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Post covid ArtsDays features new exhibits and live entertainment

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 Arts Days  had more of an online presence this year due to Covid, however there were art aficionados out and about for the gallery stroll and for live music outside of casa on Saturday, Sept. 26 and Sunday, Sept. 27.

Bailey Kate playing outside Casa for ArtsDays, Sept. 26. Photo by Richard Amery
Mortar and Bricks’ “UnMasked” exhibit was among the new art exhibits opening during Arts Days. Local folk singer/ songwriter Karen Romanchuk played outside as visitors trickled into the gallery. The group exhibit features a variety of different  artworks  by 20 different artists inspired and created during  isolation during the Covid  pandemic.

 A lot of the works were incorporated pastoral scenes of home, while others  featured dreamlike images reflecting isolation.
 The Sept. 26 grand opening coincided with  Mortar and Bricks’ second anniversary celebrations.
 Unmasked runs until  Oct. 23.

I missed Bailey Kate and the Atomicos at Theoretically Brewing on Friday, so made a point of catching her show at casa on Sept. 26.
 So While I was waiting for them to set up, I checked out a few of the new exhibits at Casa.


ArtsDays 2020 adapting to Covid -19 by focusing on visual art

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Arts Days  has changed for 2020 due to Covid-19.
 The biggest change is most of the the live events are outside.

The popular celebration of the arts kicks off this week with a virtual Word on the Street, but  the usual bevy of activities has been somewhat limited due to Covid 19 health restrictions.Arianna Richardson will be part of Arts Days 2020. Photo by Richard Amery

The annual  Allied Arts Council cabaret featuring emerging artists is now going to be streamed online instead of live shows at Casa.

 However there will still be a variety of activities happening downtown,  Sept. 24-27.

“We really get to showcase this community over a week in the downtown. There’s a lot of visual art this year,” said Allied Arts Council communications manager Kelaine Devine.

There will be a pop up gallery: Unexpected Intersections, Sept. 26-Oct. 4 at 705-2 Ave South.
“ It’s salon style with a set entrance and exit,” she said.



Word on the Street goes online for this year

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Arts Days usually kick off with Word on the Street— a  beautiful  get together held  literally on the street outside the downtown branch of the Lethbridge Public Library featuring tents full of authors, book sales, food trucks and live music.Jolene Draper playing Word on the Street in 2018. Photo by Richard Amery
 This year, due to Covid, everything is online.

“This year we’re worrying about wi-fi rather than  the weather,” said Word On the Street Festival festival director, Elisabeth Hegerat, Festival Director.
This year participating authors will be giving their presentations and readings online through Zoom.
 “Though they will be on video for people to watch afterwards,” Hegerat said, noting the events will be spread across two weeks  running Sept. 14-26 though the core of the events will be happening Sept. 18 and 19.

She observed the technical aspect of the Festival won’t be a problem.
“We’ve already been providing online programming for a few months,” she said.


Mayors celebration of the Arts goes online for 2020

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Covid- 19  has forced the Allied  Arts Council to tweak their annual Mayor’s Celebration for Business and the Arts.

Gabe Thaine is among the performers at the Mayor's Celebration of the Arts, Sept. 10. Photo by Richard Amery
Instead of the traditional ticketed luncheon and awards celebration, there will be a free live performance, Thursday, Sept. 10 at 7 p.m., which will be broadcasted on Shaw Channel 9 as well as on Youtube.
“We’ve been forced to pivot,” said Allied Arts Council communications manager, Kelaine Devine.
“So we’re going to be having live performances by Troy Emery-Triggs, dancers Claire Lint and  Catherine McLaughlin and local musician Gabe Thaine. This year we also have John Wort Hannam. They’ll be performing live from different spaces in Casa and they’ll be interspersed with the awards videos, She enthused.

“Troy is a dancer, performer  and visual artist  (He has created several of his own shows including ‘They Shoot Buffalo’ Don’t They?’. He’s from Fort Macleod who usually performs all over the world, but he hasn’t been able to because of Covid. So I’m really excited to see him.  He works a lot with Treaty 7 and he performed at the Lt. Governor’s celebrations a  few years ago,” she said.

Community relations manager and event organizer Dawn Leite is excited, because all of the performances will feature original music, as the Shaw broadcast requires  original copyrighted works.
“We asked why would people tune in to this broadcast. Usually the program is  an 20 minutes long, with people eating and then they have to leave because it is in the middle of their work day. So we decided to turn this event into a local artists showcase,” said Leite, who will be busy co-ordinating three different camera crews all over Casa, Sept. 10.

 The dancers have also arranged for original music.

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