Monthly Archives: July 2005

GRACE by Joe Ink, at the Chan Centre July 25 NEW MEDIA: Dance and Video

The Chan Centre hosted a special show of GRACE in the Telus Theatre.  Joe Laughlin and Jaime Griffiths of Joe Ink were artists in residence this summer. creating the Move It!
community workshop program.   100 of their closest friends were
invited for a special showing of GRACE before they head off to perform
at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Grace is a multi-media show, or as the buzz word is: New Media. 
Joe dances, Jaime uses video camers hooked up to computers that use
“motion capture” programs that display the images on both a rear screen
and a front scrim.  The result is amazingly beautiful. 
Sometimes we just go to symphonies or music concerts just to hear the
beauty in music, not for any particularly didactic storyline. 
Grace is like that.  It is an exploration of beauty of movement,
image and the interaction thereof.

Chan Centre director Dr. Sid Katz welcomed the audience by saying that
he first saw Joe Ink performing in New York, then London – each time
surprised that the performers were from his home town of
Vancouver.  Finally it was time to get together and give the Chan
Centre space over to these very creative visionaries.  The Telus
Theatre is a black box space – with upper and lower balconies. 
Floor seating can be configured in any possibility.

more later…

Sex in Vancouver – Aug 5-20. NEW! Singles and Couples priority seating…

Greetings from
my friend Joyce Lam – producer of “Sex in Vancouver”!
This is a reminder that VACT's new show
has some fun nights planned. It's a great way to wind down a summer evening in
Vancouver without mosquitos.   The saga of Elizabeth, Jenna,
Shari and Tess continues …

The Gals are back for the
newest Episode of *Sex in
5th – 20th!


The women of Sex in Vancouver.

Macalino, Joann Liu, Josette

Jenna, Tess,

Check out
the Games Night for
Singles & Couples
or the Special Dinner and Sex
in Vancouver Packages

Save $3 by
Buying your tickets online now! 

$22 in advance or
$25 cash at door.

Games Night for Singles & Couples: Saturday, August

Attention Single
People! At this show you have the option of
registering to joining in on
the fun “mixer” game for a chance to win some
The “Festivities” will begin at

You can also be
adventurous and sit in our special priority seating
boy/girl/boy/girl single mingle

This is a great opportunity to meet new people and
hey! You never know what the outcome will hold?

For couples, join in our “newly together” game for a
chance to win some fabulous prizes too!

& Sex in

August 10 – Saturday, August 13 – Wednesday, August

Why think of where
to have dinner before the show. Enjoy a
scrumptious dinner at the Urban
Bistro, choose from 3
set menus, then make your
way to the Roundhouse
where you will be ushered to your reserved seat, all for

only $50/person online.
Hurry, there are limited dinner &
theatre packages

for further details!  Purchase your
tickets and/or dinner &
tickets packages
online NOW!


*Created by Kathy
Hsieh & Serin Ngai under
the title Sex in
Seattle for SIS
Productions. Written by Kathy Hsieh.


Okanagan Vocal Arts Festival in Vernon – Pirates of Penzance, La Boheme + more

It was a busy weekend in Vernon.
The Okanagan Vocal Arts Festival
is an incredible gem. Expanded to three weeks, it wrapped up this past
Saturday night. I saw their closing production of Pirates of Penzance
and attended the cast party afterwards.  All the festival
participants were thrilled that a representative from Opera Canada
magazine even came to Vernon to attend the final 3 shows and cast party.

The production of La Boheme was lauded by everybody, and called the
best La Boheme he's ever seen by one cast member, Paul Philips, who
participated in 3 productions during his 30 year tenure as a chorus
member with Winnipeg Opera.

Conductor Tyrone Paterson came all the way from Ottawa to put together
an orchestra consisting of members of the Okanagan Symphony and other
freelance musicians, happy to spend a week in this sunny valley, a
favourite summer (& skiing) destination.

Kudos to artistic director Paul Moore and his wife Melina Moore
for their hard work and vision. They operate Studio Moore year round
from their home on Tillicum Mountain, and have done much to enrich the
Okanagan arts scene.

The Aria Extravaganza concerts, held on July 7 in Kelown and July 8 in Vernon, were again recorded by CBC Radio Two
and hosted by Dr. Stephen Friesen – now a part-time Opera singer, as
well as a medical doctor with a growing practice. I thought he was
FANTASTIC as the pirate king.

Judith Forst came from from
Vancouver/Port Moody to teach Master Classes during the first week.
Some very young singers were priveledged to receive guidance usually
reserved for much more experienced students. Randall Jacobsch,
Mariateresa Magisano, Andrew Greenwood also performed and taught

Bernard Turgeon and his wife, pianist Teresa Turgeon, stayed for the
duration of the festival. Zsuzsanna Lukacs was/is fantastic as festival
pianist. Her accompaniment for the Arias is perfect, and she WAS the
orchestra for Pirates of Penzance, playing with great musicality.

Pirates was conducted by Frank Klassen. The 20 young artists were
almost all double cast in Pirates, giving them both chorus and solo
experience. They spent the 3 weeks mixing with the professional singers
who were working on La Boheme. Some participants performed 11 times
during their 21 day stay.

It really is a small world, when one of the students, Christina Lewal
(an absolutely wonderful Mabel in Pirates), billeted at the home of my
girlfriend's parents says to me, “I've heard of Gung Haggis Fat Choy…
My teacher is Heather Pawsey (who has performed with me).”

During the Pirates of Penzance intermission, Jim Barrie of the
Kalamalka Highlanders learned that I was in attendance, and asked to be
introduced to me, excitedly saying he had heard me internveiwed on CBC
Radio, and was glad to meet “Toddish McWong.”

Please visit for more information on this year's festival and see the plans for next year.

Dragon Boat racing in Vernon's inaugural DB race on Kalamalka Lake

Kalamalka Lake is a bee-you-ti-ful site for the inaugural Vernon Dragon
Boat Festival
. I went barefoot in the sand for most of the day, and I
was helping load and unload team from the beach. Every now and then I
got to steer, drum or paddle for a team.

Saturday morning was beautiful sunshine – very appreciated after the
rainstorm on Friday. I drove in Friday night, found the race organizers
and volunteered my services – they are the Alberta Dragon Boat Race
– an Alberta equivalent to Water's Edge or Foundation 2000.
Turns out I will be meeting them in San Francisco for combined Men's
and Women's teams… very cool!

Calgary's Dynasty boats were used. I met the developer Gary – He
explained that compared to Gemini dragon boats – teams have more rooms per
seat and it helps to maximize a team's reach and potential. The deeper
gunwale is good for rough weather – as Saturday morning the wind blew
up and the race organizers sent the teams out in white caps.

Kelowna and Penticton races have postponed races due to whitecaps. But
give the teams credit for rising up to the challenge. Before the first
race was called, the wicked wave action knocked one drummer into the
water. And another team came in and exchanged their steers for the
services of the race director himself. This first set of morning races
were technically “Orientation Races.” Timed races took place in the
afternoon, and they set up the seeding for Sunday.

Pacific Reach was the only team up from Vancouver (I didn't have enough
paddlers to run a Gung Haggis Fat Choy team – but one of our paddlers
joined a local Vernon women's team, and she is thrilled with this
race). Magic Dragons came from Calgary as a conglomerate of Calgary
team.s Just Add
Water was the top Kelowna team, Desert Spirit travelled the length of
the Okanagan Valley from Osoyoos, and Extreme Current came from

Top teams were:

1. Pacific Reach (Vancouver)

2. Extreme Current (Kamloops)

3. Magic Dragons (Calgary)

4. 100% Juiced sponsored by Sun-Rype (Kelowna).

Top Women's teams were:

Extreme Curves (Kamloops)

Just Add Water
followed by…
I forget…

A cup was awarded to the overall best team –
no surprise – Pacific Reach.

After the finals – there was a FUN race! All top fastest 4 times… and
everybody was agreeing to stacking a team to beat Pacific Reach… PR
said “Bring it on!” Ended up being Kamloop's Extreme Current with some
paddlers from Magic Dragons + me as drummer.

A water skier was pulled up by the Pacific Reach dragon boat team. They
pulled an adult female for about 250m, to the approving roar of the
audience from the beach and dock.
I will definitely be back for next year!

Gung Haggis Fat Choy dragon head carving at Sea Vancouver Festival

Here are photos from the Eric Neighbor Carving Quintet Tent at Sea Vancouver Festival – Maritime Point site. July 7-10, 2005

Todd Wong and Dave Samis in carving tent
Eric Neighbor's dragon head in foreground.
-photo Dave Samis

Bob Brinson, Todd Wong and Dave Samis in carving tent – photo Natalie Chan

The Gung Haggis Fat Choy dragon head – still naked red cedar – photo
Natalie Chan.  Or as Natalie calls it.. “our never ending
project.” – photo Natalie Chan

Gung Haggis dragon boat head – with bagpipe inspired horns, and hockey
stick inspired back spines… just add the final paint and voila – it's
finished. – photo Eric Neighbour