A September full of events

Welcome to a new semester, a new academic year and a totally fresh series of events in Fine Arts! Even though it’s only September and the academic year has just begun, we’re already looking at a busy month of concerts, readings, guest lectures, exhibits, plays and discussions. Just for ease of reading, we’ve broken these down into our various departments.


Jeff Barnaby

Jeff Barnaby

• Orion Series in Indigeneity & the Arts: filmmaker Jeff Barnaby
7pm Monday, Sept 26 • UVic’s David Lam Auditorium (MAC A144) • Free

The Faculty of Fine Arts is kicking off our new Orion Series in Indigeneity & the Arts with a film screening and discussion featuring Mi’kmaq filmmaker Jeff Barnaby. Also a writer, composer & film editor, the award-winning Barnaby is best known for his 2013 debut film Rhymes for Young Ghouls, which earned accolades when it debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival. In addition to this public lecture, Barnaby will also be making a series of classroom visits during his week on campus.


Steven Price (C Centric Photography)

Steven Price (C Centric Photography)

• Alumni book launch: Steven Price, By Gaslight
7:30pm Tuesday, Sept 13, at Munro’s Books, 1108 Government • Free

Noted poet, author & Writing alum Steven Price launches his latest book, the much-anticipated 19th century thriller By Gaslight. Breaking news: By Gaslight was just announced as being one of 12 books on the 2016 Giller Prize longlist! The buzz about this book has been building since 2014, when it was reported that price had signed a six-figure international book deal.

Victoria Fest of Authors
Sept 21-25 • Various venues, prices

The Victoria Festival of Authors features 16 authors and four days of discussions, readings, book signings, workshops, and festivities in downtown Victoria. On the bill are celebrated Writing alumni Carla Funk, Steven Price, Yasuko Thanh, as well as former Southam Lecturer Richard Wagamese. Specific sessions will also be led by faculty member Bill Gaston (“The Latest Bag of Tricks: Humour in the Written Word”) and sessional instructor Marita Dachsel (“Between and Liminal: Writing Through the Lyrical Eye”).

Lorna Crozier

Lorna Crozier

Department of Writing Faculty Reading Night
7pm Wed Sept 28 • Hickman 105 • Free

Always a highlight of the year, the Department of Writing Faculty Reading Night acclaimed teaching faculty when they share new work at this popular annual reading night. This year’s guests include new poetry professor & alumnus Shane Book, plus faculty members Bill Gaston, Joan MacLeod, Tim Lilburn, Lorna Jackson, David Leach, Maureen Bradley, Lee Henderson, Kevin Kerr and the announcement of the recipient of the inaugural Lorna Crozier Scholarship—with Lorna Crozier herself in attendance!

• Open Word: poet Louise Bernice Halfe
9:30 am-12:30 pm Monday, Sept 26 • Fine Arts 203 • Free
7:30pm Tuesday, Sept 27 • Open Space, 510 Fort • By donation

Giving a haunting picture of Canada’s residential school legacy, poet Louise Bernice Halfe will read from her collection, Burning in this Midnight Dream. In addition to her UVic and Open Space readings, she will also be appearing at the Victoria Festival of Authors, where she will read (Sept 23) and hold a Masterclass (Sept 24). Released in spring of 2016, Burning in this Midnight Dream was written as the Truth and Reconciliation Commission unfolded. Halfe’s sometimes fierce, sometimes tender voice opens a window through which we can see ways colonial violence moves through families, communities, and lives.


• Visiting Artist: John G. Hampton
7:30pm  Wed Sept 14 in Visual Arts A150 • Free

The first Visiting Artist of the season appears this week, as the long-running Visual Arts series returns with renewed energy and an expanded list of artists. Now hooked to a for-credit course, it will be great to see so many noted artists visiting campus in the months ahead. First up is John G. Hampton, who curates the group exhibit Why Can’t Minimal, running Sept 16-Oct 22 Open Space. The executive director of the Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba in Brandon, Manitoba, Hampton sets out to both challenge & engage the critiques of minimalism. In his hands, art history is witty, candid and speculative.

Cynthia Girard

Cynthia Girard

• Visiting Artist: Cynthia Girard Renard
7:30pm  Wed Sept 28 • Visual Arts A150

For over 20 years, Montreal-based artist Cynthia Girard-Renard has created a multitudinous universe where politics, identity and imaginary worlds come together through painting, sculpture, installation, poetry and performance. Her broad range of techniques encompass various forms and take an experimental and theatrical approach to the exhibition context, such as large format works, banners, scenic backdrops, costumes and accessories, mobiles, sound sculptures, support structures, and more.

• Art Exhibit: Mowry Baden Toroidal Yodel
Wed-Sat, 12-5, to Oct 8 • Deluge Contemporary, 636 Yates

Renowned sculptor & Visual Arts professor emeritus Mowry Baden presents the kinetic exhibit Toroidal Yodel,  an extension of the artist’s ongoing interest in haptic sculpture. “I don’t want to burden the viewer with any exotic conditions,” he says in this interview. “I want the viewer to experience the sculpture as directly as possible.” With that in mind, Toroidal Yodel uses vortices to hurl palpable but invisible donuts of air at people interacting with it.

Out of the Frame: Salish Printmaking
Celebration Event + Artist Roundtable, 1-4pm Saturday, Sept 24 • UVic’s Legacy Gallery, 630 Yates • Free

An afternoon event featuring an artist roundtable discussion with the artists from the current exhibit Out of the Frame: Salish Printmaking on the role of printmaking in their practices and new directions for printing taken up in the exhibition. The discussion will be moderated by exhibit curator, UVic’s Dr. Andrea Walsh, and will feature a guest talk reflecting on the production of prints by Salish artists given by independent scholar India Rael Young, followed by a celebration with the Tzinquaw Dancers.

Rande Cook at UVic (Photo Services)

Rande Cook at UVic (Photo Services)

HIWEST Forum & Panel Discussion
6:30pm Friday, Sept 30 • UVic’s Legacy Gallery, 630 Yates • Free

Join Visual Arts Audain Professor Rande Cook and Visual Arts MFA student Hjalmer Wenstob, alongside artists Doug Lafortune & Lou-Ann Neel, at the HIWEST Forum & Panel Discussion—an event focused on celebrating, honouring and preserving Pacific Northwest Indigenous poles and monumental wood carvings. Poles and other monumental wood carving have been commissioned and installed throughout our region in recent decades, eliciting huge public interest and appetite to learn more about the traditions, practices and meanings. This event will help all of us delve deeper into the understanding, honouring, and caring for the poles/monumental wood carving that are so rich with cultural significance. Panel discussion curated by Dr Andrea Walsh, with a short talk by UBC Museum of Anthropology curator Heidi Swierenga.


Mysterious Barracades: A concert for suicide awareness, prevention and hope
6:30pm Saturday, Sept 10 • UVic’s Phillip T. Young Recital Hall • Free

From sunrise in St. John’s, NL to sunset in Victoria, World Suicide Prevention Day will feature an 18-hour concert of hope and awareness gracing a westward sequence of stages across Canada and live-streamed on the internet. Featuring some of Canada’s finest musicians performing a unique variety of classical, jazz and aboriginal music, this event will encourage discourse and raise awareness of the mysterious barricades between mental illness and health. The Victoria program will feature UVic’s own Lafayette String Quartet, Suzanne Snizek (flute), Michelle Mares & Harald Krebs (piano), Colin Tilney (harpsichord), Sharon Krebs (soprano), Benjamin Butterfield (tenor) plus Ken Lavigne (tenor) and Victoria’s Louise Rose among others performing music by Dvořák, Couperin, Beethoven, Schubert, Smit and Lang. Local performer and radio documentary producer Rebecca Hass will MC the evening’s events.

The Lafayette String Quartet

The Lafayette String Quartet

• Faculty Concert: Lafayette String Quartet
2:30pm Sunday, Sept 18 • UVic’s Phillip T Young Recital Hall • $25

Join UVic’s beloved quartet-in-residence as they celebrate their 30th anniversary season. The Lafayette String Quartet will be performing Shostakovich – String Quartet No. 7, Op. 108, Schafer – Quartet No. 11, and Brahms – Clarinet Quintet in B minor, Op. 115 with guest clarinet Patricia Kostek. And you can read some 30th anniversary reflections in this Times Colonist article from the summer.

• Faculty Concert: South Indian Classical Music
8pm Friday, Sept 30 • UVic’s Phillip T Young Recital Hall • $10-$20 • Tune in here for the live broadcast.

UVic Jazz Studies professor Patrick Boyle is joined by Canadian-based percussionist/ composer/teacher Curtis Andrews for this evening of South Indian Classical Music. Andrews creates music that is informed by his many years of experience with West African, South Indian and jazz traditions yet transcends most categories. He is currently a PhD student in Ethnomusicology at UBC.

• These are just a few of the School of Music’s events this month—see their full concert lineup here.


Student Alternative Theatre Company presents Dog Shit
12:45pm Wed-Fri, Sept 21-23 • Phoenix Theatre • $4 suggested donation

Each semester, SATCo—the Student Alternative Theatre Company—presents workshop productions of new plays, some written by Theatre students and some by Writing students. Dog Shit is the first production of the 2016/17 season, written by Caitlin Holm and directed by Kristof Melling.

Theatre student Nicholas Guerreiro

Theatre student
Nicholas Guerreiro

SATCo: O, Come All Ye Faithful
12:45pm Wed-Fri, Sept 28-30 • Phoenix Theatre • $4 suggested donation

Join playwright Nicholas Guerreiro—the winner of last year’s annual Times Colonist writing contest—and director Nadine Cordery for their new show. O, Come All Ye Faithful focuses on Rothko and Christine, two night employees of the 24-hour museum of controversial art, who receive an unexpected visitor the night of Christmas Eve.


Strong buzz around Steven Price’s new novel

It’s the kind of buzz emerging authors can only dream about: after being sold to American publisher Farrar, Straus & Giroux in 2014 for “a figure rumoured to be in the substantial six-figure range,” the latest novel by noted poet, author & stellar Department of Writing grad Steven Price is now set to launch. And by all reports, Price’s 19th century literary historical suspense novel By Gaslight is living up to the hype—it’s already been announced as being one of 12 books on the 2016 Giller Prize longlist.

by-gaslightBy Gaslight launches locally at 7:30pm Tuesday, Sept 13, at Munro’s Books, and Price will be one of the featured writers at the Sept 21-25 Victoria Festival of Authors, as well as the Oct 17-23 Vancouver Writers Fest.

Reviewed by the Globe & Mail as “a mighty steam engine of a thriller that pulls out all the stops,”  Price’s By Gaslight drops the reader into foggy 1885 London where detective William Pinkerton is on the trail of ghostly notorious thief and fabled con Edward Shade; meanwhile, Adam Foole—a gentleman without a past, haunted by a love affair ten years gone—returns to London in search of his long-lost love. What follows is a fog-enshrouded hunt through sewers, drawing rooms, and seance halls; told over two decades, Price takes readers into South Africa’s diamond mines, onto the battlefields of the US Civil War and through the opium dens of Victorian London. But By Gaslight is ultimately the story of the most unlikely of bonds: between William Pinkerton, the greatest detective of his age, and Adam Foole, the one man who may hold the key to finding Edward Shade.

Described as “epic in scope, brilliantly conceived, and stunningly written,” By Gaslight is earning critical kudos (“Wilkie Collins meets Raymond Chandler . . . as a neo-Victorian mystery it is nearly perfect” says Quill & Quire), with international rights already sold and unconfirmed rumours of a film deal in the works.  Back in 2014, Price downplayed the sales figure when he spoke to the Times Colonist. “The sum of money seems like it’s a notable thing,” he said. “But I think what’s really exciting for me is the vote of confidence an American publisher would have in a Canadian poet. That they’d be willing to invest in a novel by a relative unknown.”

Steven Price (C Centric Photography)

Steven Price (C Centric Photography)

Price’s first novel, Into That Darkness was published in 2011 and is set in post-earthquake Victoria. He is also the author of two award-winning poetry books, Anatomy of Keys (2006, Gerald Lampert Award) and Omens in the Year of the Ox (2012, ReLit Award). A long-standing sessional instructor with UVic’s Writing department, Price is also married to Giller Prize-winning novelist and Writing alum Esi Edugyan.

Interestingly, given the detective/thief focus of By Gaslight, his family runs Price’s Alarms—Canada’s oldest privately owned security company. Price told the Times Colonist that he was inspired to write By Gaslight after a conversation with a reclusive great-uncle, who told him a story about his great-grandfather, an English gunsmith and locksmith who founded the Price alarm company more than a century ago. “[My great-uncle] said something about how my great-grandfather had gotten in trouble with the law in London and fled England. He got to Canada and he kept going west, trying to make sure he wasn’t chased or caught.”

True story or not, Price then became interested in the idea of a literary character who is essentially a good person despite having a checkered past. Inspiration also came from Edugyan herself, who said to him, “If you don’t know whether it will be published, whatever you work on next, it really should be something you want to write.” Says Price, “So I just tried to sit down every day and write some pages that I would have liked to have read.”

Harald Krebs is our newest Royal Society Fellow

Award-winning scholar, pianist, author and School of Music professor Harald Krebs can now add Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada (RSC) to his many accomplishments. One of Canada’s best known music theorists, Krebs was announced as UVic’s newest RSC Fellow on September 7.

New Royal Society Fellow Harald Krebs (UVic Photo Services)

New Royal Society Fellow Harald Krebs (UVic Photo Services)

Election to the academies of the RSC is Canada’s highest academic honour and signals that the artist, scholar or scientist has made remarkable lifelong contributions to their field and to public life. And as an internationally recognized expert on musical meter and rhythm—especially in 19th-century German art song known as Lieder—Krebs certainly qualifies.

His work in music theory highlights under-researched and little-understood music of the 19th and early 20th centuries. “It’s a great pleasure for me to open people’s ears to unfamiliar music, and to aspects of familiar music that they had not previously considered,” he says.

Krebs’s publications on the life and music of the neglected 19th century German composer Josephine Lang, for example, have made her music more internationally known, and have inspired analytical work on the music of other female composers. His SSHRC-funded research on the metrically complex music of Robert Schumann culminated in the prize-winning monograph Fantasy Pieces, which has become one of the most influential books in the field.

His theory of meter has been applied to classical music of the 18th through 20th centuries, as well as to jazz, techno, and rock. “It has always been my concern to share my research internationally—via my writings, lectures, recordings, and editions—but also to share it with a local public,” he says. For 15 years, Krebs and his wife Sharon have offered “Lieder at Lunch” recitals at UVic, as well as connecting with the off-campus community through the UVic Speakers Bureau and VIHA’s entertainment programs.

At the core of Krebs’s work is his talent as a pianist. He was named a UVic Distinguished Professor in 2010, and received the Craigdarroch Award for Excellence in Artistic Expression in 2014. Now the Head of Theory, Krebs joined the School of Music in 1986. In addition to his teaching practice, his academic career has seen the creation of two groundbreaking books, a steady stream of peer-reviewed articles and a remarkable series of collaborative performances fusing scholarship and musical practice.

A total of 71 UVic scholars, scientists and artists—including current, former and adjunct faculty members—are Fellows of the Royal Society of Canada. Harald Krebs is the sixth Fine Arts faculty member to be inducted into the RSC, including Fellows Mary Kerr (Theatre), Joan MacLeod (Writing) and Tim Lilburn (Writing), as well as RSC College member Dániel Péter Biró (Music) and RSC Medal winner Jack Hodgins (Writing, retired).

Welcome (back) to Fine Arts!

It’s that time of year when we welcome all our new and returning Fine Arts students! On top of the formal Orientation schedule, there are plenty of fun — and free — events happening all week.

beullerFirst day of classes is Wednesday, September 7, and that’s also a day packed full of events:

  • Hungry for the new school year? Don’t miss free pancakes in the SUB from 8 to 11am — with gluten-free options available
  • There’s also a BBQ from noon to 2pm, running alongside the 11am to 4pm Vendor Fair, all outside the SUB
  • SUB Fair features the return of Bands on the Roof — where, yes, bands play on top of the SUB roof. Featuring local acts Iron Skies, Royal Youths, Black Wallace and DJ Vortoozo, also running noon to 4pm, followed by a DJ party at Felicita’s
  • Digitally hunt the wild Snorlax with a Pokemon Go! PokeSafari, from 5 to 7pm
  • Movie in the Park featuring the comedy classic Ferris Bueller’s Day Off — from 9-11pm in the Quad
  • Don’t forget to enter the major prize draw at the UVSS booth for a chance to win tickets to Rifflandia!

pizza day 2015Then on Thursday, September 8, is the Fine Arts Welcome Back Party! Running 4:30 to 6pm in the Fine Arts Courtyard (or the Visual Arts building if it’s raining), this annual meet-and-greet is a fun way for all Fine Arts students, staff and faculty to reconnect with friends from across all the Fine Arts departments and meet the new first year students. As always, free pizza, salads, cookies and drinks will be served by Fine Arts faculty and staff.

Also on Thursday, there’s a Farmer’s Market running 11am to 2pm outside the SUB, and a Community Pit Cook hosted by Songhees community members and UVic’s Office of Indigenous Affairs, also at 11am. There will be opportunities to learn about and to help prepare the pit cook in the morning, followed by tasting and sampling in the afternoon. (Students are encouraged to bring their own utensils for sampling.)

There’s also a special Week of Welcome for Indigenous Students. Running September 12 to 16, this is the chance for new or returning Indigenous students to connect with the Indigenous community on campus. Meet our Elders-in-residence, LE,NONET Campus Cousins and Office of Indigenous Affairs staff, learn about Indigenous student groups and be introduced to student supports on campus.

But this is just the start of six weeks of orientation activities for undergrad and grad students. Upcoming highlights include the Vikes Thunderfest (Sept 9), Sexualized Violence Awareness Week (Sept 12-16), Co-op & Career Info Day (Sept 13), the always popular Clubs and Course Union Days (Sept 14-15), the Amazing Race Victoria (Sept 17), International Opportunities Fair (Sept 20), UVic Co-op & Career Fair (Oct 4-5) and many more events. You can read more about all these events here.