Artists & Collaborators
Elaine CarolArtistic Director
Elaine Carol is an artist, writer, performance artist and director whose work has been seen and heard internationally. Born and raised in Montréal, and moving to Vancouver some 24 years ago after an 18-year stopover in Toronto, Elaine has more than 45 years experience as a professional artist in Canada.
Her interdisciplinary practice includes: solo and community-engaged performance art; documentary film; experimental theatre; public art; sound art/music and lens-based art (photography, film and video).
She has been involved with community-engaged art since 1990, has worked with youth for more than 35 years, and co-founded MISCELLANEOUS Productions (MP) in 2000.
For MISCELLANEOUS Productions, where she is known fondly as the “benevolent drill sergeant”, Elaine has directed, produced and written/co-written all of the company’s community-engaged performances in Canada, the US and Europe. She produced and co-programmed the Raincity Rap: History of Hip Hop in Vancouver festival in 2011, and was the producer and programmer of the 2013 Raincity Rap festival.
Elaine was artist-in-residence at the Nova Scotia College of Art & Design in 1996 as well as artist colonies in Belgium, France, and Catalonia in 2015, and screened her documentary films in Barcelona, Marseille, and Brussels to packed houses and standing ovations.
Nominated by Libby Davies, MP, Elaine received the 2013 Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medallion for community service for her work with MISCELLANEOUS Productions.
Elaine is committed to furthering artistic collaborations within the community, using performance art and theatre as tools for personal transformation and social change, and in cultivating long-term relationships with the communities she works with -- especially integrated groups of culturally and socially representative, multi-barriered and mainstream youth.
Elaine is currently developing a new performance work about home, identity and belonging with a working title of Refuge/Refugee/Redress.
Eric WongDiversity Consultant
Eric is a fourth generation Canadian who was born, attended school, works and lives in the City of Vancouver. Raised in a “traditional Chinese- Canadian family”, he currently lives with his children in the house where he grew up.
From Simon Fraser Elementary School, to his years as a teacher and multicultural education consultant with the Vancouver School Board, and as a faculty associate with the University of British Columbia, much of Eric’s life has been spent in British Columbia’s education system. He has volunteered with a variety of organizations such as: the Asian Society for the Intervention of AIDS (ASIA); the B.C. Association for Community Living; the British Columbia Multicultural Education Society; the Law Foundation of British Columbia; the National Association of Japanese-Canadians; SUCCESS (United Chinese Community Enrichment Services Society); the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre; and the Vancouver Recovery Club.
After leaving the Vancouver School Board in 1988, Eric taught at the Faculty of Education at U.B.C. before joining the City of Vancouver as a consultant/trainer with the Employment Equity Office in 1989. From 1990 to 1994 he was the manager of training and programs with the City of Vancouver’s Hastings Institute.
Eric is now self-employed as an anti-racism, diversity and human rights consultant, and has worked for a wide variety of organizations, including: the B.C. Hospital Employees’ Union; the B.C. Human Rights Commission; the British Columbia Ministry of Children and Family Development; the B.C. Workers’ Compensation Board; the Canadian Department of Justice; MISCELLANEOUS Productions; and the Squamish Band Social Development Office.
He is currently on a part-time contract with the B.C. First Nations Education Steering Committee as their anti-racism consultant.
Michelle BeatchAssistant Director / Indigenous Support Worker
Born in Chilliwack, BC, and a member of the White River Band, Michelle has spent most of her life in Vancouver and Burnaby.
Her goal has always been to give back to her Indigenous community by providing accessible alternative education to at-risk youth who identify as Indigenous or First Nations, with a focus on the fine and performing arts. Michelle spent a year as the Aboriginal student representative in her secondary school, attended an outward bound excursion for at-risk teenagers, and worked as a youth leader in the Urban Native Youth Association’s Young Spirits Summer Camp in 2007, 2009 and 2011. At these camps she led workshops on personal hygiene, puberty, sexual identity, bullying, culture, acting, and creative writing. Gaining confidence from her success as a leader in these camps, Michelle went on to spend a year working as a youth leader in a home for teenage girls.
Performing and the arts saved her life and gave her a voice. After graduating from secondary school, she continued following these passions in the Acting for Stage and Screen program at Capilano University, and in 2014, completed a Bachelors in Performing Arts with a focus on interdisciplinary productions.
Michelle has worked with MISCELLANEOUS Productions (MP) since 2016 as the Indigenous Outreach Worker/Assistant Director. She believes that the arts are a vital part of a healthy and connected human experience, and that through the arts we have the ability to confront obstacles and heal together. Michelle is on the MP Next Generation Team.
Dominique WakelandAssistant Choreographer/Assistant Director
Dominique Wakeland (they/them) was born on unceded Kwantlen Territory and is recent graduate of Simon Fraser University. They are a performer, dramaturge, and director. Past credits include: Dramaturging “Big Queer Filipino Karaoke Night”, (2018) Foot Faults in Foreplay“, (2017) the first production of a new and local theatre company Theatrecorps and “Stem Mother Tongue,” (2018) directed by Eddy Van Wyk. Dominique's practice is fundamentally movement and text based with an emphasis on the politics we bring in our bodies and how that manifests into knowledge. They are excited to be joining Miscellaneous as the new Assistant Choreographer/Assistant Director.
Megan LesonCostume Designer
Megan discovered her passion for theatre and film while training at the Capilano University stage and screen program from 2005 - 2007. In 2008-2009 a continuation of her studies with courses from the Textile Arts Program balanced her construction skills with an artistic approach to cloth manipulation.
Megan’s skills were expanded with the Caravan Farm Theatre productions of Macbeth, Blue Horse, King Lear, and Mother Courage. These projects led to her set costumer positions in television and film in Vancouver.
Costume collaborations with Elaine Carol and MISCELLANEOUS Productions include: Power 2, Kutz and Dawgs, Haunted House and Monsters. These shows required a sensitive design focus and required flexibility for choreography.
Megan’s costume designer credits in the local film community include a collection of short films: E’vuoto Per Amore, Alice and Huck, Shark out of Water and Time Before The Light. In 2010 Megan styled the looks for a fantastic ensemble cast in A Night For Dying Tigers. The steam punk inspired web series Riese: Kingdom Falling was a 2011 I.A.W.T.V. Award Nominee.
In 2016 Megan received her second Leo Award nomination for costume design for the period timeline film spanning the 1950s to an altered present, No Men Beyond This Point.
When given the chance to design projects between jobs, Megan strives to collaborate with all the artists involved to help the characters tell a great story.
Yvan MorissetteProps & Set Designer
Yvan, who has worked with MISCELLANEOUS Productions since 2006, has designed sets for many Vancouver and Western Canadian theatre companies, such as the Arts Club Theatre Company, Touchstone Theatre, Theatre la Seizieme, and Bard on the Beach. As well as a twenty-year career designing sets and lights for the performing arts and events industry, including many award-winning projects, Yvan also worked with students in the Film Arts program at Langara University, been a set design mentor for the Bachelor of Performing Arts Program at Capilano University, and teaches set design for Studio 58 at Langara University.
Yvan’s previous experience includes training and performing as an actor and professional juggler and working as an arts reporter for Radio-Canada. His hands-on approach to design is an integral part of his success as a designer, mentor, and educator.
Yvan currently teaches at Langara University in the Design Department.
Brad TrenamanLighting Designer
Born in Kitchener, Ontario and raised in Nova Scotia, Brad completed his education at Ryerson University in Toronto before recently moving to North Vancouver. In Toronto he did lighting design for Ballet Creole, the Panasonic Theatre production of Cats, and designed for singer Matt Dusk, magician Ted Outerbridge, the National Chinese Acrobats, and the Dalai Lama’s appearance at Toronto’s Skydome. In Las Vegas Mark lit Menopause the Musical at the Luxor Hotel, and in Victoria he created lighting for the Citadel Theatre production of REDPATCH.
Local credits include: Monsters for MISCELLANEOUS Productions; Where The Wild Things Are for Presentation House Theatre; The Events for Pi Theatre; and Salmon Girl for Raven Spirit Dance and Carousel Theatre. Brad will be creating the lighting design for MISCELLANEOUS Productions’ new performance work in 2019.
Brad is also a freelance contributor to Professional Lighting and Production Magazine.
Mary UngerleiderFilm Editor
Mary is a freelance editor and post-production supervisor for films, documentaries and commercials. Among her credits are: A Feeling Called Glory, which won several Leos and a Genie; and Bitter Paradise, which won Best Political Documentary at Hot Docs and was nominated for an Emmy. She has been editing MISCELLANEOUS Productions films for more than ten years.
Mary attended the 1998 Resident Editor’s Lab at the Canadian Film Centre and has been a resident editor at the Canadian Film Centre and at Women in the Director’s Chair at the Banff Arts Centre. She has edited numerous research documents and academic speeches, as well as working closely with author Helen Waldstein Wilkes to create the book Letters From the Lost.
Mary is a recipient of the Vancouver Women in Film Lifetime Member Award for her work as board member, president and supporter of the organization.
Mary has been working with MISCELLANEOUS Productions on all of our major digital video and documentary productions since 2006.
Dennis BurkeSound Designer & Mixer
A multi award-winning composer and sound designer for film and television, Dennis has contributed to more than 120 films, and his work can be seen regularly on network and cable TV. His many credits include musical scores and sound design for Picture Start by Harry Killas, Sister In Arms by Beth Freeman, and Tailor Made: Chinatown's Last Tailors which won the prestigious Golden Reel Award for Best Short Film at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival.
In addition, Dennis has created a number of multi-media sound works, installations, and web-based interactive collaborations, both as a solo artist and in collaboration with the likes of David Rimmer, Stan Douglas and Landon Mackenzie.
A professional musician for more than 30 years, Dennis has performed with many jazz greats, including Mose Allison, Herb Ellis, and Ernestine Anderson. Dennis has been an Associate Professor Emily Carr University since 1987.
Dennis has worked with MISCELLANEOUS Productions on their documentaries as a story editor (POWER), sound editor and sound designer since 2006.
S. Miko BurnsDirector of Photography / Cinematographer
Miko has filmed all over the world since 1988 . His experience includes numerous documentaries, Hollywood features, specials for television, and live music and sports.
Born in the town of Aberdeen, Scotland, Miko became a world traveler at the age of nine. Experiencing life in the Canary Islands, Denmark, Brazil, the Ivory Coast, Australia, Texas and Louisiana gave him an appreciation of the many different people and cultures of the world.
At the age of 20, while still attending college, Miko landed his first gig as a camera assistant televising the Nordic events at the 1988 Winter Olympics in Canmore, Alberta. He was a key cinematographer on the Jason Priestly directed documentary Barenaked in America, featuring the Barenaked Ladies, and experienced first-hand living on a bus and life on the road with a rock and roll band.
Miko has received recognition for his work filming in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside for the award-winning documentary Stolen Lives – Children in the Sex Trade and was the recipient of the 2000 Leo Award for Best Documentary Cinematography. Steven was also the lead cinematographer on the making of documentary for the first ever IMAX drama in 3D entitled Wings of Courage. He is a veteran cinematographer for CBC’s long-running Life and Times series, including biographies on William Shatner, David Suzuki and Mario Lemieux. He also had the privilege of working with the Dalai Lama on an internationally filmed documentary for German TV.
Miko is actively involved with the Wingspan Dis/Arts Cluster out of UBC and has most recently completed three mini-docs on disabled artists as director and cinematographer.
He has worked as MISCELLANEOUS Productions’ cinematographer since 2006.
Constantly aspiring to do great work and tell important stories are the fuel for Miko’s passion for and commitment to filmmaking and cinematography.
Thom StittDirector of Photography / Second Camera
Thom Stitt was lucky to discover his love of filmmaking as a child in the early 1990s at the far edge of Fort Hood, Texas, between an army base and a wild oak forest. There he borrowed his neighbour's VHS camcorder and directed his first science fiction B-movies and stop-motion animations.
As a young adult he came to BC and graduated from Vancouver Film School as an accomplished director, cinematographer, and editor. He never looked back, working in film ever since. His work spans social and political activism, charity fundraising, yoga and meditation, series pilots, experimental live concert visualizations, narrative films, documentaries, and the occasional viral video, including a rare acting turn as a hapless yoga student studying under a two-year old master.
Thom has created hundreds of promotional trailers for television shows and movies, and an award-winning official trailer for Sony's hit videogame LittleBigPlanet 2. By night he continues to work on offbeat passion projects and biographical documentaries.
In love with strange photographs in strange light, Thom always pursues the mood that gives you the feeling you’ve peeked behind the curtain for just a second. Thom has found his calling as a storyteller and pursues those tales that offer medicine to the audience. He is at his most fulfilled making creative discoveries in his work.
Thom has been working with MISCELLANEIOUS Productions since 2014's Haunted House and has been part of every project since, and was the director of photography on The Next Generations’ ghosts of Productions Past (2018).
Amber Funk BartonChoreographer & Dance Teacher
Amber Funk Barton is contemporary dance artist, born and raised in Vancouver. She received her training with Goh Ballet Academy, Arts Umbrella, The Banff Centre Dance Training and Ballet British Columbia’s Mentor Program.
Upon completion of her training, Amber established herself as a professional dance artist and has danced for various companies and choreographers, such as Joe Laughlin (Joe INK), Lola MacLaughlin (Lola Dance), Jennifer Mascall (Mascall Dance), Karen Jamieson (Karen Jamieson Dance Company) and Dana Gingras (Animals of Distinction) to name a few. She has been featured as a guest artist with Company 605 and performed in Neworld Theatre’s King Arthur’s Night, which received a Jessie Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble.
As a choreographer Amber has had her work presented in venues nationally and internationally, including a commission from the National Arts Centre and performances at the Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff, Wales and the NW New Works Festival in Seattle.
She has also worked in theatre, where she has choreographed for Horseshoes & Hand Grenade’s This Stays in the Room, which received the Critics’ Choice for Innovation from the Jessie Richardson Awards. This led to Amber’s collaboration with theatre director Mindy Parfitt on their two-women play am a.
Amber is the inaugural recipient of The Dance Centre’s Iris Garland Emerging Choreographer Award, has been awarded the Holy Body Tattoo Emerging Artist Award, and is one of the few Canadians to receive a danceWEB contemporary dance scholarship to study and attend the ImPulsTanz festival in Vienna, Austria.
In 2008, Amber founded her own Vancouver based contemporary dance company, the response.
Recent and current projects include the creation of Silas for Joe Laughlin’s solo show, Studio 58’s production of Mortified and upcoming projects with Marisa Smith of Alley Theatre, MISCELLANEIOUS Productions, and an invitation to create a work for Ballet Kelowna in 2019.
Natasha GorrieChoreographer & Dance Teacher
Natasha grew up in the hip hop dance scene. Her first brush with hip hop dance was when her mother taught her how to do the running man in their living room. Natasha’s mother was a self-taught freestyle dancer, with a passion for new jack swing dancing. Natasha began training at her mother’s dance studio at the age of eight, and that studio pioneered hip hop choreography in Metro Vancouver.
Ever since then, Natasha has had a love for the fundamentals of hip hop and funk styles. To round out her training, Natasha also studied ballet, jazz, musical theatre, and tap.
Natasha has managed to excel in the professional dance industry, while also building a reputation in the underground dance community across Canada and around the world.
Natasha is a co-founder of the powerhouse female crew Diamonds In The Rough, based out of Vancouver. As a group, they have travelled throughout the USA and Canada to battle, perform and train. She is also the founder of the Higher Ground Dance Company.
New to MISCELLANEOUS Productions, Natasha is looking forward to teaching and working with their youth performers. Natasha loves to freestyle and share with her community. She is passionate about training and is constantly broadening her vocabulary in dance. Knowledge is key.
Dawn PembertonSinging Coach
Vibrant, genuine and soulful, Dawn Pemberton has deep musical roots that take her powerful voice from gospel and soul, to jazz and funk. Her latest release Say Somethin’ won the 2015 Western Canadian Music Award for Urban Recording of the Year and crowned her as Canada's newest Queen of Soul!
Dawn has become a staple of the Vancouver music scene and can often be found tearin’ it up as a vocalist and go-to girl for live performances and studio sessions.
Dawn has been the singing/vocal coach to MISCELLANEOUS Productions youth performers since 2008.
A passionate performer, Dawn crafts her music with a sense of adventure, quirkiness, and serious groove and shapes it into her own unique and dynamic package. Tight, expressive and bold, Dawn will hit you where it counts, funk you up, and make you say Go ‘head!.
Natasha PhekoR&B / Soul / Rap Composer
Contemporary R&B singer-songwriter Natasha Pheko , born and raised in East Vancouver, fell in love with the arts at an early age, taking to the stage as a dancer, actress, and singer.
As a pre-teen, she was a youth participant in MISCELLANEOUS Productions Power and Power 2, where she dove into her first real exploration of rapping, songwriting, and solo performance. Throughout high school she attended the Sarah McLachlan School of Music, where she took her first official voice lessons -- developing her technique, exploring her voice and honing her skills as a performer.
It wasn’t until she graduated from high school that Natasha made the decision to pursue her career and post-secondary education in music and vocal performance. She attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston on a full scholarship from the Slaight Family Foundation, where she studied vocal performance, music business, and songwriting, developing her unique style and refined her songwriting skills.
Throughout her time in college Natasha did some work singing as a background vocalist on projects including Marianas Trench, and Aloe Blacc’s hit single The Man, but before long she found herself yearning to tell her own stories. Inspired by the strength of her childhood idols and female powerhouses Erykah Badu, Sade, and Lauryn Hill, Natasha began exploring her own artistry in 2015.
Natasha has worked on MISCELLANEOUS Productions’ performances, films, and plays as a hip hop lyricist/composer since 2014, including collaborations with Chin Injeti. In 2019 she is creating two new commissioned compositions – a hip hop/rap work and a new-soul piece – for MISCELLANEOUS Productions’ next performance.
Receiving critical acclaim from outlets such as NPR, Nylon Magazine, and The 405 Ones to Watch, as well as having her 80’s inspired ballad, Feel You gain more than 100 thousand streams on Spotify, and About Us being featured on Spotify’s Just Vibing playlist, Natasha Pheko is excited to share her debut EP CRISIS, currently available worldwide.
Bonnie Soon & Jason OveryUzume Taiko / Taiko Composers & Teachers
Taiko means drum in Japanese, and Uzume is the Japanese Goddess of Laughter.
Uzume Taiko is known around the world for its bold musical collaborations, humour, and theatrical stage presence. They have hand-crafted a unique brand of West Coast Canadian taiko drumming that offers a visual, sonic and sensual experience to their audience. With its powerful synthesis of music, movement and theatre, Uzume Taiko has won fans throughout the world.
Using a diverse collection of percussive and melodic instruments as well as taiko drums, Uzume Taiko has developed a dynamic fusion of old and new styles of drumming — bringing a vibrant, contemporary sensibility to an ancient art. Bonnie Soon has served as artistic director of Uzume Taiko since 1999. She incorporates choreography and theatrical elements with the festival drumming style of Japan to create new work for taiko drums, often in collaborations with musicians and artists from diverse cultures and art forms.
She builds taiko drum gear and leads taiko workshops and artist residencies in schools and communities. Bonnie began her performing career as a dancer touring with Paula Ross and Kokoro Dance companies and Snake in the Grass Moving Theatre. She has professional credits in stage management and has worked in media production.
Jason Overy divides his time between performing, teaching and composing in the world of percussion. He has served as music director of Uzume Taiko since 2004, providing direction on Uzume’s collaboration projects and national and international tours. Jason holds a BMus from the University of Victoria and has been the percussion section leader of the Band of the Fifteenth Field RCA for the last 20 years. He has developed curriculum in percussion, hand drumming and Taiko drumming and teaches music in a variety of settings. Jason holds a Sandan in Shotokan Karate-do and a Shodan in Kokodo Jujutsu.
Currently teaching and composing for MISCELLANEOUS Productions’ new performance work, Bonnie and Jason have also taught and composed new music for the company’s Stock Characters: The Cooking Show (2006 – 2007).
Operations, Production, and Stage Management
Katja SchlueterProduction Manager
Katja, who has worked with MISCELLANEOUS Productions since 2011, was born and raised in Germany and has been living in Vancouver since 1989. Currently on staff at the Capilano Blueshore Centre for Performing Arts as a theatre technician, she also works as a technician for the Fringe Festival.
Katja has been the production coordinator for the Vancouver WritersFest since 2007 and has served as the production assistant/Granville Island site manager for the Winter Solstice Lantern Festival since 2008. She also worked for many years as the production assistant for the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival. Her newest project is working as the floating stage manager for the Talking Stick Festival.
Katja lives with her husband, daughter and dog in East Vancouver.
Melanie ThompsonStage Manager & Grant Writer
Melanie Thompson is a freelance writer, stage manager and arts administrator. She has worked with MISCELLANEOUS Productions since 2007, in a variety of capacities.
Melanie’s theatre credits include: The Full Light of Day for Electric Company; Theatre Les Filles du Roi for Fugue Theatre and Urban Ink; Little Women: The Musical and FAME: The Musical for Bring On Tomorrow Co.; Rock Legends with the Chemainus Theatre Festival; Sonic Elder for The Chop, Silenced with Urban Ink Productions; The Out Vigil for FirePot Performance; The Last Five Years for LionFish Entertainment), Underneath the Lintel with Pacific Theatre; Shrek: The Musical for Theatre Under the Stars; Arvaarluk: An Inuit Tale with Pangaea Arts, The Spitfire Grill for the Midnight Theatre Collective and Pacific Theatre; and Monsters and Kutz & Dawgs with MISCELLANEOUS Productions.
Outside of her theatre work Melanie manages communications for the Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra (VICO) and writes grant applications and other copy for the VICO, DreamRider Productions, MISCELLANEOUS Productions, and other clients in the performing arts.
She is also a member of the Board of Directors of Theatre Under the Stars.
In a previous professional incarnation, Melanie was a publicist and/or media relations coordinator for a wide range of artists and arts organizations, including: the Songwriters Association of Canada (Bluebird North); Blackbird Theatre; the BC Highland Games; the Vancouver International Storytelling Festival; the World Peace Forum (2006); the Vancouver International Film Festival; and MISCELLANEOUS Productions (2006 – 2009).
Mark BarrySound Recordist
A graduate of The National Films School, Dun Laoghaire, Ireland, with over 15 years in the industry, Mark specializes in location sound and system building for complicated projects. His credits include work on the CBC TV series This Is High School, the Discovery Channel’s Cold Water Cowboys Highway Thru Hell, History Channels Yukon Gold, and the Knowledge Network’s Emergency Room: Life + Death at VGH.
Mark has worked with MISCELLANEOUS Productions as a sound recordist since 2014, including on the documentaries / documents of Haunted House and Monsters.
Marketing & Communications
Julian AntonWebsite Development
A freelance web designer / developer based in Vancouver, Julian is a 3D art graduate of Kelowna’s Centre for Arts and Technology. He provides his clients with front-end development, online content creation, and web management services.
Past experience includes working with retailer Mountain Equipment Co-op, Electronic Arts Canada, and Roundhouse Radio.
MISCELLANEOUS Productions’ new website design was created by Julian in 2018 / 2019.
Marnie WilsonMedia Relations
Marnie Wilson of Artsbiz Public Relations provides full-service marketing and public relations support to the arts community. A boutique firm specializing in promoting arts and entertainment events, Artsbiz has helped hundreds of clients increase their profile.
In addition to MISCELLANEOUS Productions, clients, past and present, include: Cirque du Soleil; Cavalia; DOXA Documentary Film Festival; the Harmony Arts Festival; and The Vancouver International Jazz Festival.
With many years of industry experience, Artsbiz Public Relations provides the expertise and creative talent necessary to take an arts group’s marketing efforts to the next level both offline and online.
Barb Snelgrovemegamouthmedia | Social Media
Vancouver-based and multi-award-winning Barb Snelgrove of megamouth media consulting brings more than 20 years of public relations and communications experience to MISCELLANEIOUS Productions, with an extensive background in radio, television, print, public relations, and as a social media strategist and brand influencer. Barb has worked in the communications industry since 1998, and as a professional social media strategist and consultant since 2011.
She is the owner of megamouthmedia consulting, a boutique public relations and brand development company specializing in assisting companies, tourism agencies, event producers and non-profit agencies connect with the online market via proven and targeted social media strategies. Barb is also a public speaker on LGBTTQ2+, social media, and public relations topics and has presented at media conferences and events in and around Metro Vancouver.
Most recently, Barb was the promotions and communications director at Roundhouse Radio 98.3, receiving a BC Broadcasters Award in her first year for their promotional Christmas campaign for the Greater Vancouver Food Bank. She has been a columnist, radio host, and television interviewer. She co-hosts the annual national telecast of the Vancouver Pride Parade coverage on OUTtv.
Barb has spent decades working as a community advocate, volunteering her time and experience with organizations, boards, and committees that include: the Vancouver Police Dept.; Vancouver City Hall Advisory Committees; Positive Living BC; the LOUD Scholarship Foundation; Qmunity; and the Vancouver Pride Society, to name but a few.
Barb has also served as volunteer emcee for hundreds of local charity and corporate events, as well as high-profile community productions.
Barb has been acknowledged for her many years of community service with accolades such as the Vancouver Pride Society Outstanding Community Member Award, and the TELUS Pride Legacy Award, and was a two-time finalist for a City of Vancouver Award of Excellence, and the YWCA Women of Distinction Award. She was inducted into the Canadian Q Hall of Fame alongside Jane Rule, Jack Layton and other queer advocates and allies in Toronto in 2013.
Kevin Dale McKeownCopywriting & Editing
Vancouver-born Kevin Dale McKeown has enjoyed a varied career in journalism, media relations and event management. In 1970, at age 19, Kevin launched a gay community news column in the The Georgia Straight, chronicling the early days of gay Vancouver’s political, social and business scenes.
He went on to write arts and entertainment columns and reviews for the Georgia Straight, the West Ender and Vancouver Courier newspapers. He went on to work as managing editor of Vancouver Week, Victoria Today, the Williams Lake Tribune, the West Ender, and Montréal Magazine. He also served for several years as the Vancouver Courier’s restaurant critic.
In 1989 Kevin launched a second career, in cultural event marketing, as communications and/or marketing manager for clients such as the Vancouver Folk Music, Writers, Children’s, Dragon Boat, and Word On The Street festivals, and groups and troupes such as Theatre Under The Stars, the Vancouver International Dance Festival, and Hoarse Raven Theatre, and provided project media relations support for Ballet Jazz de Montréal, the United Way, and the BC Federation of Labour.
Closing his firm PublicityPlus Event Marketing in 2009 , Kevin joined the BC Alliance for Arts + Culture where he handled media relations, developed and managed advocacy and engagement initiatives, and was a co-producer of the annual Mayor’s Arts Awards and producer of the cultural sector’s annual Arts Summit. Kevin is a recipient of a Canadian Newspaper Award (1978), a Western Magazine Award (1991), and the Empress of Canada’s Humanitarian Award (2010) and in 2011 was inducted into the Q Hall of Fame in recognition of his contribution to the gay community in Canada.
Today, semi-retired but still keeping a hand in as KDM Communications, Kevin provides writing and editing services for a small circle of clients whose work he admires and supports, including MISCELLANEOUS Productions, and publishes a news website for Vancouver’s West End community, where he has lived for most of his adult life.