Saturday, September 24, 2016

#Travel Scotland: The Shetland Islands

With material from a release:

Travel Scotland:
The Shetland Islands

Been watching Shetland on Netflix? The show follows the travails of a detective grappling with murder, corruption and more on the islands that lie between Scotland and Scandinavia, and where the weather often plays a role in the proceedings.

The rugged, rocky beauty of the Shetland Islands - actually a subarctic archipelago - and the unspoiled coastline are the usual draws for tourists. The Shetland Islands are located off the northeast coast of Scotland where the Atlantic Ocean meets the North Sea, and includes about 566 square miles of land and just over 23,200 people.
  • The largest island is 'Mainland' (351 square miles / 899km2)
  • Yell (212km2)
  • Unst (120km2)
  • Fetlar (38km2)
  • Bressay (28 km2)
  • Whalsay (23 km2)
  • Burra (16 km2)
  • Eight smaller ones are also inhabited, leaving more than 85 islands, holms and skerries to the sheep, the birds and the seals.

There's a long history of human habitation in Shetland that dates back six thousand years to the Mesolithic period. Shetland was a Norwegian province until 1469 when it was gifted to Scotland in lieu of the dowry of a Danish princess.

Lerwick
Lerwick is Shetland's only town, with a population of about 7,500 - although about half of the islands' 22,000 people live within 10 miles of the burgh.

Founded as an unofficial marketplace to service 17th century Dutch herring fleets, Lerwick took a long time to grow. Because of its illegal status (and alleged immorality!) the straggling hamlet around the shore of Ler Wick ('muddy bay') was demolished by order of the Scalloway court in 1615 and 1625. The Dutch burnt the fort in 1673 and the French set fire to Lerwick in 1702.

Today, it's got a buzzing night life scene, along with a range of accommodations.
Lerwick
Arts & Music
The landscape and the clear, northern light of Shetland have inspired hundreds of artists, from the 19th century illustrator John T Reid - whose 1869 volume, ‘Art Rambles in Shetland’ is still in print – to some of the Scottish Colourists in the early 20th century. Artists working in Shetland, or with other strong local connections, have formed a group called Veer North and their website contains examples of their work.

The Shetland Islands have a unique culture with a strong musical tradition, including a unique style of fiddle playing. The particular style of Shetland fiddle playing has many admirers and Shetland performers such as Aly Bain, Willie Hunter and Fiddlers’ Bid regularly tour world-wide.




When it comes to venues, Shetland is particularly well supplied. Mareel’s 600-capacity concert hall incorporates the latest in sound systems. The Clickimin sports hall can accommodate concerts for up to 1200 people, and Shetland’s modern network of country halls also handles many musical events. At the other end of the scale, there are regular jam sessions in local pubs, among which those in the upstairs Lounge Bar in Lerwick have become legendary.
There's a strong tradition of textile arts in the area that you can check out at the Shetland Textile Museum as well as shops in the area for that perfect Shetland sweater.

Natural Shetland
Along with human culture, Shetland ponies and Shetland sheepdogs are unique to the area, along with many other domesticated and wild animals, including seabirds which nest along the rocky cliffs.
Shetland ponies
Shetland is prime territory for nature hikes, spotting sea mammals, and bird watching, including tens of thousands of breeding Gannets, alongside Guillemots, Puffins, Razorbills, Kittiwakes, Fulmars at the Sumburgh Head, Noss or Hermaness nature reserves. These three large seabird colonies are easily accessible, Sumburgh Head especially so. On Noss and Hermaness, and on coastal moorland elsewhere, you’ll probably encounter Great Skuas ('Bonxies'), famously rare and aggressive, gull-sized birds, which are fond of dive-bombing hill walkers.

imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival - Annual Art Crawl and Exhibitions October 21 2016

From a media release:

imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival
Presenting Sponsor: Bell Media
Annual Art Crawl and Exhibitions - October 21, 2016
Featuring Wairua and Indigenous Movie Monsters

17TH IMAGINENATIVE FILM + MEDIA ARTS FESTIVAL
OCTOBER 19-23, 2016

TORONTO - The 17th Annual imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival is proud to announce its visual art programme including installations, exhibitions and the annual Art Crawl with artist talks on October 21, 2016 at the renowned 401 Richmond Building.
imagineNATIVE Art Crawl
imagineNATIVE will present the Canadian exhibition premiere of Wairua, featuring three works relating to the Māori concept of the soul by artists Rona Ngahuia Osborne and Dan Mace. The three works on display at A Space Gallery will include: Te Taki, a video installation where the viewer is greeted by Māori warriors and the taki, a fundamental aspect of formal pōwhiri (ritual of welcome); Whetūrangi, an immersive audiovisual installation that explores a cluster of seven stars known in New Zealand as Matariki, and presents them in the form of seven women who reflect characteristics of the star she represents; and Elemental, consisting of four projections of the elements HAU (air), WAI (water), AHI (fire), and WHENUA (earth) with moving portraits and looping textures.

imagineNATIVE will also present Indigenous Movie Monsters by multimedia artist Jay Soule, aka CHIPPEWAR, with four pieces from the 10-part series that indigenizes the classic horror movie poster. Each work – at the A Space Gallery Windows – offers a genre-specific commentary on the representation of Indigenous peoples on the silver screen, particularly in the early decades of cinema, with Tribe of Dracula, Curse of the Cayuga, Bride of Frankensioux and The Invisible Warrior.

The imagineNATIVE Art Crawl – supported by the Indigenous Visual Culture Program at OCADU – returns with seven stops at five galleries on Friday, October 21. In addition to Wairua and Indigenous Movie Monsters, the Art Crawl will also feature Folding Forced Utopias For You, about Indigenous architecture and the forced resettlement of arctic communities in Canada, Greenland and Russia; Ore Body, investigating how value of land and resources is created and assessed through Western measures of wealth; wnoondwaamin | we hear them, uses sound waves created by three artists to access knowledge and memory; and Goldilocks tahnon Ohkwari, a video installation that addresses issues surrounding colonization and language preservation with an adaptation of the popular fairy tale Goldilocks and the Three Bears told in the Mohawk language with English subtitles.

The Art Crawl will make a final stop at Artscape Sandbox for Records and Reconstructions: Lindsay McIntyre's Portraits in Process, which features a live performance followed by a screening of works by McIntyre, and films she has chosen that speak to her own art practice.

More programming for the 17th Annual imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival will be announced in the coming weeks.

The imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival is the world’s largest Indigenous festival showcasing innovation in film, video, audio and digital media. The Festival presents the most compelling and distinctive works from Canada and around the globe, reflecting the diversity of the world’s Indigenous nations and illustrating the vitality and excellence of Native art and culture in contemporary media.

Wairua
imagineNATIVE Art Crawl
Supported by the Indigenous Visual Culture Program at OCADU
Artist Talks and Receptions
Friday, October 21, 2016
5 - 8pm / FREE
401 Richmond Street West

Wairua
Exhibition Premiere
A Space Gallery, Suite 110 / September 27–October 29, 2016
Artist Talk: 5:30pm

Indigenous Movie Monsters
A Space Gallery Windows / September 27 – October 29, 2016
Artist Talk: 5:30pm

Folding Forced Utopias For You
World Premiere
Gallery 44 (Main gallery), Suite 120 / October 21 - December 3, 2016
Artist Talk: 6:00pm


Ore Body
Gallery 44 (Vitrines) / October 21 - December 3, 2016
Artist Talk: 6:00pm

Ore Body
wnoondwaamin | we hear them
World Premiere
Trinity Square Video, suite 121 / October 22 - December 10, 2016
Tuesday through Saturday, 12 ­– 6pm
Artist Talk: 6:30pm with Performance by Jeneen Frei Njootli

Goldilocks tahnon Ohkwari
YYZ Artists’ Outlet, Suite 140 / October 8 - December 3, 2016
Artist Talk: 7:00pm

Records and Reconstructions: Lindsay McIntyre's Portraits in Process
Artscape Sandbox - 301 Adelaide Street West
Friday, October 21, 2016
8:00pm – 9:15pm. Doors open at 7:30pm
$8 General / $5 Pleasure Dome Members
FREE to imagineNATIVE Delegate Passholders.
Tickets available at venue 1 hour prior to doors opening.




imagineNATIVE Early Bird Ticket Packages and Delegate Pass
are on sale at a reduced price until September 29, 2016
Call - TIFF Box Office on 416-599-TIFF (8433)
In Person - TIFF Box Office at 350 King St W, Toronto, ON

For more information please call 416.585.2333 or visit www.imagineNATIVE.org

Traditional Brazilian Music - Arcomusical: MeiaMeia (innova Recordings - 28 October 2016)

From a media release:

CD Release
Arcomusical: MeiaMeia 
innova Recordings - 28 October 2016

Buy the CD

The traditional Afro-Brazilian berimbau is a disarmingly simple instrument: a single steel string, a wooden bow, a resonating gourd. But on MeiaMeia, the berimbau is literally reinvented. Thanks to custom tuneable instruments expertly hand-crafted by David “Snappy” White, composers Gregory Beyer and Alexis C. Lamb and the dedicated talent of ensemble Projeto Arcomusical take the berimbau to new heights of collaboration, interplay and communication.

In the spring of 2013, Beyer and Lamb began working together in an independent study under the auspices of the Undergraduate Artistry and Research Apprenticeship Program at Northern Illinois University. Lamb’s first composition for berimbau, “Descobertas por pau e pedra,” was such a success that the collaboration continued, resulting in a plan to compose an expanding chamber music cycle.

MeiaMeia – which in Portuguese means “half-half” as in “six of one, a half dozen of the other” – is that cycle, a dozen pieces written in Beyer and Lamb’s rich and sophisticated language for everything from a solo instrument to a sextet. Performed by Projeto Arcomusical, the music is fresh, playful, rhythmic, colorful and soulful. Drawing on influences from ambulances in Rome to traditional capoeira to palindromes to numerical patterns to contemporary artists like Imogen Heap and the XX, Beyer and Lamb explore a rich and diverse, intricately bouncy and resonant vocabulary.

Beyer began working with the berimbau in 1999 and has since become a recognized pioneer of the instrument. Projeto Arcomusical has come a long way since its student roots: a fully professional group of excellent musicians capable of performing chamber music of the highest caliber. Such excellence is immediately evident when listening to MeiaMeia.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Nacional Records at the Latin Grammy's 2016

From a media release:

NACIONAL RECORDS 
LATIN GRAMMY NOMINATIONS
Alex Anwandter, The Chamanas and El Guincho
Nominated for Latin GRAMMYs

Alex Anwandter Nominated For Best New Artist and Best Short Form Music Video
Buy the CD
The Chamanas Nominated for Best New Artist 
Buy the CD
El Guincho's ‘Comix ft. Mala Rodriguez' - Nominated for Best Short Form Music Video
Buy the CD

Leading independent label Nacional Records is proud to announce our Latin GRAMMY nominations across a variety of genres and categories, with first time nominations for our artists; Alex Anwandter, The Chamanas, and El Guincho.

Alex Anwandter nabbed two Latin GRAMMY nominations, which include Best New Artist and Best Short Form Music Video for Siempre Es Viernes En Mi Corazón, directed by Alex Anwandter. Chile's Prince of Pop has been on an upward trajectory this year with the release of his critically acclaimed album "Amiga", which debuted number one on iTunes and on Billboard's Top 20 Latin charts. Alex Anwandter has also been earning rave reviews for his writing and directorial film debut, Nunca Vas A Estar Solo, which is currently circulating the film festival circuit where it has picked up a number of awards.



El Paso / Juarez band The Chamanas are nominated for Best New Artist. The fronterizo electro-tinged indie rock band, who just released a deluxe version of their debut album "Once Once", has had a busy year, garnering high accolades from NPR, topping a "Best of the Year” list by iTunes and named as an “Artist to Watch” by Pandora. The Chamanas, who recently toured with indie darlings Beach House, are known for their electrifying live show with inspirations found in desert backdrops, rancheras and heartbreak.



Production wiz El Guincho has also earned his first nomination for Best Short Form Music Video with the Pitchfork-approved track “Comix ft. Mala Rodriguez". The video, which was produced and directed by the Barcelona-based film collective CANADA, is an experimental mind bending homage to hip hop imagery and Asian films with eccentric and highly skilled visual effects. “Comix" comes from El Guincho’s first album in six years, “Hiperasia."

Nacional Records is proud to support these emerging artists and their first time nominations. In a little over a decade, Nacional Records has earned over 80 Latin GRAMMY and GRAMMY wins and nominations.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Luisa Maita - The 'New Voice of Brazil' - in Toronto Sept 23 2016

From a media release:

"The New Voice of Brazil" -NPR
Luísa Maita
Friday, September 23rd 2016
in/future: a transformative art experience
Toronto, ON

Ontario Place, West Island
955 Lake Shore Blvd W
Toronto, ON M6K 3B9

TICKETS
Buy the album

TORONTO - A young Brazilian singer that NPR has praised as "The New Voice of Brazil", Luísa Maita’s 2016 album Fio da Memória bridges sultry downtempo electronica and Brazilian popular music to boldly redefine Luísa's personal style as well as the soundscape of modern Brazil.

Luísa received the Brazilian equivalent of the GRAMMY for Best New Artist in 2011, had two of her songs featured in the Academy Award-winning film Boyhood, recorded with Daniel Hunt of popular electronic band Ladytron and for British groove masters Da Lata, not to mention writing for and collaborating with some of the biggest stars in Brazilian music. Recently, Luisa lent her distinctive voice to the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Luísa and her band have toured extensively performing at major festivals such as Austin City Limits and Pop Montreal. She has performed at the Apple headquarters in Cupertino, CA and for a private Google Zeitgeist event in Phoenix. Luísa appeared live on LA radio station KCRW's trend-setting program “Morning Becomes Eclectic”, as well as NPR's "Tiny Desk Concert", influential music video channel Blogotheque and more.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: http://www.luisamaita.com
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/luisamaitamusic
TWITTER: https://twitter.com/luisamaita

Learn more at www.LuisaMaita.com

Friday, September 16, 2016

Soup Can Theatre Toronto: An In-Concert Version of The Threepenny Opera - Three Performances October 2 2016

From a media release:

Soup Can Theatre is excited to announce an in-concert version of
THE THREEPENNY OPERA

Music by Kurt Weill. Lyrics by Bertolt Brecht. English Translation by Marc Blitzstein.
Directed by Sarah Thorpe and Pratik Gandhi
October 2nd 2016 at the Monarch Tavern Toronto

TORONTO - Soup Can Theatre is kicking off the month of Halloween with our favourite musical and the inspiration for our Toronto Fringe hits Love is a Poverty You Can Sell I and II: an in-concert version of THE THREEPENNY OPERA - a dark play with music full of crime, greed, lust, dark humour, and biting social commentary that chronicles the exploits of antiheroic criminal Macheath (aka ‘Mack the Knife’) against the backdrop of 19th century London's seedy underworld. With a haunting score and message, THE THREEPENNY OPERA is Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht's most famous collaboration from the Weimar Era.

To put a spin on things, there will be 3 PERFORMANCES in ONE DAY! Sunday October 2nd at 4pm, 6:30pm, and 9pm at the historic Monarch Tavern in the heart of Little Italy. In addition, just 3 PERFORMERS will be playing ALL the roles: Scott Garland (2016 Dora Award Nominee for Three Men in a Boat), Christian Jeffries (from our Love is a Poverty You Can Sell cabarets), and Sarah Thorpe (Soup Can co-founder, MyTheatre's 2015 Fan Favourite Award winner for Heretic), under the baton of our musical director Pratik Gandhi (music director of the Rouge River Winds and resident conductor at Toy Piano Composers), who helmed the music on our productions of Circle Jerk, A Hand of Bridge, Marat/Sade, and Love is a Poverty You Can Sell I and II.

Performance Details:
Where: The Monarch Tavern, 12 Clinton Street, Toronto.
When: Sunday, October 2nd, 2016. 4pm, 6:30pm, and 9pm.
Creative and Production Team:
Producer/Co-Director – Sarah Thorpe
Musical Director/Co-Director – Pratik Gandhi
Event Coordinator – Kathleen Hemsworth
Pianist – Suzan Kim
Graphic Designer – Alyksandra Ackerman

Soup Can Theatre
www.soupcantheatre.com
www.facebook.com/groups/soupcantheatre
www.twitter.com/soupcantheatre

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Ocean Riviera Paradise Hotel Opens December in Quintana Roo Mexico - Book Before Sept 30 2016 for a 38% Discount

From a media release:

OCEAN RIVIERA PARADISE GETS PREPARED TO OPEN ITS DOORS IN RIVIERA MAYA, BY HARMONIZING WITH MOTHER EARTH​

Ocean Hotels by H10 rescues regional plants to create a nursery
The Mayan Ceremony Jedz Lum takes place to harmonize the property Riviera Maya, August 26th 2016 - Resort opens December 15, 2016

• For more information on Ocean by H10 Hotels or to make a reservation, click at the link or call 1-888-531-8927 from within the U.S. and Canada.
• Book the Riviera Maya before September 30, 2016 for a 38% discount - explore this and other offers at the link

​Ocean by H10 Hotels, a brand that operates in Mexico, Dominican Republic and Cuba, prepares to welcome their third property in Quintana Roo, Mexico; Ocean Riviera Paradise in Riviera Maya by rescuing endemic plants through the creation of a plant sanctuary as well as the harmonization of the property with Mother Nature through the traditional ceremonial Jedz Lum, that took place next to the incredible beach.
Mayan ceremony on the beach
In a tranquil setting next to the seashore of the Mexican Caribbean, immerse with the sound of the conch shells and the scent of Copal, last Friday August 26th, the Mayan Priest Luis Nah welcomed a select group of guests and shared his wisdom towards the relevance of this ceremony; “which has as an objective to find peace, as this is how our cosmovision works” concluded the Priest Nah, he also explained the great knowledge that  his Mayan Ancestors had towards Mother Earth and its perfect relation with all the elements.
Ocean Riviera Paradise in Quintana Roo, Mexico
​The conservation of local flora was the key to respecting the environment, relocating them to create the majestic gardens that will frame this new five-star resort. Bromeliads, Xiat, Nacax, Yāité, Chico Zapote just to name a few, achieved the creation of a permanent plant nursery that will be planted throughout all 3 Ocean by H10 Hotels properties.
Italian restaurant at Ocean Riviera Paradise
​The Ocean Hotels by H10 Director of Operations, Alejandro González Pou, pointed out that: “Before opening the doors to the public, the objective is to preserve the ancestral traditions of the Mayan Culture as well as to promote the importance of respect towards the locality where Ocean Riviera Paradise will soon start to operate, as well as where more than 10,000 endemic plants were rescued over a period of 6 years”.
Ocean Riviera Paradise - main building exterior
At the end of the traditional ceremony, participants’ voices were unified to thank nature and a breakfast was offered in company of representatives of the corporate of Ocean Hotels by H10.
Ocean Riviera Paradise, junior or master suite view
​The majestic Mexican Caribbean, in the Riviera Maya, will be the geographic location for Ocean Riviera Paradise, which will open its doors next December 15th 2016; with 974 suites and Junior Suites where future guests will be hosted and will be able to enjoy 5 pools (1 children’s pool) 9 restaurants, a great variety of activities, 13 bars, Mike’s Coffee and an Ice Cream Shop in an All Inclusive Experience.​
Ocean Riviera Paradise lobby

About Ocean by H10 Hotels
Ocean by H10 Hotels was founded in 2007 as a joint venture between Spanish-based H10 Hotels and Vacances Air Transat, a leading Canadian tour operator and charter carrier. The company currently operates resorts in Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Cuba. Privileged beachfront locations with close proximity to gateway airports, a la carte restaurants and a unique “All-Inclusive 24 hours”  truly characterize the Ocean by H10 Hotels brand.
Ocean Riviera Paradise - junior suite

Ocean Riviera Paradise - Sakura Japanese restauarant

About Quintana Roo, Mexico