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Bringing imagination to life

Being a kid is a scary-wonderful, powerfully imaginative time — just ask Tim Burton or Maurice Sendak who built their careers on plumbing the dark depths of childhood. READ

Behind the hip-hop beats

Coming across a vinyl recording of obscure Asian flute music is like striking gold for Sylvan Lake-based hip-hop producer Young Aspect. The 25-year-old, also known as Reece Zazulak, can find an interesting hook in virtually any kind of music — from ethnic folk tunes, to a Beethoven concerto, or old movie soundtrack. READ

Comedian John Oliver pokes fun at Ottawa amid fallout from Ashley Madison hack

Comedian John Oliver is taking the residents of Canada’s capital to task for their alleged extra-marital affairs. READ

The real revival

Remove all rose-coloured glasses. John Fogerty will take Central Alberta fans back to the real Flower Power past by playing the songs of Creedence Clearwater Revival on Tuesday at Red Deer’s Centrium. READ

Descent into madness

A mad leader wanders among street people in Bard on Bower’s 21st-century version of King Lear. Shakespeare’s great tragedy is about warring disparities — the younger generation versus the old, the unscrupulous against the principled, the powerless confronting the powerful. READ

Brock Zeman: More than radio-friendly

Brock Zeman believes he writes radio-friendly songs — they just don’t happen to fit the format of mainstream radio stations. Today’s commercial radio is all about beer-party music, said the Ottawa-area troubadour, who performs Wednesday, July 22, at Gilmore’s Guitars in Red Deer. READ

Boys playing for the sweet kiss of success

Fans can lend their lips to The Boom Chucka Boys and be in the band’s new “smooching” music video. A “big-scale video” is being shot on Saturday at Westerner Days for the band’s new single, Can’t Take My Lips Off You. READ

Who knew? The surf is up at Bower Ponds

Viola washes up on the beach to the electric strains of Wipe Out in Bard on Bower’s banzai version of Twelfth Night. Prime Stock Theatre’s rad rendering of Shakespeare’s comedy opened on Thursday on the outdoor stage at Bower Ponds. It comes complete with board shorts, bathing suits, beach umbrellas — and breezy Beach Boys and Surfaris tunes performed by talented local band Underside Pattern. READ

Country artist Alecia Aichelle to perform at Fratters Speakeasy

Alberta-based singer-songwriter Alecia Aichelle brings her country band to Fratters Speakeasy on Saturday for a Westerner Days performance. The former Red Deer College student has four singles on iTunes and plans to record a full album in Nashville this fall. READ

Debut novel set in the Red Deer of a parallel universe

A Chinese rapper stands on the brink of stardom in Red Deer — or at least he does in Jon Chan Simpson’s fictional version of this city. READ

Simmons unleashes his dark side

A Red Deer man is lending his voice to the world of anime. READ

Country for the fans

In this interactive age, there’s no need for musicians to gamble on which songs to record and release to radio, in hopes of landing a hit. Why not just ask listeners which tunes they’d like to hear? READ

Prime Stock tackles light comedy, serious fare

This month’s Bard on Bower productions will be as different as Beach Blanket Bingo is from the House of Cards. Prime Stock Theatre is poised to go surf crazy with Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, while its King Lear will bring political turmoil and a more sobering madness to the outdoor stage at Red Deer’s Bower Ponds. Audiences will first pick up some good vibrations with Twelfth Night, opening on Thursday, July 16. READ

What would Jesus do?

Red Deer actor Aaron Krogman is left with more unanswered questions than ever after playing Jesus for two seasons in the outdoor spectacle known as the Canadian Badlands Passion Play. READ

Absorb the unfamiliar

John Stowell wants to take Central Albertans on a musical journey into less-travelled territory. To appreciate the open jazz tunes played by his trio, Scenes, Stowell advises listeners to sit back and absorb the “unfamiliar” sounds with an open mind. READ

The Gay Nineties set to shake things up at Bo’s

The Gay Nineties refers to the 1890s, with its decadent and ground-breaking art, witty plays, society scandals and the beginning of the suffragette movement. READ

Gilmore and Giebelhaus to play Golden Circle

From making guitars to playing them in front of an audience, Dave Gilmore is going the whole nine yards. The duo of Gilmore and Kelly Giebelhaus will entertain on Saturday, May 23, as part of the In Concert at the Golden Circle series. READ

Treat your ears for a good cause

Playing for audiences is fulfilling. Performing music to help others is life changing. Naomi Delafield, director of the Rosedale Valley Strings, has seen young musicians grow as artists and as people every time they put on a Music With a Mission concert to fundraise for global projects. “It changes who they are and who they grow up to be,” said Delafield, who has seen youngsters go on to volunteer with non-profits, “empowered” by the idea of helping others. READ

Can’t beat original art

More people are eating local produce and shopping at local stores — so how about buying local art? READ

December First Friday draws inspiration from nature and the night

Art that’s inspired by nature and nighttime will be showing at Red Deer’s First Friday’s gallery openings for December. READ

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