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Literacy Week: Performing Artist Readers

Ms. Bunbury

Ms. Bunbury studied Anthropology while active in community theatre for many years.  She won Best Actress award in the North Island Festival in 1989.  Ms. Bunbury has written numerous pieces for the stage, including a musical based on Sutherland School.  She has worked as a professional writer for national and international publications, and was a public relations specialist/writer for the National Film Board of Canada, Vancouver Opera, the Sculptors' Society of BC and an number of independent arts organizations.

Ms. Bunbury has read a small, vibrant and electrifying novel by Saskatchewan writer Gertrude Story, entitled The Way To Always Dance.  It haunts her still, although she read it 25 years ago.  She has also loved and reread Five Smooth Stones, about the civil rights movement in the US, by Anne Fairbairn.  Anything by Margaret Atwood or Timothy Findlay, particularly Not Wanted on the Voyage.

Ms. Gruetzner

Ms. G's university degree includes a major in Acting and a minor in History.

Mr. Coupland

Mr. Coupland has had a varied performing arts career:

1981 - played the role of "Tree #4" in the Blarchmont Elementary School Christmas concert.

1982 - played the role of "Usher" in the Blarchmont Elementary School Christmas concert.

1983 - performed with the McKim Middle School Choir at various community events.

1984 - "turned the pages" for our teacher as she played the piano as our McKim Middle School Choir performed at various community events.

1985 -  reprised his role of "Usher" while our McKim Middle School Choir performed at various community events.

1988 -  played the vital role of "Passerby #3" in the Selkirk Secondary School's Fall concert.

1989 until 1995 - While pursuing his "Gym Degree" at the University of British Columbia, he played the role of "Medical School Student".

Mr. Coupland retired from the "stage" in 1995.

Ms. Kirkwood

Ms. Kirkwood played a cowboy in the chorus of Oklahoma! in Grade 7. She still knows all the words to the songs.

Ms. Workman

Ms. Workman has a Bachelor of Music Jazz Studies where she majored in piano and also studied voice.

In high school, Ms. Workman met a certain teacher named Walter Mustapich. He joined her school as the Drama teacher and Business Education. In the last two years of high school, and then for 5 years after that, she worked with Walter directing and producing plays for Vanfest and also helping in his classes.

Ms. Workman had been in both instrumental and choral ensembles and is currently singing in Espiritu. She have been in the Lynn Valley Black Bear Band for a number of years as well.

One of the most memorable (and lucrative) gigs was being the carol singer on one of the carol ships in Vancouver Harbour.

Mr. Fortin

Mr. Fortin's father is a professional musician and teacher. At 18 he traded his hockey stick for a guitar.  He began writing music and lyrics immediately and has written and recorded 3 original albums and 1 children’s record about a dinosaur.  Mr. Fortin has toured the world and performed with Level 42, Jimmy Cliff, Blue Rodeo, Tom Cochran’s, Tragically Hip, etc.  He has written music and lyrics for TV movies and a few short films and continues to write and perform music.  Mr. Fortin runs a monthly singer/songwriters showcase that has raised almost $3 million for local charities and is a federal non-profit.  He would love to release a book of poetry and will write and direct a film someday.

The books that made Mr. Fortin read were Phillip K Dicks “ Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep”. The next was “Fifth Business” by Robertson Davies and all his trilogies and then “Waiting for Godot” and Charles Buckowski and Tom Waits were his poetry.... oh and he love Michael Ondaatje’s poetry and writing, especially “Coming Through Slaughter “....

Ms. Manara

Ms. Manara believes all teachers are really actors at heart.   She studied voice for five years and considered majoring in music until she realized that she would never be able to sight read. Ms. Manara have also been in numerous musicals--both on stage and off.  She has written and directed videos (some of which won awards).