Courier: Wong celebrates Celtic Fest's kilty pleasures

A Chinese Canadian Robert Burns?  Go figure!  But for some people it makes sense… at least in multicultural intercultural Vancouver. 

Last week the Vancouver Courier interviewed me for a Celtic Fest story about tonight's Battle of the Bards.  Photographer Dan Toulgoet met me at the Robert Burns statue in Stanley Park, which had been erected 80 years ago.

It's always interesting to find out how other people perceive Gung Haggis Fat Choy, and what they think about my persona as “Toddish McWong.”

Come check out the Battle of the Bards literary pub crawl:
5:30 Doolin's Irish Pub
6:05 Atlantic Trap & Gill
6:45 Johnny Fox's Irish Snug

8:00 Finale (cost $5)
Caile's Irish Pub Dublin Bar 2nd floor
poets “perform” with DJ + celtic fiddler
dancing afterwards

Read Fiona Hughes article:

Fiona Hughes,
Vancouver Courier

Todd Wong aka 'Toddish McWong' rocks the mic in the Battle of the Bards pub crawl March 13.View Larger Image View Larger Image

Todd Wong aka 'Toddish McWong' rocks the mic in the Battle of the Bards pub crawl March 13.

Photo by Dan Toulgoet

Published: Wednesday, March 12, 2008

O'Braonain, McManus, MacIsaac, Wong. Which one is not like the other?

In
any other city, finding a Wong performing among all the fiddling and
whiskey-swilling Macs and Mcs at a celtic festival might be as
impossible as discovering a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. But
in cross-culture pollinating Vancouver the inclusion of Todd Wong in
the Edgewater Casino CelticFest Vancouver is a no-brainer. (The
festival runs March 12 to 16 with the fifth annual St. Patrick's Day
parade scheduled for Sunday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Granville Street
downtown.)

Wong, as many Vancouverites know, is the man behind
the now legendary Gung Haggis Fat Choy dinner, an event that combines
Chinese New Year celebrations with Robbie Burns Day at the end of each
January. The 2008 dinner marked the event's 10th anniversary.

So
when festival organizers went looking for a local to play Robbie Burns
in a new event at CelticFest, they looked no further than Toddish
McWong. He's featured in the Battle of the Bards pub crawl Thursday
night (March 13). The event is inspired by the renowned Dublin Literary
Pub Crawl, in which three actors act out famous works by Irish scribes.
In Battle of the Bards, three men will take on the roles of Scotland's
Robbie Burns (Wong), Wales's Dylan Thomas (Damon Calderwood) and the
Emerald Isle's William Butler Yeats (Mark Downey). They'll recite
famous works from the triple threat of Celtic literati while touring
local Celtic-flavoured pubs (Doolin's, Atlantic Trap and Gill, Johnnie
Fox's Irish Snug). At the end of the pub crawl, the three “literary
giants” will face off against each other in a spoken word poetry slam
at Ceili's Irish Pub and Restaurant. But Wong, who earns his paycheque
as a part-time library assistant and dragon boat coach, isn't an actor
and he's up against trained thespians.

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