Gord Downie y el oscuro pasado de Canadá

La música de The Tragically Hip y principalmente de su líder y letrista, Gord Downie, es clave para entender el rock alternativo de Canadá y, más importante todavía, ha ayudado a reconciliar a la sociedad canadiense con uno de los episodios más tristes de su historia reciente: el abuso sistemático a su población aborigen.

Arcade Fire fueron uno de los nombres más destacados en los pasados premios Juno 2018, que anualmente reconocen los mayores logros musicales en Canadá. La banda de Montreal se llevó el premio al Álbum del Año por su Everything Now y el International Achievement Award, que reconocía la carrera de la que, hoy en día, es una de las bandas canadienses más conocidas en el mundo. La gala también reconocía a Gord Downie, desconocido internacionalmente, como Artista del Año.

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#ffbcn: La fábrica de las ‘start-up’ de Barcelona

El 17 de septiembre se celebró el acto final de fàbrica futur barcelona (#ffbcn), una iniciativa del Ayuntamiento de Barcelona y la Obra Social “La Caixa” que pone el punto de mira en el futuro, incentivando diez proyectos de futuro de diez jóvenes emprendedores en diez ámbitos distintos. Hablamos con Bibiana Ballbé, comisaria de #ffbcn, y con tres de los participantes en #ffbcn.

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Experimental Documentary: from the script to the video blog

Critical analysis over the processes of production and reception of experimental documentaries.

The video installation Script, by Brazilian artist Veridiana Zurita, was featured in Possible Futures (October 10-26th, 2013), the last activity of VOORUIT100, a six- month celebration for the 100th anniversary of Vooruit, the historic building in the city of Ghent (Belgium), currently used as a music venue, cafeteria and arts centre.

Script explores the relations between two women, a mother and a daughter. The daughter is Zurita and her mother is a psychoanalyst, based in Sao Paolo (Brazil).

The project is based in the meeting of these two women during two weeks, when they both recorded themselves on video while playing their social, familiar and affective roles, exploring themselves and the relation to the other. Continue reading “Experimental Documentary: from the script to the video blog”

“Ernest & Célestine”

Movie review of the French animated comedy-drama film Ernest et Célestine (2012), based on children’s books by the Belgian author and illustrator Gabrielle Vincent.

This is not the first time that anthropomorphized animals are used to show the glories and miseries of our society. The technique is as old as humanity and is tied close to a little mouse that became the icon for a major animation film company (and for the 20th century in general) or even further, with the earliest fairy tales.

In the traditionally crafted animated film Ernest & Célestine, it is shown through two main characters, a little mouse and a big bear, outsiders of their respective societies, living in parallel worlds on the surface and in the underground.

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‘A Little History’ of the Kamloops Film Festival

The Kamloops Film Society (KFS) originally started in 1972, when film fans gathered to watch and discuss classic and current cinema. First known as Cariboo College Film Club, they neramed as Kamloops Film Society in 1994, under the Societies Act, and focused on three significant types of cinema – independent, classic and foreign – shown in weekly series that eventually became seasonal.

In the early years, the Society independently booked films with distributors and booking agents directly but in 1994 they entered the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) film circuit. Before the Kamloops Film Festival became a reality, in the early 1990’s, a PR officer, from the local ski resort Sun Peaks, approached the KFS with the idea of bringing the best of the Vancouver Film Festival to Kamloops.

Meanwhile, a Vancouver organization called ‘Moving Pictures’ headed by John Duppong, began a travelling film festival throughout the BC interior. In 1992, Duppong approached the KFS for support on Shadows on The Wall: The Meeting of the Waters Film Festival, an event held over three days in two separate venues on opposite sides of the city.

The partnership continued and, in 1996, the third edition of ‘Moving Pictures’ The Travelling Canadian Film Festival stopped in Kamloops for the first time, March 29-31, and included Canadian and French dramatic film released from 1990 to 1995 plus documentaries and short films. Three film and short film directors featured in the festival – Michael Gibson (Defy Gravity), Gary Burns (The Suburbanators) and James Genn (Direct Lines) – were invited to the special event Short Cuts & Long Shots, a workshop about getting started in filmmaking.

A year after, the Kamloops Film Society took up the role of ‘Moving Pictures’ and organized their own first KFS Film Festival. From 1997 to 2000, the first editions of the festival brought to Kamloops movies from Canada, United States, Belgium, Italy, United Kingdom and Spain. Directors such as Atom Egoyan (The Sweet Hereafter), Bruce Sweeney (Dirty) and Ryan Bonder (DayDrifit): producers like Rosamon Norbury (Better Than Chocolate) and actress Gabrielle Rose (The Five Senses) visited Kamloops, attended the showings and accepted Q&A periods.

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TRU Actors Workshop is ‘starving’

Review of the play Curse of the Starving Class, written by the American playwright and actor Sam Shepard in 1978 and performed by students of the Theatre program at Thompson Rivers University (TRU).

Playwright and actor Sam Shepard wrote the play Curse of the Starving Class in 1978 but in the words of Wesley Eccleston, a professor with the TRU theatre arts program, it is still relevant because “families still struggle with the (same) challenges.” Eccleston directs the production, which starts Feb. 28 at the Actors Workshop Theatre in Old Main.

The characters are part of the Tate family, a dysfunctional American family where the dad, Weston (Michael Hogg), spends long periods away from home and comes back drunk and aggressive while son, Wesley (Justin Hall), pees on the floor of the kitchen, daughter Emma (Allison Clow) plans her escape and mother Ella (Alley Barton) wonders how to work it out and go to Europe.

“These characters are starving for the things they think will make them happy,” Eccleston said.

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Vincent Moon c’est Creative Commons!

Profile of the independent filmmaker from Paris, the original creator of La Blogothèque’s Concert à Emporter (Take Away Shows).

Mathieu Saura, better known as Vincent Moon, is one of the greatest and more respected filmmakers you can find, nowadays, licensing his work under Creative Commons, allowing its use and remix for derivate works. His work is available for free on Internet, he is a nomade artist building an audience on social media and keeping his projects alive by donations (crowdfunding).

Early on his career – not using Creative Commons, yet – he became known adapting filmmaking style ‘cinema verité’ to document bands playing one or few songs off the stage, on acoustic, in streets, parks, flats… anywhere. This music video subgenre, that was known as ‘Concert à Emporter’, or Take Away Shows, started in La Blogothèque. The list of bands Moon’s lenses captured includes: Arcade Fire, Phoenix, REM, Sufjan Stevens, Andrew Bird, St. Vincent or Bon Iver.

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