We took rejections as a badge of honor as we were rejected for many years with the script: Patricia Chica
#PatriciaChica; #MontrealGirls; #RobertDAlessio; #RobsInnerCircle; #JennyDuHaime; #KamalJohnIskander, #HakimBrahimi
Toronto/Canadian-Media: Patricia Chica, a Canadian film and television director, producer, writer, speaker, acting coach, and energy influencer, during her conversation, with Robert D’Alessio in Episode 20 of Rob’s Inner Circle Podcast, hosted by Robert -- produced by Jenny DuHaime, Robert D’Alessio Productions, and Pax Management in Bobby’s Short Shorts (YouTube/StreamYard/Facebook) -- describes the struggles she faced in her script and the casting during the production of her recent theatrical feature film, ‘Montreal Girls’ which would be out in 2021 after 9 years of development.
Patricia Chica in conversation with Robert D’Alessio: Screenshot
Asha Bajaj, Editorial-Director of Canadian-Media brings you the excerpts:
Robert to Patricia: Tell us about your upcoming movie, ‘Montreal Girls’.
Patricia: ‘Montreal Girls’ is the theatrical feature film dramatic coming of age story to be out in 2021 after 9 years of development. It has been a long journey for me and my writing co-partner Kamal John Iskander and the producers of ‘Objectif 9’. We have been around the block many many times and they say take rejections as a badge of honor because we were rejected for many years with the script. I always believed this story needed to be told and it is never a match until you get it right with the right partners. That is what I have learned in this process. 'Montreal Girls’ is a labor of love and has my full stamp on it. The film is coming out next year, and post-production has already started.
Patricia with the Cast and Crew of Montreal Girls on the set. Image credit: © Bernard Brault.
To Patricia: Tell us a little bit Patricia about the lead actor, there is something peculiar about him. He had no experience but he did something extremely courageous. Please share that with your audience.
For many years we had one of the top rising stars of Egypt, Ahmed Malek but once we were able to fund the film with all the regulations in Canada, we lost our Egyptian star. So within a week, we had to replace him with somebody local because my film production was at stake. We went on a wide search casting call including North America and the Middle East for a young middle eastern actor in his early 20s to play the lead. At last, when I found a young person Hakim Brahimi, who was actually not an actor, but an employee of CIBC bank, also studying at Concordia University to become an engineer.
I wrote to him that he should send a self-tape within 24 to 48 hours, and when he sent a tape, it was obvious that he was not a trained actor. The next day I called him in the audition room and asked for his commitment to work full time with me as he had to do the lead role. He not only committed but also quit his job before I announced the role. With his willingness to learn and be guided to educate himself at different levels, I found that Hakim had a very high teachability index.
Hakim Brahimi with Patricia Chica. Image credit: Sophia Benalouane
We worked together for a full year to get him ready for the role of Ramy in ‘Montreal Girls’ and he did all the coaching of chi energy possible to become that character. The profound performance he gave was so intuitive and so right for the role. “I was myself impressed to the point of being teary sometimes behind the monitor when I could observe all the journey he went through to become that character.”
Hakim being coached by Patricia on Chi Energy. Image credit: Sophia Benalouane
To Patricia: You said you have some actors cast from all over Canada. There you have quite a bit cast on Montreal Girls.
We have a large cast with over 20 actors, a lot of secondary roles extras, etc. For me, casting has to be right, to be the right energy, authentic, and the commitment of the actors. I spent 4 and a half years on my own looking for those actors. And then worked with the wonderful team at Bruno Rosato Casting who helped us complete the callbacks and things like that. But it was a long journey for me, a heartbreaking journey to discover so many talents, discover myself, as well as my characters throughout the process. I did not want to cast people from different cultures playing Arabs and middle eastern people etc. I wanted the Quebecois to be full of Quebecois with the accent and those who were Anglos to be Anglos from Montreal, Middle Easterns to be Middle Eastern Arab characters and this is what makes a movie real and authentic.
Rob’s Inner Circle Podcasts are copyrighted: Copyright © September 2020, Bobby’s Short Shorts / Robert D’Alessio Productions / Pax Management. All rights reserved.
#PatriciaChica; #Filmmaker; #StoriesWithMessage; #CreativeProcess; #MaleDominatedSets
During a retrospective of her films and Q & A at the University of Southern California (USC), hosted by the Central American Film Festival in 2016, filmmaker Patricia Chica shares personal moments of her life and career journey, and inspirational anecdotes about her creative process working with actors, writers, and producers with TV Host/Interviewer: Sandra Chavarria and the audience.
Asha Bajaj, Editorial-Director of Canadian-Media brings you the excerpts:
Patricia Chica's interview session with Sandra
Sandra: I heard you say in your introductory speech Koalas to Astoria meaning what is your story. what is your story, Patricia?
Patricia: My story is very similar to about 2 million people in El Salvador where I was born in the 1970s. When the war struck in my country my father left the country to go to Mexico and apply for a visa for Canada. After working very hard from cleaning bathrooms to painting walls, within 6 months, he was able to pay for me, my mother, and my three little brothers to go to Canada. But we could not get visas to Canada due to the war. So, we had to lie and from Mexico City boarded a plane for Madrid with a stopover in Montreal, where my mother left the airplane leaving all her personal belongings with the luggage. Once in Montreal, we sought political refugee status. My parents were paid to learn French and soon they became Canadian citizenships and professionals and I educated myself to become a filmmaker. At present, about 200,000 to 250,000 Salvadorians are in Canada. 50,000 are in Montreal where I am from and there are many in Toronto and Vancouver. So that is my story.
What inspired you to become a filmmaker as you probably did not know many filmmakers from El Salvador?
I did not know any filmmakers in the world. From my childhood, I used to draw pictures to tell stories. When given a camera to record the vision in my head, I knew could transform people with my stories. I realized cinema to be the right tool for as it encompasses everything that I love including to stage, direct people, create, guide people to empower themselves creatively. My aim is to utilize all art forms visually to write a story to sound and music with rhythm and energy and to create emotion to engage and reach out to an international audience.
Patricia Chica filming as a teenager
What is your process with your writers when you have a plan to do a film?
I love to collaborate with the writers to elevate ideas, dialogue with them to develop a visually powerful story with my strong ideas, and a smooth transition from scene to scene by getting rid of many lines in the script. Once the actors start talking lines the visual script becomes alive and elevates the story to the next level. Apart from the writing and storytelling process, I love editing my own films with detail, love, long hours, and passion to create a strong message.
How I enjoy it? I had upset many boyfriends by spending all my nights on my computer. I started editing and filming when I was 16 years old. For me editing is a process of visualizing, capturing the image, creating rhythm and dynamics and associating lines with visuals and scenes, and reshuffling the structure of scenes to elevate the story. It is always about the story and involves selecting actors tactfully. For example, Medusa in ‘Serpents Lullaby’ was shot while sitting on the chair and just looking. This behind the scenes material was shot by behind the scenes camera. I utilize every second to shoot the reactions of unaware actors to elevate performance by replacing words with magical moments.
I also see that you teach with very spiritual energy with a message in all your stories. How do you do that?
The basic principle of filmmaking I follow is to connect the subject matter at the human level even if it is horrific, violent, dark, and then to find the light of humanity in darkness. After learning that the actor Holy Scar, could not scream due to a huge emotional blockage from childhood, I helped him overcome this blockage.
Holy Scar. Image credit: Screenshot
The strong messages in my stories empower and transform people’s lives by awakening their realization that everything happens in the world for a reason. In ‘Ceramic Tango’ my message to the people was to stop judging HIV patients or feel threatened because they are all human beings. I showed them the other side of the illness or their lifestyle to find some connection. After the screening of ‘Ceramic Tango,’ one man came to me, took my hand, and said, ‘This movie really moved me because I have been living with HIV for 30 years and it is the first time that I felt good about it.’ (Audience clapping) I sold my house for this film, but it was worth it as I felt a little better because somebody understood.
What are your experiences as a Latina woman filmmaker in a male-dominated field? Do you get a lot better with men than with women during working?
Being a filmmaker all my life since the age of 16, I see a huge change in the film industry by allowing women more important roles. Having been mostly on male-dominated sets with all my collaborators being male, I love working with men. Being raised in a family where there were only brothers, I have always been like a female leader. I know there are challenges, but I am very geeky and love talking about cameras, lenses, and techniques and we have fun working together. Irrespective of male or female collaborators, my concentration is focused on if their collaboration can improve the performance of what I have in my mind.
Do you think that lack of opportunities for women in this industry not only in the US but everywhere is going to change?
I think it is up to me to change it. I do not count on anybody to give me jobs. I create my own jobs and I am always creating something so I always find a way and not hoping that somebody will come with a silver plate.
Any words of wisdom for the audience and other people as to how to keep going in this industry?
I would say what has worked for me is to always follow your purpose and your heart, to do what you love, be aligned and congruent with your purpose. By doing the things that make you happy, you will always succeed.
In my rebellious teenage mind, I wanted to provoke thinking and challenge the status quo: Patricia Chica
#Toronto; #PatriciaChica; #Salvador; #Filmmaker; Chi Energy
Toronto, Nov 3 (Canadian-Media): Patricia Chica is a Canadian/Salvadorian talented writer, director, and producer of several films in English, French, and Spanish with a unique voice and qualifies for a subsidy from both countries.
Patricia Chica. Image credit: @GeovannySolis_GOODy
Asha Bajaj, Editorial-Director of Canadian-Media discusses with Patricia Chica by e-mail about her unique vision in all her work.
Asha Bajaj: What motivated you to choose the film line? Briefly describe your work for eight years as a casting director with your company ChicArt Productions, before you were known as a director-producer?
Patricia: I’ve always known that I would work in the entertainment industry, film, and television in particular since I was a kid. When I was in high school, as part of my English class assignment, I decided to do a video instead of a written essay like everyone and this was marked as a skill I would go on to develop further in the future.
I started my professional career as a casting director at the age of 16 and at 18, I founded ChicArt Productions as a small one-person business. Within a few years, it was transformed into a sustainable and successful casting agency with an office at Mel’s Studios in Montreal and 6 full-time employees.
Patricia Chica filming as a teenager
During those years, I conducted over 2000 auditions alongside veteran directors and seasoned actors for dozens of projects ranging from feature films, television series, commercials, and music videos, for Canadian, American, and French productions and became actor’s director and coach. My casting approach was based on opening doors to diverse actors: people of color, LGBTQ+, underground-looking people, and newcomers. I was always on the lookout for novelty, originality, for diversity, and inclusion in an era where these elements were unheard of. Finally at the height of my casting career, following my own heart, I closed the agency to concentrate solely on directing. Although I was broke for 6-months during my transitional period, I never looked back and I absolutely have no regrets.
As a 60-time award-winning film and television director, producer, writer, and editor you specialize in world-class productions in the genre of psychological dramas, thrillers, and edgy documentaries. What motivated you to follow this direction?
Driven by the power of storytelling to impact audiences worldwide to make society and the world a better place, I decided to become a director at the age of 17. In my rebellious teenage mind, I wanted to provoke thinking and challenge the status quo.
Today, there are 3 conditions that have to meet to become involved in a project which are:
1) Will the story impact the world positively?,
2) Will I have fun working on the project with the team involved?
3) Will it make me money, make me grow, and/or bring prestige to my slate?
All 3 boxes have to be checked for me to get involved. I don’t make compromises on the quality of the projects I choose to direct or produce.
Which were the main characteristic features and techniques you employed to develop stories in the genre of psychological dramas?
I tell my stories from the point of view (POV) of the protagonist, which drew me to the inner journey of the character and ultimately to the psychological drama genre. I developed storytelling techniques that support emotional connection with a unique visual style, using surreal imagery and meticulous editing cuts to portray the intrapsychic perspective of the protagonist.
In my psychological thriller work, I use twisted and disturbing elements within the edits to shock audiences and make them think differently about certain hard-hitting realities. It’s my way of bringing the darkness to the forefront so the audience can better see the light that lies underneath the surface of the plot. My films have a redeeming aspect so they can bring some sort of healing and enlightenment in the end.
Being prolific in three languages, did you direct films in all three languages? If yes, give a few examples of films in each language?
I started my career on French-Canadian television, directing for Canal Vie, Astra Media, the former TQS channel, ARTV, Canal D, Tele-Quebec, and many more, but later transitioned to English television for networks such as National Geographic, MTV, Travel Channel, CBS, and CBC.
With an aim to find an international audience for my personal films, I’ve worked with writers from Los Angeles, and Toronto, and made my short films mostly in English (Day Before Yesterday, Ceramic Tango, Serpent’s Lullaby, A Tricky Treat, and Morning After).
I used the Spanish language when I filmed two episodes of a documentary series called Spice Hunters in Mexico.
My recent English-language feature film Montréal Girls has many scenes in Arabic and French. Even if I don’t speak Arabic, I wanted the Arab characters to express themselves as authentically as possible.
You co-founded in 1997 a production company Flirt Films with a vision to produce high-quality films directed by women and visual minorities. Can you elaborate on this?
My intention of co-founding Flirt Films was to trigger opportunities for women and visual minorities (people of color), which were scarce in the late ’90s, and provide them with a space to work on high-quality productions.
Some of my first few projects with Flirt Films were short films directed by women, which was followed by producing and directing a series of short documentaries about the diverse Queer, Nightlife, and Hip Hop scenes in Montreal. The hiring of diversity was also extended to the cast and crew. Always being surrounding myself by multicultural and queer collaborators from different walks of life, sharing different views of the world, I felt could make a team richer at all levels.
You developed a creative approach based on Chi Energy techniques for storytelling and performance while filming ‘Montreal Girls’. Briefly describe this technique with your actors during the physical limitations imposed by the COVID safety rules.
Right at the beginning of the filmmaking process, I embraced Chi Energy, a mindset process based on the combination of these 5 laws: the laws of Nature, Time, Language, Subconscious Mind, and Vibration which implements higher consciousness and awareness. This methodology integrates storytelling with mindful practices such as breathwork, meditation, visualization, body awareness, energy exchange, and self-actualization exercises.
Patricia Chica in Chi Energy workshop. Image credit: ©Sharath_Ravishankar.jpg
By sharing this simple technique, when combined with a clear positive purpose, with my actors during the compulsory pre-production workshop, allowed them to stay centered and deeply connect to their characters, build strong relationships among themselves by successfully transcending any physical and mental limitations.
For example, I showed them how to use gazing into each other’s eyes and visualization techniques, to name a few.
Are you in any way connected with Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF)? If so in what capacity?
I’m a proud alumna of the TIFF Filmmaker Lab, a professional development program hosted by the Toronto International Film Festival. I was selected in 2018 as one of the 10 rising Canadian directors through this highly curated prestigious talent incubator. Thanks to my participation in the Lab, I was able to make valuable connections and learn from outstanding mentors.
What are your future plans after signing up with MoJo Global Arts?
My managers at Mojo Global Arts (Alex Flores, Doug Warner, and Morris Ruskin) are actively looking out opportunities for me to direct American episodic television and commercial feature films. They have been facilitating introductions to various production companies and studios in Hollywood. They’ve also guided me through the strategic process of rebranding me and my craft to attract high profile collaborations in the US and abroad.
MoJo Global Arts
#Toronto; #PanoramaIndia; #GhazalNight; #NamasteLiveWithPanoramaIndia
Toronto, Sep 16 (Canadian-Media): Panorama India is pleased to announce the next episode of 'Namaste Live With Panorama India', with its theme, "Ghazal Night" dedicated as an ode to this art form of poetry and soulful music on Sunday, September 27th, 2020 at 7:00 PM.
Panorama India. Image credit: Twitter handle
The Art of Content⠀Namaste Live with Panorama India is a periodic live stream session featuring content of arts, culture, lifestyle, local talent of South Asian diaspora in Toronto & GTA, to connect with and within our community.
Ghazal Night. Image credit: Panorama India
Featured Artists are: Vedant Panwar, Panorama Idol 2020 Winner (Jr.); Manpreet Singh, Punjabi Singer, Naveen Sarpal, Ghazal Singer; Megha Raina, Ghazal Writer; Featured Community Organization: HIMCAN - Himachali Association in Canada.
The program is being hosted by Sumeeta Kohli, Programmer; and Anusha Iyer, Technical Moderator.
Established in 1999 with the support from Consulate General of India, Toronto, Panorama India is a not-for-profit umbrella organization which helps unite various Indian cultural associations and groups, and celebrate Unity in Diversity.
Revolving around 3 pillars of its mandates: Educate, Celebrate and Collaborate, Panorama India fosters a better understanding between India and Canada and is proud to build bi-lateral relations with India and Canada through culture as well as provides a platform for all Indian cultural associations, groups, and individuals to exhibit and showcase their arts and culture.
More than 100 artists took the stage to perform diverse forms of Art, Culture, Music
#Brampton, #Ontario; #VibrantBramptonFestival; #ACISA; #NationalBank; #SandeepPrabhakar; #RickyBajaj; #VibrantBramptonEFestival; #VibrantClassical; #SouthAsianDigitalFestival
Brampton(ON), Aug 19 (Canadian-Media): The launch of the largest South Asian digital festival in Brampton #VibrantBramptonFest, biggest digital festival in Canada, presented by National Bank and supported by Lazeez Canada, concluded its successful virtual buzz on August 12.
Vibrant Brampton Festival. Image credit: Website
The live performance of the ‘festival of festivals’, was attended by thousands of people each day from their own homes, revelling, participating, applauding and generating a massive audience reach.
Conceptualized and arranged by the Arts & Culture Initiative of South Asia (ACISA), this year’s festival presented over a 100 artists' lineup including local and renowned international names.
Image credit: Website
The popularity of this year’s main festival event that began on July 21 and was scheduled to conclude on August 11 was so well attended that organizers had to add another day to conclude the grand finale on August 12.
The highlights of the festival including fusion performances, dance presentations and varied music from across the globe were greatly applauded and appreciated from audiences.
The inflation of the numbers of social media reach and engagements right from the commencement of the festival on June 22nd, and the launch of its talent hunt program #VibrantStar by emerging artists was followed by the conclusion of the main festival on August 12.
“We are pleased to announce that the #VibrantBramptonFest was very successful despite the pandemic. Our Social Media reach for both Facebook and Instagram was immense with the total post reach at 543,081 and the total post engagement at 291,776,” says Ricky Bajaj, co-founder and president, ACISA.
Ricky Bajaj. Image credit: ACISA website
“We would like to take this opportunity to specially thank National Bank, this year’s festival title sponsor, as well as Lazeez Canada. We would also like to send a shout out to all our local and international artists, community collaborators, volunteers and media partners, without whom #VibrantBramptonFest would not have been possible, added Arpan Banerjee, one of the founders of the festival.
This is also the first year for #VibrantStar, the emerging artists talent hunt contest with eight winners in different genres of performing arts – vocal, instrumental and dance. A total of 33 were selected from hundreds of video entries, part of a 4-week LIVE online audition from June 22 until July 17, 2020.
Click to download
“Vibrant Star was held to support local talent with a vision to groom musical and dancing abilities and to provide an opportunity to perform in Brampton’s largest arts, culture and heritage festival, #VibrantBrampton,” said Sandeep Prabhakar who chairs the Board at ACISA.
Vibrant Stat. Image credit: Website
Stemming from the need and demand for a platform for local Classical Music & Dance artistes to showcase their art forms in GTA, a new festival called Vibrant Classical Music & Dance is also being launched this Wednesday August 19, in a digital format until September 2nd.
“Classical Music and Dance has always aimed for the “classes” and not the “masses” But our goal is to let the masses experience & enjoy the class of this genre. It is the purpose of this festival to allow classical music and dance to reach as many ears and touch as many lives as we can” adds Sandeep Prabhakar.
The performance of the artists and their achievements are as follows:
Day 1 – SREERAMA CHANDRA
The amazing lineup of artists commenced on July 21 with the celebrated Sreerama Chandra, Indian Idol 5 winner and Bollywood playback singer from Mumbai, India. Along with Anita Lerche, renowned Danish Punjabi Singer currently living in the USA and award winning Canadian Indigenous artist David Maracle.
Click to download
Day 2 – AMAN TRIKHA
On July 22, Aman Trikha, India’s playback singer from Mumbai, took the stage performing LIVE from Mumbai. He was supported by local Canadian Bollywood Singer Parichay and several other local artists.
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Day 3 – SAHIR ALI BAGGA
July 28 brought in Pakistan’s award winning musician of Coke Studio fame – Sahir Ali Bagga, who has composed music for TV performances of Shafqat Amanat Ali Khan, Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, Azra Jehan, Sanam Marvi and many more performers. Earlier in the evening Maza, the Band, local Canadian pop band also of Pakistani origin, enthralled the online audience.
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Day 4 - BHOOMI TRIVEDI
The spectacular lineup continued on August 4 with live performances by Bhoomi Trivedi, well known Bollywood playback singer and Indian Idol finalists, and renowned Broadway Singer and artists Syndee Winters.
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Day 5 – LV REVANTH
On August 5, LV Revanth, Indian Idol 9 Winner and Bollywood Playback Singer graced the stage with his mesmerizing presence as the headlining act. Earlier in the evening Raghav, renowned Canadian Bollywood pop singer and Toronto’s successful award winning dance duo - Hemant and Vaishali Panwar – well known for their kathak performance, blew the audience away with their performances.
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Day 6 – HEMANT BRIJWASI
The brilliant singer, Hemant Brijwasi took the stage, keeping the audiences spellbound with his performance. Brijwasi is the winner of India’s prestigious reality TV singing competition Rising Star 2 and popular singing reality show Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs. He has also sung for films like Soorma, Genius, Bhootnath and many more.
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Day 7: NAVRAJ HANS
The #VibrantBramptonFest grand finale featured Navraj Hans, Punjabi heartthrob, singer, actor and emerging youth icon. The Son-in-law of Daler Mehndi, he has done playback singing for several Bollywood and Punjabi movies and some of his best known works are "Jind meriye" from the Bollywood movie Purani Jeans, "Chote Chote Peg" for Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety, and "Mundiyaan Tu Bachke" with Palak Muchhal for Baaghi 2.
Click to download
Images credit: Screen shots
Local Artists which participated in this festival were: Bollywood Dance School Canada; Jadoo Entertainment; The Butler -Fearon O’Connor School of Irish Dance; Syndee Winters; An Trio Ensemble; Toronto Chinese Orchestra; Zakisha & LiftID; Young Blood; Raz Hilland Quartet; Shivanjali Dance Academy; and Masaisai Afro Fusion band.
Images credit: Screen shots
A a non-profit organization with a vision to promote cross cultural understanding, Arts & Culture Initiative of South Asia (ACISA) aims to bring a diverse community together in celebration of life, culture, art and tradition. With its mission to promote the diversity of South Asian art forms, ACISA showcases local artists and provides them with an opportunity to present their work to a wide audience, break cultural barriers and encourage participation. ACISA continues to evolve imbibing the cultural values of Canada by allowing all communities from Brampton and rest of Canada to experience the different forms of South Asian Arts and culture to showcase South Asian heritage to communicate key messages that share the philosophy of diversity with residents of Brampton and rest of Canada.
#VibrantBramptonDigitalFestival2020; #ACISA; #RickyBajaj; #MoreThan100Artists
Toronto, Jul 21 (Canadian-Media): This year’s annual event of Vibrant Brampton heritage festival from July 21 to Sep 3, to be presented by Arts & Culture Initiative of South Asia (ACISA), would present performances of more than 100 artists in a digital format, owing to the current COVID-19 pandemic. In an email interview to Asha Bajaj of Canadian-Media, ACISA co-founder and president Ricky Bajaj talks about the mission, vision, challenges during the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Image: Official FB pages
This is the largest digital festival in Canada and you have an impressive 100 plus artists. How did you decide to do this?
A. This is our 5th anniversary this year and we had big plans for this festival. The venue at Garden Square, the largest ever stage and other technical equipment were all good to go. Two major headliners from India and Pakistan were booked to come to perform at the festival. However, COVID 19 happened, so we had to look at alternative ways to bring this festival to the people.
Vibrant Brampton E-Festival 2020. Image credit: Facebook page
We believe showcase of arts, culture & heritage through festivals and expositions will not lose its power even in the face of the virus.
Our plan to celebrate this milestone might have changed its course but our promise to entertain people across the Greater Toronto Area and Canada through a unique online experience came alive, when we thought of turning this festival into a digital hybrid format!
What challenges did you face in getting these 100 artists? It is quite an achievement. What were the criteria for selection?
Yes, it’s definitely a challenge to get over 100 artists to perform. Like all other areas of life, arts & cultural showcases have not been left untouched by this crisis. We wanted to support our local artists during these unprecedented times. Like every year, we wanted to give them a platform where they could perform with leading international artists who have a big fan following in Canada, so that these local artists could get more exposure. Like every year, we initiated the artists' call, both from South Asian and non- South Asian backgrounds, through various channels.
What is the mandate of this organization?
Arts & Culture Initiative of South Asia (ACISA) - the producer of VIBRANT BRAMPTON FESTIVAL - is a non- profit organization with a vision to promote cross cultural understanding with the aim of bringing a diverse community together in celebration of life, culture, art and tradition.
ACISA. Image credit: Website
Our mission is to promote the diversity of South Asian art forms by showcasing local artistes and providing them with an opportunity to present their work to a wide range of audience; to break cultural barriers and encourage participation, allowing all communities from Brampton and rest of Canada to experience the different forms of South Asian Arts and culture; showcase South Asian heritage as it continues to evolve imbibing the cultural values of Canada; and communicate key messages that share the philosophy of diversity with residents of Brampton and rest of Canada.
What kind of an audience can we expect in these trying COVID times?
More than ever, now is when arts and music and culture have the power to not only uplift spirits, but also to bring people together in these unprecedented times and our festivals endeavour to do just that. Keeping this in mind, we launched a program where we could get not just professional artists but also emerging artists and provide them with an opportunity to perform at our prestigious festival. Our Board of Directors and the team embarked on opening up online auditions and so far we have got over 90,000 engagements on Facebook alone, where we have been running this program since June 22, 2020.
How important is it to promote art and culture?
I believe art and culture is very important. Cultural expressions are tangible in the form of art, literature, music, dance, theatre, film, storytelling etc. Such manifestations can also be of economic value. Projects from our non-profit arts organization Arts & Culture Initiative of South Asia (ACISA) - such as Vibrant Brampton, Visual Arts of South Asia-Arts Festival (V.A.S.A) and META Arts fest– Digital Arts Music & Media Festival are not only harbingers of social development, but also bring economic value to local business community.
Any message to the community?
I would encourage everyone to join in and encourage our artists in the Vibrant Brampton Festival through our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/vibrantbramptonfest
Every Tuesday & Wednesday from July 21 until August 11
July 21 & 22, July 28 & 29, Aug 4, 5 and 11
Time: 7.30 pm to 10.00 pm.
For more information, visit www.acisa.ca.
Watch YouTube: https://youtu.be/yH-mhsY6zug
Over a 100 artists to perform at the largest Digital South Asian Festival featuring arts, culture, music
Superstars Navraj Hans, Hemant Brijwasi and Bollywood Sensation Bhoomi Trivedi among performers
#Brampton, #VibrantBramptonFestival; #ACISA; #NationalBank; #SandeepPrabhakar; #RickyBajaj; #VibrantBramptonEFestival; #VibrantClassical; #SouthAsianDigitalFestival
Brampton (ON), Jul 15 (Canadian-Media): Bollywood and Punjabi Heartthrob, Navraj Hans, the winner of Rising Star 2 and Saregama L'il Champs, Hemant Brijwasi, Indian Idol 9 Winner and Bollywood Playback Singer LV Revanth, Singer and Diva Bhoomi Trivedi and renowned Pakistani Singer, music director and composer Sahir Ali Bagga along with several other artists will be performing at the prestigious Vibrant Brampton festival, being presented in Brampton July 21-September 3 in a unique digital format.
The annual event is being presented by the Arts & Culture Initiative of South Asia (ACISA), a non-profit organization that began its journey a few years ago and was initiated with a mandate to showcase the culture and diversity of our country, and with its vision to promote cross cultural understanding and bringing a diverse community together in celebration of life, culture, art and tradition.
“The sounds and sights of the various artists will present a diverse sound, providing artists from various genres to come forward with their art including music, dance and culture,” says Sandeep Prabhakar, co-founder and Chair of ACISA. Under the banner of Vibrant Brampton, a spectacle of celebration will bring the best of South Asian arts, culture and heritage.”
With its mission to promote the diversity of South Asian art forms by showcasing local artists in allowing them to present their work to a wide audience, ACISA serves to break cultural barrier in encouraging participation from all communities from Brampton to experience the different forms of South Asian Arts and culture in showcasing South Asian heritage as it continues to imbibe the cultural values of Canada and communicate key messages that share the philosophy of diversity with residents of Brampton. For more information, visit www.acisa.ca.
With a focus to promote local talent, the festival encourages and features renowned artists from Canada, India, Pakistan, Europe and the U.K and will be broadcast on July 21 and 22, July 28 and 29 and August 5, 6 and 11, 2020.
“This is an arts festival that provides artists with the opportunity to connect, create and communicate a whole new array of art in different forms, with each artist bringing their best to thousands of people across the globe,” said Ricky Bajaj, President and co-founder of the festival.” The audience will get to experience varied art forms, whether it is the beats of Bhangra or the dance moves of Bollywood or an assortment of other art forms emerging from the roots of the South Asian continent.”
National Bank. is the Presenting Sponsor of the event.
"National Bank has always been committed to contributing to the cultural vitality of the communities it serves, even during uncertain times like these. Vibrant Brampton is a great opportunity to immerse yourself in South Asian culture, discover new artists and see them in action. Enjoy the festival!" said Nejib Ranni, Regional Vice President - Personal Banking, GTA Central and East, National Bank of Canada.
Besides Vibrant Brampton, ACISA will also organize four more festivals in a digital format including Vibrant Star, Visual Arts of South Asia (V.A.S.A) Arts festival and META. The Vibrant Star talent hunt live auditions received an overwhelming response. Out of a pool, 32 selected amateur participants, six emerging artists will get the opportunity to perform at the Main Festival alongside renowned national and international artists. In addition, this year a new festival – Vibrant Classical - is being launched for classical arts enthusiasts.
This year’s festival title sponsor is National Bank and is also supported by Lazeez Canada.
Vibrant Brampton, a heritage festival would feature performances from renowned and emerging artists held every Tuesday and Wednesday from July 21 to August 11, 2020.
Key dates with schedules are as follows:
July 21 and 22 – Renowned and Emerging artists (Vibranampton) 7:30 AM – 10 PM
July 28 and 29 – Renowned and Emerging artists (Vibrant Brampton) 7:30 AM – 10 PM
August 5, 6 and 11 - Renowned and Emerging artists (Vibrant Bramon) 7:30 AM – 10 PM
VIBRANT BRAMPTON e-FESTIVAL would be held every Tuesday & Wednesday from July 21 until August 11.
The schedule is as follows:
July 21 & 22, July 28 & 29, Aug 4, 5 and 11
Time: 7:30 PM to 10:00 PM
The festival, like every year, will run hands on workshops every Thursday - July 23, 29 and August 6.
Vibrant Classical (New segment classical art enthusiasts) would be held on August 20, 27 and September 3 from 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM
LIVE STREAMING ON VIBRANT BRAMPTON FACEBOOK PAGE TIMELINE is as follows:
Sreerama Chandra (Indian Idol 5 winner and Bollywood playback Singer)- from Mumbai, India;
Anita Lerche (Renowned Caucasian Punjabi Singer) from Denmark; and
David Maracle- Award winning Canadian Indigenous artist
Aaman Trikha (Bollywood playback Singer, Mumbai India), and
Hemant & Vaishali Panwar- Award Winning Canadian Kathak duo
Sahir Ali Bagga (Coke Studio fame Pakistani musician), and
Maza- the Band (Local Canadian pop band of Pakistani origin)
Hemant Brijwasi (Winner of Rising Star 2 and Saregamapa L'il Champs), and
Parichay: Canadian Bollywood pop singer
Bhoomi Trivedi (Renowned Payback singer), and
The Starzone (Pakistani Canadian pop band)
LV Revanth (Indian Idol 9 Winner and Bollywood Playback Singer), and
Raghav - Renowned Canadian Bollywood pop singer
Kinjal Chaterjee, Famous Bengali and Bollywood Playback musician,
Sarabjit Cheema- Renowned Canadian Punjabi Folk Singer, and
Navraj Hans- Famous Punjabi Singer and Bollywood Heartthrob
#Quebec; #PublicHealthAuthorities; #Covid19; #EaseOfRestrictions
Quebec City, Jun 8 (Canadian-Media): Quebec public health authorities are announcing that it will soon be possible to meet in private indoor locations, provided they do not exceed the maximum number of 10 people.
Quebec Govt. Image credit: Facebook page
It is requested that there be a maximum of 3 separate households and that all of the sanitary instructions that apply to any other gathering are respected, in particular the minimum distance of 2 meters. Indoor gatherings will be allowed from June 15 outside the Metropolitan Community of Montreal, the regional county municipality of Jolietteand the city of L'Épiphanie.
For these territories, these gatherings will be allowed from June 22. These measures are consistent with the measures currently recommended for gatherings in an outdoor private place, which remain to be preferred, when the weather permits.
During these gatherings, the basic instructions must be observed at all times, including those concerning hand washing, avoiding unnecessary contact with common surfaces and objects and wearing a face covering if the minimum distance cannot be respected. Note that food can be served, but buffet meals should be avoided. Children have the right to play together, but with certain precautionary measures.
It is recommended that people at risk, either people over 70 years of age or those who are more vulnerable on the immune level, not to participate in such gatherings. In addition, anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, is under investigation, or has symptoms compatible with this infection should stay at home and avoid gatherings.
People who receive at home are invited to take note of the people invited to their home, the date of their visit and the activities that took place. This will make it easier for the regional public health department to conduct investigations in the event of an outbreak.
Useful measures to put into practice include, for example, reserving a bathroom for guest use and often cleaning frequently touched surfaces such as door handles and switches.
People who receive are also invited to find solutions to reduce the risk of transmission of the virus, for example by identifying the glasses with the names of the people, by serving dishes in separate bowls according to households or by demonstrating creativity in this sense.
Remember that if symptoms appear, it is always essential:
#NFB; #AnimatedShorts; #AnimatedFilms; #VirtualRealityAimation
Montreal, May 26 (Canadian-Media): Seven works that were either produced or co-produced by the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) have been selected for We Are One: A Global Film Festival, an unprecedented online film festival streaming across the globe on YouTube from May 29 to June 7, 2020.
More than 20 of the most prestigious festivals in the world—including Venice, Berlin, Cannes, Annecy, Tribeca and Toronto—are joining forces to present We Are One: A Global Film Festival, which will also provide ways for viewers to donate to COVID-19 pandemic relief efforts.
The NFB titles selected are: the animated shorts Shannon Amen by Chris Dainty and The Procession by Pascal Blanchet and Rodolphe Saint-Gelais, both of which have won acclaim on the festival circuit; Léon in Wintertime, Molly in Springtime, Bonifacio in Summertime and Poppety in the Fall, a series of four enchanting, family-friendly animated films co-directed by Pierre-Luc Granjon; and the VR animation work Minotaur by Munro Ferguson.
Seven NFB productions or co-productions selected for the We Are One: A Global Film Festival:
NFB. Image credit: Twitter Handle
#MeghanMarkle; #Disney; #NewOnDineyPlus; #PrinceHarry; #RoyalFamily; #Africa
Toronto, Mar 26 (Canadian-Media): More than three years after quitting her acting career former “Suits” star Meghan Markle accepted the role of a narrator in the upcoming documentary “Elephant,” due to livestream on Disney+ beginning April 3, media reports said.
Meghan Markle. Image credit: Twitter
The release is one of a series of animal- and nature-themed features to mark Earth Month. Dating back to 1970, both Earth Month and Earth Day have been observed to focus our energies on our environment.
The film follows an elephant family on a 1,600-kilometre journey across the Kalahari Desert.
Proceeds from the film will benefit Elephants Without Borders, a charity believed to be close to Meghan and Harry’s hearts.
Meanwhile “Black Swan” actress Natalie Portman’s Disneynature documentary “Dolphin Reef” will premiere alongside “Elephant” on April 3.
Harry and Meghan's announcement in January of quitting as senior royals, relinquishing official duties and seeking financial independence had shocked the world. Since late last year they have been based on Vancouver Island, in British Columbia and will officially end royal duties on March 31.