Maria Dunn is our favorite Alberta Folk Singer. She came to Vancouver a few years ago and opened at a folk concert for the "No Shit Shirleys". Maria is a classic folk singer and has compiled an excellent collection of Western Canadian folk music. She is socially aware and not afraid to put her voice to the many advocacy needs faced by our community. Here is a beautiful piece written for the "Albertans Who Care" Campaign.
Mayne Island is a small island in BC's "Gulf Island" Chain, between Vancouver and Victoria. It is a beautiful island and home to a peaceful community of "islanders" and "weekenders". Mayne Island has a history of being an agricultural community and there are still numerous active farms and a vibrant "farmer's market" every Saturday during the summer.
Pam and I spent 4 days on Mayne last week visiting our friends Harry and Dee. One of the highlights was a visit to the "Japanese Gardens". The "Japanese Gardens" were created to remember the Japanese families who had settled and farmed on Mayne Island in the early 1900's. The Japanese families were evacuated and interned after the outbreak of World War II.
Japanese Gardens - Mayne Island
I've compiled a short video of the pictures I took at the Japanese Garden along with the song "Sakura" (Cherry Blossoms) sung by the Vancouver Chamber Choir under the direction of Jon Washburn. The plaintive, melancholic tone of the song seems to fit the mood of the garden and the sad history it commemorates. "Sakura" is from the Chamber Choir's CD "Unexpected Gifts", part of a series of CD's entitled "Music for Healing" which has been organized by my friend, and Healing Touch practitioner, Laverne G'Froerer. Details of this innovative music project can be found here... "Music for Healing." I am reminded as I reflect on this history of the many dimensions of healing and reconciliation that take place within our diverse community.
Michael Kluckner, Canadian artist and writer, has published an excellent web page documenting some of the Japanese history of Mayne Island. His site includes original artwork, old photos, historical information, and comments from former and current Mayne Island residents. Michael's site can be found here... Vanishing BC