Friday, August 31, 2012

TIFF Preview/Review - Camp 14: Total Control Zone (A Documentary)

TIFF Preview/Review:
Camp 14: Total Control Zone
– Directed by Marc Wiese  -  TIFF DOCS


Country: Germany
Year: 2012
Language: Korean, English
Runtime: 104 minutes
Rating: 14A
Production Co.: WDR, Engstfeld Film GmbH, BR
Principal Cast: Shin Dong-Huyk, Hyuk Kwon, Oh Yangnam
Screenplay: Marc Wiese

TIFF Screenings:
Tuesday September 11 - Cineplex Yonge & Dundas 10 - 5:00 PM
Thursday September 13 - TIFF Bell Lightbox 2 - 9:00 PM
Sunday September 16 - Scotiabank 2 - 9:30 AM


I still suffer from nightmares.
It's better than at the beginning of my stay here.
But I still have nightmares.


Welcome to the surreal world of Shin Dong-Huyk, a North Korean who escaped to the West from a camp for political prisoners in his native country in 2005 at age 23.

I'm resting so I don't have to do other things.
This quietude helps me kill time. I don't want to think about anything.


Calm, articulate and honest in a way that is stripped of any pretense, Shin talks about his life in the camp and now afterwards as he still struggles to come to terms with the terrible freedom of living on his own. In shots of him in his spartan apartment - where he still sleeps on the floor - he seems bemused by the variety he finds in his own fridge while the modern city of Seoul shimmers outside his window. At a grocery store, he confronts the sea of choices with a blank stare. As he relates, in the camps they were kept on a starvation diet that could be cut back at any time at the whim of the guards. The only meat they ever ate came from the rats that they would catch and eat bones and all.

Shin's only crime was to have been born. His parents were both political prisoners who were forced to marry. His mother was given to his father as a reward for good work and he was born into the life of a prisoner, forced into labour in the mines at the age of six. The children pushed out the carts of coal their parents had mined. Until he physically left the camp, he couldn't conceive of a world that wasn't like the prison camp, where he lived with his mother in an unheated hut and slept on a concrete floor. One of his first memories of the camp is of a public execution he attended with his mother at age four.

When the shots were fired, I panicked. That is my first memory of my childhood in the camp.

He talks about his former life in even tones that belie the nature of the topic, never meeting the eyes of either the reporter or the camera. At age 7 or 8, he witnessed a classmate beaten senseless by the teacher for finding a few grains in her pockets (they were searched of course) - she died that evening of head injuries. The scenes of Shin talking in his apartment are augmented by animated segments that portray the bleak camp life he describes. The film also includes similar interviews with former guards from other prison camps, now ensconced in their new lives in the South.

It doesn't take much to be arrested in North Korea.

The guards recount their duties - as bemused as the former prisoner at the contrast between their former and current lives. There is authentic - and truly frightening - footage of a police interrogation that was smuggled out of the country. It's disturbing and violent, but no less so than when the guards recall their own cruelty with a smile at the memory of having the power of life and death over their prisoners. Both describe sexually abusing female inmates, and while neither admits to the act themselves, recount how the women who were unfortunate enough to get pregnant by a guard were brutally murdered.

The film sets up a riveting story that unfolds in unexpected ways, posing big questions about human nature. If people are stripped of all rights and treated like animals, is it possible for anyone in the situation to retain any vestiges of humanity? It asserts definitively that it is possible to break the human spirit and exposes the true evil of a totalitarian system and political imprisonment.

Shin's father told him stories about his life in the outside world before his imprisonment that ignited his imagination, the food in particular. The idea of eating chicken and eating until he was full was intoxicating - more so than any ideas about freedom. After a harrowing escape with a friend who didn't survive traversing the electric fence, he ran to his first astonishing taste of freedom without even so much as a concept of money.

Nowadays, Shin is an activist and works with LINK - Liberty for North Korea - a group of American kids whose enthusiasm comes in marked contrast to his carefully controlled demeanour. The scenes with the group are the only ones in which Shin isn't entirely alone and when he smiles in a way that seems genuine. He describes his torture in great detail - in outside detail like the way they tied him up or beat him - but never how bad it hurt or the real pain he's in. Somehow, he's keeping it all at bay except for rare moments when the emotions come through.

Incredibly to an outsider, he hopes to return home one day to that same camp and farm the land. Shin is someone who is neither really living in his body in South Korea nor physically in the prison he'll never outgrow.

TIFF News: Emily Hampshire Stars in the Premiere of My Awkward Sexual Adventure

From a media release:

Emily Hampshire stars in
My Awkward Sexual Adventure

Romantic comedy to premiere at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival

TIFF Screenings:
Tuesday September 11 - Scotiabank 4 - 7:00 PM
Thursday September 13 - Cineplex Yonge & Dundas 9 - 8:30 PM
Saturday September 15 - Cineplex Yonge & Dundas 9 - 9:45 AM 


TORONTO, ON – Montreal-born actor Emily Hampshire will arrive in Toronto next month to celebrate the world premiere of My Awkward Sexual Adventure at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), alongside her co-stars Jonas Chernick, Vik Sahay and Sarah Manninen.

The film, written and produced by Chernick and directed by Sean Garrity, will premiere at TIFF on Tuesday, September 11 at 7 p.m. at the Scotiabank Theatre. The film is scheduled to hit theatres late 2012/early 2013.

Hampshire plays the female lead role of Julia, a complex, sexually charged exotic dancer who is enlisted by Jordan Abrams (Chernick), a reserved accountant, to help him gain sexual experience in a desperate attempt to win back his unsatisfied ex-girlfriend (Manninen).

“Shooting My Awkward Sexual Adventure was quite the remarkable experience for me. This was a gift of a role and working with Sean Garrity changed me as an actor. I’m thrilled the film is premiering at TIFF,” said Hampshire. "I am really excited to screen it with an audience."

The actress has been busy lending her talents to a long list of projects. She is currently promoting her latest role in David Cronenberg’s Cannes 2012 celebrated drama Cosmopolis, where she stars alongside Robert Pattinson. She also recently wrapped filming the drama All the Wrong Reasons, co-starring Cory Monteith of Glee. In the fall, she will begin shooting a Filmax feature horror film The Returned, directed by Manuel Carballo (Exorcismus, 2010), the film will also star Kris Holden Reid and Shawn Doyle.

Hampshire has been recognized for many of her roles, both in film and television. In May 2012 during the Cannes Film Festival, Canada’s leading luxury jeweller Birks presented Hampshire (alongside Sarah Gadon) with the first Birks Canadian Diamond, an award celebrating individuals whose professional accomplishments allow Canada to shine.

Hampshire’s body of work also includes a starring role Jacob Tierney’s comic noir thriller Good Neighbours (2010) and indie-comedy The Trotsky (2009). She  also received a Gemini Award in 2001 for her performance in the television series Made in Canada (CBC), and has been recognized by the Canadian Academy of Film and Television with three Genie nominations for her roles in the films Snow Cake (2006), Blood (2004) and A Problem with Fear (2003).

To learn more about her, check out Emily’s website: www.emilyhampshire.com.

Sneak Peek - My Awkward Sexual Adventure from Kosher Sexy Films on Vimeo.

TIFF Preview/Review: Pablo Trapero's White Elephant (Elefante Blanco)

TIFF Preview/Review:
White Elephant (Elefante Blanco)
Directed by Pablo Trapero  -  Special Presentation
Countries: Argentina / Spain
Year: 2012
Language: Spanish
Runtime: 111 minutes
Rating: 18A


Production Co.: Matanza Cine, Patagonik, MORENA FILMS, Full House
Cast: Martina Gusman, Ricardo Darin, Jérémie Renier
Screenplay: Alejandro Fadel, Martín Mauregui, Santiago Mitre, Pablo Trapero

TFF Screenings:
Thursday September 13 - TIFF Bell Lightbox 1 - 9:45 PM
Friday September 14 - Scotiabank 2 - 3:00 PM
Sunday September 16 - Scotiabank 2 - 5:45 PM


Two worlds are contrasted, collide or rasp against each other abrasively from the opening segments of this film, a drama set in the enormous Villa Maria slum of Buenos Aires. The contrast comes as both visual and in the form of the two priests at the heart of this story. Father Julián (Ricardo Darín) is the older veteran and Father Nicolás (Jérémie Renier) his young protege from France, both trying to bring medicines, supplies, education and justice to the poverty-stricken neighbourhood of some 30,000 people living in this vast expanse of flat tin roofs and makeshift buildings.

The complex was supposed to include a government hospital, in fact the largest hospital in Latin America, a project that has been worked on it fits and starts for decades - the titular White Elephant. Father Julián has made it his quixotic mission to complete the building and open it to serve the people of the area. He's the older man, more reasoned, used to playing the politics of his own church in trying to find the money and help his parishioners, staying neutral and calm even as he breaks up a street fight. Father Nicolás, scarred at being the only survivor of a massacre in the Amazon before this posting, eschews politics for a more hands on approach to helping. The two clash as he gets involved in trying to mediate between sides in the violent turf wars between drug gangs. This is also a very modern version of the priesthood, where Father Nicolás develops a relationship with the local social worker, Lucinda.

The film is beautifully shot, from the steamy banks of the Amazon to the dirty streets of Villa Maria, where, when it rains, the streets are transformed into mucky pools. The comfortable world of the bishop and the politicians Father Julián courts is juxtaposed with the elaborate and endless interiors of the shantytown with room after room and hallway after hallway in a local drug lord's den. It gives the movie an entirely authentic feel.

This is no pat story about good vs. evil or the brave undertrodden masses vs. the government. The children of the neighbourhood are disturbingly complacent about their situation and enjoy their lives of deliquency. They're inured to the everyday violence and atrocities. The people run from drug dealers' bullets and the police and their raids too, and it's church politics that holds up completion of the clinic. In the end, what can the priests do - what have they accomplished? What can actually be done for people who are complicit in their own situation and where everyone has a self serving agenda?

The ending has an unfinished feel, just as the situation would in real life. There are no easy answers - but a lot to think about - in this engrossing story.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Jazz CD Review: The Fred Hersch Trio & Alive at the Vanguard


Review:
The Fred Hersch Trio featuring John Hébert and Eric McPherson
Alive at the Vanguard (Two-Disc Album)
To be released September 11, 2012 on Palmetto Records
U.S. Live Dates (including New York City) September 1-28 - see bottom of post


Alive at the Vanguard delivers a sophisticated sound from musicians at the top of their game; a virtuosic and stylish recording in front of an appreciative live audience at the famous West Village landmark. The performance by Hersch’s trio with bassist John Hébert and drummer Eric McPherson is full of surprises, twists and turns that fascinate to the end of this double album to be released on the Palmetto label on September 11, 2012.

This new piano trio recording by five-time Grammy nominee Fred Hersch is melodic with a sense of drama, a certain theatricality about it. The music is thoroughly contemporary even as it pays tribute to the legacy of the greats of the genre, using its virtuosity and rhythmic complexity for expressive results. The double album features a diverse array of seven new Hersch originals, four American Songbook gems and seven classic jazz tunes.

“This may be my best trio playing on record, in terms of range, sound, being in the moment, and the way we play together,” says Hersch, 56. “Not that I disown any of my former albums, but considering where I was three to four years ago, this is very strong, focused playing. And sonically I think it really captures the Vanguard. It sounds different than a studio album, and it should sound different, so you feel like you’re there.”

Sometimes swingy, the songs are also sometimes hauntingly beautiful, as in Tristesse (for Paul Motian) a tribute to the late drummer dominated by piano with drum lines that intertwine with the keyboard. I also loved the emotional I Fall in Love Too Easily, which takes advantage of the moodier qualities of the bass as it trades off leads with the piano.



Every note is considered and has a purpose. The trio features more of an interplay of instruments rather than a typical lead and accompaniment arrangement, with the drums often a kinetic counterpoint to the piano's melody rather than a straight rhythmic base. The music is very of the moment even as the recording tips its hat to the legends, including pairing unlikely tunes together in medleys (a trademark of Hersch's). I like his gorgeously re-harmonized version of Ornette Colman's Lonely Woman as paired with Miles Davis’ shimmery Nardis.

Hersch includes a version of Rollins' Softly As In A Morning Sunrise, a piece the tenor sax legend recorded on his classic 1957 album Live at the Village Vanguard and he ends the first disc with an unusually slow rendition of the Rollins standard Doxy. Play it when you have time to listen - the double CD set makes a satisfying listen for the true jazz lover.

Upcoming Live Dates:
Sat., Sept. 1 - Trio - Dirty Dog Jazz Café - Grosse Pointe, MI
Sun., Sept.  2 - Trio - Detroit Jazz Festival - Detroit, MI
Sat., Sept.  8 - Solo - Maverick Concerts - Woodstock, NY
Tues., Sept. 11 – Sun., Sept. 16 - Trio - Village Vanguard - New York, NY
Wed., Sept. 19 - Trio - Scullers Jazz Club - Boston, MA
Thurs., Sept. 20 – Sun., Sept. 23 - Trio - Jazz Showcase - Chicago, IL
Mon., Sept. 24 – Tues., Sept. 25 - Trio - Blue Wisp - Cincinnati, OH
Thurs., Sept. 27 - Trio - Blues Alley - Washington, DC
Fri., Sept. 28 - Trio - An Die Musik - Baltimore, MD

U.K. and other European dates to the end of the year, back in the U.S. in 2013 - check his website for additional dates


Saturday, August 25, 2012

TIFF 2012: The NFB Brings Three World Premieres & More

From a media release:

NEW FEATURES BY SARAH POLLEY, SUDZ SUTHERLAND AND PETER METTLER
HEADLINE STELLAR NATIONAL FILM BOARD LINEUP
AT TORONTO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

SEPTEMBER 6 TO 16, 2012

Jeffrey St. Jules' Let the Daylight into the Swamp and Patrick Bouchard's Bydlo
premiere in Short Cuts Canada section

Toronto -
The National Film Board of Canada (NFB) lineup at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival includes premieres of three powerful new feature films by acclaimed Toronto directors' - part of a rich selection showcasing the NFB's role in unique and innovative Canadian cinema.

Sarah Polley's NFB production Stories We Tell will have its North American premiere at the festival, joined by the world premiere of Sudz Sutherland's Home Again (Hungry Eyes Film & Television/DCP Mystery Arts/NFB) and the Canadian premiere of Peter Mettler's new feature documentary, The End of Time (maximage/Grimthorpe/NFB/SRF/SRG SSR/ARTE G.E.I.E.).

The NFB's TIFF 2012 lineup also boasts Jeffrey St. Jules' 3D look at his Franco-Ontarian roots, Let the Daylight into the Swamp, and the stop-motion NFB short Bydlo by Patrick Bouchard.

Stories We Tell
In this exploration of the elusive nature of truth and memory, Oscar-nominated writer/director Sarah Polley (Away from Her) discovers that the truth depends on who's telling it. Polley is both filmmaker and detective as she investigates the secrets behind a family of storytellers. She playfully interrogates a cast of characters of varying reliability, eliciting refreshingly candid, yet mostly contradictory, answers to the same questions. As each relates their version of the family mythology, present-day recollections shift into nostalgia-tinged glimpses of a lively, fun-loving past and the shadows just beneath. Polley unravels the paradoxes to reveal the essence of family: a messy, intense and loving tangle of contradictions.

A Special Presentation at the festival, this inspired, genre-twisting film was developed by Polley at the NFB. It is produced by Anita Lee and executive produced by Silva Basmajian of the NFB¡¯s Ontario Centre.



Home Again
Making its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, Toronto director Sudz Sutherland's Home Again tells the story of three young people deported 'home' to Jamaica after being raised abroad since infancy. Once landed in Kingston, and without a compass of any kind, each of the characters embarks on a journey that pushes their endurance beyond measure and forces them to discover who they truly are. On the most fundamental level, Home Again asks the question, "How would you survive?"

From the award-winning team of Love, Sex and Eating the Bones (TIFF Best Canadian First Feature, 2003) in partnership with Don Carmody (Resident Evil series, Silent Hill, The Boondock Saints), Home Again is directed by Sudz Sutherland and produced by Jennifer Holness, Don Carmody and the NFB's Anita Lee.

The End of Time
Making its Canadian premiere in the Masters program at the Toronto International Film Festival, The End of Time is the final film in a trilogy of works by Peter Mettler that explores the limits of what can be expressed in cinema, following Picture of Light (1994) and Gambling, Gods & LSD (2002). In his latest work, Mettler takes on the elusive subject of time, again seeking to film the un-filmable on a journey that takes him to a particle accelerator in Switzerland and lava flows in Hawaii, disintegrating inner-city Detroit and a Hindu funeral rite near the place of Buddha¡¯s enlightenment. Mettler dares to dream the movie of the future while also immersing us in the wonder of the everyday.

The End of Time is produced by Cornelia Seitler and Brigitte Hofer (maximage), Ingrid Veninger (Grimthorpe) and Gerry Flahive (NFB).



Let the Daylight into the Swamp
In Let the Daylight into the Swamp, Toronto filmmaker Jeffrey St. Jules reconstructs the story of his grandparents and their rugged frontier existence in the logging towns of Northern Ontario. St. Jules¡¯ tale unfolds on the bumpy back roads of life, where ultimately his family was dislodged. Blending fiction and documentary, myth and fact, comedy and tragedy, all rendered in 3D, St. Jules stitches together an elusive, fractured family history. Yet the joie de vivre of Franco-Ontarian life tempers the hardship and regret, infusing this visually inventive film with both joy and heartbreak.

Making its world premiere in the Short Cuts Canada section, Let the Daylight into the Swamp is produced for the NFB by Anita Lee.

Bydlo
Bydlo by Patrick Bouchard is an allegory of mankind heading for disaster. Inspired by the fourth movement of Modest Mussorgsky¡¯s Pictures at an Exhibition, and drawing on the composer¡¯s brilliant ability to evoke work and labour in his music, Bouchard brings the earth to life in Bydlo through animated clay sculptures, creating a concrete and terrifying world in which man is his own slave driver. Making its Ontario premiere in the Short Cuts Canada section, Bydlo is produced for the NFB by Julie Roy.

About the NFB
The National Film Board of Canada creates groundbreaking interactive works, social-issue documentaries and auteur animation. The NFB's award-winning content can be seen at NFB.ca and on apps for smartphones, tablets and connected TV. Canada¡¯s public producer and distributor since 1939, the NFB has created over 13,000 productions and won over 5,000 awards, including 6 Webbys, 12 Oscars and more than 90 Genies.

Bydlo (Trailer), National Film Board of Canada

Four Rising Stars at TIFF 2012

From a media release:

Four Rising Stars shine bright at Toronto International Film Festival
The 37th Toronto International Film Festival runs September 6 to 16, 2012

TORONTO, ON
– In its ongoing commitment to the development of emerging talent in the Canadian film industry, the Toronto International Film Festival® announced today the four actors selected to participate in this year’s TIFF Rising Stars programme. Now in its second year, the programme immerses four participants in a series of public events and industry meetings during the Festival. This year’s rising stars, Charlie Carrick, Connor Jessup, Tatiana Maslany, and Charlotte Sullivan, will receive intensive professional development with international casting directors, filmmakers, producers and development executives.

“Canada continues to produce top-notch on-screen talent, and we’re proud to offer these four actors an international platform during the Festival,” said Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of the Toronto International Film Festival. “We are grateful for the support of our longtime public partner in Telefilm Canada, as well as the Brian Linehan Charitable Foundation and the Canadian Film Centre for having joined forces with us on such an important initiative.”

The Brian Linehan Charitable Foundation and the Canadian Film Centre partnered with TIFF on the Rising Stars programme and assisted in the selection process. Jury members included filmmakers Clement Vigo and Michael McGowan; casting director Deirdre Bowen; Executive in Charge of Music & Acting Talent at the CFC, Larissa Giroux; along with Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of the Toronto International Film Festival.

Charlie Carrick is a British Canadian actor from Newcastle, England. His television credits include recurring roles on V and Tower Prep, as well as guest starring appearances on Flashpoint, Supernatural, Sanctuary and Psych. On stage, Charlie starred in the Canadian premiere of The History Boys at The Arts Club in Vancouver, and returned to the same company to play Jacob Mercer in Salt-Water Moon. Charlie was a 2011 resident of the Canadian Film Centre’s Actors Conservatory. He has recently completed a starring role in Molly Maxwell, directed by Sara St. Onge. Charlie will next be seen in a recurring guest arc on Showtime’s The Borgias.

Connor Jessup is best known for his critically acclaimed performance as Ben Mason in Steven Spielberg’s Falling Skies. Jessup stars in the independent film and Festival 2012 selection Blackbird as Sean Randall: an angry and troubled teenager who finds himself in juvenile detention after being accused and arrested for a crime that he did not commit — forever reshaping his life. Connor is the executive producer of the independent film Amy George, which played at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival. He also wrote, produced and directed the shorts Something and I Don’t Hurt Anymore!, and wrote and directed the play Pushing Normal — which won an Award of Distinction at the 2010 Sears Drama Festival. Connor is also known for his leading role in the Discovery Kids/TVO series The Saddle Club, in which he played 13-year-old computer geek Simon Atherton.

Tatiana Maslany, a Regina-born actor, has amassed an impressive résumé in both film and television. Tatiana won the World Dramatic Special Jury Prize for Breakout Performance at Sundance 2010 for her role — which also garnered a Genie Award nomination — in Grown Up Movie Star. Her recent feature credits include the starring role in Picture Day directed by Kate Melville, which will debut at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival; The Vow opposite Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum; Geoffrey Fletcher’s directorial debut Violet and Daisy (opposite Saoirse Ronan and Alexis Bledel), which premiered during the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival; and The Entitled with Ray Liotta, Victor Garber and Kevin Zegers. Some of Tatiana’s television credits include the Tandem/Scott Free Production World Without End; her Gemini-nominated performance in the BBC/CBC co-production Nativity; Certain Prey for USA network; as well as Gemini Award-winning performances on Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures for TMN and Flashpoint for CBS and CTV.

Charlotte Sullivan was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario. She is a Genie Award-nominated actress, who has most notably played Marilyn Monroe in the controversial, Emmy Award-winning series The Kennedys, staring Academy Award®-nominee Greg Kinnear and Katie Holmes. She played opposite Academy Award-winner Kathy Bates in the sci-fi miniseries Alice and Academy Award-winner Peter O’Toole in the film Iron Road. Charlotte’s other film credits include Defendor, starring Academy Award-nominee Woody Harrelson; Smallville; and Edwin Boyd: Citizen Gangster, which won for Best Canadian First Feature during the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival. She is currently playing police officer Gail Peck in the third season of the ABC hit series Rookie Blue.

• All images courtesy of TIFF

The 37th Toronto International Film Festival runs September 6 to 16, 2012.

Purchase Festival ticket packages online 24 hours a day at tiff.net/festival, by phone Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET at 416.599.TIFF or 1.888.599.8433, or by visiting the box office in person from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET at TIFF Bell Lightbox.

About TIFF:
TIFF is a charitable cultural organization whose mission is to transform the way people see the world through film. An international leader in film culture, TIFF projects include the annual Toronto International Film Festival in September; TIFF Bell Lightbox, which features five cinemas, major exhibitions, and learning and entertainment facilities; and innovative national distribution program Film Circuit.

TIFF Rising Stars is supported by the Brian Linehan Charitable Foundation, Canadian Film Centre and Telefilm Canada.

The Toronto International Film Festival is generously supported by Lead Sponsor Bell, Major Sponsors RBC, L'Oréal Paris, Visa and Audi, and Major Supporters the Government of Ontario, Telefilm Canada and the City of Toronto.

Ballet Jörgen Canada Announces Artist-in-Residence Grigory Popov

From a media release:

2011 National Arts Centre Award-Winner,
Ballet Jörgen Canada Welcomes First Artist-in-Residence Grigory Popov of Russia's Mariinsky Ballet

Toronto ON – Bengt Jörgen, artistic director and CEO of Ballet Jörgen Canada, is proud to announce today’s arrival of the company’s first Artist-in-Residence, Grigory Popov—direct from Russia’s Mariinsky Ballet Company. Grigory, a graduate of the Vaganova Academy of Russian Ballet and an international winner of the Vaganova-Prix International Competition, will be joining the company for the 25th Anniversary year.

"We are extremely pleased to have Grigory dance the lead role of the Prince during our 25th Anniversary presentation of Swan Lake.” says Bengt. “His past performances at the Mariinsky Ballet have received rave reviews. We are very fortunate to have such a talented and powerful dancer performing with our company."

Grigory adds, "This is my first experience of this kind—I  have been touring with Mariinsky Ballet Company all over the world, including Canada, for more than 10 years... and this is my first opportunity to work for a foreign ballet company, especially during its jubilee season. I look forward to dancing the principal role in Swan Lake and am very excited to try Bengt Jörgen's choreography."

Grigory is well-known for his electric vigor and his ability to hold soaring jumps. Paula Citron, of the Globe and Mail has written that Grigory "seems capable of holding his legs in any position once he leaves the floor and sails into the air". Alexandra Tomalonis of danceviewtimes.com describes Grigory jumps as godlike "… and a body so supple that even his torso danced — … [one of] the performances' glories."

Ballet Jörgen Canada has been revitalizing the Canadian dance scene for 25 years by engaging talented new artists. Please visit balletjorgencanda.ca for regular updates on Grigory’s residency with Ballet Jörgen Canada.


Ashkenaz Festival Celebrates Global Jewish Culture Aug 28-Sept 3 2012 in Toronto

From a media release:

Ashkenaz Celebrates Global Jewish Culture at Harbourfront Centre
Aug 28-Sept 3, 2012


TORONTO, ON – Harbourfront Centre is pleased to announce the biennial return of the Ashkenaz Festival. The week-long festival, held this year from Tuesday, Aug. 28 through Monday, Sept. 3, celebrates cutting-edge and traditional culture from the international Jewish scene.

The Ashkenaz Festival, which began in 1995 and has grown into one of the city’s favourites, features events spanning music, film, theatre, dance and more, celebrating the variety of cultures that comprise the international Jewish community. Over 200 individual artists from over a dozen countries, including Uganda, India, Australia, Argentina and Mexico, will descend upon Harbourfront Centre, demonstrating the diversity and depth of Jewish arts and culture.



Highlights of Ashkenaz include performances, workshops, activities and more:
• Music from Yemen Blues, who mix Yemenite-Jewish song and poetry with West African grooves, jazz, blues and funk; Shye Ben Tzur, who combines Hebrew, Middle-Eastern and Indian influences; the post-Soviet klezmer-pop-party-music of Opa!; Toronto’s 13-piece Balkan-Klezmer-Gypsy-Party-Punk Super-Band Lemon Bucket Orchestra; the Canadian premiere of 99 year-old Toronto composer and Holocaust survivor Leo Spellman’s “lost” composition and others;
• Theatre Panik’s production of The Corpse Bride;
• Family fun including the always-popular Ashkenaz Parade and the return of two of North America’s premier entertainers, Sharon and Bram, who add Yiddish songs alongside their classic repertoire;
…and much more!

For additional information and complete event listings, the public may visit harbourfrontcentre.com or call the Information Hotline at 416-973-4000. Harbourfront Centre is located at 235 Queens Quay West in the heart of downtown Toronto’s waterfront.

ABOUT THE ASHKENAZ FOUNDATION:
The Ashkenaz Foundation is a community-based, non-profit organization dedicated to fostering an increased awareness of Yiddish and Jewish culture through the arts. Through its biennial festival and an expanding slate of year-round programming, Ashkenaz showcases the work of leading contemporary artists from Canada and around the world working in music, film, theatre, dance, literature, craft and visual arts. The Foundation incorporates in its mandate and programming many other manifestations of pan-Jewish music and art beyond Klezmer/Yiddish, including an expanding commitment to the art and culture of Sephardic, Ladino and Mizrahi Jews. Ashkenaz also actively pursues fusion and cross-cultural exchange with artists from outside Jewish cultural traditions through commissioned work and special projects.

African Film: Seasons of a Life & The Silent Monologue Available from ArtMattan Films

From a media release:

African Films on DVD: Seasons of a Life & The Silent Monologue Now Available

SEASONS OF A LIFE
Director: Shemu Joyah
From: Malawi
Year: 2008- Minutes: 102 mins
Language : English
Genre: Drama


A housemaid, who is sexually abused by her boss and made pregnant, is forced to give up her son in order to go on with her education. Six years later she comes back to claim her son.

From Malawi comes this moving story about sexual abuse, women rights and the legal justice system in Malawi.

This film tackles universal themes in an African setting giving viewers an understanding of some of the modernization and democratization processes in Africa.

To order Seasons of a Life please contact ArtMattan Films at info@AfricanFilm.com or call (212) 864-1760.
DVD sale: $245


THE SILENT MONOLOGUE
LE MONOLOGUE DE LA MUETTE
Director: Khady Sylla and Charlie Van Damme
From: Senegal / Belgium
Year: 2008- Minutes:48mins
Language : French and Wolof with English subtitles
Genre: Docu-drama


Also now available is The Silent Monologue by Khady Sylla, official selection of the 2012 Locarno Film Festival.

In a voice-over, we hear the thoughts of Amy, a girl from a rural area of Senegal who works as a domestic for a well-to-do family in Dakar. She complains about her employer, who continuously criticizes her and gets on her case, and she talks about her dream of one day opening her own eatery. Meanwhile, we see her sweep the pavement, prepare the food and clean the house. The contrast with her vast and barren native region is enormous. 

In Dakar, some 150,000 young women work as housekeepers for families whose daughters can go to school. "Why does the emancipation of some result in the servitude of others?" Amy wonders. The filmmakers interview other young maids who dream of going to school, and they film a woman who shouts her furious lyrics straight into the camera in rapper-like fashion: "I keep your houses squeaky clean, but you all think I'm dirty!" In a dramatized scene in a slum, the women demonstrate how they'd like to deal with a woman who doesn't pay her housekeeper enough. In response to the situation, the filmmakers make an appeal to change the rules of the world economy.

The Silent Monologue is a political film, a combative film and a film rooted in the artistic tradition displayed in the work of other Senegalese authors such as Ousmane Sembene, Djibril Diop Mambety and Safi Faye.

The Silent Monologue is the second film by Khady Sylla (pictured right) distributed by ArtMattan Productions. In her other film, Colobane Express, we observe 24 hours in the daily life of drivers and passengers of the public vans in Dakar.

Films exploring life in Senegal distributed by ArtMattan Productions are:
  • The Silent Monologue by Khady Sylla
  • Colobane Express by Khady Sylla
  • Almodou by Amadou Thior
  • Return to Goree, by Pierre-Yves Borgeaud
to order The Silent Monologue please contact ArtMattan Films at info@AfricanFilm.com or call (212) 864-1760.
DVD sale: $245
Special offer: Purchase The Silent Monologue and Colobane Express for $345

Le monologue de la muette from Athénaïse on Vimeo.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Battle of the Beatmakers 2012: August 25 in Toronto

From a media release:

Just Blaze, Statik Selektah & Skyzoo All Take Part In this year's Battle of the Beat Makers
August 25, 2012 at the Opera House, Toronto

Producer Registration ends August 22, 2012
Advance tickets on sale now

Toronto, Canada –
Grammy Award winning producer Just Blaze and celebrated hip-hop artists Statik Selektah and Skyzoo will be joining aspiring producers in Toronto, Canada for the nation’s official annual producer retreat, Battle of the Beat Makers (BBM), consisting of the Pro Audio Conference and Producer Competition. .

“Every year we attract new producers from all over the country, eager to learn new tricks of the trade, rub shoulders with celebrated guests, artists, as well as to create a name for themselves at the Battle, this year will be monumental in satisfying each desire,” says Clifton Reddick, BBM Founder.

Grammy award winning and multi-platinum selling producer Just Blaze, most well-known for producing Jay-Z songs on hit albums The Blueprint, The Blueprint 2, and The Black Album, as well as, Eminem’s Recovery album, will be a guest speaker at the upcoming 2nd Annual Pro Audio Conference.In addition to an exclusive Q&A session with selected Canadian producers, he will also host a 50-minute live production demonstration.

Statik Selektah will also be on hand to provide selected Canadian producers with an exclusive Q&A session, as well as a live production demonstration at the Pro Audio Conference.  In 2007, Statik released his first LP, titled Spell My Name Right, followed by Stick 2 the Script (2009) and 100 Proof: The Hangover (2010). Besides dropping his own albums, he has also produced on many other artists’ projects and hosts a show on Thursday nights on Eminem's Shade 45 XM/Sirus Radio Station.

Alongside serving as a special guest judge at the competition, hip-hop fans will also be entertained with a live performance from DuckDown Records recording artist Skyzoo. Widely recognized as one of the top spitters of today, Skyzoo has toured with Ghostface Killah, Raekwon, Pharoahe Monch, Sean Price, and Buckshot, as well as headlined internationally in places like China, London, Paris, Berlin, Italy, Amsterdam, and more. His highly anticipated sophomore album A Dream Deferred is slated for a fall 2012 release.

Registration Closes: August 22nd, 2012. Producers can register online at BattleoftheBeatMakers.com or in-person at various retail outlets listed on the website.

The grand prize package will consist of cash and prizes valued at over $10,000.


Battle of the Beat Makers (BBM) is Canada’s Official Producer Competition, which focuses on showcasing the talents of the hottest up-and-coming Canadian producers.  BBM is the first outlet for Canadian producers to showcase their talents in a live setting.

Advance Tickets: $20 (19+ Event) *Qualifying Producers will have access to the event.*
Hosted by: Trixx, One of Toronto’s top Comedian  Music by: DJ P P-Plus
Guest Judges: To Be Announced
Venue: The Opera House | 735 Queen St. East., Toronto (Closes Intersection Queen St. East & Broadview Avenue.)
Date: August 25th, 2012 | 8 p.m. – 12 a.m. | 19+ Event


From last year's event:

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Bold New Theater at Joe's Pub New York City August 23 & 24 2012

From a media release:

INCOMING! THE PUBLIC THEATER'S UNDER THE RADAR FESTIVAL TESTS BOLD NEW MATERIAL FROM EDWIN LEE GIBON, CHRISTINA ANDERSON AND LILAC CO AT JOE’S PUB AUGUST 23 & 24, 2012

New York, NY –
INCOMING! The Public Theater’s Under the Radar Festival will present new work at Joe’s Pub, The Public Theater’s most intimate performance space, on August 23 and 24. INCOMING! offers emerging talent the freedom and flexibility to experiment with new material – sometimes for the first time – in front of a live audience. This year’s lineup includes Obie winner Edwin Lee Gibson’s Five ‘ Til, the Brooklyn-based theater company Lilac co’s Drusi Is Coming and playwright Christina Anderson’s Hollow Roots.

The INCOMING! initiative at Joe’s Pub was created as an avenue for developing new material by artists looking for a safe, intimate performance space to debut work. “The Under the Radar Festival is proud to join with Joe's Pub in presenting the INCOMING! series,” said UTR Artistic Director and Producer Mark Russell. “This is a forum where artists can develop new material in front of an audience. Sometimes a deadline is the best thing you can give an artist. INCOMING! is a deadline and a place for outrageous failures and new revelations! All live at one of the best rooms in the city. These are going to be some exciting performances.”

Like Under the Radar, which the New York Times called “a dizzying mix of dance, comedy and experimental theater,” INCOMING! takes artists out of their comfort zones and challenges them to be ambitious in an environment known for its commitment to originality and innovation. “Joe’s Pub is thrilled to work with our Public Theater colleagues to present these works-in-progress while keeping our prices low to encourage adventurous theater-goers, promote community engagement and support up-and-coming talent,” said Joe’s Pub Director Shanta Thake.

Tickets for all INCOMING! The Public Theater’s Under the Radar Festival @ Joe’s Pub are just $10. The next Under the Radar Festival (UTR 13) will be held January 9-20, 2013 at The Public Theater. Artists that have debuted at INCOMING! followed by works produced at the official Under the Radar Festival include Lemon Andersen's County of Kings and Dael Orlandersmith’s Stoop Stories.

INCOMING! THE PUBLIC THEATER'S UNDER THE RADAR FESTIVAL @ JOE’S PUB:


“Five ‘ Til” by Edwin Lee Gibson
Friday, August 23, 9:30pm, $10

Obie Award winning actor, Edwin Lee Gibson (The Seven) brings his commentary on capital punishment to Joe’s Pub in the blues fairytale, Five ‘ Til. In a notorious state penitentiary in Huntsville, TX, cause and effect have come home to roost.  Dante Wallace sits five minutes from execution for the murder of Kenya. What happens when a capital punishment case becomes about convicting someone rather than someone who is guilty?

Five ‘Til frames the complexity of a worst nightmare scenario into a “karmic tale” of how vengeance is far more powerful than a lethal injection. A lucid hallucination set to music, the play is a blues fairytale that captures both pain and joy in the stylistic traditions of Negro spirituals and soul. Edwin Lee Gibson has starred as Raqmaan in the NaRa Films feature Blood First (2012 release). He has also just completed his academic work, Freedom Initiative, which utilizes the canon of the late August Wilson as a means for revisiting and reimagining the American-African experience, post slavery, in the United States.

“Hollow Roots” by Christina Anderson
Saturday, August 24, 7:30pm, $10

In Hollow Roots, a woman traverses a nameless urban landscape plagued by a question: can a person of color have a "neutral narrative"? A spare and intimate setting evolves into a vivid world painted in detailed observations and marked by memories, music, history, candy, maps, and circumstance.

Tapping into the rich and complicated genre of one person plays by writers such as Wallace Shawn and Spalding Grey, playwright Christina Anderson (Good Goods, Inked Baby), director Lileana Blain-Cruz (Doctor Faustus Lights the Lights) and performer April Matthis (Lear, The Sound and the Fury) interrogate the concept of cultural identity and ask “Can someone live a life unaffected by one’s race or gender?”

“Drusi Is Coming” by Lilac co
Friday, August 24, 9:30pm, $10

Drusi Is Coming is the latest episode by Lilac co in the jinx series continuum. Lilac co has made new theater in Greenpoint, Brooklyn since 2005 (stjohnstheatre.org) including a feature length independent film "love is black water" (to festivals us/euro fall 2013). Since summer 2009, all work by lilac co. has been developed at the 94 Norman Avenue storefront space in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

"The work, written and directed by Sean Edward Lewis, recalls literary experiments such as those of Gertrude Stein, Samuel Beckett, Lewis Carol, Antonin Artaud and David Lynch. As audience to their work one can dwell, rather than be directed what to think about, be that a narrative progression, or a character's "inner" psychology. The work affects feelings and ideas actively, if not immediately, LSJ creates not merely physical spaces, but imaginary, emotional, and intellective states an audience passes through." -Thom Donovan, FANZINE.

Written by Sean Edward Lewis. Directed by Colm Dee and Sean Edward Lewis. Company manager Daniel Clare Pomorski. Sound and video by Michael King.

TICKETS ON SALE NOW
ONLINE at joespub.com
PHONE 212-967-7555,
IN PERSON at The Public Theater Box Office (1 PM to 6 PM) located at 425 Lafayette Street, NYC

From A-Z Films: And If We All Lived Together? Opens in Toronto Aug 17

From a media release:

A-Z FILMS presents
And If We All Lived Together?

(Et si on vivait tous ensemble?)
A film by Stéphane Robelin
 
Starring (in alphabetical order):
Guy Bedos, Daniel Bruhl, Geraldine Chaplin, Jane Fonda, Claude Rich, Pierre Richard

Opens in Toronto August 17, 2012
The Varsity + Cineplex Odeon Sheppard Cinemas


Other Canadian cities to open:
Vancouver - August 24
Montreal - September 21
Calgary – October 12
Ottawa - October 12

French with English Subtitles

(Toronto)  And If We All Lived Together? is a beautiful adventure that revolves around a group of aging friends, who at 75 - in order to avoid retirement homes - resolve to live together, bringing with it the tragic and comic aspects of the communal life they have chosen.

Opening in Toronto, on August 17, at The Varsity + Cineplex Odeon Sheppard Cinemas, followed by Vancouver on August 24, then Montreal on September 21, and then Ottawa on October 12.

And If We All lived Together? will showcase some of cinema’s most legendary actors, such as Jane Fonda – who is fluent in French and makes her return to French cinema after almost 40 years - alongside the well-respected humorist Guy Bedos and Claude Riche, and comic Pierre Richard, and the incomparable Geraldine Chaplin.

Annie, Jean, Claude, Albert and Jeanne have been the best of friends for forty years. So when the memory starts wavering, the hearts starts fluttering and the spectre of the retirement home rears its dismal head, they friends rebel, and decide to set up their own house together. A foolish scheme, apparently. But even though their new togetherness creates friction and revives old memories, it is the beginning of a wonderful adventure – house-sharing at 75!

“I always dreamed of bringing legendary actors together in an ensemble film dealing with family and friendship,” says director Stéphane Robelin. “I was particularly interested in the social issue of dependency and the elderly, which is rarely explored in cinema. When I started writing the screenplay, I remembered my great-grandparents declining in health and my grandparents didn’t know how to care for them, they hadn’t been prepared for that situation. So I was inspired to write a story about a group of aging friends who decide to live together.”

About Stéphane Robelin
Robelin started filmmaking in the 1990s, writing and directing short films. Later he began working in the field of TV documentaries, mainly for the national French TV station, France 2. His feature debut Real Movie (2004) premiered at the Dashanzi Underground French Film Festival in Peking. And if we all lived together?  is his second film.

Selected Filmography
2011 – And If We All Lived Together? (Feature Film)
2004 – Real Movie (Feature Film)
2002 – Sortir de l’Apartheid (TV Documentary)
2000 – Le Curé de la Sorbonne (TV Documentary)

Tess: New Video & Afro Punk Festival Aug 25 & 26 in Brooklyn

From a media release:

New Video: HipRocknB with Tess and MJ
She'll be at Commodore Park, Brooklyn on August 25 & 26 2012 as part of the Afro Punk Festival


[New York, NY] In the words of Charlie Sheen, Singer/Songwriter Tess, is WINNING!! August has proven to be a great month for the HipRocknB Rebel. On Friday, August 3rd, Tess gave an incredible performance at the final Afro Punk 'Battle Of The Bands' show; and was announced one of the winners of the evening. Tess will perform along side Eryka Badu, Janelle Monae, Gym Class Heroes and many more on August 25th and 26th at Commodore Park in Brooklyn, NY. The 2012 Afro Punk Festival will definitely get a taste of #HipRocknB.

Continuing the 'WINNING' streak, Friday, August 10th, also marked a big milestone for the young artist: the release of the new music video for the hit single “MJ”, off her debut EP, 'The Name Is Tess'. The fun and quirky video is sure to be a favorite.

Singer/songwriter, Tess aims to flood the music scene with a sound she's coined "HipRocknB". The young artist has toured internationally with Deemi, JT Taylor (of Kool & the Gang), Atlantic Star, and has worked with Musiq Soulchild, Joel Ortiz among others. Tess has finished writing and recording her Debut EP, ‘The Name Is Tess’ released May, 18th 2012. Tess enlisted the help of the talented Mr. Reynolds, who served as the Executive Producer. Mr. Reynolds is a veteran in the business and has worked on projects from many top selling artists, including The Roots, Kelly Rowland, Lyfe Jennings, and many others. Tess’ new project promises to be a game changer. 'The Name Is Tess' EP is now available for purchase on iTunes, CD Baby, and Bandcamp.

Shawn Lee: Synthesizers in Space & U.S. Tour Aug 22-Sept 2 2012

From a media release:

ESL presents Shawn Lee’s Psychedelic Opus
Synthesizers in Space

U.S. Tour dates at this link (see below too) August 22 - September 2, 2012
Download the MP3 "Head Up" at this link


“For me, being creative is a natural bodily function, like breathing and eating,” Shawn Lee says from his London studio as he reflects on the whirlwind effort and inspiration he experienced in developing his latest album, Synthesizers in Space. It began at a music store called Switched On in Austin, TX and the discovery of a vintage “mystery-box” instrument hidden amongst the old synths and organs that created sounds and textures unlike anything currently in his sonic arsenal.

The result was a focused attack in the studio, creating a set of 11 new tracks based around the “mystery box”, and a range of psychedelic grooves. Synthesizers in Space is a diverse, densely layered collection from a musician known for his ability to blend sunny melodies, smoky grooves and propulsive rhythms into his own inimitable sound.

By bouncing tracks back and forth between digital and analog media, Lee gave the album a warm, intimate sound. The synthesizers are spacy, full of subtle, ear twitching effects, but primordial drumming keeps the music anchored for the listener. “AJ’s Mood” opens the set with a subtle, bongo dominated pulse with hesitant bass and sparse keyboard accents; “Head Up” is an epic party-starter complete with Fatboy Slim hooks and block rocking beats; while “Boogie Children (Saturn Day Night”)” channels the spirit of T. Rex with a cracking glam rock pulse, phat bass guitar and a salacious vocal from special guest Earl Zinger.

“There’s a lot more to this album than the title implies,” he explains. “I use a lot of keyboards, but it’s not wall-to-wall synthesizers. The foundation is drumming – real drums played in real time – and captured on analog tape for that crusty, magnetic sound that I like.”



Lee has been searching for that sound since his early days growing up in Wichita, Kansas starting on air-guitar. “I got a real guitar when I was 10 and started playing along with records and recording myself. I wanted to make records. Not to get chicks and play clubs, but to make the kind of sounds that fascinated me.” Along the way, Lee taught himself drums, bass and many other instruments. He played in cover bands in grammar and high school; including a group that included future country star Martina McBride.

Upon moving to Los Angeles, the aspiring musician found day jobs producing, doing session work, and working with the likes of the Dust Brothers and the late Jeff Buckley, Tony Joe White, and Tommy Guerrero.  These early opportunities to work with top producers caught the eye of legendary BBC radio DJ, Gilles Peterson, who gave Shawn the opportunity to re-locate to London by signing him to his record label Talkin’ Loud, where he is still based today.

In 1995 he made the Planet of the Breaks series and Ape Breaks, Vol. 1-5 - widely sampled albums that became the backbone of countless recordings. “I taught myself how to play break beats, then looped and sampled myself, leaving in all the errors and off beats to get something that doesn’t sound manufactured.”



Lee’s prolific recording career – 30 plus albums and counting - took off with a series of song based solo albums, including Monkey Boy, which included “Happiness,” later a mega-hit for singer Will Young. He made ten titles of cinematic instrumental music as the Ping Pong Orchestra, collaborated with artists such as Clutchy Hopkins, Money Mark, Amy Winehouse, Lana Del Rey, Alicia Keyes, Adrian Younge and Bei Bei, composed music for film, video games (award winning video game composer for “Bully”) and television shows, including HBO’s Eastbound and Down, Lost, Criminal Minds, and toured with artists like Phoenix, Zero 7, Sigur Ros and Thievery Corporation.

Shawn’s most recent band collaboration creatively titled “AM & Shawn Lee” released their debut album, Celestial Electric, to great album and show reviews worldwide on Eighteenth Street Lounge Music and are touring extensively around the world.

Shawn will also be on tour with AM starting in August
Aug 22 @ Cafe du Nord - San Francisco, CA
Aug 24 @ Satellite - Los Angeles, CA
Aug 25 @ LA Cave - Costa Mesa, CA
Aug 28 @ Great Scott - Boston, MA
Aug 29 @ New York State Fair - Syracuse, NY
Aug 30 @ Montserrat House - Washington DC
Aug 31 @ Knitting Factory - Brooklyn, NY
Sep 02 @ Bumbershoot Festival - Seattle, WA

Rock from New Zealand: Devilskin New Video for 'Little Pills'

From a media release:

DEVILSKIN - LITTLE PILLS [Official Music Video]
Produced/Directed/Written by Dimi Nakov

Editing/Post Production: Martin Collyns
Camera : Dimi Nakov,Stephen Morris,Joe Murdie and Mike Whitehead.
Lighting : Mike Whitehead, Simon Kramers and Joel Comer

Genre: Rock/Metal/Bogun

Members:
Jennie Skulander- vocals
Nail- guitar
Paul Martin- bass
Nic Martin- drums

"Devilskin is a four piece band from Hamilton New Zealand formed in June 2010, they already has guts, class, kudos and confidence. The sum total of a determined and accomplished group of musicians who know what they want, the music is organic, dynamic and real.

The band features the spectacular Jennie Skulander on lead vocals. Her powerful and compelling voice and alluring stage presence sets her apart from any vocalist New Zealand has put up so far. With an unerring gift for melody, Jennies' incredible voice sweeps from whisper to roar, rips with power, drips with melody and captivates with sincerity. Jennie previously fronted Rotorua band Slipping Tongue garnering a swathe of fans with their videos, eps and album. Slipping Tongue also impressed many when they opened for Coheed & Cambria in 2008.

On lead guitar is The Nail from popular Waikato band Chuganaut who won the NZ Battle of the Bands and the World Battle Of The Bands in 2004. Played BDO in 2005 and opened for Iron Maiden at Mt Smart stadium in 2009. Chuganaut has played numerous national tours and released several singles, eps, videos and an album. Nails' searing guitar work and high energy performance bring real intensity to the live show.

Playing bass guitar is Paul Martin, known as the Axeman from arguably, New Zealands most popular radio show, the Axe Attack. Lead guitarist and vocalist for World War Four, Pauls' previous bands include Knightshade and Blackjack. He has opened for Black Label Society (2006), Heaven & Hell (2007) and Motorhead twice (2008), and played BDO (2009). Paul's powerful and aggressive bass style is a propulsive force in the bands sound.

Nic Martin joined Devilskin as drummer in August 2011 at the age of 15. Pauls son, Nic is the youngest artist to ever play the BDO when he performed with World War Four in 2009 at the age of 13. Nic adds to the show with a real display of power and passion on the drums. With a fierce style all his own and the inexhaustible energy of youth, Nics truculent style and showmanship are fast becoming a talking point on the NZ live music scene. Not to mention making Devilskin one of the few bands featuring a father and son in their line-up.

Together, Devilskin have the ability to write songs that have depth and passion. They create a compelling and irresistible sound and perform a stunning, explosive, live show.

THE SONGS: Arresting and undeniable, Devilskin songs are all consuming. With the tenderly masked ire of 'Fade', the brutally truthful epic that is 'The Whale Song', the magnificence of 'Dirt', the enslaving anthem of 'Death Warmed Up'. The sheer speed and violence of 'Rise' and 'Until You Bleed' to name a few, will prove that this band is not just special, but spectacular, and simply too important to be ignored. Devilskin herald a change in the perception of what New Zealand music is all about. The art of songwriting is back."

Zodiac Entertainment Copyright 2012
All content © Zodiac Entertainment, unless otherwise noted. All rights reserved.
http://zodiacentertainment.co.nz/