Drama, theatre, film

1405 Colonialism corrective

TELEVISION DOCUSERIES REVIEW: British Columbia: An Untold History by Kevin Eastwood, Writer and Director Burnaby: British Columbia’s Knowledge Network, 2022 Reviewed by Patrick A. Dunae * Knowledge Network, ‘British Columbia’s public educational broadcaster,’ has produced a compelling documentary series entitled British Columbia: An Untold History. The production qualities are superb. Each episode of the four-part…
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1375 SkyTrain, sex shows, $50 jokes

Yearbook by Seth Rogen Toronto: Penguin Random House Canada (Viking), 2021 $35.00 / 9780735237995 Reviewed by Sheldon Goldfarb * So the editor asks me to review Seth Rogen’s book. Seth who? Do you mean Joe Rogan? No, Seth Rogen, the comedian, actor, voicer of Vancouver’s SkyTrain announcements. Oh, that Seth Rogen. And he’s the one…
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1304 Blunt portraits & candid memoir

All the Rage: A Partial Memoir in Two Acts and a Prologue by Brad Fraser Toronto: Penguin Random House (Doubleday Canada), 2021 $34.00 / 9780385696371 Reviewed by Brett Josef Grubisic * One of the recurring delights of All the Rage is a multi-faceted storytelling technique that reserves a little something for everybody. Whether Brad Fraser…
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1125 Greek myths for the age of anime

Greek Mythology: The Gods, Goddesses, and Heroes Handbook, From Aphrodite to Zeus, a Profile of Who’s Who in Greek Mythology by Liv Albert, illustrated by Sara Richard Toronto: Simon & Schuster (Adams Media), 2021 $22.99 / 9781507215494 Reviewed Linda Rogers * “He said, she said.” Oral storytelling is like court evidence without benefit of cell…
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1062 Pepper’s ballet and dance

Falling into Flight: A Memoir of Life and Dance by Kaija Pepper Winnipeg: Signature Editions, 2020 $19.95 / 9781773240831 Reviewed by Maria Tippett * In the early 1930s two dancers from British Columbia were invited to join the corps de ballet of Basil’s famous Ballets Russes. The offer came with one condition: Patricia Meyers from…
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1046 Featuring Anne Wheeler

Taken by the Muse: On the Path to Becoming a Filmmaker by Anne Wheeler Edmonton: Newest Press, 2020 $20.95 / 9781774390016 Reviewed by Lynne Bowen * A train has stopped on a prairie siding. A passenger watches through the window as several children play shinny on a frozen water-filled ditch beside the tracks. It is…
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Letters from the Pandemic 11: Dear Sam

Letters from the Pandemic 11: Dear Sam by Cathy Joyce * Dear Sam, As a whole civilization muddles about individually bewildered, bumping into themselves while trying to stay safely apart, I wonder if a wry smile might have flickered on your etched features because you already knew, and have already precisely documented, just what happens…
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#809 From Nanaimo to the Royal Ascot

Nanaimo Girl: A Memoir by Prudence Emery Toronto: Cormorant Books, 2020 $24.95 / 9781770865273 Reviewed by Randolph Eustace-Walden Unless noted otherwise, all images reproduced here are from Nanaimo Girl: A Memoir, by Prudence Emery * Prudence Emery is the eponymous “Nanaimo Girl.” Now in her early 80s and living on her native Vancouver Island just…
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#785 A New World Oliver Twist

Washington Black by Esi Edugyan Toronto: HarperCollins, 2018 $33.99 / 9781443423380 Reviewed by Theo Dombrowski * Since its publication in the summer of 2018, Esi Edugyan’s novel Washington Black has made a resounding impact. Reviews abound; awards and award short listings likewise. Stirring most comment and praise are not just the gripping story line, but…
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#778 On the road with Sir Kenneth

MEMOIR: On the road with Sir Kenneth by Grahame Ware * Recently we published Grahame Ware’s review of Horn Swoggled: A Play by Armstrong playwright Ken Smedley: see The Ormsby Review no. 762 (March 5, 2020). In a follow-up email, Grahame described his intense and productive artistic friendship with Smedley in the mid-1990s, when the…
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#762 Bard Smedley of Armstrong

Horn Swoggled: A Play by Ken Smedley Vernon: Rich Fog Micro Publishing, 2019 $25.00 / 9781988707211 This book is available via Canada Post from Ken Smedley, PO Box 323, Armstrong, BC, V0E 1B0 for $25, which includes postage and handling Reviewed by Grahame Ware * First, a word or two about the playwright. Born in…
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#706 Hitting life’s reset button

Scarred: The True Story of How I Escaped NXIVM, the Cult that Bound My Life by Sarah Edmondson with Kristine Gasbarre San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 2019; Vancouver: Raincoast Books, 2019 $24.99 (Canada); $27.95 (U.S.)  / 9781797202396 Reviewed by Nathaniel G. Moore * When I was in my undergrad, I took a course on new religious…
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