Marvin Beatty’s Canadian Photography

Hello all! I thought I’d hop into the passenger seat for this post and introduce you to Marvin Beatty, a Canadian photographer based in Castlegar, British Columbia!

This man is surrounded by beauty and he knows it! With his faithful Nikon D70 and two favourite lens—an 18-200mm VR and a 60mm—or his new Canon T5i, Marvin has captured an array of magnificent scenes, which you’ll get to see below! Continue reading “Marvin Beatty’s Canadian Photography”

World Music Celebration: March 21st

They looked so sterile, so cold. Silver cylinders. That’s all they were.

But when the two musicians standing before the crowd struck their first notes these pans transformed before my eyes. The musicians caused a waterfall of pearling, perky, upbeat sounds to bounce from their drums. Like delighted rubber raindrops falling on a steel roof combined with the purest moment in the sound of a steel pipe falling on the cement or on top of another steel pipe. I suddenly saw in my mind’s eye sunshine, palm trees and tranquil blue waters. Maybe it was because I’ve often heard this instrument in movies associated with warm places and the ocean. Continue reading “World Music Celebration: March 21st”

A Chai Exhibit: March 10th

It had been a long and terrible night. Stirring from my sleep as sunlight filtered through the blinds across my eyes, I was overjoyed to find myself feeling quite a bit better than when I had gone to sleep. Just a friendly and wise note: if you attend a shot-luck, participate moderately and NEVER take a super-shot, a concoction of all the hard liquor available (and there was a lot), smack in the middle. I will never, ever do that again. After a number of terrible hours in the early morning I finally slipped into a wonderful sleep. Hours later I woke up, luckily without a headache, and my stomach had settled. Still, I felt a gross grogginess. After a lot of grumbling and groaning I found myself walking from the bus station to the event I had promised to cover for the student newspaper, Omega. I was attempting to absorb the crisp morning air and wake myself up, but by the time I arrived at the Commodore Grande Café and Lounge I was still groggy and instead feeling utterly worn out.

That blissfully changed less than five minutes after I swung the door open. Continue reading “A Chai Exhibit: March 10th”

Tiny Tot Powwow: Women

My camera bag lay beside my feet with its cover loosely closed. Though entranced by the display of vibrancy and energy before me I was still conscious enough of my immediate surroundings to tuck me bag under my legs as an elder woman was helped to her seat beside me. I was at ground floor and had witnessed a number of people troubled by the first giant step of the bleachers. Women had to lift their dresses and children had to practically climb up. It was no surprise that this elder woman had decided to sit at the bottom. As she settled in I was struck by the contrast of her quiet character with the boisterous strength of voices and drums ringing through the gym. The sight of her stillness compared to the flashing, twirling, ducking and leaping fabric and feathers on the dance circle. I felt a sense of calm within her small frame beside me. Continue reading “Tiny Tot Powwow: Women”

Tiny Tot Powwow Men

Ducking and swaying the dancers exuded the characters of hunter and prey. Stepping lightly through an invisible forest or softly across the prairie grass they circled each other, conveying heightened awareness and the power of instinct. Beside the three dancers, alone in the circle, a child reached the edge of the floor. Watching his elder brethren for a moment, he too began to feel the music. Lost in the drums he dipped and spun. Continue reading “Tiny Tot Powwow Men”

Tein Taal: A Show Of Indian Music

It began with the tabla.The sound of droplets falling into water and then air bubbles breaking the surface. The patter of rain on pipes and stone was in the Barber Centre. I could see such a scene in my mind’s eye. The wobbling clangs from the sitar were clashes of thunder in the passing spring flurry. Then there are elephant footfalls. There are dozens of hooves from a herd pounding by. Wheels turning. A waterfall emerges from the sarod. There is the drama of life then the sudden soothing presence of peace. Morning, midday and night speed by at times, like a time-lapse film. Continue reading “Tein Taal: A Show Of Indian Music”

Soran Bushi: A Japanese Tradition

“Hi!” The commanding opening to the Japanese sea shanty, Soran Bushi, would have startled me out of my seat had I not already witnessed it last year. In the unglamorous classroom the powerful dance was out of place. It was a force of nature in a delicate artificial shell. The beginning sequence of hands dipping and rising to imitate waves was such a stark contrast to the surroundings– like an oasis in the desert. Even without their happi, or Japanese festival jackets, the dancers exuded the spirit of the traditional dance. It was great to be allowed to watch the dance grow and come together as the group continued to practice.

Continue reading “Soran Bushi: A Japanese Tradition”

Robbie Burns Supper: January 26th

The undertone that at first seemed misplaced began to fit together. As steady as stone it became a foundation beneath the flittering wind-tossed butterfly that was the overtone. The combination became a fascinating tune. It translated well from the air into toes tapping against the firm floor. There was a sole player in an empty room, warming up before the main event. Even alone he stood tall: his bagpipes nestled in his arms, his fingers fluttering across the chanter and his foot tapping out a steady beat. Continue reading “Robbie Burns Supper: January 26th”

Idle No More Round Dance

Like a heartbeat pushed to exertion. That’s what it sounded like. That moment after a long run where your breathing slows and from the quiet emerges your heartbeat pounding in your ears. The air seemed to breathe. The Sun out in all its glory gave warmth to the sky. The voices, intertwined with each other and empowered by numbers, followed the sunbeams into the blue. Thanks went to the Creator. Welcome to all and everything spread in every direction: east to the Creator, south to meet ourselves, west to meet family, friends and neighbors, and north to meet the elders’ wisdom. Continue reading “Idle No More Round Dance”