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The many visions for the future of Arts Commons resident companies p.4 | Dumble-don’t miss the magical world of Potted Potter p.18 | A fond farewell to CEO Johann Zietsman p.40

M A G A Z I N E W I N T E R 2 0 1 9 | #1 1


ALL SEVEN HARRY POTTER BOOKS IN SEVENTY HILARIOUS MINUTES! “HHHH IT’S THE SINGLE FUNNIEST THING I HAVE SEEN IN AGES. YOU’RE GONNA LOVE THIS SHOW!”

“A sensation… super, ingenious, amazing” – Calgary Herald

– Toronto Star

BACK BY MAGICAL DEMAND February 5 TO 18, 2019 arts commons | martha cohen theatre Evening and matinee shows available!

HURRY – TICKETS ARE SELLING FAST! 403-294-9494 or artscommons.ca/potter

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LETTER FROM JOHANN

“If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.” – Steve Jobs.

O

ur journey at Arts Commons is shaped by a desire to both reflect and project the best version of our community. Through a wide diversity of arts experiences, we seek to elevate, and to nurture compassion – without criticism and judgement. As we reach ever-higher – to a summit that keeps rising – we sometimes pause to look back at the expanding view. This is such a moment. Since I had the great fortune to join this remarkable organization nine years ago, my journey has become our journey. We enjoyed growth in so many ways: stronger financial sustainability, more patron-generated revenue, increased economic impact, more facility user-groups, many more events and visitors, extraordinary lifecycle upgrades to our facility’s infrastructure, deeper connections and more diverse relationships, and an increasing, respected international footprint. But statistics only reveal a part of our view. None of this would have been possible without the extraordinary generosity of this community (corporate, public, and private), who continue to support our growth with their time, their talents, and their treasure. Thank you! And then there are the thousands who participate in our experiences each year. The wonder on your faces, the smiles, the tears, the applause, the swaying bodies and the comments in the lobbies reassure us that you value and enjoy what we do, and that we should keep striving – together. To me, our “audiences” are potential storytellers, who will share an experience, and repeat a story – adapting it in the re-telling. Especially the kids: for some it might be their first experience of live performing arts in a theatre or their first exposure to visual arts. They return home with an expanded perspective on the possibilities life offers, and for some, these moments are life-altering. For me, that is the definition of success. The driving energy behind this journey is always the incredible and generous artists from all over the world, who entertain and challenge us with their creativity, skills, and inspiring discipline. They show us who we can be, and help us deal with the good, the bad, and the ugly of life. Through their work they change hearts and minds. Some of their stories appear in this issue. I am humbled and deeply grateful to have been a part of this journey. I leave this city and this amazing organization with a tear in my eye, but with the confidence that the good work we’ve done will continue. –UBUNTU–

Johann Zietsman said farewell to Arts Commons at the end of 2018 for an incredible opportunity to lead the Adrienne Arsht Center of Miami-Dade County, in Miami, Florida. We will miss him and his wife, Tharrie, tremendously, and we know they will miss us – their Arts Commons family. We wish him the very best in his new role and their new home.

Johann F. Zietsman President & CEO, Arts Commons

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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contributors

contents

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New and old faces with big dreams – the heads of Arts Commons resident companies outline their vision for the future.

Local black artists explore what it means to separate their art from their skin colour, and if that’s even possible, as we celebrate Black History Month.

My Colour, My Art

A New Horizon for Arts Commons

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Saddle Up Partners – The High Performance Rodeo Rides Again!

What's On at Arts Commons What's new and notable this Winter at Arts Commons.

It’s that time of year again! The High Performance Rodeo presents an overwhelming amount of shows – here are a few of our favourites to start planning your schedule.

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Croon and Swoon with the Greats at Monterey Jazz Festival On Tour

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From private clubs to raids and closures, there is a rich, hard-earned queer history within the brick and mortar of Calgary, which one artist is working hard to unearth and preserve.

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Potted Potter Will Slytherin To Your Heart Potted Potter has taken the globe by storm with a uniquely quirky take on the popular franchise – which includes a live game of Quidditch!

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Arts Commons Winter 2019

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Love and Dance in Time and Space with Unganisha MONS S CO M ! E G ART IN IN L Z N A O H IS A M VA IL A B L E A YES! T aring, h s IS y E b ce Z IN M AG A our experien is publication y th Expand and enjoying ns.ca o , reading it artscomm ns Vis . e n li ommo n o #artsc

@yyca

rts

KAIJA DIRKSON Creative Manager

ERIN BELTON Graphic Design

RESIDENT COMPANIES

After nearly a decade at Arts Commons, CEO and President Johann Zietsman shares some final thoughts before he departs the organization, leaving behind a legacy of love and growth.

Come Find Queer History at the Ledge Gallery

Managing Editor

Burnet, Duckworth and Palmer LLP looks at the changing face of community investment – especially amid a tough economy.

Thank You For An Amazing Nine Years

Dorian R. Kominek is an analytic and innovative leader, with a background in marketing, business development, management, and team leadership. With experience in marketing and talent direction with organizations like Shift Talent Management, and the organizer behind events like the Diamond Frosted Gala, she has a keen eye for fashion and the arts.

AARON CHATHA

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The top brass in jazz stops in Calgary, with an award-winning cadre of jazz artists. Get the lowdown on where these musicians find inspiration.

Editor-In-Chief

CONTRIBUTORS

BD & Passionate

Dorian R. Kominek

TASHA KOMERY

Peter DeCourcy Peter DeCourcy is an improviser, comedy writer and famous shirtless athlete. He’s a graduate of The Second City Toronto and has written for publications including The Beaverton, with racy headlines such as: “He never tried to eat me,” “Friends defend cannibal,” and “BREAKING: 12 hours later, man realizes praise was sarcastic.” He also has a valid driver’s license.

Ryan Bartlett, Aaron Chatha, Peter DeCourcy Tasha Komery, Dorian R. Kominek, Shone Thistle, and Johann Zietsman

Alberta Theatre Projects, Arts Commons Presents, Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, Downstage, One Yellow Rabbit, and Theatre Calgary

Shone Thistle

PUBLISHED BY

In addition to being a professional fundraiser, Shone is a spoken word artist, poet, and painter. Her creative work has been highlighted in multiple magazines and anthologies, including Mic Check and the Canadian Anthology of Spoken Word. In 2017, she performed in Calgary’s Coming Out Monologues. She also loves a good solo dance party and – until her mid-twenties – she thought skunks only lived in France (because of Pepe Le Pew).

Arts Commons 205 8th Avenue SE Calgary, Alberta T2G 0K9 Phone: 403-294-7455 Fax: 403-294-7457 artscommons.ca © Copyright 2019 by Arts Commons; may not be reprinted without expressed permission. The opinions expressed herein are those of the respective authors and not necessarily those of Arts Commons. Arts Commons will not be liable for any damages or losses, howsoever sustained, as a result of the reliance on, or use by a reader or any other person of, any information, opinions or products expressed, advertised or otherwise contained herein. Whew… glad we got that out there, now enjoy the magazine. on’t miss the s p.4 | Dumble-d s resident companie Johann Zietsman p.40 of Arts Common farewell to CEO for the future p.17 | A fond The many visions of Potted Potter magical world

Explore the roots of dance through a love story that spans the ages in this unique production by Woezo Africa Music and Dance Theatre.

I N E M A G A T EZR 2 0 1 9 | # 1 1 WIN

CBN, PLEASE PLEASE ADD FSC LOGO ADD FSC LOGO

ON THE COVER Cécile McLorin Salvant is a Grammy Award winning jazz musician who is headlining the Monterey Jazz Festival On Tour. The rising star is joined by a team of accomplished jazz artists who are just itchin’ to play at the Jack Singer Concert Hall. Learn all about them and where they draw their inspiration on Page 12.

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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What is your vision for the next few years at Alberta Theatre Projects?

A New Horizon for Arts Commons

DARCY EVANS Executive & Artistic Director Alberta Theatre Projects

WRITTEN BY AARON CHATHA

W

hen Arts Commons first opened its doors way back in 1985, as Calgary Centre for Performing Arts, the vision was to foster a culture of creativity and provide proper performance spaces to best service the fast growing city and it’s growing hunger for a vibrant arts scene. The Centre originally opened with three resident companies: Alberta Theatre Projects, the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, and Theatre Calgary. Over the years, our little family would only grow, adding Arts Commons Presents, the Calgary International Children’s Festival, Downstage Performance Society, and One Yellow Rabbit Performance Theatre, all under one roof.

Recently, long time directors of our companies like Blake Brooker (One Yellow Rabbit) and Johann Zietsman (Arts Commons Presents) have welcomed new faces to our family, including: Paul Dornian, who joined the Calgary Philharmonic in 2015; Stafford Arima who joined Theatre Calgary in 2017; Darcy Evans, who joined Alberta Theatre Projects in 2018; and Clare Preuss who joined Downstage at the end of 2018. New faces means new visions for the future of the arts at Arts Commons, and the leaders of our resident companies sat down with Arts Commons magazine to outline their vision for the next few years.

JOHANN ZIETSMAN President & CEO Arts Commons & Arts Commons Presents

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Arts Commons Winter 2019

What upcoming show are you most excited for? The final play in our season, The New Canadian Curling Club by Mark Crawford tells the story of a Chinese physician, a Jamaican Tim Horton’s Manager, a South Asian Father, and a 17-year-old Syrian refugee who join their small town’s “Learn to Curl” program. It is a wonderful new play about a very modern Canadian experience. By turns funny, insightful, and hugely relevant, it examines the cultural intersections present in communities across this country. With a specific eye toward the contemporary human face of newcomers and refugee resettlement, the play tells the story of five very different Canadians, with roots around the globe, trying to build connections and to build a team. And it all takes place on the slippery surface of a small-town curling rink. The play manages to be socially relevant, raising some pretty strong questions about the prejudice we all possess while being laugh-out-loud funny. March 5 – 23 | atplive.com

We hope to create world class contemporary theatrical experiences that reflect our community. We’ll do this with a mix of the best Canadian plays, hit international plays with recognizable titles, and new plays we develop here at ATP. We’re planning to create plays that explore the intersection of culture in a modern urban city like Calgary. And we will engage a diverse company of artists that specialize in making the kind of theatre that blurs the line between the audience and the artist. By embracing the unique audience configuration opportunities of our home in the Martha Cohen Theatre at Arts Commons, we offer something no other large company in Calgary can: a new experience for the audience with each production. Performances will occur in thrust, cabaret, in-the-round, and immersive settings. We’ve started this with a return to thrust configuration for the 2018-19 season and audiences have loved it.

What is your vision for the next few years at Arts Commons?

What upcoming show are you most excited for?

Arts Commons embarked on an intentional journey over the past decade to become a more open, accessible, diverse, and inclusive gathering space for people from all walks of life, including the full demographic spectrum. Over the next few years we will continue in this direction, and as we learn from our experiences, we will get better at listening and understanding, and to respond in the most sensitive and respectful way. This includes our artistic and educational programming, our service to internal and external customers, and our workplace culture. As the social dynamics of our community changes, we want to be that central gathering space where people can come together to share and learn, and can bridge cultural divides through the powerful universal language of the arts.

This is like having to pick your favourite child – impossible! We present full seasons of Jazz, Blues, World Music, National Geographic Live, Classic Albums Live, and a host of very exciting education and engagement projects. But, if I only have one choice, it would have to be Habib Koité, Bassekou Kouyate and Ladysmith Black Mambazo’s triple-bill – an infusion of Malian, African, and Afro-pop on the Jack Singer stage on March 1st, 2019. Ladysmith Black Mambazo is from my country of birth, South Africa, and I have developed a friendship with their extraordinary founder/director Joseph Shabalala, so that connection plays a role in my choice. But they were also the very first group to perform in our BD&P World Music series almost two decades ago! And to hear them combine their talent and energy with two other masters of their artform, Koité and Kouyate, will be a true celebration of our aspiration to embrace the excellent expression of all cultures. March 1 | artscommons.ca

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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What is your vision for the next few years at the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra?

PAUL DORNIAN President & CEO Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra

CLARE PREUSS Artistic Director Downstage Performance Society

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Arts Commons Winter 2019

At the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, we are committed to making musical experiences not only impactful but accessible, even beyond our city limits. Our most significant tool in that transformation process is our venture into live-streaming. Last year was our pilot project season with live-streaming. We streamed five performances that were viewed live by thousands of people in over 80 countries. With the generous sponsorship of the Rabinovitz family, this season we continue to build on that initial success and we are proud that the CPO will be a vital part of the conversation about what is new and exciting in the international classical music community.

What upcoming show are you most excited for?

What is your vision for the next few years at One Yellow Rabbit?

What upcoming show are you most excited for?

Provocative: Percussion + Tchaikovsky in April. This program can be heard live at the Jack Singer Concert Hall or watched free of charge on the live-stream at calgaryphil.com. It is part of our ‘Under the Influence’ Festival and shows the range of our programming. It opens with rock legend Frank Zappa’s Revised Music for Low Budget Symphony Orchestra, then Garreth Farr’s Percussion Concerto featuring our very own Joshua Jones as soloist. Josh is a world-class example of just how good our CPO players are. The concert concludes with one of the most beloved pieces in the traditional orchestral repertoire – Tchaikovsky’s Pathetique Symphony. These are three different takes on orchestral music for the 21st century – each one riveting in its own special way. April 25 | calgaryphil.com

To continue to produce exceptional, undeniable work with our ensemble, to continue to help the High Performance Rodeo flourish as the hottest spot in Canada's cold winter, and to continue to develop young artists through the Summer Lab Intensive and our Beautiful Young Artists programs.

Personally, I'm excited about presenting the North American Premiere of La Société Protectrice de Petites Idées' COW LOVE, from France. I first saw the show at the Mala Inventura Festival in Prague and its quirky, effervescent humour and fresh, virtuosic style grabbed me and wouldn't let go. I'd never seen anything quite like it and I think it should find an eager audience in Calgary, as it has in Europe. It's a beautiful, wild show that has a warm beating heart, suitable for an audience of all ages. January 23 – 26 | oyr.org

BLAKE BROOKER Artistic Director One Yellow Rabbit Performance Theatre

What is your vision for the next few years at Downstage?

What upcoming show are you most excited for?

What is your vision for the next few years at Theatre Calgary?

What upcoming show are you most excited for?

Downstage’s next few years are filled with leading-edge projects that are innovative, heart-warming, thought-provoking, funny, and full of topics that resonate with Calgarians. We are excited to offer stories that are diverse in form and content, providing local audiences with fresh perspectives on a wide range of important social issues. Downstage loves to bring people together and stir up conversation! We are confident that upcoming seasons will keep audiences on the edge of their seats, welcome them into new venues and provide many ways to engage both through our theatre programming as well as special events, workshops, classes and community outreach initiatives. We are delighted to collaborate with many Alberta based artists including former Downstage Artistic Director Ellen Close, Mieko Ouchi, and Col Cseke, among others. Join us for excellent theatre and dynamic conversations this season and beyond!

Smoke by Alberta playwright Elena Belyea, is a nuanced look at sexual assault within romantic relationships. Downstage’s world premiere production features a split-cast: the couple in question is portrayed as an opposite-sex and same-sex couple on alternate nights. Calgary director, Christine Brubaker, weaves us into the multiple realities of Jordan and Aiden as they wrestle with their relationship to each other, themselves, and their art. Downstage audiences can expect a dynamic experience that asks some big questions around the value of consent, memory, love, and passion. It’s a play that is bound to stir up powerful images, feelings, and opinions. It’s a great example of Downstage’s commitment to producing excellent theatre that creates meaningful conversation. February 12 – 23 | downstage.ca

To me, it’s plain and simple – today’s stories need to be told today, with no borders, no barriers, no boundaries, and a healthy dose of risk. To be recognized as an impactful and innovative theatre company, new works and new voices must be a part of the DNA of a theatre company. Absence of this leads to safety and timidity. It’s crucial that Theatre Calgary’s art reflects the world we live in today, and uses its voice to thrillingly tell today’s stories in imaginative ways. To quote George Bernard Shaw, “Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” Like Shaw, I also believe that with change comes growth.

I am so excited for our season closer, Billy Elliot the Musical. The play and Elton John’s music are such a compelling reminder to live one’s dream and be proud of who you are. I also have the honour of working with the legendary Alberta Ballet principal dancer Yukichi Hattori, who will be our choreographer. Plus, our cast will consist of almost all Calgary talent. We have such a rich community of artists, and it is going to be a thrill to have a stage full of local actors. What a magical leap of faith this show is going to be! April 9 – May 12 | theatrecalgary.com

STAFFORD ARIMA Artistic Director Theatre Calgary

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Encore!

Lea Salonga

BD&P a proud supporter of the arts

Investing in our communities Repsol is a proud sponsor of Arts Commons’ National Geographic Live educational program.

–The Human Heart Tour The unmistakable and magical voice of Broadway and Disney

April 17, 2019 Arts Commons, Jack Singer Concert Hall Public Sector Support

Official Suppliers

GET YOUR TICKETS TODAY!

403-294-9494 artscommons.ca /leasalonga

Photo by Mark Thiessen

www.bdplaw.com

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Arts Commons Winter 2019

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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The High Performance Rodeo Rides Again! WRITTEN BY AARON CHATHA & RYAN BARTLETT

T

he annual High Performance Rodeo, an international arts festival, animates Calgary every year in January with an array of live performances from around the world. Featuring theatre, music, dance, and multi-disciplinary arts, ‘The Rodeo’ showcases the best and most exciting contemporary performances to put some heat in your winter woes.

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Arts Commons Winter 2019

Live Your Prime, With Damien Frost

Shane Koyczan

JANUARY 9 – 19 Big Secret Theatre

JANUARY 22 Jack Singer Concert Hall

The One Yellow Rabbit ensemble presents a brand new satirical comedy about aging in the 21st Century. Join John Murrell, recipient of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement, as Damien Frost, in a story about getting old. Really, if getting old is getting old for you, stop by and learn a few secrets about how to live your prime – in several easy payments, of course.

The poet of a generation performed at the 2010 Winter Olympics Opening Ceremonies. With a collective “wow” across Canada and beyond, the world took notice when Shane’s influential, antibullying, To This Day Project video went viral in early 2013 with over 22 million views and counting.

Pearle Harbour’s Chautauqua JANUARY 10 – 12 Jack Singer Rehearsal Hall Led by Pearle Harbour – an all-America gal who’s sweet-as-pie and sharp-as-nails (and also the 40's-era drag creation of writer Justin Miller) – Chautauqua is the cure for whatever it might be that ails ya! Part cabaret, part tent revival, all drag. Music, sing-a-longs, puppet shows, and even an exorcism! This is an award-winning immersive extravaganza that is sure to be a festival favourite.

Produced by One Yellow Rabbit, in cooperation with many of Calgary’s major arts organizations, we’ve selected our five favourite ‘must see’ shows at the 2019 festival, which takes place Jan 9 to 27. Of course, you can find the full list of shows, and schedules, at hprodeo.ca

Scott Thompson: Après Le Déluge – The Buddy Cole Monologues

Café Daughter (Co-Presented with Alberta Theatre Projects)

JANUARY 23 – 26 Big Secret Theatre

JANUARY 15 – 27 Engineered Air Theatre

Selling out across North America, lounge lizard Buddy Cole from Kids in the Hall makes a return to the limelight in an evening of humorous monologues from the period the show went off the air in 1995 to the present day. From appearances on Letterman and Conan to television shows like Hannibal, Reno 911!, and Degrassi High, come catch up on what Cole has been up to in the past quarter-century or so.

In 1950's small town Saskatchewan, nineyear-old half-Chinese, half-Cree Yvette Wong struggles to find her place in a smallminded community until an unexpected ally helps set her on a path that’s destined for greatness. Inspired by the life of ChineseCanadian and Cree Senator Lillian Eva Quan Dyck, Café Daughter tells an uplifting story of finding yourself and defining your place in the world against all odds.

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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“Putting together a bright-eyed and passionate band of players, who are excited to lead jazz to new horizons, was the vision for this year’s tour.”

M

elissa Aldana, tenor saxophonist and first female winner of the Thelonious Monk Competition, can’t help but feel deeply moved when listening to The Standard’s Never Let Me Go. The ballad is one of her biggest inspirations as an artist – she feels it underscores the power of performing beautiful music, to stir emotion in both players and audiences. That’s precisely the aim of the Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour, which will celebrate its 60th anniversary at Arts Commons in April, in the Jack Singer Concert Hall. Starting in 1958 in Monterey, California, the original festival is one of the longest running of its kind, and attracts tens of thousands of jazz lovers. The infamous Dave Brubeck led the charge in getting the city to approve the first festival and performed at the festival at least 14 times. Other big names in that first year included: Billie Holiday, Louis Armstrong, Dizzy Gillespie, and Sonny Rollins – names even those who aren’t jazz lovers are familiar with. The festival is held annually, in September, on the 20-acre Monterey County Fairgrounds, and every year, five hundred amazing artists perform on nine stages, resulting in 50 concert performances. Of course, we can’t all make it down to Monterey for this amazing event. The good news is that we don’t have to. The Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour is sure to satisfy, featuring a brilliant representation of top talent like Aldana.

WRITTEN BY DORIAN R. KOMINEK

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Arts Commons Winter 2019

This year's 60th anniversary tour highlights an award-winning assembly of modern jazz artists, including Tokyo-born bassist Yasushi Nakamura, who cites The Blessing by American saxophonist Ornette Coleman as an inspiration.

“Doing something you love for a living, meeting new people every day, (travelling) around the world making music with new and old friends is (something to be) thankful for,” Nakamura said. This positive sentiment is representative of the energetic fresh vibe that artists from Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour bring to the stage. According to festival organizers, putting together a bright-eyed and passionate band of players, who are excited to lead jazz to new horizons, was the vision for this year’s tour. Other performers and players include: Grammy Award winning vocalist Cécile McLorin Salvant, who Rolling Stone describes as “...one of the greatest jazz singers of her generation...,” Juno Award winning trumpeter, Bria Skonberg, five-time Grammy nominee Christian Sands as piano and musical director, and Grammy nominated Jamison Ross on drums and vocals.

Arts Commons Presents

who what

when

April 11, 2019

Arts Commons, Jack Singer Concert Hall

tickets

artscommons.ca/monterey

where

Don’t miss the Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour, featuring Cécile McLorin Salvant, Bria Skonberg, Melissa Aldana, Christian Sands, Yasushi Nakamura, and Jamison Ross, performing at Arts Commons, on Thursday, April 11, 2019. Tickets at artscommons.ca/monterey

TD Jazz: Monterey Jazz Festival On Tour

Opposite, left to right: Bria Skonberg, Melissa Aldana, Cécile McLorin Salvant, Jamison Ross, Christian Sands, and Yasushi Nakamura Above left: The crowd at the Monterey Jazz Festival. Photo © dumpstaphunk Above right: Backstage at the Monterey Jazz Festival Photo © Erroll Garner

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Arts Commons is grateful for the support of TD Bank Group.

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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AT THE LEDGE GALLERY

WRITTEN BY AARON CHATHA

A

rtist Ryan Danny Owen is interested in what has been and what could be in store for queer spaces in Calgary. His upcoming exhibition, Come Find Me, in the Arts Commons Ledge Gallery, will give insight into a much larger project: documenting the history of queer spaces in Calgary. “Calgary had a rich queer history that is difficult to find any information about,” the artist said. “For example, we had six gay and lesbian bars, I believe the most in all of Canada, for all of two months – before half of them were raided or closed.” “There’s a huge chunk of history there that’s not very-well known, and there’s a potential that as time continues, it’s going to be harder and harder to discover.” With help from projects such as Kevin Allen’s the Calgary Gay History Project and The Gay and Lesbian Archives, Owen’s research has taken him back as far as the early 1960s, unearthing many examples of the queer community coming together and shaping itself amongst bigotry and backlash. Take Club Carousel, opened originally in 1967 as a basement bar that once existed on the same block as the now defunct Drum and Monkey. The original owners actually ran it like a carnival bar, inviting and selling tickets for people to come and watch queer people drink. 14

Arts Commons Winter 2019

“Basically, the original owners would say ‘come on over and watch a couple of queers have a beer,’ except, of course, the language wasn’t as clean,” Owen explained. “Basically, it was seen as this kind of freak show – so it was boycotted and bought out and made into Club Carousel, this private, members-only queer bar – the first ever in Calgary.” The exclusivity brought by the new owners was strict – the only way to get in was via an introduction by other members. It was an effective method of reclaiming the space for the queer community. As a young queer person, Owen feels it’s important to reflect on these moments – for himself, and for the sake of preserving and recognizing the past. “Queer people often do not know their own history, it is seen as something separate from them” he said. “They don’t know Stonewall, they don’t know why it’s been such a fight – and that the fight never really ended. There is a strange distance from the past as if it doesn’t belong to us.” Come Find Me is an experimental studio residency project which will take the form of various projects including a series of automatic writing poetry on posters installed in the gallery and other public spaces placed not only as reminders to a history with the potential to be lost, but also as markers for the potential of new queer spaces to emerge. Automatic writing is the process of writing in a steady stream

without a focus on the conscious mind – letting subconscious thoughts take control. Owen’s goal is to use the words to express a night, a person, or even just a feeling that reflects that space. The exhibition can be seen in Ledge Gallery at the top of the grand staircase in Arts Commons until March 1.

Opposite, above and below: Artwork © Ryan Danny Owen

THE RBC EMERGING VISUAL ARTISTS PROGRAM Ryan Danny Owen represents one of the first visual artists under the new RBC Emerging Visual Artists Program at Arts Commons, providing exceptional opportunity for emerging visual artists to develop their artistic practice, showcase their work to the public through exhibitions, benefit from open studio and speaking engagements, and hone their professional skills in order to build a solid foundation for a successful career. Through mentorship, exhibitions, and professional development, these artists will enter into the next phase of their career.

Arts Commons Presents

who what

when

where info

Come Find Me December 7, 2018 – March 1, 2019

Ledge Gallery artscommons.ca

This is free to artists of the program on top of their standard CARSAC artist fee. The RBC Emerging Visual Artists Program is accepting submissions for the 2019-20 season until Mar 11. Visit artscommons.ca for more details.

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra

It’s cold outside. The concert hall isn’t. Join us this Winter

Mozart’s Birthday Party 25 + 26 January

Soulful with Gavin Hope 9 February

Symphonic Fairytales 17 February

Women Rock with Mélanie Léonard 22 + 23 March

Brahms v. Radiohead 9 March

Mendelssohn’s Elijah 29 + 30 March

calgaryphil.com | 403.571.0849

Helping to Create Well-Rounded Citizens

MORE AMAZING PERFORMANCES FOR 2019! Celtic Nights – Oceans of Hope

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2019

Habib Koité, Bassekou Kouyate & Ladysmith Black Mambazo

Buy ea for the rly seats a best t best pr the ice!

FRIDAY, MARCH 1, 2019

Cuba Vibra!

Arts Commons, Jack Singer Concert Hall

Lizt Alfonso Dance Cuba

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 20, 2019

403-294-9494 or artscommons.ca/ world

Anoushka Shankar

FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2019

Title Sponsor

Supporting Sponsor

Public Sector Support

Supporting youth and education is a vital part of ConocoPhillips’ contribution to communities where we operate, for today and for the future. That’s why we support Arts Commons’ efforts to bring arts and culture to students and teachers.

TD Arts Access Pass Title Sponsor

Media Sponsors

Official Suppliers

www.conocophillips.ca © ConocoPhillips Company 2018. All rights reserved.

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Arts Commons Winter 2019

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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I

t took J.K. Rowling 10 years, seven books, and a total of 4,224 pages to tell the story of boy wizard Harry Potter.

The magical movie series clocks in at just under 20 hours total.

For anyone doubting that real magic exists in this world, I submit to you: Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Experience – A Parody by Dan and Jeff. This enchanted two-person play condenses all seven Harry Potter books into 70 hilarious minutes and is coming to Arts Commons this February. The show was originally conceived in 2005, as a very short show to entertain people in a bookstore waiting for the midnight release of Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince. Co-creators Dan Clarkson and Jeff Turner condensed the first five books into a show, eventually adding in books and extending

Somehow, they managed to cram it all into the show.

adaptations, character indexes made by fans, and even explicitly themed Harry Potter events. In 2012, that little line about a parody saved them, when Canada added parody and satire to its fair use law (and Britain did the same a few years later), and before that – well, maybe Rowling just had a soft-spot for the comedy.

“There are flying Ford Anglias, fire-breathing dragons (yep, that’s correct – they actually have a live, fire-breathing dragon* on stage!), and even a full game of Quidditch, that the whole audience gets to play!” beamed Turner, who takes on the role of Harry Potter.

Also, it helps that while the basic plot elements are there, many of the laughs come from the brilliant minds of the performers – and there’s a ton there for non-Potter fans to enjoy as well when Potted Potter lands its broomsticks from Feb 5 – 18, 2019.

This, of course, means that Clarkson, a proud Hufflepuff, plays the 360 other roles. “Everyone from Dumbledore to the Serpent of the Chamber of Secrets,” explained Clarkson – who added that performing the show is the best cardio workout he’s ever had. “I lose count of all the beards, hats, wigs, puppets, and cloaks I’m throwing off and on throughout the show.”

Find out more at artscommons.ca/pottedpotter. *May not be a real live fire-breathing dragon, but a non-fire breathing man in a suit.

The crux of the show focuses on the Voldemort-Harry relationship, with all the

“ ...I lose count of all the beards, hats, wigs, puppets, and cloaks I’m throwing off and on throughout the show.”

WRITTEN BY PETER DECOURCY

their run-time ever-so-slightly with each new release.

other plot points and characters fitting in around that.

That’s a total of 199 chapters, though they admitted it was actually the middle of the story – The Goblet of Fire – which was the toughest to condense.

Of course one of the big questions surrounding Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Experience - A Parody by Dan and Jeff isn’t answered in the show, but in that incredibly long title – how did they pull this off for more than a decade without J.K. Rowling suing their robes off?

“The Quidditch World Cup, Harry’s encounter with the Hungarian horn-tailed dragon in the Tri-Wizard Cup, the showdown in the graveyard with Voldemort… the list goes on,” said Clarkson.

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Arts Commons Winter 2019

what

Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Experience - A Parody by Dan and Jeff.

February 5 – 18, 2019

when

Rowling hasn’t been hesitant to protect her copyright before, putting a halt to film

Opposite: Production photo from POTTED POTTER – The Unauthorized Harry Experience – A Parody by Dan and Jeff. Photo © Dahlia Katz

Arts Commons Presents

who

where tickets

Martha Cohen Theatre

artscommons.ca/potter

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

19


COMING UP IN 2019! Led Zeppelin IV THURSDAY, JANUARY 31, 2019

AC/DC Back In Black THURSDAY, APRIL 18, 2019

note. Note for ut.™ Cut for c Public Sector Support

Buy ea for the rly seats a best t best pr the ice!

Arts Commons, Jack Singer Concert Hall

403-294-9494 or artscommons.ca/CAL

Media Sponsors

Supporting those who brighten our lives. Arts and culture have a unique capacity for creating community spirit and bringing people together. A thriving creative scene not only provides entertainment, but also inspires fresh ideas and perspectives. At Cenovus, we’re big fans of those. Cenovus Energy. A Canadian oil company.

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enjoying the ride.

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We didn’t convince your best friend to go on an adventure. Or cross something off your bucket list. But we did fuel the road trip that reminded you that you’re only as old as you feel. When the energy you invest in life meets the energy we fuel it with, exhilarating moments happen.

saskatchewanminingandminerals.com 20

Arts Commons Winter 2019

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

21


I

s a black artist always a black artist or can they be an artist who just happens to be black?

I’m going to kick off this conversation with a hypothetical, so stay with me: One day you’re introduced to a series of hilarious dinosaur comics, featuring an overconfident T-Rex, a wise-cracking Raptor, a down-on-his-luck Stegosaurus and other, wackier dinosaur pals. The comics are consistently funny and a little irreverent. After reading a few, I tell you the artist creating the comics is black. Does this change how you view the comics? Does it now carry a different meaning? Perhaps the Stegosaurus now represents minorities, the T-Rex represents racial privilege, the use of ancient dinosaur traditions takes on a Jim Crow-like intent, and the asteroid hurtling towards the planet a signifier of a broken system? Of course, it’s so obvious, why did you not see it before? Perhaps because it was never the author’s intent, but nevertheless, their racial identity is applied to their art. Sculptor Nnamdi Okonkwo criticised the idea that black art exists when showing his work at the now cancelled Black Fine Arts Show in New York, remarking that many people came to the show looking for how the art pieces reflected African-American history. Okonkwo’s figures of females are meant to represent the veneration of womanhood, and were inspired by his wife and mother – not a focus on black identity issues. The artist says on his website that he hopes the sculptures can elicit a strong emotional response from the viewer regardless of their background or race. But regardless of his wishes, audiences do apply his own racial background to the intent behind his art.

WRITTEN BY AARON CHATHA

22

Arts Commons Winter 2019

“I think racialized artists shouldn’t need to identify with our race to be practicing artists, but I think that it ends up happening because race is an unavoidable fact of our modern day existence,” said local spoken word artist Mel Vee. “For myself, personally, it’s something I’ve been struggling with,

because my race, my politics, and my identity have been at the forefront of my art, and that is critical, but there also needs to be space, opportunity, and projects where I can work on my art without my racial identity being at the forefront.”

Either way, whether intended or not, artists – especially artists of colour – more often have their work politicized. Is that fair? No, it’s not. But it is the reality. So next, it usually falls upon the artist to clarify the content and intent behind the work – but how far does the artist go, before the work can no longer speak for itself?

Unfortunately, that space is rarely afforded to artists of colour. More often than not, in today’s politically charged climate, an artist’s skin colour does have some impact on how the public interprets their art.

“I think there needs to be a little bit of audience care, but not in the sense of educating people about the realities of my experience beyond what my art already does,” Vee explained.

“The work may not deliver an overt message about today’s world, but the very act of it being created by a person of colour carries political weight,” said writer and documentarian Cheryl Foggo. “When we look at any given genre or art form, we can look at the data around who creates that art. Who are the creators of dinosaur comics – how many are men, how many are women, how many are people of colour – how many are women of colour? When you start breaking it down that way, you notice the numbers keep getting smaller.”

So that dinosaur comic could represent something greater, but as an audience member, look at it critically – see if the allusions and connections you see are intentional and prominent. And maybe you do see something the artist didn’t intend – it’s perfectly okay to consume art however you want, just be cognizant the artist’s intent may not match up. Maybe the artist has an activist streak – or maybe they just really like drawing dinosaurs.

Because there are so few recognized artists of colour, or recognized female artists of colour, their numbers in art do not necessarily represent their numbers in Canada or America’s demographics. Often times the few represented artists must bear the burden of representing their entire race or gender – or both.

Continue this conversation at Arts Commons in February for Black History Month. On February 22 & 23, spoken word artist Mel Vee hosts the Black History Month Cabaret in the Engineered Air Theatre. Stop by to celebrate black history and the impact the community has had in Calgary, through a combination of visual arts, music, and more.

Because of this, Foggo argues that every artist of colour’s work is often politicized, but that doesn’t mean it’s overtly political. She also believes that all art is political, whether the artist is drawn into that conversation or not, because all artists function within systems governed by politics.

For more information, visit artscommons.ca

“Through our art we can challenge and push back against systems or we can uphold them. We can bring opposing points of view to an artwork. Or we can approach our work from what we might think is a neutral perspective,” she said. “But is there really any such thing as a neutral perspective? There might be ambivalent perspectives, but that’s not the same as neutral.”

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

23


Arts Commons is proud to be home to these services, theatre, and performance companies.

EVENT SPACES INFUSED WITH THE ARTS Book one of our venues today! artscommons.ca/yourevent

TD is proud to support Jazz and Music Festivals across Canada. We are working together with Arts Commons to bring people together through a shared love of music.

ÂŽ

24

Arts Commons Winter 2019

The TD logo and other trade-marks are the property of The Toronto-Dominion Bank.

M05234 (0216)

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

25


what’s on

December 7, 2018 – January 28, 2019

December 7, 2018 – March 1, 2019

visual and media arts

visual and media arts

Arts Commons Presents

Arts Commons Presents

Prairie Queer

Winter

Through intimate and collaborative portraiture, artist Mike Hooves will create drawings of young queer Calgarians to record and honour living LGBTQ2+ artists in Calgary, and further contribute to the history of the Prairie Queer identity. where when info

Lightbox Studio

Always open artscommons.ca

December 7, 2018 – February 28, 2019

theatre

One Yellow Rabbit

Pearle Harbour’s Chautauqua

These objects that I have unearthed from the bottom of my drawer, Oracles of Nature, With Her, I Am, and Nashpati

Part of One Yellow Rabbit’s 32nd Annual High Performance Rodeo The Audience Choice Award Winner at SummerWorks, Pearle Harbour’s Chautauqua is an immersive extravaganza: part cabaret, part Tent Revival, part drag. There’s music, sing-a-longs, puppet shows, and even an exorcism! The world may be falling apart, but Pearle will show you that there’s more that unites us than divides us!

Arts Commons showcases unique exhibits in the Window Galleries from artists Chelsea Yang-Smith, Francis A. Willey, Samantha Charette, and Sana Makhdoom, along the theme of exploration of the various forms of relationships. where

November 5, 2018 – March 1, 2019

January 10 – 12, 2019

when info

Window Galleries

where

Always open artscommons.ca

when

Jack Singer Rehearsal Hall

tickets

Show times vary artscommons.ca

visual and media arts

Arts Commons Presents

Nihisgaka Ogha – For Our Children This past spring, 11 Tsuut’ina artists participated in a dinner with leaders from Tsuut’ina and Calgary to share a meal and discuss future goals as neighbours. That dinner resulted in the creation of amazing works by the artists – some of which are featured at Arts Commons. +15 Window Galleries

where when info

Always open artscommons.ca

visual and media arts

Arts Commons Presents

WOC: A Sisterhood and In Still Time This project tells the stories of seven women of colour through their own words. The artist aims to veer away from depictions of women of colour as angry or victims, and instead show them in bright colours to highlight beautiful features and personal stories. where when info

December 3, 2018 – January 31, 2019

Broadcast Lab

Always open artscommons.ca

December 7, 2018 – March 1, 2019

January 1, 2019

Hunting Self

pr0phecy sun threads together conscious and unconscious choreographies, sound, and environment to explore works that invoke deep body memory. +15 Soundscape

where when info

Always open artscommons.ca

Arts Commons Presents

Come Find Me

An experimental studio residency project by Ryan Danny Owen documenting an encounter with queer history, with a proposition to stop and look closer, using text work, photography, and a series of public actions. when info

26

Arts Commons Winter 2019

One Yellow Rabbit

Salute to Vienna: New Year's Concert

10-Minute Play Festival Part of One Yellow Rabbit’s 32nd Annual High Performance Rodeo

Celebrate the New Year with the beauty of Vienna's golden era! Enjoy a brilliant new programme of Strauss waltzes and sweeping melodies from beloved operettas performed by acclaimed European singers, and ballet and ballroom dancers. The first effortless notes of the eternal Blue Danube Waltz will carry you away! where when

Jack Singer Concert Hall

7:30pm

tickets

Six of Calgary’s most audacious indie theatre companies take on the dare to create an original 10-minute play in 24 hours – inspired only by a prop and a line of dialogue! Selected by a surprise host, these props and lines are designed around themes that reflect one of the participants’ unexpected passions.

calgaryphil.com

where when

visual and media arts

where

january

theatre

Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra

visual and media arts

Arts Commons Presents

January 12, 2019

music

Ledge Gallery

Always open artscommons.ca

tickets

January 9 – 19, 2019

7:30pm artscommons.ca

theatre

One Yellow Rabbit

Live Your Prime, with Damien Frost Part of One Yellow Rabbit’s 32nd Annual High Performance Rodeo A brand new satirical comedy about aging in the 21st Century starring John Murrell. If getting old is getting old for you, join Damien Frost, his son Damien Junior, and his wife Darlene, as they share with you the secrets of how to LIVE YOUR PRIME. In several easy payments, of course. where

Big Secret Theatre

Show times vary

tickets

artscommons.ca

when

Artists, dates and programs subject to change. Listings within is as of time of press.

Martha Cohen Theatre

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

27


January 15 – 17, 2019

January 15 – February 9, 2019

January 18 & 19, 2019

January 25 & 26, 2019

theatre

theatre

music

music

Chop Theatre and One Yellow Rabbit

Theatre Calgary

Arts Commons Presents

Part of One Yellow Rabbit’s 32nd Annual High Performance Rodeo

Rick Miller returns to Theatre Calgary after his sold out run of BOOM in 2016 with the world premiere of BOOM X! Picking up where BOOM left off at Woodstock in ’69, Rick time travels by way of multimedia up to 1995. Some classic BOOM characters reappear (Elvis gets fat, Lennon gets shot, and Reagan gets elected), but the focus moves from his mother to his own story.

How To Disappear Completely

Deeply profound and surprisingly funny, Itai Erdal is an award winning lighting designer who combines multimedia, video footage and storytelling to transport audiences into his captivating journey. Erdal demonstrates his approach to theatrical lighting while also reflecting on the events that followed his mother asking him to take her life. Engineered Air Theatre

where

Show times vary tickets artscommons.ca when

Boom X

where

Max Bell Theatre

Show times vary tickets theatrecalgary.com when

January 16, 2019 January 15 – 27, 2019 theatre

Alberta Aboriginal Performing Arts, Alberta Theatre Projects, One Yellow Rabbit, and Workshop West Playwrights' Theatre

Café Daughter

Part of One Yellow Rabbit’s 32nd Annual High Performance Rodeo In 1950’s small town Saskatchewan, nine-year-old half-Chinese, half-Cree Yvette Wong struggles to find her in place in a small-minded community until an unexpected ally helps set her on a path that’s destined for greatness. Engineered Air Theatre

where

Show times vary tickets artscommons.ca when

comedy

Live Nation

This is That Live - Farewell Tour Hosts Pat Kelly and Peter Oldring offer audiences a brand new version of their hit touring live show for the 2018 season. The show is in two acts: The first half is a mix of the duo performing new and fan-favourite material from their award winning radio show. In the second half, they turn the writing responsibilities over to the audience and improvise brand new stories on the spot. where when

Jack Singer Concert Hall

8pm

artscommons.ca

tickets

music

Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra

Music of the Movies

Sarah Hicks conducts Music of the Movies – a tribute to great film scores and composers. Enjoy fan classics including the 1950s musical sensation Singin’ in the Rain, Ennio Morricone’s timeless Once Upon a Time in the West, the American Film Institute’s “greatest American film score of all time” — Star Wars — and other audience favourites. where

january 28

Arts Commons Winter 2019

PCL Blues: The Duke Robillard Acoustic Trio

when

Jack Singer Concert Hall

tickets

7:30pm calgaryphil.com

Mozart's Birthday Party Part of One Yellow Rabbit’s 32nd Annual High Performance Rodeo

The one and only Duke Robillard is a musician of startling musical versatility and vocabulary, bringing his talent and signature sound to swing standards, ballads, rockabilly hits, and Chicago gutbucket blues. Not to be taken lightly, Robillard has received two Grammy nominations and performed alongside Bob Dylan, Jimmy Witherspoon, and Tom Waits, just to name a few. where

Sharing a birthday with none other than Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, conductor Rune Bergmann leads the CPO in a joyful celebration of the great composer whose music shines with balanced purity, perfection, and delightful humour. where

Engineered Air Theatre

when

8pm tickets artscommons.ca when

Jack Singer Concert Hall

7:30pm

artscommons.ca

tickets

January 27, 2019

January 22, 2019

open house

Arts Commons Presents

theatre

One Yellow Rabbit and Tooth Blackner

Preamp Short-Term Residency – Open House

Part of One Yellow Rabbit’s 32nd Annual High Performance Rodeo

The Preamp residency invites artists to spend a full week using Arts Commons' resources to work through an idea or project. Whether it’s a tremendous success, a valuable lesson learned, or both, come see the results of the residency at the open house!

Shane Koyczan

In a realm where poets rarely intersect with stardom, the Opening Ceremonies for the 2010 Winter Olympics introduced us to Shane Koyczan. With a collective “wow” across Canada and beyond, we found the poet of our generation. And we weren’t even looking for one. Shane's performance will also feature special guest Kris Demeanor. where

where when

Engineered Air Theatre

7pm artscommons.ca

info

Jack Singer Concert Hall

January 27 & 28, 2019

8pm tickets artscommons.ca when

January 18 & 19, 2019

Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra and One Yellow Rabbit

speaker series

Arts Commons Presents

National Geographic Live: The Search for Life Beyond Earth with astrobiologist Kevin Hand

January 23 – 26, 2019 theatre

Astrobiologist and Emerging Explorer Kevin Hand works with NASA to search for life beyond Earth. His mantra, “follow the water,” has led to him investigate Europa, Jupiter’s fourth largest moon. Although his focus is a world millions of miles away, Hand also explores the extremes of Earth, like the north slope of Alaska and the glaciers of Mount Kilimanjaro, to see how microbes survive in harsh climates.

One Yellow Rabbit

Scott Thompson: Après Le Déluge – The Buddy Cole Monologues Part of One Yellow Rabbit’s 32nd Annual High Performance Rodeo Well known to fans as a member of the sketch comedy troupe The Kids in the Hall, Scott Thompson is anything but your average comedic talent. Find out what he's been up to since ‘95! where

where

Big Secret Theatre

when

7:30pm tickets artscommons.ca when

Jack Singer Concert Hall

tickets

Sunday 2pm & Monday 7pm artscommons.ca

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

29


January 31, 2019

February 1 – 28, 2019

February 3, 2019

February 8, 2019

music

visual and media arts

youth/family

music

Arts Commons Presents

Arts Commons Presents

Entertainment One

Arts Commons Presents

Made from thunderstorm samples, taken in urban environments, Kyle Hinton creates a soundscape to express how distant humans are from pure nature. While tinkering with samples, Hinton felt the project was more like constructing nature than re-creating it.

Based on eOne’s top-rated animated series, airing daily on Disney Junior, the new show features preschoolers’ favourite pre-school superheroes and familiar songs from the popular show along with brand new music and a whole new adventure.

Classic Albums Live: Led Zeppelin IV Stairway to Heaven became the stairway to rock royalty for Zeppelin with their fourth, untitled album, which also included hits like Black Dog, Rock and Roll, and Going to California. Feel every kick, snare, and strum thunder through the Jack Singer’s acoustics. Performed note for note, cut for cut™ by Classic Albums Live.

tickets

7:30pm artscommons.ca

February 1 & May 17, 2019 education

Alberta Theatre Projects

Play in a Day!

Children will work together with talented and passionate theatre professionals to create a short play in just one day! They will explore their creativity through a fun filled day of activities, theatre games, performance fundamentals, and play creation. Plus an exclusive behind the scenes look at Alberta Theatre Projects, and our home the Martha Cohen Theatre. Martha Cohen Theatre

where

9am – 5pm tickets artscommons.ca when

where when

+15 Soundscape

Always open artscommons.ca

info

PJ Masks Save the Day Live!

where when

February 2, 2019

Featuring some of Ireland's greatest performers, this spectacular night of entertainment tells the story of those who risked everything to travel across oceans to the New World. Casting a hopeful eye to the future, Oceans of Hope celebrates the everyday heroes that leave everything behind for a new life in a new home, using music, dance, and powerful storytelling.

Jack Singer Concert Hall

tickets

2pm artscommons.ca

theatre

Arts Commons Presents

To help increase awareness of Black History Month in Calgary, Woezo Africa Music & Dance Theatre, in collaboration with Creoternity Theatre, introduces Unganisha. This dance theatre showcase celebrates the history and influence of African culture on modern dance styles. where when

Martha Cohen Theatre

tickets

2pm & 7pm artscommons.ca

February 2, 2019

Potted Potter – The Unauthorized Harry Potter Experience – A Parody by Dan and Jeff

where when

where when

Jack Singer Concert Hall

tickets

Arts Commons Winter 2019

Soulful with Gavin Hope Featuring the exceptional voice of Gavin Hope, Soulful includes 50 years of brilliant R&B, Motown, funk, disco, and pop by the finest recording artists and performers. From Smokey Robinson to Outkast, Stevie Wonder to Pharrell Williams, Isaac Hayes to Seal, join Jeans ‘n Classics and Daniel Bartholomew-Poyser in a night of music that will feed your soul.

Show times vary artscommons.ca

where when

8pm artscommons.ca

theatre

8pm calgaryphil.com

February 10, 2019

Fire Exit Theatre

Evergreen

music

Calgary Civic Symphony

At the Evergreen, a rural diner off the beaten track, an ex-pastor with a broken marriage takes pains to rebuild his life in a refuge of solitude. But when an inquisitive customer divines information a littler too close to home, two strangers wrestle with a series of coincidences and the significance behind their connection.

Immortal Beloved Bring the love of your life to this Valentine’s Day concert featuring Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony, referred to as “the apotheosis of the dance,” and some of the most beloved and romantic music ever written. where

Engineered Air Theatre

when

7:30pm tickets artscommons.ca when

Jack Singer Concert Hall

tickets

February 6 – 10, 2019

where

jan/feb

Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra

Legends of Motown

Legends of Motown is a 16-piece cast of singers and musicians performing live look-a-like/sound-a-like tributes to The Supremes, The Four Tops, The Temptations, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Smokey Robinson, Jackson 5, Martha and the Vandellas and more and features all your favourite songs of the Motown era.

7:30pm artscommons.ca

music

Martha Cohen Theatre

Jack Singer Concert Hall

February 9, 2019

Potted Potter takes on the ultimate challenge of condensing all seven Harry Potter books (and a real life game of Quidditch) into seventy hilarious minutes. This fantastically funny show features all your favourite characters, a special appearance from a fire-breathing dragon, endless costumes, brilliant songs, ridiculous props, and a generous helping of Hogwarts magic!

tickets

music

when

tickets

Woezo Africa Music & Dance Theatre

Unganisha

where

February 5 – 18, 2019

dance/theatre

Legends of Motown

30

BD&P World Music: Celtic Nights – Oceans of Hope

Jack Singer Concert Hall

where when

Constructed Nature

tickets

Jack Singer Concert Hall

2:30pm artscommons.ca

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

31


February 13 – 23, 2019

February 19, 2019

March 1, 2019

March 2, 2018

theatre

music

visual and media arts

music

Downstage

Arts Commons Presents

Arts Commons Presents

Live Nation

Meet and mingle with local artists, curators, and art lovers alike. This is a chance to celebrate our current visual and media artists and an opportunity to have a deeper conversation about contemporary art.  

Raffi, North America’s preeminent family entertainer, turns 70 this year, and he is marking the occasion with a new album and a series of #belugagrads concerts.

TD Jazz: Bobby McFerrin & Gimme5: Circlesongs

Jordan, Aiden's ex, shows up at Aiden's apartment to confront her about the allegation that Jordan sexually assaulted her two years ago. The smoke is thick and the town is burning. What will it take to put it out? Big Secret Theatre

where

Show times vary

tickets

artscommons.ca

when

Ten-time Grammy Award winner Bobby McFerrin’s calling has always been to connect people through the unlimited possibilities of music. His new group, Gimme5, includes trusted veterans of Voicestra, and is based on Circlesinging, assigning vocal parts to the audience, transforming sold-out houses into impromptu choirs. where

February 14, 2019

Jack Singer Concert Hall

7:30pm tickets artscommons.ca when

music

Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra

Rush Hour Romance

Jack Singer Concert Hall

where

6:30pm tickets calgaryphil.com when

February 16, 2019

cabaret

Arts Commons Presents

Black History Month Cabaret A celebration of black history and the impact the community has had in Calgary, through a combination of visual arts, music, and more! Hosted by local spoken word artist Mel Vee. where when info

Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra

Pièces de résistance

Journey from Berlioz’s flourishing ode to the swashbuckling Le Corsaire, through works by Chausson and Ravel, and arrive at that pinnacle of sensuous French writing: Debussy’s La mer. Jack Singer Concert Hall

where

7:30pm tickets calgaryphil.com

7:30pm artscommons.ca

February 26 – March 23, 2019 theatre

The Scarlet Letter It is 1642 and Hester Prynne has been branded an adulterer by her Puritan village and forced to wear the titular scarlet letter as repentance. However, in this modern adaptation, Hester is unashamed of her actions and proudly subverts society’s rigid standards put upon women to be virtuous and good. Today, as we continue to grapple with these expectations, Hester’s story resonates all the more. when

tickets

feb/mar Arts Commons Winter 2019

where when info

Raffi

where

Arts Commons

when

7–10pm artscommons.ca

theatre

Alberta Theatre Projects

The New Canadian Curling Club

Arts Commons Presents

BD&P World Music: Habib Koité, Bassekou Kouyate & Ladysmith Black Mambazo Habib Koité is joined by Malian musician and master of the traditional African lute (the Ngoni), Bassekou Kouyate, as well as multiGrammy Award winning group Ladysmith Black Mambazo, who have won five Grammy Awards and rose to prominence after being featured on Paul Simon’s 1986 album Graceland. Nelson Mandela once hailed them as South Africa’s cultural ambassadors. where

When the organizer of a free, “Learn to Curl” program slips and breaks her hip, a former champion must take her place – but he has some strong opinions of the new immigrants who have joined the class. where

Live Nation

Scott Bradlee's Postmodern Jukebox Since 2009, Postmodern Jukebox has amassed 740 million YouTube views, and continues to put out new arrangements every week, interpreting modern artists like Lady Gaga, Beyoncé, Maroon 5, and Outkast. Now experience the jukebox live!

visual and media arts

Arts Commons Presents

Hunting Self

pr0phecy sun threads together conscious and unconscious choreographies, sound, and environment to explore works that invoke deep body memory.

artscommons.ca

music

Jack Singer Concert Hall

March 1 – April 29, 2019

Show times vary

tickets

March 8, 2019

where

Martha Cohen Theatre

when

7:30pm tickets artscommons.ca

info

1pm & 4pm artscommons.ca

March 5 – 23, 2019

music

when

Jack Singer Concert Hall

tickets

March 1, 2019

when

where

32

Engineered Air Theatre

Theatre Calgary

music

when

©Carol Friedman

In this special Valentine’s Day concert, let three giants of French music infuse your evening with the sensual romance of Paris! Whether with your special someone or flying solo, bask in an explosion of sumptuous French delicacies: the rich bravado of Berlioz’s Le Corsaire, Ravel’s fiery Tzigane, and Debussy’s La mer. The perfect date night!

February 22 & 23, 2019

Visual and Media Arts Reception

©Ladysmith Black Mambazo Management

Smoke

where when

tickets

Jack Singer Concert Hall

8pm artscommons.ca

+15 Soundscape

Always open artscommons.ca

Max Bell Theatre

Show times vary theatrecalgary.ca

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

33


March 8 & 9, 2019

March 11 – May 31, 2019

March 20, 2019

April 7, 2019

music

visual and media arts

music

music

Arts Commons Presents

Arts Commons Presents

Arts Commons Presents

Calgary Civic Symphony

Iris Moore hand-animates a Nightingale’s journey to find out why the sun has to set at night; Aran Wilkinson Blanc tests experimental camera software by taking a different look on an ordinary garden; Christopher Spencer-Lowe seeks to create an impressionistic ‘memory’ rendering of his year at home with his two-year-old daughter.

Cuba Vibra! Lizt Alfonso Dance Cuba is a dance party, a tribute to Cuban musical heritage, and a night of pure celebration all rolled into one amazingly immersive performance that fuses the energy and strength of cha-cha, mambo, rumba, conga, and bolero together from 50 years of Cuban dance history, along with the passion of live Cuban music.

PCL Blues: Dom Flemons

Engineered Air Theatre

where when

tickets

8pm

©Thomas Peschak

Grammy Award winning singer-songwriter Dom Flemons brings a modern sensibility and engaging charm to old-time acoustic blues. Playing the part of traditional troubadour with over 100 years of American ballads, folksongs, and melodies at his fingertips, Flemons embodies his nickname of The American Songster.

Why Must The Sun Go Down, Aleatoric Garden, TWO

artscommons.ca

where when info

Arts Commons Presents

visual and media arts

National Geographic Live: Wild Seas, Secret Shores with photographer Thomas Peschak

Arts Commons Presents

©Long Grass Studio

Jack Singer Concert Hall

Sunday 2pm, Monday 7pm tickets artscommons.ca when

visual and media arts

Arts Commons Presents

Unhelpful Disguises Artist Jackie Huskisson explores a fascination with absurdity through a series of drawings centering on the individual that embraces logical inconsistency and contradictions. The artist will be researching and experimenting with drawing, text, and installation. Lightbox Studio

where when info

Always open artscommons.ca

mar/apr 34

Arts Commons Winter 2019

©Caitlin Thompson

March 11 – April 29, 2019

Always open artscommons.ca

March 11 – May 31, 2019

speaker series

where

Broadcast Lab

where when

tickets

March 10 & 11, 2019

Dive beneath the waves and come face to face with hammerhead sharks, bottlenose dolphins, and black-footed penguins as marine biologist and photographer Thomas Peschak brings you up close and personal with both the charming and daunting animals found in the world’s oceans.

BD&P World Music: Cuba Vibra! Lizt Alfonso Dance Cuba

Jarrett Plays The Hits, Masked Dickey Birds in Their Natural Habitat, Feral Femme, and The Coloured Clouds Jarett Sitter mixes ink and digital mediums in his illustrations, leaning to the abstract with dark, dream-like elements; Long Grass Studio creates an installation looking into the wonderful world of handcrafted Dickey Birds; Larissa Monique Hauck develops small-scale paintings into an otherworldly realm of fantastic creates; Oxana Babkina explores the colour of the soul in abstract shapes and shades. where when info

Window Galleries

Always open artscommons.ca

Fantastic Firebird Calgary’s own extraordinary pianist, Krzysztof Jablonski, joins the orchestra to play the most poetic of Beethoven’s piano concertos. Grand yet nuanced; generations of listeners have loved this piece, and critics have judged it to be among Beethoven’s greatest and most innovative works. where

visual and media arts

Arts Commons Presents

PANORAMADA

Using capes and sculptural vessels, PANORAMADA will fill Ledge Gallery with colourful, needle-worked images of pastoral chaos. Animated embroideries will create looping, revolving scenes of landscapes nodding towards the history of the panoramic vista. where when info

artscommons.ca

tickets

Jack Singer Concert Hall

7:30pm

April 9 – May 12, 2019

artscommons.ca

theatre

Theatre Calgary

March 31, 2019

Billy Elliot The Musical

open house

Set in working-class England, young Billy dreams of trading in his boxing gloves for ballet slippers, but his widowed father cannot understand his passion. A celebration of Calgary’s local talent, this rendition of Billy Elliot The Musical will be choreographed by former Alberta Ballet principal dancer Yukichi Hattori and will feature the best and brightest of Calgary’s dance community.

Arts Commons Presents

Preamp Short-Term Residency – Open House The Preamp residency invites artists to spend a full week using Arts Commons resources to work through an idea or project. Whether it’s a tremendous success, a valuable lesson learned, or both, come see the results of the residency at the open house! where when

info

where

Engineered Air Theatre

when

7pm artscommons.ca

Max Bell Theatre

tickets

Show times vary theatrecalgary.com

April 11, 2019

April 5 & 6, 2019

music

Arts Commons Presents

music

Arts Commons Presents

TD Jazz: Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour

Singer, songwriter, and boogie-woogie pianist Eden Brent comes to Calgary with her spontaneous and electric style of juke-joint blues. A Mississippi girl through and through, Brent’s love for the piano started at the young age of five. She was later mentored by the late, great Delta piano player Abie "Boogaloo" Ames who affectionately dubbed her Little Boogaloo.

The Monterey Jazz Festival comes to Calgary, starring the Grammy Award winning vocal talents of Cécile McLorin Salvant, Juno Award winning Canadian Bria Skonberg, Melissa Aldana, Yasushi Nakamura, Christian Sands, and Jamison Ross, in a joyous celebration of jazz and jazz musicians.

PCL Blues: Eden Brent March 11 – May 31, 2019

Jack Singer Concert Hall

when 2:30pm

where

where

Engineered Air Theatre

when

8pm tickets artscommons.ca when

tickets

Jack Singer Concert Hall

7:30pm artscommons.ca

Ledge Gallery

Always open artscommons.ca

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

35


April 12, 2019

April 18, 2019

cabaret

music

Arts Commons Presents

Arts Commons Presents

Love Notes Cabaret

Classic Albums Live: AC/DC – Back in Black

Artistic matchmaker, poet, and author Harpreet M Dayal brings Love Notes and Coffee to Arts Commons. At this FREE event, spoken word artists flirt with painters, dancers, and musicians, creating a love note to Calgary and sharing it with the universe and beyond. when info

An album born from grief, members of AC/DC began working on the guitar riffs on Back in Black just days after lead singer Bon Scott’s funeral. The band ended up creating one of the best-selling albums of all time. Hear every note and rhythm perfectly recreated by Classic Albums Live!

Engineered Air Theatre

where

7:30pm artscommons.ca

where when

tickets

Jack Singer Concert Hall

7:30pm artscommons.ca

Postmedia solutions gives you the Power to grow your business.

April 16, 2019 ballet

April 26, 2019

Great Russian Ballet

music

Great Russian Ballet – The Romantakia Tour

Arts Commons Presents

BD&P World Music: Anoushka Shankar

Russian ballet has been regarded as the barometer for classical dance for many decades, leading the way and enchanting audiences along its path. This season’s tour focuses passion and death-defying love stories. when

tickets

7pm

Arts Commons Presents

Lea Salonga – The Human Heart Tour Known across the world for her powerful voice and perfect pitch, Lea Salonga is a singer and actress who is best known for her Tony Award winning role in Miss Saigon, being the first Asian woman to play Eponine in Les Misérables, and providing the singing voice for Disney's Jasmine and Mulan. Jack Singer Concert Hall

7:30pm tickets artscommons.ca

36

Arts Commons Winter 2019

Advertising

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DISCOVER WHAT WE CAN DO FOR YOUR BUSINESS, WITHIN YOUR BUDGET. SCHEDULE A FREE CONSULTATION BY VISITING POSTMEDIASOLUTIONS.COM

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April 28, 2019 music

One Live Media

KANSAS – Point of Know Return Tour With a legendary career spanning more than four decades, KANSAS has firmly established itself as one of America’s iconic classic rock bands. This “garage band” from Topeka released their debut album in 1974 after being discovered by Wally Gold, who worked for Don Kirshner, and have gone on to sell more than 30 million albums worldwide. where when

april

Jack Singer Concert Hall

Audience

7:30pm tickets artscommons.ca when

©Raymund Isaac

music

where

where

artscommons.ca

April 17, 2019

when

Sitar player and composer Anoushka Shankar is a singular figure in the Indian classical and progressive world music scenes. Her dynamic and spiritual musicality has garnered several prestigious accolades including six Grammy Award nominations.

Jack Singer Concert Hall

where

we outsmart your comPetition

tickets

Jack Singer Concert Hall

8pm artscommons.ca

Become a member of Founders Circle and discover exceptional benefits and exclusive offers, all while helping us share the transformative power of the arts with many more in our community.

Join today! 403-294-7497 artscommons.ca/founderscircle FOUNDERS CIRCLE IS MADE POSSIBLE WITH THE GENEROUS SUPPORT OF:

All photos ©Will Young

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

37


thank you

Arts Commons wishes to express our sincere appreciation to the following corporations, foundations, governments, and passionate community leaders who give generously to support Arts Commons as we play a key role in the social, economic, cultural, and intellectual life and well-being of Calgarians and visitors.

CORPORATE SPONSORS & FOUNDATION PARTNERS

OFFICIAL SUPPLIERS AND SPONSORED GOODS OR SERVICES

ALSA Road Construction Ltd. Supporting Sponsor,

BD&P World Music and TD Jazz

Arts Commons Endowment Fund through the Calgary Foundation Big Rock Brewery Inc. Official Brewery Burnet, Duckworth & Palmer LLP Title Sponsor, BD&P World Music CBN Commercial Solutions Official Printer Cenovus Energy Inc. Student Engagement Sponsor, National Geographic Live

ConocoPhillips Canada Resources Corp. Naming Sponsor,

ConocoPhillips Hub For Inspired Learning Presenting Sponsor, National Geographic Live

Dinner Optimist Club of Calgary Supporting Partner, ConocoPhillips Hub

CKUA Radio Network Media Sponsor

Explorers Circle members help Arts Commons present the distinguished speaker series, National Geographic Live, for student and public audiences, and help National Geographic explore and protect our planet by supporting the world’s leading scientists, photographers, journalists, and filmmakers.

CTV Media Sponsor

ENGAGEMENT SPONSORS

CBC Media Sponsor

ENMAX Corporation Sponsor, ENMAX District Energy Centre Thermal Energy Solution

Great Events Catering Sponsor, Founders Circle Sponsor, VIP Receptions, TD Jazz Hotel Arts Sponsor, Explorers Circle,

National Geographic Live Sponsor, Explorers Circle & VIP Receptions, National Geographic Live Sponsor, VIP Receptions, Classic Albums Live

for Inspired Learning

Pattison Outdoor Media Sponsor

Enbridge Inc. Sponsor, EXPLORE National Geographic

PostMedia Media Sponsor

Keyera Corp. Sponsor, EXPLORE National Geographic

Salon Fine Catering & Events Sponsor, VIP Receptions, BD&P World Music

PCL Construction Management Inc. Title Sponsor, PCL Blues

GOVERNMENT

RBC Foundation Naming Partner, RBC Emerging Visual Artists Program

Repsol Oil & Gas Canada Inc. Sponsor, EXPLORE National Geographic Saskatchewan Mining and Minerals Inc.

OPERATING/PROGRAM SUPPORT Government of Canada through the Departments of Canadian Heritage and Service Canada

Government of Alberta through the Department

Sponsor, EXPLORE National Geographic

of Culture and Tourism and Labour, and the Alberta Foundation for the Arts

SerVantage Services Inc. Supporting Sponsor, BD&P World Music

The City of Calgary through the Department

TD Bank Group Presenting Sponsor, Black History Month Cabaret Title Sponsor, TD Arts Access Pass Title Sponsor, TD Jazz

Explorers Circle

of Community Services, and the Council Strategic Initiative Fund

CAPITAL SUPPORT Government of Canada through the Departments of Canadian Heritage and Infrastructure Canada

Government of Alberta through the Department of Culture and Tourism

The City of Calgary through the Department of Community Services

Bob & Sue Benzen, The Search For Life Beyond Earth by astrobiologist Kevin Hand Michel Bourque & Bryan Clarke, Wild Seas, Secret Shores by photographer Thomas Peschak Doug Flaig & Helen Timmons, Social By Nature by wildlife photographer Ronan Donovan Ken Havard & Rosalind Reid, Adventures Among Orangutans by anthropologist Cheryl Knott & photographer Tim Laman

TRAILBLAZERS Antony, Kathleen & Alexander Deakin

EXPLORERS Anonymous (1) Maureen Armitage & Shane Matthews Sandra & Simon Barker Cabra Consulting Ltd. Holly Clark & Jon Handforth David & Roxanne Dunlop Jane Durango & Dr. Beverly Frizzell Greg Epton & Greg Robertson Lloyd & Riona Freeman Jane Golubev & Igor Tesker Brian & Annette Hester Janine LaBossiere Jordan & Nyssa Moore Shone Thistle & Heather Shaw Joyce Warren & Vanessa Arrate Tharrie & Johann Zietsman

Founders Circle

Founders Circle members help Arts Commons present remarkable artists through such series as BD&P World Music, Classic Albums Live, PCL Blues, and TD Jazz, and foster impactful educational initiatives, such as the ConocoPhillips Hub for Inspired Learning. HONOURARY MEMBERS

Please note that only gifts of $10,000 or more are listed above. For a complete list of corporate, foundation and government supporters of Arts Commons, please visit our website at artscommons.ca. To inquire about becoming a supporter of Arts Commons, please contact Shone Thistle at 403-294-7455, ext.1468 or sthistle@artscommons.ca.

Dr. Martha Cohen, C.M., L.L.D. (in memoriam) Sandra LeBlanc Vera Swanson, O.C. (in memoriam)

FOUNDERS – PLATINUM TIER 38

Arts Commons Winter 2019

Bob & Sue Benzen Betty & David Smith

WRITTEN BY SHONE THISTLE

FOUNDERS – GOLD TIER

Jeff & Michele Boyd Don Douglas & Betty Dunphy Douglas David & Roxanne Dunlop R. Scott Hutcheson Greg & Alexa Kudar Henry Sykes, QC & Molly Naber-Sykes Maureen Williams

FOUNDERS – SILVER TIER

Anonymous (1) Scott Boyd & Fiona Lowes Greg Epton & Greg Robertson Ken Havard & Rosalind Reid JoAnn McCaig John McWilliams, QC & Susan McWilliams Brian Mills & Susan Tyrrell James & Janice Morton Randy & Luba Pettipas C.A. Siebens Roderick Villanueva & Jennifer Kingsbury Tharrie & Johann Zietsman

BENEFACTORS

Anonymous (2) Colin & Wendy Anderson Leslie Biles & Robert Armstrong Michel Bourque & Bryan Clarke Carri Clarke Lesley Conway Patricia Dalk & Terry Burton Norm & Colleen Dickson Leslie & Joe Dort Vonny & Liz Frazer-Fast Jane Golubev & Igor Tesker Barry Heck & Beth Reimer-Heck Brian & Annette Hester Andrea Hopps & Michael Mezei Jennifer Johnson & Trev Habekost Tasha Komery & John Hiebert Arun & Roopa Lakra Nicole Latimer & David Gustafson M. Ann McCaig Rodney & Karen McCann Daniel Mills Chadwick & Jillian Newcombe Joe & Judy Osinski Dr. Jeremy Quickfall Stuart & Vicki Reid Holly Schile & David Nielsen Bernie Slogotski & Thedra Hunt Alane Smith Marg Southern Daryl & Cindy Stepanic Shone Thistle & Heather Shaw Patricia van de Sande Please note that only gifts of $1,000 or more are listed above. For a complete list of individual donors, please visit our website at artscommons.ca. To inquire about becoming a member of Founders or Explorers Circle, please contact Daniel Mills at 403-294-7497 or dmills@artscommons.ca.

I

t’s no secret that everyone from small businesses to major corporations have to tighten their belts and do more with less, particularly when it comes to community investment. Calgary’s arts, culture, and social sectors have long benefited from the incredibly generous spirit of our corporate friends over the last few decades, and we’re all feeling the effects of uncertainty within our shifting economic foundation. But a conversation with our friends at Burnet, Duckworth and Palmer LLP (BD&P) proves one thing is certain: the generous spirit of Calgary’s corporate community lives on in creative and innovative ways. Brian Feick of BD&P looks back ten years to remember the days when working in community investment and sponsorship was perceived as party planning. Today he takes pride in moving the needle to focus more on business development and meaningful impact – not just one or the other. “It doesn’t have to be about doing less; instead it can be about getting creative to do more with greater focus,” Feick said. “In fact, why not bring your clients and business partners along for the ride?” Case in point is BD&P’s partnership with the Calgary Food Bank on their PUT THE BOOTS TO HUNGER™ campaign. Each year BD&P purchases a Chuckwagon Tarp for the duration of the Calgary Stampede and then auctions off each night of benefits to their business partners who become co-sponsors of the campaign. Brian credits clients, friends, community partners, and members of the general public for contributing to the success of the 2018 BD&P PUT THE BOOTS

Third-generation chuckwagon driver Dustin Gorst poses in front of the 2017 BD&P PUT THE BOOTS TO HUNGER™ Chuckwagon.

TO HUNGER™ campaign, which raised nearly $269,000 in food and funds. “At BD&P, we are committed to continuing to recognize the true ‘Stampede spirit’ of community support which is afforded by the PUT THE BOOTS TO HUNGER™ campaign,” Feick explained. “The initiative offers the Calgary Food Bank a unique and valuable opportunity to raise awareness in our community and it inspires individuals, community groups, and corporations to get involved.” Since its inception in 2008, PUT THE BOOTS TO HUNGER™ has raised almost $4.5 million dollars towards a hungerfree community, and, who knows, maybe 2019 will be the year they break $5 million! In addition to their huge heart and their impact through the Calgary Stampede and The Calgary Food Bank, BD&P has a well-rounded community investment strategy, partnering with more than two dozen local charities on meaningful community impact. BD&P World Music is heading toward their twentieth year at Arts Commons; that’s almost two decades of filling the Jack Singer Concert Hall with joyful celebration of arts and culture that inspires and unites us through the universal language of music. Thank you BD&P! Your creative and innovative approach to community investment is an inspired example of Calgary’s entrepreneurial spirit and generosity in action.

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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confidence, and strong moral convictions. It is arts and culture that help us develop these “soft” social skills, and without them, nothing else matters.

I will always remember how we came together as a staff and as a larger organization during the flood, and how our creativity saved the day.

What did you learn about yourself (as an arts leader or on a personal level) during your time at Arts Commons?

I also experienced extreme pride and gratitude when we transferred the FIRST few dollars into a reserve fund, for a rainy day – the most unnoticed yet most momentous moment!

I discovered the deeply underestimated Canadian values of being “nice,” and doing the right thing: the transformative power that comes from simply being good humans. I learned anew that UBUNTU* is real in my life: that I truly am what and who I am, because others around me can be what and who they are. The staff, Board and others at Arts Commons who graced my daily life enabled me to be the best version of myself. “Love thy neighbour” is not an abstract idea – it is real.

OUR PRESIDENT AND CEO LEAVES US WITH SOME FINAL THOUGHTS ON HOW THE ARTS CAN CHANGE THE WORLD What has being involved in the arts in general contributed to your life? The arts opened my eyes to Apartheid, humaneness, UBUNTU*, and imagination. The arts basically shaped who I am. When I did my mandatory military service at the height of Apartheid in 1973, two of my army buddies and I visited a “shebeen” (an illicit social “pub” in a black township near the army base), for entertainment. We were the only white people in the room, and our white arrogance was tone deaf to the inappropriateness of our presence. As tradition has it, the evening was filled with much entertainment, and on this night, two black actors came to perform Athol Fugard’s The Island. At the time I had no idea of the significance of Fugard’s work, not did I realize I was watching two giants in African theatre: John Kani and Winston Ntshona. The play was depicting life in prison (clearly Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela spent 18 years), and despite the horrendous circumstances depicted, the play ends up celebrating the infinite ability of the human spirit to prevail. I came away changed for life, because I suddenly realized 40 Arts Commons Winter 2019

the shared humanity of ALL South Africans, and how much we had in common. From that day, I knew Apartheid had to end, and I knew that the arts would play a decisive role in changing the hearts and minds of our dysfunctional community. The arts provided me with my simple (maybe idealistic) desire to make the world a better place, and my conviction that it can be done through the transformative nature of the arts. In the 9 years since you have lived and worked in and for Calgary, how has Calgary’s relationship with art changed? In important ways, I have seen the arts become more integral to everyday life through community events, festivals, diversity and inclusion, and slowly becoming a part of the bigger discussions around community identity, economic impact, and social justice. But at the same time, arts and culture are still viewed as somewhat optional, noncritical, and not fundamentally understood as being a core element of who Calgary is, and what makes it work.

Given the polarized social climate of today, what role do you see the arts playing? Our role to bring diverse (and disparate) communities together through the universal, non-judgemental language of the arts is now absolutely critical. It is clear that some of the historic social leadership roles played by politicians, educators, religious and business leaders are being challenged, and in some cases are being viewed as part of the problem. The arts are in a unique position to offer a safe place for this discourse, and we have the opportunity, the responsibility and the agency to help communities heal the divides between them.

Arts Commons and Calgary once again reminded me not to take myself too seriously. Through the many ups and downs, there is always a level of joy and humour that sustains me.

The ever-diversifying arts and cultural experiences, and the expanding education and community engagement impact – this points the way to a future Arts Commons that is truly exciting! What is your hope or vision for the future for Arts Commons? To play a leadership role in a time of social fracturing, weaponized social media, cyber bullying, and polarized cultural identities to bring human beings together to breathe together while experiencing the unifying universal language of the arts.

What will you miss most about Calgary? The people, the people, the people! The Arts Commons family, the participants who come to share in experiences here, the corporate and private friends, the folks in the street, and how we get together during big moments (the flood, volunteering, and of course, The Stampede). I will also really miss kayaking on Lake Louise, and camping in Banff!

To be recognized as a cornerstone in the foundations of Calgary’s future DNA, as a city built on people, their arts, and their culture. If these form the base, then other elements of life will flourish. To be a happy, safe, successful place of creative imagination.

What will you miss most about Arts Commons?

Do you have a favourite memory of your time at Arts Commons? Please share.

The people, the people, the people! Being surrounded, supported, and strengthened by remarkably talented, smart, experienced, and passionate, caring staff is a privilege not to be taken for granted.

I have so many wonderful memories! I love seeing the profound impact our work has had on kids – so many examples big and small of lives transformed.

The journey: we have come so far in the past nine short years in so many ways, and I will miss the quiet competence and resilience of this organization.

We can help to ensure that ALL voices matter, and that ALL identities are celebrated. The arts can and must bear witness and heal, but also be boldly honest about difficult truths. The arts also provide critical life skills needed in a new purpose-driven economy, where “soft” skills are replacing “hard” skills. In this new economy it is critical to act with compassion, understanding, and tolerance, and to develop a healthy self-esteem,

*UBUNTU is a Nguni Bantu term meaning “humanity,” but is usually translated as “I am because we are” or “humanity towards others.”

Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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Connect » Contribute » Create

MORE GREAT PERFORMANCES IN 2019!Subscriptions on sale now!

Bobby McFerrin & Gimme 5: Circlesongs

Buy ea for the rly seats a best t best pr the ice!

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 19, 2019

Monterey Jazz Festival on Tour

featuring Cécile McLorin Salvant, Bria Skonberg, Melissa Aldana, Christian Sands, Yasushi Nakamura & Jamison Ross THURSDAY, APRIL 11, 2019

Title Sponsor

Supporting Sponsor

Public Sector Support

Become a member of Explorers Circle and forge a deeper, more meaningful connection with National Geographic and Arts Commons.

Arts ArtsCommons, Commons, Jack Singer Jack SingerConcert Concert Hall Hall

Join today! 403-294-7497 artscommons.ca/explorerscircle

403-294-9494 or artscommons.ca/jazz

TD Arts Access Pass Title Sponsor

Media Sponsors

Official Suppliers

EXPLORERS CIRCLE IS MADE POSSIBLE WITH THE GENEROUS SUPPORT OF:

THE RBC EMERGING VISUAL ARTISTS PROGRAM

MORE GREAT PERFORMANCES IN 2019! The Duke Robillard Acoustic Trio

Bridging the gap from emerging to established artist in Calgary.

FRI / SAT JANUARY 18 & 19 2019

Dom Flemons

FRI / SAT MARCH 8 & 9 2019

Eden Brent

FRI / SAT APRIL 5 & 6 2019

Thornetta Davis

Arts Commons, Engineered Air Theatre

403-294-9494 or artscommons.ca/blues

FRI / SAT MAY 3 & 4 2019

Title Sponsor

Single tic ke going fa ts s – buy yo t urs today!

Public Sector Support

FOUNDATION PARTNER:

Visit one of our free exhibits today! Learn more at artscommons.ca

We deliver more than ink on paper. Formerly known as McAra Unicom, CBN Commercial Solutions is about more than ink on paper. We’re about you.

Official Suppliers

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(403) 250.9510 | CBNCS.com 42

Arts Commons Winter 2019

CBNCS Arts Commons ad 7.25x2 v3.indd 1

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Winter 2019 Arts Commons

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A

n interstellar love story woven together by the lyrical threads of dance – Unganisha is a powerful production about love, movement, and black history in Canada.

WRITTEN BY AARON CHATHA

Unganisha means ‘connect’ in Swahili, and focuses on connection to the roots of nine dances, including tap, jazz, hiphop, samba, salsa, capoeira, Afro-Cuban, Afro-Caribbean, and step. The story follows two soul mates who continue to be drawn to each other through history. During one scene they may be high school crushes; during another, they may be an expectant couple torn about by slavery. Each time period is represented by a different dance, which will also tie into the historical origins of that particular dance style. “This is an empowering production – we’re looking at it to educate the masses through the power of creation, to a space where acceptance and healing can begin,” explained producer Wunmi Idowu. “We as black people are part of Alberta’s fabric – we were here to plant and grow, harvest, and sustain Alberta, and we’ve not had the opportunity to celebrate that. So Unganisha is part of that celebration.” This is actually the second iteration of Unganisha; the first was performed by Woezo Africa Music and Dance Theatre in early 2018, and they have only refined it since then. Unganisha will be performed twice at Arts Commons on February 2 at 2pm and 7pm. For more information, visit artscommons.ca/unganisha.

Woezo Africa Music & Dance Theatre

who

what

Unganisha

when

February 2, 2019

where

tickets

44

Arts Commons Winter 2019

Engineered Air Theatre artscommons.ca/unganisha


OUR LOCATION Our address is 205 8th Ave SE. Our main entrance is located off Stephen Avenue, one block east of the Calgary Tower and across from Olympic Plaza.

Located in the heart of Calgary’s vibrant downtown core, Arts Commons is home to the city’s premier performance venues. Offering public art spaces and six distinct performance venues, including the Jack Singer Concert Hall, Arts Commons is home to a variety of artists and an array of resident companies that include the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra and Theatre Calgary.

GETTING HERE BY LRT Calgary’s LRT (light rail train) will take you to City Hall station, one block north of Arts Commons.

GETTING HERE BY CAR

P1

Arts Commons offers underground parking. Enter off Macleod Trail between 9th and 8th Avenues.

$6

OPEN EVENI NGS & WE EKENDS

P U RC H AS E T IC K E TS AT O U R B OX O F F IC E : C E N T RE CO U RT, 2 2 5 8 T H AV E S E

SEE A SHOW

10 to 6

AM

PM

Sundays

CLOSE D

403-294-9494 artscommons.ca

Other parking options include:

P2

Civic Plaza Parkade

P3

TELUS Convention Centre

P4

Palliser Square (access Arts Commons via the +15 network)

P5

Surface parking lots in the 200, 300 and 400 blocks on the south side of 9th Avenue SE

LANDMARKS Calgary Tower

P3

Olympic Plaza TELUS Convention Centre Hyatt Regency Calgary

P1

P4

P5

P2

P5

Glenbow Museum Marriott Hotel City Hall

BE SOC I AL

JO I N US O N FACEB O O K OR FO L LOW U S O N TW IT T E R FO R CO NCERT A NNO UNCEM E N TS , S P EC IA L O F F E RS , A N D M O RE .

#artscommons @yycARTS


hak esc hom as P ©T

Explore the world with National Geographic Live shows in 2019! The Search For Life Beyond Earth with astrobiologist Kevin Hand SUN/MON JANUARY 27 & 28, 2019

Wild Seas, Secret Shores with photographer Thomas Peschak SUN/MON MARCH 10 & 11, 2019

Adventures Among Orangutans with photographer Tim Laman & anthropologist Cheryl Knott

Lam

an

SUN/MON MAY 5 & 6, 2019

©T

im

PRESENTING SPONSOR

TICKETS: 403-294-9494 OR artscommons.ca/ngl Presenting Sponsor

Explorers Circle, Engagement Sponsors Kevin Hand Thomas Peschak – The Search For – Wild Seas, Life Beyond Earth Secret Shores

Student Engagement Sponsor

Cheryl Knott & Tim Laman – Adventures Among Orangutans

EXPLORE National Geographic Sponsors

Public Sector Support

Media Sponsors

Official Suppliers

Explorers Circle & VIP Reception Sponsor

Arts Commons, Jack Singer Concert Hall, Sunday Matinees 2pm, Monday Evenings 7pm

Profile for Arts Commons

Arts Commons Winter 2019 Magazine  

Arts Commons Winter 2019 Magazine  

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