SCA News

Posted on 21 Mar 2017 in

2017 The Lind Prize Shortlist

We're happy to see some SCA students represented in the shortlist for this year's The Lind Prize, an award administered by the Presentation House Gallery. Here's the official notice from the PHG:

Presentation House Gallery is proud to announce the shortlist for the second annual Philip B. Lind Emerging Artist Prize. The prize was established to support emerging artists working with photography, film, and video, and reflects Presentation House Gallery’s long history of nurturing new talent among the province’s visual artists. Each year, post-secondary visual arts instructors are invited to nominate a student enrolled in a BFA or a MFA program in British Columbia. Shortlisted students have their work exhibited as part of the The Lind Prize exhibition. The winner is awarded $5000 toward the production of a new work to be displayed at the future Polygon Gallery, an opportunity  designed to showcase artists early in their careers.

This year’s jury comprises artist Stan Douglas and curators Grant Arnold (Vancouver Art Gallery) and Helga Pakasaar (Presentation House Gallery). 

The Philip B. Lind Emerging Artist Prize is made possible through a generous donation from Rogers Communications to honour Phil Lind’s commitment to the company and the communications industry over 40 years.

The Lind Prize exhibition at Presentation House Gallery 7 – 28 April, 2017.
Opening Reception: 7 April, 7 PM
Closing Reception and Prize Announcement: 28 April, 7 PM

The exhibition includes eleven finalists, whose submissions highlight expansive approaches to working with camera images, both still and moving.

The 2017 Lind Prize shortlist: 

Durrah Alsaif (Kwantlen Polytechnic University)
David Biddle (Simon Fraser University)
Ryan Ermacora (Simon Fraser University)
Laura Gildner (University of Victoria)
Natasha Habedus (University of British Columbia)
Marisa Holmes (Emily Carr University of Art & Design)
Brian Lye (University of British Columbia)
Brittany Nickerson (Emily Carr University of Art & Design)
Terra Poirier (Emily Carr University of Art & Design)
Brandon Poole (University of Victoria)
Tori Schepel (Emily Carr University of Art & Design

Posted on 15 Mar 2017 in

Interview with Daniel Arnold and Marisa Emma Smith from Alley Theatre

SCA Professional Development Coordinator, Chelsea Hunter, sat down with Daniel Arnold and Marisa Emma Smith from Alley Theatre to find out more about the company, their interest in working with students, and their sage advice for emerging artists.

CH: Tell us about Alley Theatre and the company’s philosophy in working with students.

Alley Theatre: Alley Theatre was founded in 2008 and we produce mostly new Canadian plays.  We believe that non-traditional staging such as site-specific and created-space work not only enlivens theatrical experience but also attracts a new theatre-going audience, which is a primary goal of our company.  We choose to work with students for so many reasons. Most students are young and young people are the future! We can learn as much from them as they can from us.  We also love the forward-thinking, outside-the-box energy that youth can have, the ability to be open to experimentation and new ideas.  Being a student allows people to have the freedom to fail and we love that kind of energy.

CH: From your professional experience, how do you see these internships as being beneficial to students?

Alley Theatre: Well, the classroom can only teach so much –it can’t really replace the experience of working in the professional world.  Doing an internship with a professional company gives students a leg-up when it comes to landing paid gigs after school, which is a crucial time in one’s career.  Also during an internship, students would be learning from veteran professionals in the industry – which is invaluable for education.  Artistic Producer, Marisa Emma Smith was an intern with Neworld Theatre early in her career and years later she ended up on staff there and she is now directing her second associate production with Neworld.  So you can never underestimate the connections you make in these kinds of work experiences.

CH: Can you tell us about the internship positions you have open to SFU students and how they fit within the company?

Some Cast & Crew of Alley Theatre's "Mrs. Warren's Profession", a postmodern revisitation staged in a punk rock club in the Downtown Eastside (

Alley Theatre: For our upcoming production, we have three internships available to students. The first two (for summer and fall) are for a Community Coordinator Assistant and would be ideal for students interested in the bridges between art and community.  Community Coordination will involve connecting with various community groups and organizations about their involvement in this professional theatre production, managing schedules, and outreach to community groups and audiences.  The third internship (for fall) is for Running Crew during our production, which involves the smooth backstage running of the show – which will have about 45 people on stage and use the entire space of the Annex Theatre.  Each intern would work closely with their superior (Community Coordinator, Stage Manager, Production Manager) as well as with the company’s Artistic Producers and the project’s director.

CH:  Do you have any advice for emerging artists?

Alley Theatre: Apply for everything you can! Be open to all new experiences! Follow what your passionate about and pursue it, and don’t limit your thinking about what you can or cannot do.  Take any opportunities that are offered to you because you never know what else they’ll lead to.  Securing a career in the arts can be difficult, but extremely valuable and noble (and fun!) and the ‘real world’ rewards emerging artists who are keen, eager, and determined.  A life in the arts is a reward in and of itself.

Posted on 10 Mar 2017 in

Owen Underhill Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

The incomparable Owen Underhill has been awarded the "first-ever" Lifetime Achievement Award from the Canadian Music Centre in BC (CMC) during their 2017 CMC Gala Fundraiser and concert. The award is well-deserved, in our opinion, and we suspect, since Owen is a very busy, prolific person, it will likely not be the last such honour he's yet to receive. Here's how the CMC paid tribute to him:

It is impossible to overstate Owen Underhill’s contribution to the musical life of Vancouver, to the province of BC, and to the cultural fabric of the nation itself. He is a prize-winning, Juno-nominated Associate Composer of the Canadian Music Centre; a celebrated and highly innovative Artistic Director of Turning Point Ensemble, renowned for deeply-researched and visionary programs; as a conductor he is acclaimed by the musicians he works with, having conducted well over 150 premieres by Canadian composers; and he is a highly respected professor of composition at Simon Fraser University, where he previously served as Director of the School for the Contemporary Arts and Dean Pro Tem of the Faculty of Communication, Art & Technology.

Congratulations, Owen!

Posted on 08 Mar 2017 in

Paul Paroczai’s Vorbei

Not every SCA MFA graduating project ends up as a performance (dance, music, theatre or otherwise), film or video work, or a 'real world' artwork of some kind for exhibition in a gallery space. Case in point is Vorbei, the graduating project by MFA Paul Paroczai. Somewhere between a sound-processing tool and a self-generating experimental music player, Vorbei was produced using the software Max/MSP. Here's what Paroczai has to say about it:

Hey all, here’s the link where you can get at everything having to do with my grad project:

The project itself is a piece of software built in Max/MSP that will generate a unique piece of music every time you run it (it will also allow you to record individual runs if you get the sense it might make something you’ll want to hear again). There are a couple versions available (Mac and Windows compatible) on the site, so here’s a little bit about each one.

App – best for if you just want to use the program.

Patch – if you have experience working in Max/MSP and want to see how the program was put together, this is what you’re looking for.

Recordings – if you want a sense of the kinds of sounds you can expect from the program before deciding to clutter your computer with extra junk, you can hear recordings of some of the runs I’ve done up to this point.

If you do end up choosing one of the download options, the software itself has a help button that can hopefully answer any troubleshooting issues that might arise.

Posted on 06 Mar 2017 in

SCA Dance Lab 2017

Back for the second year, the SCA Alumni Dance Lab is happening May 8 to June 16 in the dance and theatre studios at SFU Goldcorp Centre for the Arts. This year we have six alumni dance artists working on original performance works, ranging from multimedia solo dances and dance films to group choreography. This lab is process based, giving emerging dance artists space to develop work, collaborate, and be part of the SCA community of artists.

2017 Projects

Choreography Jenn Edwards
Working Title: Other Creatures
Music: James Coomber
Dancers: Jenn Edwards, Jennifer Aoki, Erin Lequereux, Sam Presley, Cody Cox, Jess Ames

Choreography Helen Wakley
Working Title: JOHN
Performers: Olivia Shaffer, Josh Martin and Helen Wakley, with actor Alex Ferguson
Composer: James Maxwell with Harpist Joy Yeh
Costume/set designer: Natalie Purschwitz
Light designer: James Proudfoot

Choreography Tin Ganboa
Title: Maria Clara- (a dance film project)

Choreography: Farouche Collective (Felicia Lau, Erika Mitsuhashi, Mahaila Patterson-O’Brien)
Title: Lilac
Dancer: Felicia Lau
Choreographer: Mahaila Patterson-O’Brien
Projection + Sound: Erika Mitsuhashi (with mentorship from Remy Siu)

Choreography: Clara Chow
Dancers:  Megan Morrison, Tin Gamboa, Rachel Helten
Choreography: Warehaus Dance Collective: Akeisha de Baat + Megan Hunter
Dancers: Nathan Todd and Akeisha de Baat

Posted on 06 Mar 2017 in

Rob/Jane/Kim: Death and Flying

The SCA's Rob Kitsos (choreography) and long–time dance-artist collaborators Jane Osborne and Kim Stevenson, working with composer Elliot Vaughan, are presenting Death and Flying at this year's Vancouver International Dance Festival (VIDF). Running March 16 to 18 at 7pm at the Roundhouse Exhibition Hall, this duet is inspired by the work of the American poet Max Heinegg and "looks at things we collect and what we choose to leave behind." All events in the VIDF are free by becoming a VIDF Society supporter for $3. Click here for full details about VIDF membership. And click here to see a short video about Death and Flying, which is emended with a brief article about the VIDF by the Vancouver Sun.

Posted on 01 Mar 2017 in

Polyphonic Worlds: Justice as Medium

The always-busy Judy Radul is part of a timely and interesting exhibition – Contour Biennale 8: Polyphonic Worlds: Justice as Medium – that offers a challenging question as it's premise:

"How to distinguish between the deep historical injustices of colonial modernity, settler governance, and mercantile empire, and the current operations of neoliberal capitalism that pronounce conditions of injustice in the familiar tenor of historical experience yet persist with a transformed planetary vigor and a reconstituted means of language, while taking planetary effect?"

To unpack and address that question (or indeed accumulated series of related questions), the Biennale brings together "a number of collectives to partake in shared deliberation, informal exchanges, durational research, and process-based contributions."

Artists and collectives participating in the Biennale include: Adelita Husni-Bey, Agency, Ana Torfs, Arvo Leo, Basir Mahmood, Beatriz Santiago Muñoz, Council, Eric Baudelaire, Filipa César & Louis Henderson, Ho Tzu Nyen, inhabitants, Judy Radul, Karrabing Film Collective, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Madonna Staunton, Otobong Nkanga, Pallavi Paul, Pedro Gómez-Egaña, Rana Hamadeh, Ritu Sarin & Tenzing Sonam, Rossella Biscotti, Susanne M. Winterling, The Empire Remains Shop (Cooking Sections), Trevor Paglen, and Trinh Thi Nguyen.

Click here for a list of the curatorial, organizational, and behind the scenes team (which includes Judy as an 'advisor').

One initiative beyond the exhibitions offered by the Biennale is an online journal called Hearings, which is "a periodically updated resource tracing the artistic process, conceptual approach and historical research through textual as well as image and video-based contributions from a range of artists, filmmakers, thinkers and authors."

Hearings is full of great content, including Judy's thoughtful essay Video Temporality and Hindsight Evidence, which situates video art in the context of video-based evidentiary practices, both popular (YouTube, etc.) and juridical (police body-cams, interrogation videos, etc.). Now in a world supersaturated by video recording technologies and interactive platforms for sharing and showing videos of all kinds, Judy's essay asks: how "has video technology changed our ability to memorialize the “moments” in which decisions of exigent importance are made?"

Contour Biennale 8 Polyphonic Worlds: Justice as Medium is on view from March 11 to May 21, 2017, in venues throughput Mechelen, Belgium, and also includes several nights of public programming (details here).