Friday, January 28, 2011

Shakespeare In The City

Episode 44 of This Is Toronto is now available!

This latest edition features the Spur-of-the-Moment Shakespeare Collective, a group of Toronto actors who strive to make the works of William Shakespeare more accessible.

NEXT EPISODE: Feb. 11, 2011

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Pride in the CBC: A Musical Request and Challenge

A challenge - which I'm crossposting on several net.venues today:

A friend of mine in the UK recently pointed out a song to me by a gent name of Mitch Benn, "I'm Proud of the BBC". It's been making the rounds across the anglophonic portion of the Net, and quite possibly beyond that corner for a few months now. It's even generating some spin-off merchandise of its own.

And I like listening to it.

And it got me thinking.

It's no secret I have a pro-CBC/Radio Canada bias. Have had such for a longish while now. Some of you reading this posting - wherever you're reading it - share in that bias, and rightly so.

The point: I'd like to see a fan-song extolling the historical and present virtues of the Ceeb. I don't quite know what rules to set on the thing so we don't run afoul of any laws or lawsuits. I just know I don't have the lyrical talent we need for this.


Thursday, January 20, 2011

why i live my life on facebook

i woke up with a start at 420 am (yeah) with some ideas that i wanted to write down. including some new antics for chausette, my new born stoner sock puppet. after writing furiously so i wouldn't forget anything, i am now completely buck awake.

coffee? of course. i fired up the espresso machine and made myself a tall water with lime.

i realized again why i like facebook & blogging. my days are so free form, around meetings and shooting and playing and creating, all on my schedule. when i write things down on facebook it's like an electrical journal for me. i still have paper notebooks too, mostly for drawing.

i remember writing a facebook note after a friend had said "what's it like with a job where you're not really helping anybody". my friend wasn't interested in the answer but i was. so i wrote it down... and then people commented and discussed... and i realized that storytelling can be the best way to help someone. so yeah, thanks facebook.

i love going off the grid just as much. i'm not big into rules or doing something just for the sake of doing it. right now i will live my life on facebook.

lisa anita wegner
boss lady of the dufferson herman arts umbrella/ mighty brave productions

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


One of the things keeping this particular contributor busy over the last few months has been writing small commentaries for the Spacing Ottawa weblog.

Today's instalment focuses on the state and perception of the Ottawa Public Library's Main Branch. Libraries being yet another form of civic infrastructure, that infrastructure being Spacing Magazine's main topic of interest.

All of which leads me to wonder how people across Canada view their local libraries...?

Friday, January 14, 2011

Neighbourhood Art

Episode 43 of This Is Toronto is now available!

This latest edition features MABELLEarts, an organization that uses art to bring residents of the diverse Mabelle community in Etobicoke together.

NEXT EPISODE: Jan. 28, 2011

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Work Space, Live Space, Play Space, Solo Space.

If you'd have told me that I'd be living alone and working in my living space in 2011, I'd would have said 'no way Jose'. Well, sunrise surprise here I am living solo and working out of my front room. And the best part is how much I dig it.

With a roommate, my space would be too small to work in. And how amazing to have no overhead and half personal living expenses become right offs? Extremely amazing. For six years I had a workspace outside my house and I loved (sometimes -ha-) being able to walk away from work. Sometimes I didn't want to. Now I just unplug my work phone lines when I'm done.

I guess the real surprise is how much I heart living alone. I lived with my parents or with a partner my whole life. And one year with a highschool friend. I was always used to having someone around, eating meals at a table and being in reasonable touch with someone and sort of having a congruent social schedule. I didn't think I'd be interested in the solo living.

Sunrise surprise number two. I love the freedom; I eat candy in the morning; walk my dogs at 3am; wear pajamas all day; nap when I want; turn my phone off; go to High Park all day and anything else I can think of. I have people over when I want and then total peace when I want.

I think everyone that does something all the time (like living with someone) would benefit from taking a break from it. And then it's crystal obvious if you want to go back to it. I do think I'll partner up again, and at that time move my work out. But maybe after this freedom I won't want to.

Possibilities are delicious.

Dr. Lisa Anita Wegner

Living In A Movie.

I didn't go to film school and never was a cinephile. Directors names meant nothing to me before the last couple of years and not too long ago, I hadn't seen Gone With The Wind or the Wizard of Oz.

When I was a kid I would get really onto one specific movie and just lock and load. I would live it as much as I could. Costumes, collecting stuff, memorizing lines, singing the songs, pretending there was some elaborate reason that me and one of the characters had switched identities. I didn't have a video camera so I would put on plays based on the films I liked. Then as teenager I fell asleep before the end of movies and never re-watched them. I was happy to know the beginning of a lot of stories. And I still put on plays, and started making some video stuff.

Then about 5 years ago I decided seeing as it was my profession I realized it was time to add to my film knowledge library. I started with Birth Of A Nation and kept moving forward the golden years of Hollywood and so much more. Docs, foreign films, kids films, tv movies, series, claymation etc.

I was enjoying films less and analyzing them more. It was invigorating but felt like work.

Now I think I have found a
balance. I binge on films a lot and feel I have a specific taste but have acquired a wide appreciation. And I figured out how to get right into a movie and feel like I'm living and breathing it- like I did when I was little kid.

Wow Miss Geek really looks like me.
Lisa Anita Wegner

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The days & nights of an indie film producer.

Hello Public Broadcasting Readers,

I starting blogging in 2008 while I was prepping for the Cannes Film Festival. I got a lot out of it but after just a few postings I got very sick. So hello again. Nearly three years later I am back. Still creating content, telling stories, and getting them made.

Here is what's on my mind today:

I realized how much of my creative thinking I do while I am walking my two dogs. Stories, scripts, ways to pitch and problem solving are all things that come to me when I'm doing other things. And when my mind is somewhat occupied with something else. I have some techniques for helping this process but best is not to force it. Trudging through the snow in my snowsuit playing with dogs is a perfect time for a story point I had been stuck on for weeks to literally comes to me. Shazam.

It's not earth shattering news, I think this is a common phenomenon. But it was neat for me to figure out again and good for me to practice.

Coming in after dog walks and jotting everything down, made me notice how much content comes in that way. The nuts and bolts of producing fill days but the storytelling creative part of me, the part that I am proud of and that allows me to do this work, rarely comes alive while I'm sitting at my desk. So I thank my dogs. I wonder if Dufferson and Tanner will be the only canines with writing credits in film?

I am still easing in to work and currently working with a playful creative partner and happy to be back on track.

Also recently very inspired by Jim Henson and his amazing brain. I always loved The Muppet Show when I was little but investigating the worlds and characters that JH created have really opened my mind. He is a story telling inspiration machine. And the Muppet Show Cast Album is great on the ipod.

I was wanting to embed The Muppet Show season one opening here, but a link will have to do because I couldn't figure it out.

BTW who are the the 6 YouTube bastards who don't like the Muppet opening?

Looking forward,
Lisa Anita Wegner

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Ideas for Canada's 150th Birthday Projects

Inspired by remarks by Romeo Dallaire in recent weeks, Geoff d'Auria for the Tyee suggests a project or two of his own preference for Canada's 150th Birthday Party. I know of Dallaire's preference for pursuing the abolition of child soldier recruitment, and in my POV, both proposals ought to be pursued regardless of whether we can get them either done or at least underway in time. Nor are they the only ones.

Opinions, anyone?