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Cowichan Valley Citizen

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Wednesday, July 8, 2015

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YOUNG MUSICIAN OF THE WEEK

Gillian de Valk, 16, has just finished Grade 11 at Frances Kelsey Secondary. She plays alto sax and likes jazz greats John Coltrane, Charlie Parker and Charlez360. She hopes to travel again with band director Mr. Evans during Grade 12. She’s been to Seattle and San Francisco thus far.

COURTESY COWICHANMUSICTEACHERS.COM

Kim Yanick’s stunning photograph of singer/songwriter Kristia di Gregorio is the result of a lot of inspired ideas from a number of sources. [SUBMITTED]

LEXI BAINAS CITIZEN

A Victoria singer-songwriter got a boost from a Lake Cowichan photographer after illness shoved her musical dreams to the back burner recently. Kristia Di Gregorio was stunned last year by a shocking breast cancer diagnosis. She had just released The Whiplash Curve, recorded with Juno-winning producer Joby Baker, when the news came and was forced to cancel tour plans, hang up the guitar and enter chemotherapy. A dedicated performer, she mourned her project at the same time she was facing desperate fears about her health. Photog rapher Kimberley Yanick heard her story though a mutual friend on Facebook and offered a photo shoot to document the change in Di Gregorio’s body post-mastectomy. Upon meeting they realized

this would not be an ordinary shoot. Di Gregorio had been toying with an idea for a music video that involved dressing up as the goddess Artemis, a huntress and reliever of women’s diseases, and was inspired by Yanick’s portraits of strongly feminine women. “She was the perfect photographer to bring this idea to life,” Di Gregorio said in a note to the Citizen last week. By a stroke of good luck, she said, artists Two Brothers One Vision (Larry and Darren Dibb) had a gilded antler crown in the works that would be a perfect fit for a hunter-goddess. Designers of a jewelry line, they had also been creating sculptural head pieces for a number of Yanick’s shoots. Di Gregorio is thrilled with the results. “The image these artists have created is strikingly defiant. A

missing breast, a chest exposed, golden antlers and a scar gilded in gold leaf much like broken Japanese pottery is repaired with gold in an art form called Kintsugi — a philosophy that celebrates breakage, rather than seeking to hide it. I hope that other young women who are fighting breast cancer will see my photo and be able to draw some courage from it,” she said. The artists have another collaboration in the works with a music video for a song called Oh My Heart (written when Di Gregorio started to experience the chest pains that would lead to the discovery of her cancer) which is now being filmed with Hemstock Films and world-renowned dancer Joel Hanna. Want to see more of the Artemis shoot? A behind the scenes video can be found at https://youtu. be/3lQc4dTe1u4

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Photographer helps singer celebrate victory over breast cancer

Profile for Black Press Media Group

Cowichan Valley Citizen, July 08, 2015  

July 08, 2015 edition of the Cowichan Valley Citizen

Cowichan Valley Citizen, July 08, 2015  

July 08, 2015 edition of the Cowichan Valley Citizen