Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Arty Awards

April 22, 2008 The Abbotsford Arts Council presented the Fifth Annual Arty Awards. People started arriving an hour before the pre-show. By 7:00 the walls of the Matsqui Centennial Auditorium were vibrating with the solid beat of the Blues band Deception; Art Panchisin on lead Guitar and vocals, Gary Huntbatch on drums and vocals, Steve Fultz on bass and vocals and Helen Kahlke on saxophone. With fifty nominations for the ten categories the 360 seat auditorium was close to capacity. I was impressed to see our new Solicitor General John van Dongen among the humble and happy artist's and art lovers.Dana MacMillan Abbotsford Arts Council President opened with an introduction to the Master of Ceremonies, Charles Wiebe, we laughed at all of his jokes even if we were Scottish or politicians. Next on stage were The Bhangra Dancers swirling and stepping with a blast of bright colored costumes and interesting wooden percussion instruments, the smiles on their faces and the enthusiasm in their steps showed the gratification these young men had in their traditional harvest dance. And the winner is; For Outstanding Artist in the Performing Arts-Theater-Sponsored by LINC, David A. Hunt. Outstanding Visual Artist-Sponsored by House of Fine Arts, Myrtle-Anne Rempel. Next up for entertainment was sweet young Country singer Kristal Barrett singing her single "This Time Next Year". And the winner is; Outstanding Artist in the Performing Arts-Music-Sponsored by Web Net Communication Ltd., Sweeny Singers. Outstanding Artist in the Literary Arts-Sponsor Neighborhood Bugel, Robert Martens, "I am from a Mennonite background, I don't deserve this, I'm feeling really guilty." That sums up what has been Abbotsfords attitude for the arts. Outstanding emerging Artist-Sponsor RBC Insurance, The band Good Thief. Karen Lee Batten was back for a second year to wow the crowd venturing from her comfortable country into jazz with "Peel me a Grape". She should venture more. And the winner is; Outstanding artist in the performing Arts-Dance,Yevshan Ukrainian Dancers, three young dancers all dressed in appropriate costume accepted the award. Outstanding Arts Sponsor Award-Sponsor-PCL Construction Westcoast Ltd., Abbotsford Printing Inc.. Last on the program for entertainment were the Abbotsford Children's Theater . They showed great enthusiasm for the fifth birthday of The Arty's and read about famous artists of Canada. They also sat close to the side stage to give the awards as needed and were helpful at the door. And the winner is; Outstanding Arts Instructor or Mentor-Sponsor Q Steak House, the humble Susan Reilly her words of wisdom "practice". Outstanding Arts Volunteer-Sponsor Vancity Credit Union, Liz Carter. And lastly, Outstanding Arts Advocate-Sponsor the MSA Poets Potpourri, Christine Caldwell. "In the past five years we have had more awareness in the arts and culture than we have had in the past twenty years. We are at a cusp of new beginnings with the new arts and cultural center opening soon. Its up to the grass roots to get out and support their kin." Afterwards we all crowded into the foyer for schmoozing and goodies provided by Q Steakhouse. The Arty awards have been instrumental in bringing forth the artists and giving them a face and name, showing Abbotsford we have Art and we are going to grow so look out and step aside the Arts are here!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nice blog Karen.

Great coverage of the event, but one thing is missing: No picture of Deception playing. What's up with that? How did Steve let you get away with it?

But thank you for not calling me Asgar.