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Stratford Writers Festival launches interactive component to help emerging authors get published

A new kind of 21st Century literary festival combining literature, the arts and interactive programming comes to Stratford next month, giving aspiring writers a chance to share their work with established authors and industry professionals.

Celebrating Cape Breton: Celtic Colours

by Kerry Dexter /
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Aug 15, 2016 / 0 comments

Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, is a place in the far north of Atlantic Canada where mountain meets forest meets sea. Over the centuries, it has also become a place where cultures meet and mix and respect each other. The Mi'kmaq people came first, to fish the waters and live in the forests.

Artist of the Month: Manny Martins-Karman

by Dr. Jessie Voigts /
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Aug 01, 2016 / 0 comments

Just look at our artist of the month this month – she exudes joy, both in writing and in her art. Born in 1963 in Faro, Portugal, Manuela Martins-Karman (Manny) is honing her skills as a visual artist in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. Manny graduated from Red River Community College, where she majored in Graphic Design and minored in life drawing. There, she developed her acute attention to form and spatial analysis.

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Visiting Stratford, Ontario? The first thing you need to do...

MThere are many reasons to visit Stratford - the legendary theatre (of course!), the incredible culinary scene, the arts, the beautiful setting, and the kind and interesting people who live there.

For whatever reasons you're visiting Stratford, there's ONE thing you need to do first. We did, and it informed and influenced our entire visit.

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Everything You Need to Know about the Newfoundland Folk Festival

Just up the block from Moo Moo's Ice Cream in downtown St. John's, Newfoundland is Bannerman Park (trust me to base directions on ice cream). A wide, expansive park, with a playground, lush grassy areas, and plenty of trees, a visit earlier in the week showed me just that - a park. But once a year in early August, this park transforms into a world-class music venue, as it hosts the Newfoundland & Labrador Folk Festival. 

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How to Spend an Idyllic Afternoon on Île d’Orléans, Quebec

It was a gorgeous August day - the kind you hope for when planning a trip, smile at your good luck with the weather during, and remember fondly for years afterward.

How to Spend an Idyllic Afternoon on Île d’Orléans, Quebec

Photographer of the Month: Courtney Quirin

by Dr. Jessie Voigts /
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May 16, 2016 / 0 comments

Courtney Quirin is a wildlife biologist turned environmental journalist and documentary filmmaker. She has reported for Al Jazeera America in San Francisco and for The Associated Press in Johannesburg, South Africa. Courtney's first documentary, which was her thesis at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, won the 2015 CINE Golden Eagle Award for Best Student Documentary and the Margaret & William Hearst Award for Excellence in Documentary Film.

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Young Stars Light Up the Stage at Stratford's Springworks Festival

In a simple basement with bare light bulbs and a water heater for company, five gifted musicians are making extraordinary music. In a studio that means business (except for the cheerful teal and silver dots adorning one wall), eight talented dancers are pushing the boundaries of what their bodies can do. On an often isolated journey, a budding composer is hearing whole orchestras. What do they have in common? None of them are older than 25.  

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Sharron Matthews Set to Open Stratford's SpringWorks Festival With a Bang

Opening nights are ever an exciting and elegant gala, celebrating months of hard work. This year on May 12 – at SpringWorks indie theatre & arts festival – will be no exception. Though there may be a bit more rocking out as Sharron Matthews takes the stage with her signature irreverent wit and solid gold mash-ups in a comedic tour-de-force concert.

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What is it like to be a writer? Canadian author Marianne Brandis on the creative life

As a writer, I am entranced by words. I love them – writing them, reading them, re-reading them, finding writers that use them in creative, interesting ways. To say that my life is one of writing and reading is not an overstatement, but rather, a joyful way to be in the world. 

When I discover writers that I love, I dig in deeply to their words. They enrich my life, thoughts, reading. And, when I have the ability to share the talents of such writers? Well, this is one of the reasons I started this website.