This Week In Art/Culture/Entertainment

By John Swartz

There’s lots happening at the Orillia Youth Centre. First, it’s open. The Valis Sound Studio is coming together and will be ready for use soon.

There is a fundraising concert, Roots North Music Festival Revisited, September 26th at Sunset Barrie Drive-in (Oro-Medonte Line 4 at Highway 11).  Hawksley Workman is headlining, Terra Lightfoot is opening – and just added is our own The North River (Nick Keays, Kristina Skeries and David Kaye) are also opening.  Get tickets now. They are $35 each, a carload of 4 people is $125, which is a discount. The concert, is sponsored by Dapper Depot and Harveys, so all the proceeds will go to the youth center.

There are two other fundraisers happening to establish a scholarship fund in memory of Jake Beers. One is by the Beers family called hxmesweethxme and they’ve been present downtown on weekends and they’ve held other events. Check out their Facebook page for opportunities to contribute. Also, Anitta Hamming created an online raffle of two paintings created over a couple Friday nights at the Creative Nomad Studios shenanigans downtown. You can get a ticket here, and you can also see, or buy, other art work from the Metamorphosis project.

Last, the drums which got waterlogged in the basement flood at the youth center a month ago were dried out and rebuilt to working order. Meanwhile over at Orillia Secondary School, music teacher Laura Lee Matthie put together a program for her music students to work with the guidelines set up. They can’t be blowing any instruments, so half the students will be working in a keyboard lab and the other half will be working on drumming. They are going to be using the youth center’s drums to pull that off. The way drummer’s see it, there’s nothing wrong with horn tooters and piccolo noodlers learning something about time keeping, and the way the rest of the world sees it, there’s nothing wrong with drummers learning something about how all those other sounds from the instruments around them work.

Oh Look, It’s You
Aaron Davis

You can be part of the audience at the Opera House September 19 when Aaron Davis tapes his concert. The concert then will be available on a pay per view service called Travel by Sound.

Aaron was a member of Manteca, is in the Holly Cole Trio, written more than 100 movie scores, and is music director for Measha Brueggergosman. His band for this concert includes Kevin Breit, who has been here many times for Spring Blues Festival and Jazz Festival gigs.

To be part of this event, get tickets here.

Wearable Art

The Somniatis folks are going to be out in force Friday night downtown. They are calling it the Mad Hatter’s Ice Tea Party and through three business windows (Fashion Therapy, Dapper Depot and Bellaza Day Spa & Salon) you can watch models and their handlers (makeup, hair, costuming) work through the motions of getting ready to walk a runway.

There will be other models showing off some past and new creations at tent, and a few wandering about. The crew has been organizing restaurants to have hard lemonade and an appetizer specials. There will be music and more, so they’ll be handing out a program of what is happening and where.

Somniatis was to happen this fall, but has been postponed until May next year.

Info Orillia Auction

One of the vital services Orillia has is Information Orillia. They do so many things, and are often scrounging for money to keep going.

They have an online fundraiser happening right now. Part of the objective is to showcase Orillia businesses, which also donated the items. Of course the other part is to raise some operating funds. Money raised will help cover day to day stuff, and programs like their income tax preparation service offered to low income people.

You can see the items in the auction on their website, or their Facebook page. You can bid here. The auction ends Sept. 30.

Rewarding Culture

The Orillia Regional Arts & Heritage Awards are happening this fall. Last year was the first time under that name because Orillia Museum of Art and History rolled their awards into ODAC’s.

The nominations are open. If you are stuck remembering things that happened and whether it was in the past year or before, don’t worry. You can look at my columns since last fall for a refresher.

Nominations are to be done online. You can go here, to see the criteria and start assembling your nominating material. Nominations close October 2. The categories are Education in Arts, Culture and Heritage; Emerging Artist; Heritage: Restoration, Renovation and Publication; Event in Arts, Culture and Heritage; and Qennefer Browne Achievement Award.

Taking The Temperature

The downtown pedestrian mall has been the premiere culture event since mid-July. Labour Day Weekend is the last one. The City organized this in cooperation with the DOMB and merchants. Since the City is involved, there needs to be a report. If there’s going to be a report, there needs to be data.

One of the pieces of data is how did you think it went. It’s online and if you are business owner fill out this one, if you were a patron fill out this one by September 14.

It’s unfortunate the plan was to do this only until Labour Day because there’s still plenty of good weather ahead, and not much on the calendar to do. Unless the emergency committee calls a special meeting of council to extend it an opportunity is going to be missed. Contact info for councillors is here and you can let them know in this case they did a good job creating the mall.

The Shorts

*  OMAH has another round of the QuarARTine, 6×6 art pieces for auction  here. OMAH also has a fascinating new article about Mazo de la Roche here, and there are videos on Youtube of the Speaker’s Night’s that would have been. The most recent is about Glenn Gould, and the one before is about a group of RCMP officers drowning on Lake Simcoe. See the whole bunch here. And the gallery is open by appointment, 705-326-2159.

*  There are still some copies of the  annual compilation album, music from the artists who would have performed at this year’s Mariposa Folk Festival, available. This time its music by Blackie & The Rodeo Kings, David Francey, Dala, Reuben and the Dark, OKAN, and others The vinyl is $40 and the CD $20. You can order them at 705-326-3655. Shipping and taxes are extra. You can save the shipping cost by arranging pick up. They also have some videos to enjoy on their Youtube page, or their website

*  The Leacock Museum is open again. Admission is limited to small groups, 5 people max,  and you have to call ahead 705-329-1908 to book a tour of Stevie’s old house. The  hours are noon to 3 p.m. Monday to Friday. The Bistro is still closed. Swanmore Hall is available for business meetings of no more than 10 people, but is otherwise closed. Check the website for updates and more details.

*  The Orillia branch of Dress For Success has a progressive, online, raffle called Toonie Tuesday. The next jackpot, Sept. 8, is $3,156. Tickets are $2 and you can buy as many as you like.. Check their Facebook page frequently for updates on the jackpot and weekly winners.  

*  The Orillia Public Library is open, find out more on their website.

(Photos by Swartz – SUNonline/Orillia and Supplied)

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