Category: Articles

MARTY Awards Honours Top Mississauga Artists

– -Jatin Naik

Mississauga’s very own MARTY Awards was celebrated late last month on Thursday May 23. Leading artists from diverse fields were honoured at the 2019 MARTY awards ceremony hosted by the Mississauga Arts Council (MAC). The awards were presented at the Mississauga Convention Centre to a house full of attendees. This year, the MAC celebrated the 25th anniversary of the MARTY Awards. A large number of nominated artists, who are chosen based on criteria demonstrating excellence in their work,  walked the red carpet.

Artists, including nominees and their family members and friends were present, as well as prominent Mississauga politicians, celebrities  and business leaders. We also saw arts patrons, volunteers, and so many engaged art lovers in the community. The cocktail area, as always, was very lively and our emerging artists loved to meet the movers and shakers in the city, including media personnel.

The Mississauga Arts Council (MAC) established in 1981 by City Resolution, is a non-profit registered charity governed by a Board of Directors. Their mission is to foster, develop, support and champion a vibrant, dynamic arts community in Mississauga. The MAC is instrumental in advocating for the building of Arts spaces including Meadowvale Theatre, the Art Gallery of Mississauga and the Living Arts Centre. The MAC regularly hosts and promotes events each year to create a vibrant arts and culture community in the city. The MARTYS is also known as the Mississauga Arts Awards, an awards ceremony that has been recognizing excellence in the field of arts, in the city of Mississauga, since the past 25 years.

The  following winners during the ceremony in the below mentioned categories:

Festival of the Year – Bollywood Monster Mashup

Lifetime Achievement – Lata Pada
Hazel McCallion Volunteer of the Year – Michael Buchert
Laurie Pallett Patron of the Arts – Heather Snell
Emerging Visual Arts – Katherine A. Laird Continue reading “MARTY Awards Honours Top Mississauga Artists”

Monster World MashUp heats up a cold and wet Spring!

–Lachman Balani

It has been a cold, wet and dreary Spring!

Never fear though because festival season is upon us to heat things up!

This past weekend Brampton got its fair share of energy and a hot spell as Vikas Kohli’s third annual Monster World Mashup (MWM) took over the ski chalet at Chinguacousy Park and Brampton’s Garden Square (temporarily named Jurassic Square for the NBA finals as Toronto’s team, the Raptors, take on the Warriors from Oakland in California).

MWM kicked off on May 31. After opening remarks from Councilor Charmaine Williams and Kohli, the ski chalet wound up being a non-stop laugh heaven as Brandon Ash-Mohammed opened up the night by splitting the sides of all attendees with his wisecracks.

Then followed a zany bunch of hilarious jesters including Johnny Batta, Harpreet Sehmbi, EDwOrld Kim, Vandad Kardar and headliner Nick Reynoldson cracking joke after joke after joke as the crowd egged them on with uncontrollable fits of laughter. Vandad, of Iranian descent, was the most brazen and frank comic of them all with one fan telling him he had a lot of “cojones”.

The comedians were Canadians of all different origins representing the natural habitat of Brampton.

The whole show was hosted by well known comedian Amish Patel of Fade to Brown who had some people laughing so hard that they cried!

MWM continued the next day transforming the Garden Square in Brampton into “Chutney and Bollywood” square, as one spectator exclaimed,  with a non-stop music show from 5 pm onwards that was hosted by Randy Persaud and headlined by Parichay.

Parichay is a Bollywood playback singer, composer and producer who is currently based in Toronto. He has collaborated with the likes of Vishal Dadlani, Nargis Fakhri, Kardinal Offishall and Sean Kingston and his youtube portfolio has more than 100 million views.

Parichay has this knack of infusing lyrics from old Hindi movie songs and he didn’t disappoint this time thrilling the crowd right from the get-go with Mohd. Rafi’s “yeh mera prem patra padhkar, ke tum naaraaz na hona…”. His performance was par excellence! Continue reading “Monster World MashUp heats up a cold and wet Spring!”

A-Z Films has picked up ‘The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir’

Film stars renowned Indian Actor Dhanush in the lead 

A-Z Films has picked up The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir, a comedy adventure by Quebec director Ken Scott (Starbuck, Delivery Man, Unfinished Business, La Grande Séduction) and starring the well-known Indian actor Dhanush, and featuring Bérénice Béjo (The Artist) Barkhad Abdi (Captain Phillips) Erin Moriarty (Blood Father) and Abel Jafri (Timbuktu). Rounding out the cast is Gérard Jugnot, Ben Miller, Sarah-Jeanne Labrosse, Stefano Cassetti.

A co-production between France, India and Belgium, the English-language feature will be distributed in Canada by A-Z films, and released day and date with US, India and Canada on June 21.  

The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir most recently won the Audience Award for Best Comedy at the Barcelona Sant-Jordi International Film Festival, and was the opening night film at the International Film Festival of South Asia, in Toronto.

The screenplay was written by author Romain Puértolas, and Luc Bossi who also is producing through his Paris-based company Brio Films. Other co-producers include Vamonos Films, Little Red Car Films, Scope Pictures, M! Capital Ventures, Impact Films and Golden Ratio Films.

The film has been adapted from Puértolas’ novel “The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe,” which came out in 2014 and has been translated into 35 languages.

A hustler from Mumbai embarks on an extraordinary voyage across Europe in search of his estranged father. During his trip, he finds love in a Swedish furniture store in Paris, but danger with Somalian migrants ensues and he ends up in London, then more threats follow the young man until he finds himself in Rome, where an unlikely threat shadows the hustler on to a hot-air balloon that rides across the Med. Continue reading “A-Z Films has picked up ‘The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir’”

Blues Legend Lucky Peterson launches Kitchener Blues Festival!

–Lachman Balani

 The cavernous up tempo bar and nightclub Elements in Kitchener was the scene for the launch party of the Kitchener Blues Festival this past weekend.

The Kitchener Blues Festival is one of the few tightly run annual music festivals in Ontario announcing its line-up way ahead of its scheduled event in August.

This 4 day festival in Kitchener spread over 3 stages boasts of having hosted some amazing acts in recent times such as Eric Burdon, Randy Bachman, Burton Cummings, Foghat , Edgar Winter, Rik Emmett and many more! It is the go to event for blues and rock lovers in the neighbouring Greater Toronto Area.

Matt Weidinger opened the kickoff party setting the mood for the party-goers.

Following the opening band, Lucky Peterson from Buffalo and Kitchener homeboy Shawn Kellerman and his band sent the crowd into a dancing tizzy as both young and old folks got up to groove to the blues.

Shawn opened up with his band and Lucky joined in a couple of songs later and they all came together to play nonstop blues rock ramming one song into the next without missing a beat! It was incredible to see them play for a full hour with no break between songs! Continue reading “Blues Legend Lucky Peterson launches Kitchener Blues Festival!”

Are You Living an Adventure-Starved Life? 11 Ways to Shake Things Up

– Vella Mbenna, author of Muddy Roads Blue Skies 

Have you fallen into a routine of drudgery? Do you feel stuck there? You’re not alone. If we’re honest, many of us will admit that we’re kind of going through the motions—work, home, eat, TV, sleep, repeat—and living by default instead of design. Life isn’t bad; it’s just dull. Uninspired. Actually (and ironically), a bit lifeless. We shouldn’t just accept our adventure-starved status quo.

Life is meant to be really lived. I’ve come to believe adventure is a deep human need. We read about it in books and we watch it in movies because deep down we crave it.

And we owe it to ourselves to pursue things that give us that spark, that jolt of excitement. It doesn’t matter how old you are or what your income is. You can and should weave some adventure into your life.

Growing up in rural Georgia, I dreamed of travel and excitement. But after college I found myself broke, divorced, and struggling to raise my child alone. Continue reading “Are You Living an Adventure-Starved Life? 11 Ways to Shake Things Up”

Book reveals that the Biblical Hebrew people came from Ancient India

HINDUS EMBRACE JEWISH WRITER’S RESEARCH

Toronto’s Hindu community is embracing the work of a Jewish writer whose research shows the Biblical Hebrew people came to the Middle East from Ancient India.

Earlier this month, Author Barry Brown, who spoke at the Hindu Sabha Mandir, was warmly welcomed by the hundred plus audience in Brampton.    His richly detailed book, Humanity: The World Before Religion, War & Inequality, claims the start of the Jewish Bible and the end of India’s ancient text the Mahabharata are connected by the same ancient history.

“Barry Brown is a Pulitzer Prize-nominated Canadian journalist. His book says that the first war in the world is the Mahabharata,” said Ashok Kapoor, of the Hindu Sabha Mandir, introducing Brown to the audience.

. According to Brown, ancient India’s history ends almost 6,000 years ago with the destruction of its ancient kingdoms in what Brown’s book claims is the first large-scale, organized war in human history. And that war is also the historic event that inspired the Bible’s tale of the “fall of mankind” in the Garden of Eden and the beginning of the Jewish calendar nearly 6,000 years ago.

“The Bible says Eden was located at the eastern end of a larger land called “Havilah” and according to the 20-volume, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia, the oldest traditions in Judaism and Christianity dating back more than 2,000 years all agree Havilah was India. Continue reading “Book reveals that the Biblical Hebrew people came from Ancient India”

Book, Beach & Boca Chica! Sun, Sand & Santo Domingo!

Those of us who chose to make Canada our home, obviously love the snow! The world looks pretty! Even so, when it snows non-stop, for weeks, we seek the sun! Reading week for my university student was a perfect time to get warm and cozy. That’s when we landed in Punta Cana!

Since our preference was a not so touristy location, we chose an all-inclusive resort in a small village-town called Boca Chica. The bus journey from the airport to our resort was scenic, laden with hills and greenery! Arriving at our destination by night, our family, a hungry bunch headed straight for dinner! This beach resort, which was home for the next week had plenty to offer! Food, drinks, beach, nightly entertainment, easy access to the village……

On day two, we decided to visit Santo Domingo, the vibrant city that combines splendid centuries-old cathedrals and buildings with amazing parks, lakes and caves.

Travelling in a private car was a fun way to get around. Our enthusiastic driver, who spoke English was more than willing to be our tour guide. He brings us to gorgeous Zona Colonial, where the city’s oldest sights and trendiest shops co-exist adjacent to each other.

Although Santo Domingo’s Colonial Zone is small and walkable, the slow-moving Chu Chu Colonial train is an exotic way to explore the area’s treasure of antiquity. This 45-minute guided tour gives you a ride through cobblestone streets as you admire the historic monuments, cathedrals and archaeological ruins that have been there for centuries. Continue reading “Book, Beach & Boca Chica! Sun, Sand & Santo Domingo!”