Wait for Me, Daddy is a photo taken by Claude P. Dettloff on October 1, 1940. It shows the British Columbia Regiment marching down 8th Street, New Westminster. Taken 75 years ago, it was one of the most recognized photographs in the world and it became symbolic of Canada’s effort in WWII. In commemoration, the City of New Westminster, Anvil Centre and Brief Encounters are presenting a contemporary response to the classic image…
For Wait for Me Daddy REDUX we are teaming nine artists with three individuals who have settled in New Westminster and have been affected by war and conflict. Three groups of four will work collaboratively and across disciplines, using the settler’s life story as source material, to create both a short film and a performance. More than half the cast are artists living and working in New Westminster.
Fascinated by migration, artistic exchanges and diasporic communities, CS Fergusson utilizes performance works, drama, and living mediums (both sentient and not) to analyze the push and pull of non-western traditions residing in modern western cultures and the fragility and volatility of intercultural society caught up in generational tectonic shift.
Michael de Courcy is a New Westminster artist/photographer, curator and educator. Recent de Courcy projects include: The Intermedia Catalogue 1967-2009 (a web-installation documenting the Vancouver Intermedia Society’s experiments, experiences and ideas from the point of view of its member-artists); Dead and Buried: The Remapping of the Cemetery at Woodlands, 2010-2012 (a process of redress for the three thousand persons who are at present buried in unmarked graves in the former British Columbia Provincial Asylum site). These projects are at once contemporary and historical in nature. They have been gallery exhibitions and/or are also published online in the form of archives, articles and installations at michaeldecourcy.com
Eden Fine Day is a singer, songwriter and guitar player from the Vancouver area. She was born on the Sweetgrass First Nation in Saskatchewan and has been writing songs since she was 19. In 2003, Eden started Vancougar, an all girl garage pop band that was a darling of critics both here and abroad. In 2013, Eden released Things Get Better, an intimate yet accessible confessional pop album that was well received critically. She is currently writing her next album.
Joey Le: I am a strong believer that what happened in my past has made me the person I am presently. I went through two wars: the Civil Vietnamese War and the Invasion of Cambodia. These unforgettable events left sweet and bitter tastes in my memory. In 1975 as a young child, the collapsed Saigon daily drew many dark, discontinued, uneven lines on my white, pure, innocent canvas soul. In less than 40 days, the war had changed a cheerful boy to a fearful wounded sparrow. The burning sky at night, the continual explosions during the days, the dreadful eyes of the adults, the uncertain future of all who arrived as uninvited guests. Every minute slowly passed, along with the thought that tomorrow might not come. It was over 40 years ago, but just closing my eyes I can see it all, just like an old film that keeps repeating in front of me. 1986 was a remarkable year. I was a proud young Hematologist joining a team of scientists to study and prevent the Malaria Break in Cambodia. March 19 we landed at the Battambang Air force base. The city vividly unveiled war’s scars, even from the sky. The next six months would overlay more dark paint on my soul, but at the same time dashing a few drops of bright orange, light pink, and laminated green. Sorry, I must stop now for I begin to feel the dripping of blood out of my unhealing scars. I will continue when we meet. In the back ground I can hear Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World performed by Israel Iz Kamakawiwo’ole …
Michelle Lui has performed for Hong Kong Exile, David McIntosh (battery opera), Dancers Dancing, Kinesis Dance, and apprenticed with Peter Bingham and Justine Chambers. She has a BFA in Dance and Visual Art from Simon Fraser Universty.
Pedro Chamale is a first generation Canadian theatre artist. After 18 years Pedro relocated to Vancouver and received his BFA in Theatre Performance from SFU’s School for the Contemporary Arts. Pedro drives the theatre he creates to expand audience’s perspectives and values, all while telling interesting and evocative stories. Pedro has been a performer/collaborator on such projects as The Walking Projects: Vancouver, Crawling, Weeping, Betting (Battery Opera), Are We There Yet? (Neworld Theatre), The Show Must Go On and Poetics: a ballet brute (Push Festival).
I’m Maryam from Iran and have been in Canada for 20 years now. I grew up with four siblings, my mom stayed at home and my father worked as a university professor. We were forced to move out of our home during the civil war and lost everything. Kurds have almost never had a country of their own. “Kurdistan” is the mountainous area where the borders of Iraq, Iran, Syria and Turkey meet. For Kurdish people life is a huge challenge, living in constant fears with no security. Growing up in two wars (Iran civil war and Iraq), I witnessed many horrifying moments. For some reason I was more impacted by civil war than the Iraq war. I felt confused, lost and never understood the concept. Moving to another city I realized that we were the only Kurdish family on the block and only two Kurdish kids in grade one. Every morning on my way out, I would be reminded by my beloved father to be aware of my wording just to protect us. I cannot imagine living in the same fear that my parents did for their children with my own children. We were not taught in Kurdish and that was the cause of why so many children find school too difficult and drop out. The hardest part for me was pretending to be someone that I was not and some one that I had no respect for (felt lost, confused and no identity). When reflecting back on what I have seen or heard from my parents and grandparents, I wonder about the human behaviours and cruelty that are so destructive to their own kind. Yet, I have always believed in human resiliency to adapt and overcome any tragedy they have had to face. I hope for a day where we all can celebrate diversity and accept each other as we are.
David C. Jones is an actor, keynote speaker, writer, filmmaker and teacher. He has made short films that have screened around the world in such locales as Torino, Bangalore and St. Petersburg and also produced a TV series for Out TV called Tops & Bottoms. He started out making funny corporate videos for companies like West Fraser Timber, Business Objects and Tourism Vancouver and that led the graduate of Studio 58 to start making narrative based short films. He experimented in form and style in his early shorts such as shooting on Super 8. Several other short films were created as he studied all aspects of visual story telling. He alternated between impressionistic dramas to black comedy to documentary short. He was honored to be one of 5 filmmakers commissioned to create a short documentary as part of the Queer History Project in Vancouver. The Out On Screen Festival has screened Laughing Behind Enemy Lines was a look at the unintended activism of female impersonators in Vancouver in the 1950’s to the 1980’s. It screened at Out On Screen twice! He was one of 4 filmmakers chosen from across Canada to be part of a reality TV show called Hot Pink Shorts. Industry professionals mentored each person as they wrote and directed a film. His project was eventually entitled The Bonus a sex comedy. He has created PSA’s for The Queer Film Festival and Canadian Actor’s Equity and his last short film Same Boat one the OUTtv’s People Choice Award for Best Short Film.
JJ Lee wrote the critically-acclaimed memoir, The Measure of a Man: The Story of a Father, a Son, and a Suit. It was shortlisted for the Charles Taylor Prize, the Governor General’s Literary Award for Nonfiction, and the Hilary Weston Writer’s Trust Prize. Last year, he hosted the CBC radio summer series, Head To Toe. He contributes essays on family life and fashion to ELLE Canada. He lives in Uptown, New Westminster.
Born in London August 1940.
Raised in Glasgow Age 4 to 16.
Returned to Britain Age 18.
At 20 he moved to Israel: 1 year working Kibbutz usher, and 4 months as a construction labourer in Jerusalem. Then back to London. The next 2 years, a summer wandering the south of France and northern Italy. Then Jobs in Vienna and St. Moritz, Switzerland. At 23 he returned to Canada, sold insurance for a few months, then spent 7 years as a taxi driver in Toronto. He became a citizen at age 30 and married Bernice Daigle. He has two daughters, Taisha, born in Toronto in 1971 and Melinda, born in British Columbia in 1977. Separated in 1980 and moved back to Toronto where he worked as a children’s entertainer and a one-man show of music, magic and juggling as “Mr. David”. In 1987 David married Sok-Ran-You, a Korean immigrant and had one son, William in 1988 in Toronto. He then moved back to BC and had a second son, Noah, in 1992. Separated 2010. Moved to New Westminster 2011 where he lives very happily to this day.
Jessica Han is a filmmaker, theatre/audio-visual technician, stage manager and camera operator in Vancouver. In her free time she volunteers with local emerging theatre companies such as Resounding Scream Theatre, rice and beans theatre, The Troika Collective; and non-profit organizations such as Art for Impact and Vancouver Pride Society. She also looks out for earthworms on the sidewalk on a rainy day.
Jessie award winner Marilyn Norry is an actor, dramaturg, producer. Favourite roles: Hagar in The Stone Angel (Firehall), Madeline in Competition is Fierce (ITSAZOO), Heidi in The Heidi Chronicles (Playhouse). Film: Nellie McClung in CBC’s Life and Times, Emily’s mother in The Exorcism of Emily Rose, Battlestar Galactica, Supernatural, and a naked dancing zombie mother in Masters of Horror. She is the creator of My Mother’s Story, dedicated to telling women’s history one mother at a time.
Warren Bernard, the child in the famous Province photo, is seen here being reunited with his father Jack Bernard at the end of the war. Claud Dettloff/The Province [PNG Merlin Archive]
Q&A with singer/songwriter Eden Fine Day