Drawing in Space

Leah Garnett is an artist based in Sackville, New Brunswick who teaches Fine Arts at Mount Allison University. Her installations explore the shaping of space, how we construct, mold, and contain it. Drawing on her experience growing up on construction sites, her recent work, in which she creates installations that combine mark-making and building, has been described as “drawing in space.”

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For the Confederation Centre Art Gallery, Garnett is creating an installation this week titled When One Space Meets Another, in which she transposes various sites – woods in Maine, an exhibition space in Sackville, a construction site – into the space of the gallery.

“Leah Garnett’s installations are enigmatic, playful blends of optical effects, mapping, drawing, and sculpture,” says gallery curator Pan Wendt. “We are excited about how she will transform the space of the gallery,”

For the artist, the work provides her with an opportunity to range over questions about construction sites such as “what is the relationship between landscape and architecture where the temporary and transitional construction site becomes a hybrid of the two,” as well as “how does a construction site compare to a studio, especially the temporary studio occupations of artist residencies,” and finally, “what are the results and implications of transposing multiple landscapes into a single location?”

Leah Garnett: When One Space Meets Another opens this Saturday, March 4 and will be on exhibition until June 4.

Boom Boom Boom

From the creative team behind MacHomer and Bigger Than Jesus, comes an explosive solo performance that documents the music, culture and politics that shaped the Baby Boom generation (1945-1969). BOOM takes us through 25 turbulent years, and gives voice to over 100 influential politicians, activists and musicians. It’s a mind-blowing experience for audiences of all generations.

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BOOM chronologically documents a historical period stretching from that first ‘boom’ of the Atomic Bomb in 1945 all the way to the Apollo 11 landing the first human beings on the Moon in 1969. These two iconic moments span 25 of the most tumultuous years in modern history, fuelled by a generation of children with incredible influence due to their numbers, and to the advances of technology and communication. In the BOOM generation, politics and culture merged like never before – and perhaps never again.

KDOONS and WYRD Productions blend cutting-edge multimedia, unforgettable characters and tour-de-force storytelling in a stunningly staged production. BOOM allows you to experience the global events as they unfold: the Cold War, McCarthyism, Beatlemania, Trudeaumania, JFK, MLK, Mao, Vietnam… The various stories spiral into the “The Summer of Love”, and BOOM ends as it began: with a new generation born into a new world order.

BOOM is at the Homburg Theatre March 31st.

Guild It and They Will Come

Join us on Feb. 27th for our annual Guild Fundraiser, all in support of Island artists! The evening will feature entertainment from Irish Mythen, Luka Hall, Aaron Crane, Lori Linkletter, Nora Mallet, Julien Kitson, Adam Brazier, Melissa Kramer and Ava & Lily Rashed.

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Hosted by Rob MacDonald and Graham Putnam, this is not an evening to be missed!

February 27th 7:30 – 10 PM at The Guild.

Vienna Choir Makes a Rare Appearance

Founded more than five hundred years ago, the Vienna Boys’ Choir is certainly the most famous boys’ choir of the world. Together with Confederation Centre of the Arts, the boys invite you to a concert presenting the works of W. A. Mozart, Strauss, and Haydn, among other works. This rare chance to see one of music’s most acclaimed choral ensembles takes place one night only, March 17 at 7:30 p.m. in the Homburg Theatre.

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When Emperor Maximilian I decreed in 1498 that there were to be six boys among his court musicians, he had unwittingly laid the foundations for the Wiener Sängerknaben, known globally as the Vienna Boys´ Choir. Over the centuries, the Viennese Court attracted musicians like Mozart, Salieri, and Bruckner; Joseph Haydn, Michael Haydn, and Franz Schubert, whom were themselves choristers. The Chapel Imperial always travelled with the Emperor.

Today, there are 100 choristers between the ages of nine and fourteen, divided into four touring choirs. They present around 300 concerts each year, attended by almost half a million spectators around the world. Since 1926, the Choir has undertaken around 1,000 tours in 97 different countries; in that time, the boys have sung more than 27,000 concerts.

A Toronto Star reviewer attending one such concert in 2016 described the “pure unbroken treble voices” offering very impressive musicianship and entertainment. “These boys have been expertly trained, but there was also a humble humanity to the way the younger singers’ eyes and attentions wandered from time to time.”

Tickets are available in person at the Confederation Centre box office or via phone, (902) 566-1267, toll free at 1-800-565-0278, or online at confederationcentre.com. Special thanks are extended to Sobeys, the title sponsor of LIVE @ the Centre, as well as media sponsors The Guardian, Hot 105.5, and Ocean 100.

Guess Who’s Coming to the Watermark

An American comic writing legend and a famous Irish political rabble-rouser are the two playwrights whose plays will be presented this summer at the Watermark Theatre. The professional theatre company’s 10th Anniversary Season will include Neil Simon’s “Barefoot in the Park” and George Bernard Shaw’s “Mrs. Warren’s Profession”.

Neil Simon is widely considered one of the most successful playwrights in American history. In his long and prolific career, he has become an icon of film and theatre with his distinctive combination of humor and humanity.

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Simon was born to a Jewish-American family in 1927 in the Bronx, New York

City. After a brief stint in the military, the young Simon teamed up with his brother Danny to pursue comedy writing in radio and television. They got their first break writing for the television comedy “Your Show of Shows” under the actor and writer Sid Caesar. The other writers included Mel Brooks, Carl Reiner, Larry Gelbart, and Woody Allen. “I knew when I walked into Your Show of Shows,” recalled Simon, “that this was the most talented group of writers that up until that time had ever been assembled.”

Like Brooks and Allen, Simon’s writing reflects his roots as a Jewish-American kid growing up in New York City. All three were sophisticated, sarcastic, and ably balanced slapstick and farce with real insight. But in addition, Simon’s plays also capture an inclusive American experience. For him, New York seemed to be a microcosm for the country as it evolved. The city was bustling with a diverse population of recent immigrants and represented the frontier of America’s changing cultural landscape.

In the 1960s, Simon began writing for the stage. He scored a hit in 1961 with his debut, “Come Blow Your Horn”, which ran for 678 performances. In 1966, he made history when he had four plays running simultaneously on Broadway: “Sweet Charity”, “The Star-Spangled Girl”, “The Odd Couple”, and “Barefoot in the Park” (which played for 1,530 performances). In the years that followed, he would go on to write iconic plays and films, earning four Oscar nominations, twelve Tony nominations, and two Tony wins for best play with “Biloxi Blues” in 1985 and “Lost in Yonkers” in 1991, which also won Simon the Pulitzer Prize for Drama.

His other famous plays include: “Chapter Two”, “They’re Playing Our Song”, “I Ought to Be in Pictures”, “Brighton Beach Memoirs”, “The Goodbye Girl”, and “Laughter on the 23rd Floor”.

In 1983, Simon was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame. And in that same year became the only living playwright to have a New York theatre, the Neil Simon Theatre, named in his honour.

Irish playwright and critic, George Bernard Shaw, sought to introduce a new realism into English-language drama, using his plays as vehicles to disseminate his political, social and religious ideas. Shaw wrote more than sixty plays and three volumes of music and drama criticism. He was a free spirit and a freethinker who advocated women’s rights and equality on income. Most of Shaw’s early plays described the problems of capitalism and explored existing moral and social problems. These plays included “Widower’s Houses” about the landlords of slum properties; “The Philanderer”; and “Mrs. Warren’s Profession” taking his titular character’s profession as a metaphor for a prostituted society.

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From 1904 to 1909 The Royal Court Theatre in London staged fourteen of Shaw’s plays. The first, “John Bull’s Other Island”, a comedy about an Englishman in Ireland, attracted leading politicians and was seen by Edward VII, who laughed so much that he broke his chair. Other plays in the series included “Man and Superman”, “Major Barbara”, “The Doctor’s Dilemma”, and “Caesar and Cleopatra”. “Pygmalion”, Shaw’s most successful play, was produced in London in 1914. In 1938 he provided the screenplay for a filmed version of “Pygmalion”, for which he received an Academy Award.

His appetite for politics and controversy remained undiminished throughout his life. By the late 1920s he often wrote and spoke favourably of dictatorships of the right and left. In the final decade of his life he made fewer public statements, but continued to write prolifically until shortly before his death, aged 94.

His valuable contributions to literature won him the Nobel Prize for literature in 1925. While Shaw accepted the honor, he refused the money. He has regularly been rated as second only to William Shakespeare among English-language dramatists. The word “Shavian” has entered the language as encapsulating Shaw’s ideas and his means of expressing them.

Watermark is thrilled to be producing plays from these two iconic playwrights of English language theatre and look forward to introducing their plays to the Island’s residents and visitors this summer.