LSM Newswire

Thursday, June 12, 2008

SHIFT- A festival of Canadian and Dutch Arts


A major festival of Canadian and Dutch Arts

Presented by Continuum Contemporary Music and Images Festival


Saturday, June 21, 7-10 pm

Gallery 345, 345 Sorauren Avenue, south of Dundas

Toronto, June 10, 2008: On Saturday, June 21 at 7 pm, Continuum Contemporary Music and Images Festival host a media launch and fundraising event for SHIFT, a festival of Canadian and Dutch Arts to be held in Amsterdam in November, 2008, and in Toronto in February, 2009. The event will feature Guy Maddin as guest-speaker, and other guests will include SHIFT partners Jennifer Waring, Artistic Director of Continuum, Scott Miller Berry, Executive Director of the Images Festival, and Geoffrey Taylor, Director of the International Festival of Authors; also in attendance will be Astrid de Vries, Deputy Consul-General of the Netherlands. Catering for the event will be provided by Grano.

The evening will feature short presentations from Jennifer Waring, Scott Miller Berry and Geoffrey Taylor; a performance by Continuums musicians; and a talk by guest speaker Guy Maddin. The event will be held at Gallery 345; the gallery, owned by Edward Epstein, specializes in exhibitions of photography and is a frequent venue for concerts of contemporary music and arts-related special events.

Conceived by Continuums Artistic Director Jennifer Waring, SHIFT is a festival of Canadian and Dutch arts with activities in Amsterdam in November, 2008, and in Toronto in February, 2009. SHIFT will create opportunities for exploration, exchange and new artistic and cultural understanding between Canada and The Netherlands. SHIFT is programmed by some of Canadas top artistic voices Continuum, International Festival of Authors, Visual Arts at Harbourfront Centre and Images Film Festival in collaboration with the internationally acclaimed ASKO and Ives ensembles, and Impakt Film Festival, Utrecht. In Amsterdam, the architecturally stunning Muziekgebouw aan t IJ is the host venue; Canadian activities will be hosted by Torontos jewel of the waterfront, Harbourfront Centre. SHIFT will present music, film, literature and visual arts as distinct forms while also encouraging their combination: Canadian and Dutch artists will work together to create new and exciting interdisciplinary projects. Highlights include the premiere of new works by no less than eleven Canadian and Dutch composers; a project of film and live music; exhibitions of Canadian and Dutch photography, metalwork and more; readings by established and emerging Canadian and Dutch authors; and in Toronto, a three-day architectural charrette during which the most innovative Dutch and Canadian architects will grapple with a set issue, followed by a public forum for discussion of the results.

Winnipeger Guy Maddin is an internationally acclaimed screenwriter and director whose most distinctive quality is his fondness for recreating the look and style of silent or early sound era films. His short and feature-length films, which include The Saddest Music in the World, and Brand upon the Brain! featuring narrator, live musicians and foley artists, have won numerous awards and honours including a Genie, Best Canadian Feature at the Toronto International Film Festival, a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Telluride Film Festival, and a directors spotlight at the Rotterdam International Film Festival. For SHIFT he is creating a new work in collaboration with British/Dutch composer Richard Ayres, to be premiered in Amsterdam by Continuum and repeated in Toronto at the Images Festival.

Continuum Contemporary Music, led by Artistic Director Jennifer Waring, was formed in 1985 and has been responsible for commissioning and premiering more than 100 new works from emerging Canadian composers. One of the finest new music ensembles in the country, Continuum was awarded the 1994 Jean A. Chalmers Award for its focus on new works for voice, has toured Canada and Europe, and in 2007 released its second compact disc, Sea Change. Members are Anne Thompson (flute), Max Christie (clarinet), Benjamin Bowman (violin), Paul Widner (cello), Ryan Scott (percussion) and Laurent Philippe (piano). Continuum will perform in Amsterdam as part of SHIFT, and then will enhance their European presence with performances in Huddersfield, Aberdeen and Den Bosch.

The Images Festival was established in 1987 as Toronto's only alternative to the Toronto International Film Festival, integrating film and video from its inception, and later expanding to include installations, performances and new media. It is now the most comprehensive event of its kind in Canada, and a critical forum for the Canadian independent media arts community, as well as media artists and programmers operating on an international level. Over its long history, the Images Festival has become intrinsically linked to the survival of independent production as well as to the profile of Canadian work both here and abroad.

The International Festival of Authors (IFOA) was inaugurated in 1980 with a mandate to bring together the best writers of contemporary world literature. The IFOA includes readings, interviews, lectures and round-table discussions as well as public book signings and a festival bookstore. Recent participants have included Man Booker Prize-winners Anne Enright, Kiran Desai, John Banville, and Yann Martel; Nobel Prize-winner Orhan Pamuk; and Pulitzer Prize-winner Geraldine Brooks. The IFOA also presents a number of special events including readings by Scotiabank Giller Prize and Governor Generals Literary Awards finalists, as well as the awarding of the Harbourfront Festival Prize.

Tickets for the event are $75 (purchasers receive a $50 tax receipt) and must be reserved in advance. For more information or to reserve tickets please contact Festival Coordinator Josh Grossman at (416) 924-4945 or

Continuum Contemporary Music presents

SHIFT media launch and fundraiser

Saturday, June 21 at 7 pm at Gallery 345

345 Sorauren Avenue, south of Dundas

Tickets $75 ($50 tax receipt), reservations required

For tickets and information contact Josh Grossman at or (416) 924-4945.

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