Journey into the Storm. And a journey to Newfoundland, a place neither she nor her father had ever visited.

I spoke with Barbara Walsh this week from her home in Maine.

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WAM October 7-8 George Murray

Poet George Murray is the executive director of the Association of Cultural Industries Newfoundland and Labrador.

And George is concerned about how we vote in Tuesday’s election. He would like us to consider what our local candidates and their provincial parties think and say about art and culture in their platforms. Opinions that might have a great impact on the lives of artists in the coming house of assembly.

I spoke with George on Friday.

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October 22-23 on the Weekend Arts Magazine

Multi-instrumentalist Jim Fidler has a new album coming out, but that’s not the only news from the Fidler camp - he’s releasing it in an unorthodox manner. Two young artists - Dave Sheppard and Darren Whalen - open a show of new works at Emma Butler Gallery, you’ll hear from Darren. Journalist Barbara Walsh wrote a book on the hurricane of 1935 that struck the south coast and discovered a storm in her own family, she’ll talk about August Gale. The Hot Earth Ensemble joins forces with Innismara for Hosiana, an evening of early music of Praise and Thanksgiving. Mary Fearon drops by on Sunday morning to give you the story about the upcoming Storytelling Festival. Liner Notes features the much anticipated new release from The Once - hear Gerry, Phil and Andrew talk about Row upon Row of the people they know.

The Weekend Arts Magazine with Mack Furlong airs from 6 to 9:30 island time - 5:30 to 9:00 in parts of Labrador - on Saturday and Sunday mornings on CBC Radio 1.

If you miss an interview or a show, then check our podcasts and streaming interviews, available at cbc.ca/wam. Or follow @CBCWam on Twitter. Or listen live from anywhere in the world. Go to cbc.ca/nl and choose the Listen Live to Radio One button.

If you’d like to comment on the show or anything you hear on the show, email us; our address is wam@cbc.ca. You could search for CBC WAM on Facebook and join the conversation there. Or call us at 576.5245, 1.877.576.5245 toll-free from anywhere.

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WAM October 15-16 Dr. Andrew Jennings

The Leslie Harris Centre of Regional Policy and Development at Memorial University has been sponsoring a North Atlantic Forum on Culture, Place and Identity at the heart of Regional development since Thursday. The Conference winds up today.

So many people have been attending and presenting and discussing! Artists, academics, tradition bearers, government officials responsible for regional development, for arts and for heritage preservation!

Economic development and diversification, cultural tourism, and arts and cultural heritage as tools for community building are all themes for this conference.

One of the speakers at the conference is Andrew Jennings. Dr. Jennings teaches Orkney and Shetland Studies in the University of the Highland and Islands. He is interested in the culture of the Shetland, including place-names and the Viking influence on the islands. He has a particular interest in Shetland’s modern cultural history and identity. And how they impact regional development.

Dr. Andrew Jennings joins me in the studio.

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October 15-16 Corpus

The 21st annual Festival of New Dance is in full swing this weekend and one of the most charming and attractive performances are those given by CORPUS, the circus-like dance company from Montreal.

CORPUS is known for its precise and surrealist humour combining movement with theatrical imagery. CORPUS’ unique and engaging performances are presented in both traditional and unusual locations, for large and diverse audiences. CORPUS also co-creates 4-square, a popular educational television series for pre-schoolers, now in its fourth season with Treehouse TV.

David Danzon is co-creator of CORPUS and he visited this week with Mack Furlong who asked him what CORPUS is and what it does.

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October 15-16 Molly Peacock

Molly Peacock writes and edits poetry. But twenty-odd years ago, Molly stumbled upon a story that would not leave her - the story of Mary Granville Pendarves Delany, born in 1700, died in 1788. The part of the story that impressed Molly the most was that, at the age of seventy-two, Mary Delany began her life’s work when she invented the art of collage.

Molly Peacock now tells that story in the sumptuous volume The Paper Garden. The book contains not only the life of Mary Delany, but also over thirty full-colour illustrations of Mrs. D’s art - work you have to see to believe. Mrs. Delany created collages of common flowers, but they are no common creations. It boggles the mind to think that not only are these not real flowers, but that each flower is made up of little tiny pieces of paper meticulously cut and shaped by Mrs. D.

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October 15-16 John Walker

John Walker has directed more than fifteen award-winning documentary films on his c.v. - he has won Gemini awards and taken prizes from the Organization of American Historians and the Atlantic Film Festival. His films on Sir John Franklin and the coal miner’s choir the Men of the Deeps amongst others have been screened in Los Angeles, Berlin, London, Havana and Seoul.

Next Thursday in St. John’s, you have the opportunity of seeing A Drummer’s Dream. Filming in a music camp situated in rural Ontario, Walker focusses on some of the most versatile and respected drummers in the world who show that not only have they great drum chops, they have passion, heart, humour and dynamic personalities. Nasyr Abdul-al-Khabyyr, Dennis Chambers, Kenwood Dennard, Horacio Hernandez, Giovanni Hidalgo, Mike Mangini and Raul Rekow all appear and perform.

Like Mack Furlong, John Walker is a drummer. Mack spoke with him this week and asked him where the idea for A Drummer’s Dream came from.

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October 15-16 Pamela Morgan

Pamela Morgan has devoted her entire professional career as a champion traditional music in Newfoundland and Labrador. As a member of the seminal trad/rock band, Figgy Duff, Pamela ushered in not only a new respect for the songs and singers of the province, but enlivened those songs with the energy that rock and roll brought to the scene. Pamela and the Duff loved these tunes and these performers, but stamped the music with their own inimitable style.

Pamela continues this service to traditional music of Newfoundland and Labrador with a new project, a music book. Newfoundland Ballads for Piano and Voice is a co-production between Amber Music and Running the Goat Press.

Pamela was involved at every level of the new book: the choice and arrangement of the songs; the design of the book; and the creation of the illustrations. She even helped hand-sew the books together!

Mack Furlong spoke with Pamela this week and asked her about the songs in the book and where they came from.

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October 15-15 Operation Homespun

The Anna Templeton Centre for Craft Art and Design has thrown down the thrummed gauntlet - they are challenging knitters to enter a contest, creating contemporary work using traditional knitting patterns from Newfoundland and Labrador as the influence. Operation Homespun is the contest, held in co-operation with the Craft Council Gallery, where an exhibit of the created work will be held.

All work should show the influence of the book, Operation Homespun, a collection of traditional Newfoundland and Labrador knitting patterns printed by the Centre in the `80’s and reprinted again recently.

Susan Furneaux and Shirley Scott have laid out the pattern for the contest. They both teach at the Anna Templeton Centre.

Mack Furlong visited with Susan and Shirley at the Centre this week.

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October 15-16 on the Weekend Arts Magazine

Chris O’Neill-Yates sits in for Mack Furlong this week. Chris will introduce you to some of the highlights of this year’s St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival with Noreen Golfman. Poet Molly Peacock will visit Memorial University soon and she’ll talk about her magical book The Paper Garden. Philip Goodridge likes Radio Plays so much he’s putting three of them on stage, just in time for Hallowe’en! Pamela Morgan releases a book of Newfoundland ballads - and she’s done ALL the work - she arranged the pieces, worked on the design, wrote the scores, and did the illustrations as well. Chris’s guest on Liner Notes is Bruce Moss.

The Weekend Arts Magazine airs from 6 to 9:30 island time - 5:30 to 9:00 in parts of Labrador - on Saturday and Sunday mornings on CBC Radio 1.

If you miss an interview or a show, then check our podcasts and streaming interviews, available at cbc.ca/wam. Or follow @CBCWam on Twitter. Or listen live from anywhere in the world. Go to cbc.ca/nl and choose the Listen Live to Radio One button.

If you’d like to comment on the show or anything you hear on the show, email us; our address is wam@cbc.ca. You could search for CBC WAM on Facebook and join the conversation there. Or call us at 576.5245, 1.877.576.5245 toll-free from anywhere.

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WAM October 8-9 Margie Gillis

A national treasure. A living legend. The first modern dancer to be named a member of the Order of Canada. A Knight of the Ordre National du Quebec. The first western dancer to perform modern dance in China. That’s Margie Gillis.

Margie has performed with the National Ballet of Canada, Ballet British Columbia, the Alberta Ballet Company. She has created work for Cirque du Soleil and over 100 solo pieces performed all over the world.

Everywhere except St. John’s.

That will be corrected this week when Margie Gillis appears at the 21st Annual Festival of New Dance. She will perform Voyages into the Interior Landscape.

I asked Margie to tell me about the pieces.

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WAM October 8-9 Amanda Jernigan & Mark Callanan

Amanda Jernigan, a poet once resident in St. John’s, launches her first collection of poetry, Groundwork, influenced by classic myth and by the Atlantic Ocean outside our port.

Mark Callanan, a good friend of Amanda’s, is ready to see his new collection, Gift Horse, influenced by a near-death experience with disease, in your hands.

Both poets will present their new work to you on Tuesday night in St. John’s.

I asked Amanda to describe Groundwork, which is a play, many times over, on words.

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WAM October 8-9 NAF Mike Clair & Deatra Walsh

Next week, the North Atlantic Forum gathers academics, practitioners, government officials and other people interested in the intersection of culture, place and identity, which they see at the heart of regional development.

The international conference is being convened by the Harris Centre for Regional Policy and Development at Memorial University. Mike Clair is the Associate Director of Public Policy at the centre, and Deatra Walsh, working on her post-doctorate degree at York University, will be presenting a talk on the panel “Authenticity in Cultural Expression.” Her paper is on Hey Rosetta.

I asked Mike why, as an interested observer of the cultural scene in the province, I should be excited about the conference.

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WAM October 8-9 The Bookery

For committed book lovers, the big box stores just don’t cut it. Sure, they have all the Stephen Kings and the Harlequin romances and the Rachel Ray cookbooks.

But where do you reliably find Joel Thomas Hynes or Amanda Jernigan or Sara Tilley? The Bookery, on Signal Hill, that’s where. An independent bookstore stocking an idiosyncratic list of books. Book lover’s books.

Or at least that’s where you used to be able to find those odd titles.

Russell Floren, owner and operator of The Bookery, is about to call it quits. I visited him in the Bookery this week.

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Oct 8-9 On The Weekend Arts Magazine

Join Mack Furlong and hear all about a Feast of Pottery for the Thanksgiving Weekend! Potter Alexis Templeton invites you to the celebration. Writers Amanda Jernigan and Mark Callanan are good friends and good poets - they both launch new collections next week. The Festival of New Dance is also on the cultural horizon - world-renowned Margie Gillis will be here for a chat and for a performance! Liner Notes will feature the new release from Repartee.

Mark your X for a song to represent each of the major political parties running in the provincial election! Call at the number below - we’ll be sending out gift prizes of cds, books, tee-shirts! Who knew elections could be such fun?

The Weekend Arts Magazine airs from 6 to 9:30 island time - 5:30 to 9:00 in parts of Labrador - on Saturday and Sunday mornings on CBC Radio 1.

If you miss an interview or a show, then check our podcasts and streaming interviews, available at cbc.ca/wam. Or follow @CBCWam on Twitter. Or search for CBC WAM on Facebook. Or listen live from anywhere in the world. Go to cbc.ca/nl and choose the Listen Live to Radio One button.

If you’d like to comment on the show or anything you hear on the show, email us; our address is wam@cbc.ca. Or call us at 576.5245, 1.877.576.5245 toll-free from anywhere.

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WAM October 1-2 Greg Thomey

He was a stalwart of the local theatre and film scene and one of the original members of This Hour Has 22 Minutes. He created Frank McMillan and the comedy series Daily Tips for Modern Living. Then we kind of lost sight of Greg Thomey. But Greg is back in the saddle again - he makes a guest appearance this week on 22 Minutes as the great political character he created, Jerry Boyle. They don’t make political advertisements like that anymore, alas. The unmistakable dulcet tones of Jerry Boyle … and of Greg Thomey. I caught up with Greg by phone yesterday

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WAM October 1-2 Andrew Staniland & Jason Caslor

The Music School at Memorial University in St. John’s is jammed with bright, innovative and excited young teachers with active imaginations.

Two of those teachers - Andrew Staniland, a professor of composition, and Jason Caslor, who teaches conducting - have come up with the terrific idea to create a Canadian Composition Competition for works for band created by composers under the age of thirty-five, the only competition of its kind. Cash prizes and performance opportunities will be bestowed upon the winners.

I invited Andrew and Jason into the studio to talk about this and asked Jason who’s idea it was for the composition competition.

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WAM October 1-2 Jamie Fitzpatrick

You may know Jamie Fitzpatrick as the producer and host of The Performance Hour. You may know him for his regular contributions to the Winterset in Summer Literary Festival. You may remember Jamie as one of the last sports broadcasters employed by CBC Radio in the previous century. You may be familiar with him as a recreational league hockey player. Or you may subscribe to his opinion column on about.com

Now you will know Jamie as a novelist. Of course, he won the Fresh Fish Award for emerging writers in 2008, so you may have had some intimation of his skills and life arc. But now the real thing is here, You Could Believe in Nothing is the book, and Jamie celebrates the publication this coming week.

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WAM October 1-2 Janet Michael

Janet Michael had a long and fruitful career as an actor, writer and singer in Newfoundland and Labrador with the Mummers, Rising Tide and the LSPU Hall before she moved to British Columbia in the mid-`80’s.

Janet has continued writing and performing, returning home occasionally for television, film or stage work.

Janet is back in town this week, workshopping a new play, Habib’s Unforgettable All-Night House Party. There’ll be a public reading of the play tonight.

The workshop is a partnership between RCA Theatre and Western Canada Theatre. Paula Dankert, well-known in these parts and now working with the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, acts as dramaturge in the workshop, while Stephen Drover is directing.

I met with Janet yesterday in a rehearsal room in downtown St. John’s and asked her who was Habib.

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WAM October 1-2 Chainsaw Earle

Am I the only person who’s ever been the outsider, the picked-upon, the dork of the crowd?

Right, I didn’t think so.

So, I guess we can all identify a little with Earle, the lead character in that tune by Buddy Wasisname and the Other Fellers, Chainsaw Earle.

Now that character has come to new life, beneath the pen of celebrated cartoonist, Kevin Tobin. He’s just about to release an illustrated version of Chainsaw Earle.

Kevin joined me in the studio this week with the other Kevin, Blackmore, of Buddy Wasisname fame, and Wayne Chaulk, one of the other fellers, who wrote the song with the Buddy Kevin. I asked Wayne where the story of Chainsaw Earle comes from?

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WAM October 1-2 Sarah Hillock

A bestiary is described by the Oxford English Dictionary as a treatise on beasts. Bestiaries were full of description and illustration. They contained animals both real and mythical and usually drew moral lessons from their real and imagined lives.

The Leyton Gallery of Fine Art in St. John’s opens their own bestiary this afternoon with work from eight artists, including Jack Botsford, Tia Connolly, and Michael Pittman creating a gallery full of animals.

One of the artists is Sarah Hillock, an Ontario artist who returns regularly to Newfoundland.

Sarah has created large works depicting hens and chickens along with flowing script, Taoist excerpts.

I asked Sarah what attracts her to the Bestiary and we went from there.

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