Category Archives: Radio Show

World Poetry Celebrates Producer Selwyn Jacob & The Ninth Floor!

Celebrating Black History Month!

Reprinted from TAN, The Afro News, http://www.theafronews.com/

A must see film and special interview with Selwyn Jacob!

The Ninth Floor, a powerful film of race relations and history, produced by the well known Selwyn Jacob; written and directed by Mina Shum will be shown at the Vancity Theatre, www.viff.org/ February 15-16 at 6:30 pm. Please go see the film!

The Ninth Floor was voted as one of the Top Ten Canadian film and is now showing across Canada.

This 81-minute documentary Ninth Floor revisits the infamous 1969 Sir George Williams Riot at Montreal’s Concordia University, a watershed moment in Canadian race relations. More than four decades later, Shum takes us back to one of the most contested episodes in the nation’s history and listens as protagonists in Trinidad and Montreal set the record straight and lay their burden down. Ninth Floor is written and directed by Mina Shum, produced by Selwyn Jacob and executive produced by Shirley Vercruysse for the NFB’s Pacific and Yukon Centre in Vancouver.”

I was honoured to be able to interview Selwyn Jacob, the producer of the Ninth Floor, who has worked with the National Film Board since 1997 at their Pacific and Yukon Studio in Vancouver and whose mission has been to educate the public through film. The Ninth Floor is one such example.

During the interview with Mr. Jacob, several important points emerged:

The long term connection of the producer to the film, which in some ways has been parallel to his life; the need to portray a balanced and unbiased depiction of the events of the occupation, the ability to make the film now using a Canadian perspective and to get the support needed that he would not be able to get in the 1970’s to make the film.

In addition, the Ninth Floor shows how the participants and the descendents were affected after the event in during the 1969 Sir George Williams Riot. They are still carrying the burden of their experiences of the event. One other element raised in the film was that hateful words do great damage and remain in the mind, long after the event has passed.

In addition, Selwyn Jacob had the following suggestions on improving racial relations:

*Do not prejudge people based on dress or accent. * Be tolerant of others. * Be self reflective in your interactions. *Use the 9th Floor as a cautionary tale.

I would like to thank Selwyn Jacob for his wisdom and insights during the interview.

Mr. Jacob says: “I’ve wanted to make Ninth Floor ever since I became a filmmaker, some forty years ago. I’ve always felt a direct connection to the events at Sir George Williams. I, too, immigrated to Canada from the Caribbean in the late 1960s, and I could easily have ended up in Montreal alongside those students. And with the passage of time, I’ve come to realize how the story resonates for all Canadians.”  Selwyn Jacobs, Producer of the 9th Floor.

Selwyn Jacob has produced close to 50 NFB films such as Crazywater, directed by the Inuvialuit filmmaker Dennis Allen; Hue: A Matter of Colour, a co-production withSepia Films, directed by Vic Sarin; Mighty Jerome, written and directed by Charles Officer; and the digital interactive project Circa 1948, by Vancouver artist Stan Douglas. Released in 2010, Mighty Jerome addresses issues of race and nationalism while paying tribute to Harry Jerome.  One of the His recent credits include Ninth Floor, a feature documentary about the infamous Sir George Williams Riot of 1969. Written and directed by the acclaimed director Mina Shum, it’s a story that Jacob has wanted to bring to the screen for decades.

Sources: The National Film Board, the Afro News and the interview with Mr. Jacob.

World Poetry Celebrates Keith Garebian from Canada!

The World Poetry Café Radio Show with hosts Ariadne Sawyer, MA , Neall Ryon and super operator  Victor Schwartzman, welcomed the Poet on Tour, Keith Garebian in an information packed show of readings and insights into his writing. Also our second guest,  well known Wanda Rae Willis, actress and  singer  phoned in from LA. She will have a separate feature on site.

 

To HEAR THE SHOW CLICK HERE!

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Born in Bombay to an Armenian father (a survivor of the Armenian genocide of 1915) and an Anglo-Indian mother, KEITH GAREBIAN immigrated to Canada with his family in 1961. After obtaining his Ph.D. from Queen’s, he began his professional career as freelance literary and theatre critic, and has in the course of this long career been published in over 100 newspapers, journals, magazines, and anthologies. He is the author of six poetry collections (Reservoir of Ancestors (Mosaic), Frida: Paint Me As A Volcano/Frida: Un Volcan de Souffrance (Buschek), Blue: The Derek Jarman Poems (Signature), Children of Ararat (Frontenac), Moon on Wild Grasses (Guernica), and Georgia and Alfred (Quattro). He has also published fifteen books of non-fiction, including a memoir, Pain: Journeys Around My Parents, (of his parents), a political satire (Accidental Genius), and ground breaking works on classic Broadway musicals. His poetry has appeared in numerous anthologies and journals, such as Poet to Poet, Implicate Me, Tributaries, Seminal, Exile, The Malahat Review, Literary Review of Canada, Rampike, Quarry, The Antigonish Review, and Freefall.  He made the long list twice for the Re-Lit Award for poetry, the short lists for the Freefall magazine and Gwendolyn MacEwen-Exile Poetry Awards, and has won numerous awards, including the William Saroyan Medal (Armenia), the Naji Namaan Literary Honour Prize (Lebanon), three Mississauga Arts Awards (Established Literary), Canadian Authors Association (Niagara Branch) Poetry Awards, a Dan Sullivan Memorial Poetry Award, a William H. Drummond Poetry Award, and the Surrey International Writers Poetry Award. He has also won numerous writing grants from the Ontario Arts Council, and a senior arts grant from the Canada Council to complete a theatre biography of William Hutt. He lives in Mississauga, Ontario, and posts reviews of the arts on his website, www.stageandpage.com, where readers can peruse his C.V.

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  Co-host Laura Kelsey presenting a World Poetry Certificate of appreciation to Keith.

World Poetry Celebrates the talented Yasir Kayani from Pakistan!

“Ariadne’s Notes: We are honoured to present a talented young poet from Pakistan who joins our World Poetry Family.    

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I’m Yasir Kayani, an Attorney at law, Writer, Poet and Human Rights activist. I belong to Pakistan’s district which is far flung from the capital of my country. My city, Kasur is situated on the periphery of Pakistan’s eastern border with India. But how far I am, we all belong to one family and that is human family. Poetry given a flip to imaginations. I do poetry in English as well as in my National language i.e. Urdu. As no body has ever measure, not even poets how much the heart can hold. Poetry is the medium that tries to measure the heights of imagination and depth of one’s feelings. Rainer Maria Rilke once said, “The only journey is the one within.” And through poetry, I travel from within, I am in search of the universe within, the secrets and mysteries within myself, the woof and warp of Nature within and the dazzling light that guides me always. Being a Human Rights activist, I wish to depart this world feeling content that I fulfilled my duty to my fellow human beings. I wish you all an illuminating journey towards yourself! ”               

Love beyond time and space

Beyond the sight of my apparent eyes

I see you in the garden of love

Where the souls fuse into each other

Around the bezels of seraphs

Under the ceil of divine light

Just you and me holding each other

With an everlasting heavenly thread

Sheathing us tightly to become one

Out beyond the time and space

We experience the purity of love

Love takes us towards timelessness

And changes our finiteness to infinity

© ~ yasir