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Write on Ottawa: Palawan Story by Caroline Vu

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Caroline Vu. Photo from Palawan Story's Facebook Page.Caroline Vu. Photo from Palawan Story's Facebook Page.

Caroline Vu’s Palawan Story is about the young Kim Nguyen’s unwitting and traumatic escape from the 1970’s Communist Vietnam to the Palawan refugee camp in the Philippines, to her eventual arrival in the United States thanks to a case of mistaken identity. While the story of survival told from a child’s perspective and later re-dissected through Kim’s adult eyes is one that merits readers’ attention alone, it is Vu’s ability to keep her readers emotionally aligned with her narrator that really secures this novel’s literary merits. Vu displays an uncanny... | Continue reading article

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Write On Ottawa: Reimagining the cosmos

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Vanishing-Stars-Cover-Front

What do you feel when you look up at the heavens?  For many people – if not most – contemplating the vastness of the cosmos is a deeply humbling experience. The universe is so large, and our planet Earth in comparison so small, we can be forgiven for thinking that humanity is mere dust on an infinite cosmic broom. But is this feeling of insignificance justified?  In his fascinating book Vanishing Stars: Unravelling the appropriation of art by science, Ottawa-based photographer Sanjeev Sivarulrasa offers a radical new way of thinking... | Continue reading article

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Young Ottawa glitterati hit bowling green for charity

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Photo from lawnsummernights.com.Photo from lawnsummernights.com.

Hintonburg’s sleepy Elmdale Lawn Bowling club will be transformed into the hippest spot in the city on Wednesday when Lawn Summer Nights returns to the capital for the first of four nights of mingling, munchies, booze and bowling in support of Cystic Fibrosis Canada. The second annual fundraiser, which draws a who’s who of young Ottawa professionals from the political, media and business spheres, doubled in size this year and sold out in less than 24 hours. “We have a bunch of returning teams, and we attribute much of our... | Continue reading article

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Write On Ottawa: Fantasy sequel by local writer is a hit

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Photo of Caroline Fréchette by TurkoizePhoto of Caroline Fréchette by Turkoize

Caroline Fréchette is one of my favourite fantasy writers in the National Capital Region. Last year, the Gatineau-based author released Blood Relations, the first book in a five-part series. Now she has published Brothers In Arms, the enjoyable sequel in her action-packed world filled with gangsters, a mysterious corporation and young people with superpowers. Published by Renaissance Press, this well written series tells the story of Alex Winters, a teenage boy who can create fire with his thoughts.  Growing up in rough circumstances and running away at the age of... | Continue reading article

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Hintonburg Happening: a festival celebrating all that’s wonderful about this neighbourhood and its residents

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Hintonburg is a community that has gentrified in recent years and is now alive and thriving with art, culture, as well as fantastic food and drink. For the first time ever, this Ottawa community will host its very own festival, opening Saturday June 21 and ending Sunday, June 29. I interviewed Anne Wanda Tessier, a local artist and Hintonburg resident who has been instrumental in putting Hintonburg Happening together along with Summer Baird of the Hintonburg Public House to find out more. Why is there a “Hintonburg Happening?” The festival... | Continue reading article

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Souljazz Orchestra to test drive new material at Glow Fair

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Photo by Alexandre Mattar.Photo by Alexandre Mattar.

Ottawa’s Souljazz Orchestra is leading a strong set of local acts heading into Glow Fair, the Bank Street BIA’s new street festival, this Friday. Self-described as “Canada’s hardest-working combo”, The Souljazz Orchestra is hoping the neon, glow-in-the-dark festival will serve as a tune up ahead of their big euro tour launching next week. “It’s been awhile since we’ve played a proper show in Ottawa,” says lead singer Pierre Chrétien. “It will be a good tune up before we leave for Europe for our big summer tour the same week. We’ll... | Continue reading article

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From Death Valley to Paradise City: A different kind of ‘beat’ journey

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Photo provided by the Available Light Screening Collective.Photo provided by the Available Light Screening Collective.

There’s an undeniable romance to the idea of climbing into a car and discovering the world head-on wherever the road, and your instincts, might take you. That’s the primary motivation behind multidisciplinary visual artist, musician and director Lisa Lipton (a.k.a FRANKIE)’s most recent works that compromise the screening get outta my dreams and into my car. This Thursday’s screening (presented by Available Light Screening Collective) will be the first time Lipton shows all five films created during her Canada-U.S. journey and the first time she will perform alongside them. Apartment613... | Continue reading article

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What does an art critic do?

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Anna Khimasia (left) and Teodora Dimitrova. Photo provided by the Ottawa Art Gallery.Anna Khimasia (left) and Teodora Dimitrova. Photo provided by the Ottawa Art Gallery.

The Ottawa Art Gallery’s Articulation: Critical art writing workshop series is intended to offer participants the support, skills, and editorial assistance they need to establish or expand their critical art writing practice. The series aims to foster a community of critical art writers in the Ottawa-Gatineau region, by providing both emerging and experienced writers with the opportunity to connect with each other and learn from prominent members of the national art writing community. The last writing workshop, offered by Anna Khimasia, focused on the role of criticism in art writing: “What... | Continue reading article

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The Burden of Self Awareness: Q&A with Eric Coates and Arthur Milner

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Eric Coates, Artistic Director of the GCTC, right, during rehearsals in late May 2014. All photos by Kenneth Ingram.Eric Coates, Artistic Director of the GCTC, right, during rehearsals in late May 2014. All photos by Kenneth Ingram.

Eric Coates is the Artistic Director of the Great Canadian Theatre Company. He also plays the character Michael in The Burden of Self Awareness. This production marks his stage debut at the GCTC. We caught up with him in advance of the production’s launch. Our interview with Arthur Milner follows. Apt613: It’s the GCTC’s 39th anniversary season and it’s coming to an end with The Burden of Self Awareness. Why have you saved it for last? Coates: That was partly just a scheduling necessity because of the availability of other... | Continue reading article

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Capital Pride promises to offer an edgier festival this year

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A participant in the 2013 Capital Pride Parade. All photos by Charlie Crabb.A participant in the 2013 Capital Pride Parade. All photos by Charlie Crabb.

In its ever-lasting quest to be more fabulous, fantastic and flamboyant than the year before, the Capital Pride Committee is releasing a program that’s edgier than its predecessors. This year’s Capital Pride Festival will kick off at the Museum of Nature. As part of the museum’s popular Nature Nocturne event series, revelers will launch Pride, while checking out the Museum’s exhibits in a night club-esque setting. The Village Movie Night is also evolving. This year’s night in front of the silver screen will include a fully licensed bar. The committee’s... | Continue reading article

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