Creative Current – music of the Golden Age comes to Ashcroft

Nadine Davenport's bi-monthly round up of Arts and Entertainment in the region.

Lovely watercolours painted during last year’s Plein Air in Ashcroft.

Light-hearted & hard-swingin Company B Jazz Band

Step back in time to the golden age of jazz with the Company B Jazz Band at St Albans Hall on April 27. Doors open at 7 pm with music starting at 7:30 pm. Winding Rivers Arts and Performance Society presents their final show of the 2012/13 Desert Concert Season. This fabulous Vancouver-based sextet delivers a light-hearted, hard-swinging take on 30’s and 40’s-era acts like the Andrews Sisters and the Boswell Sisters. Since the their inception in 2007, Company B Jazz Band has been featured at music venues and festivals in all corners of British Columbia, as well as in Washington, Oregon, and California.

Let’s meet the Band! Shannon Scott, Emily Lyall and Juhli Conlinn sing vibrant three-part harmonies that will bring a grin to your face. Guitarist David Taylor and bassist Jen Hodge back them with infectiously good-humoured rhythmic drive, while reed player Jens Christiansen complements the vocals with tasty saxophone and clarinet licks. Bassist Jen Hodge is a Vanier alumnus who continued with jazz studies at University as well as a growing music career of her own with her Four Eyes Jazz Quartet. Woodwind player Jens Christiansen is also a member of Four Eyes Quartet.  He brings cutting-edge musicianship and keen musical humour to both ensembles.

Singers Scott, Lyall and Conlinn are all graduates of the jazz program at Capilano University, and have extensive performance experience in large and small ensembles. They not only deliver the sweet sounds of swing-era vocal jazz harmonies, they also dress the part, in classy period outfits. In homage to their style, guitarist David Taylor delivers swing guitar licks in the style of Django Reinhardt and Chet Atkins.

So don’t miss out for the last Desert Concert of the Season. Should be a great show! Tickets in advance at The Ashcroft Bakery, Nature’s Gifts and the Ashcroft Liquor Store or by calling (250) 453-9100 to reserve. For more info and you tube video of Company B ‘live’ go to www.windingriversarts.ca.

Spring Into Action May 4

Let’s celebrate Spring and all the wonderful activities, home businesses and local products in Cache Creek and Ashcroft! This is the weekend before Mother’s Day and there will be plenty of gift ideas for you to choose from. There will be live music and demonstrations as well as a concession with all proceeds going to the Cache Creek Elementary School PAC. It takes place in the Cache Creek Community Hall from 10 am to 2 pm. Call Marcie at (250) 826-6957 to book your table!

The Wilderness Way Adventure Resort Open House

Come and visit The Wilderness Way Adventure Resort for an afternoon BBQ & Open House on Sunday May 5 from 2-5 pm. See first hand why it is projected to be the most exciting new Resort project in British Columbia. There will be tours of the project and their entire team will be available to answer any questions. If you crave excitement, enjoy the outdoors and love to explore, then they have the experience in the making for you! The Resort is located off of Hwy 97 C – just past Sundance Guest Ranch – follow Kirkland Ranch Road – then take Squaw Valley Road.

The afternoon includes tours of the Lodge, guest cabins, the newly filled Leslie Lake, and the many adventure activity locations on the 200 acre site. Plus a BBQ and live music with country artist Arlen Park from Clinton, Flat Busted from Spences Bridge – and other surprise guests.

“The Open House gives local folks the opportunity to see the vision for this unique Ashcroft area Resort. We are very excited about the impact that it will have on Tourism for the Ashcroft area, and also Economic Development to the local region in general,” says Andrew McKinnon (Owner/CEO).

The Wilderness Way Adventure Resort is designed and marketed as an international, year-round, destination and outdoor adventure resort offering; ATV off road challenges, Mountain Bike trails, an exciting Zipline experience, Horseback Riding, Rock Climbing,  Hiking, Fishing and Archery all of which are available to you to explore, challenge and unleash your wildest adventure needs! Plus, gourmet dining in our Spectacular Mountain Top Lodge, Cowboy Poetry, Music and Storytelling, Traditional First Nations Dance and Ceremony, Four Star Accommodations! All just minutes outside of Ashcroft. For more info call (250) 453 0033 or visit their website www.thewildernessway.org

Excitement mounts for the 2nd Annual Ashcroft Plein Air paint-out

Winding Rivers Arts & Performance Society cordially invites you to participate in the 2nd Annual Plein Air Paint-Out in Ashcroft on May 22-23. Ashcroft and the surrounding area will once again see a number of painters creating works of art from various vantage points around our community. Last year’s event saw 34 artists visit our community and more are expected this year.

The Society looks forward to welcoming those from near and far to celebrate the beauty of what is often described as a “stunning and unique landscape” where inspiring views and vistas abound. Artists of all levels of experience are welcome. Once again, the focus will be on gathering like minds to enjoy the sheer pleasure of painting. Paint in your favourite medium, acrylic, oil, watercolour or create a mixed media piece, drawing, or collage; you name it!

In true plein air style, the event will happen rain or shine. There will also be plenty of opportunities to paint as well as gatherings for meals, conversation and hear live music.

En plein air (pronunciation: plen air, not plane air) is a French expression which means “in the open air”, and is particularly used to describe the act of painting outdoors, which is also called “peinture sur le motif” in French.

Artists have long painted outdoors, but in the mid-19th century working in natural light became particularly important to the Barbizon school and Impressionism. The popularity of painting en plein air increased in the 1870s with the introduction of paints in tubes (resembling modern toothpaste tubes). Previously, each painter made their own paints by grinding and mixing dry pigment powders with linseed oil. The Newlyn School in England is considered another major proponent of the technique in the latter 19th century.

It was during this period that the “Box Easel”, typically known as the French Box Easel, was invented. It is uncertain who developed it first, but these highly portable easels, with telescopic legs and built-in paint box and palette, made treks into the forest and up the hillsides less onerous. Still made today, they remain a popular choice even for home use since they fold up to the size of a brief case and thus are easy to store.

Whether you’re a seasoned painting pro, a beginning artist, or a creative individual looking for a new hobby, register now for the 2nd Annual Plein Air Paint-Out in Ashcroft on May 22-23 for some fun with your fellow artists. To register or for more info please visit www.windingriversarts.ca or email or to register email ashcroftpleinair@gmail.com

Nadine Davenport

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