Category Archives: Arts & Culture

Celebrate Cameroon’s culture on May 21 Enjoy a day of dancing, soccer, and food

“Every single Cameroonian knows two things. First thing: how to dance. The second thing is how to play soccer,” says Raymond Kampoer, beaming with pride.

Kampoer moved into Parkdale two years ago with his wife Micheline and two children. During the upcoming Cameroon Day celebrations, his rich, diverse culture will be on display in Edmonton.

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Connecting local art to the community Nina Haggerty’s beautiful installation has a home at Alberta Ave Community League

Artists from the Nina Haggerty Centre for the Arts gifted Alberta Avenue Community League with a colourful multimedia art installation representing the community.

Created by six painters and 12 clay artists who work at the Nina, the installation depicts unique houses in the Alberta Avenue neighbourhood.

Paul Freeman, artistic director of the Nina Haggerty, said “the aim of the centre has always been to broadcast work in the public space and an opportunity for other people to see what the artists at the Nina can do.” He explained the artists “want to make a concrete contribution to the local reality,” and that “good art connects your experience to my experience.”
Continue reading Connecting local art to the community Nina Haggerty’s beautiful installation has a home at Alberta Ave Community League

A new springtime event on the Ave Alberta Avenue welcomes Mythos, A Springtime Fair

“If you can dream it, it is possible.”

This is the vibe that I pick up from speaking with Keia Dreger, director and creator of Mythos, A Springtime Fair, which will be held April 21 at Alberta Avenue Community Centre.

Dreger created the festival out of a need for artists and artisans to “have an opportunity to learn, express, showcase themselves, network, create conscious community, gain exposure.” Dreger is also an artist. She works in a variety of mediums and has designed some dividers, which will be for sale at the fair.
Continue reading A new springtime event on the Ave Alberta Avenue welcomes Mythos, A Springtime Fair

The importance of keeping your culture Local drum and dance troupe talk about their experience and vision

If you have spent any time at Alberta Avenue festivals, you have probably been mesmerized by Sangea, a high energy, colourful, and talented African drum and dance troupe.

I bumped into them at the Carrot during Black History Month. Their commitment to their craft, vision and values triggered my interest in culturally diverse communities. I jumped at the opportunity to interview founders Reckie Llyod and Erini Perez Amezcua about immigration, music, and artist lifestyle.
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Telling the tale of the city’s collective story Edmonton Heritage Council initiative helps Edmontonians find hope and belonging

On March 15, a diverse group of community members gathered in a sharing circle to tell their story of how they came to Edmonton.

Organized by the Edmonton Heritage Council (EHC), Weaving City Narratives was held at Ben Calf Robe – St. Clare School. The event was created to help people to find a sense of hope and belonging in Edmonton.
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Musicians, rejoice! Making music in the hall Jam sessions strike a chord with community musicians and music lovers

Last fall, my friend Gerard Forget and I attended a Leaders in the Community meeting hosted by the Avenue Initiative Revitalization. The purpose was for people to share ideas and brainstorm implementation of new projects that would benefit the community.

Gerard and I saw this as a great opportunity to share our idea of organizing jam sessions for community musicians and performers who were looking for a place to play together in an informal environment.
Continue reading Musicians, rejoice! Making music in the hall Jam sessions strike a chord with community musicians and music lovers

Explore mindfulness meditation Parkdale-Cromdale Community League offers free meditation classes on Tuesdays

A mindfulness meditation class is held every Tuesday between 7 and 8:30 pm at Parkdale-Cromdale Community League (11335 85 Street). This free class gives neighbourhood residents an opportunity to explore how sitting meditation practice can help you become more calm. Over time, meditation helps develop serenity not only during class, but also in everyday life. People practicing mindfulness meditation use a relaxed yet upright posture and pay attention to the natural flow of breath. All are invited to attend.

Everyone can be a little bit Irish The Serca Festival of Irish Theatre showcases celtic culture on Alberta Ave

For many people, St. Patrick’s Day is an opportunity to wear green and celebrate Irish culture, but organizers of Serca Festival are hoping to engage Edmontonians in Irish theatre.

Mark Henderson, the creative director and founder of Serca, explained the festival goes beyond a literal definition of Irish theatre. The plays featured at the festival could be about Ireland or by Irish playwrights, or they could be translations of non-Irish plays by Irish playwrights. They could also, as festival producer Michael Clark said, “be about the Irish experience.”

Continue reading Everyone can be a little bit Irish The Serca Festival of Irish Theatre showcases celtic culture on Alberta Ave

The sound and story of The Secretaries The decade-old Edmonton band is playing at SkirtsAfire

The Secretaries are having brunch in Amy van Keeken’s kitchen on a Sunday afternoon, before rehearsal. Happy dogs lie at their feet. It’s a cozy domestic scene, but don’t be mistaken—this band isn’t made up of shrinking violets.

Colleen Brown, Natasha Fryzuk and Amy van Keeken work hard for the money (so hard for it, honey).

“We just wanted to jam,” said guitarist van Keeken. Six people showed up at their first session, but by the second, the band was distilled to its core members.

Continue reading The sound and story of The Secretaries The decade-old Edmonton band is playing at SkirtsAfire