AV Kitching

AV Kitching

Reporter

Born in Malaysia, AV Kitching moved from her small town of Ipoh to the bright lights of London in 1998 to pursue her childhood ambition of becoming a writer.

Her first proper job was at a newspaper in Essex, England. She reviewed bands, interviewed chefs and sat in on community sewing circles, which is where she learnt every single person has a story to tell.

Her career has seen her taking notes at local council meetings, cooking in busy kitchens, going on army maneuvers, sitting in the front row of fashion shows, drinking 16 beers in a day and once, most memorably, butchering a pig… all for a story.

Before she landed in Winnipeg with her husband and daughter, AV was a freelance writer in London, England. Previous to that she was the food editor at the MailOnline. She has worked in Malaysia, where she was the sex and dating editor at Time Out KL and the editor of Time Out Malaysia. She was also the digital editor of fashion magazine ELLE Malaysia.

AV’s favorite writers are all poets. She loves drinking cups of tea. She loathes Coffee Crisps. She is curious about what makes people tick.

Recent articles of AV Kitching

For new poet laureate, grappling with language is a way to navigate the world

AV Kitching 7 minute read Preview

For new poet laureate, grappling with language is a way to navigate the world

AV Kitching 7 minute read Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2022

Chimwemwe (Chim) Undi pauses a lot. She weighs each question carefully before answering, her words examined thoroughly from all angles, measured out and deliberate, her thoughts fully untangled before she gives voice to them.

What she says, and how she says it, is of utmost importance.

The 28-year-old lawyer — Undi practises employment, labour and intellectual property law at Thompson Dorfman Sweatman — is working from home when we speak, keeping an eye on 11-week-old pup Mingus, and coming to grips with being named Winnipeg’s latest poet laureate, the city’s third, by a panel of literary experts commissioned by the Winnipeg Arts Council.

She’s stepping into the rather large boots of Duncan Mercredi, one of the city’s most beloved wordsmiths, who says they couldn’t have chosen a better person to succeed him.

Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2022

MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Chim Undi has been named Winnipeg’s third poet laureate.

Poet laureate Duncan Mercredi ends his term with celebration of words

AV Kitching 4 minute read Preview

Poet laureate Duncan Mercredi ends his term with celebration of words

AV Kitching 4 minute read Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2022

For Winnipeg’s outgoing poet laureate Duncan Mercredi, vulnerability is key when it comes to writing poetry.

Mercredi says poems resonate with us in such a personal way because they come from the heart.

“When you are writing poems you are trying to share what you’re feeling with people, as opposed to when you are writing fiction or novels, when the thoughts come from the brain,” he says.

As Winnipeg’s winter sets in, and to celebrate the culmination of his three-year stint, Mercredi has assembled a group of poets, singers and storytellers for a free evening of entertainment at the West End Cultural Centre tonight.

Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2022

MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS FILES

Duncan Mercredi served as Winnipeg’s poet laureate for three years.

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Siloam Mission CEO starts the day with a hearty breakfast

AV Kitching 9 minute read Preview

Siloam Mission CEO starts the day with a hearty breakfast

AV Kitching 9 minute read Monday, Nov. 28, 2022

This is not Tessa Blaikie Whitecloud’s dream job.

As the CEO of inner-city ministry Siloam Mission, her remit, together with the 177 staff the centre employs, is to create and build solutions for people experiencing homelessness.

“Siloam Mission is a mercy resource centre. We offer long-term housing and transitional housing. We support people experiencing food insecurity and mental-health issues and offer spiritual care.

“I think really we need to recognize it as a multi-causal experience; people experience homelessness because of job loss or not knowing how to do their finances… there are so many systems put in place for people to overcome before they can start taking charge of their own lives,” she says.

Monday, Nov. 28, 2022

JESSICA LEE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

As the CEO of inner-city ministry Siloam Mission, Tessa Blaikie Whitecloud's remit is to create and build solutions for people experiencing homelessness.

New public art piece in Point Douglas really speaks to us

AV Kitching 4 minute read Preview

New public art piece in Point Douglas really speaks to us

AV Kitching 4 minute read Saturday, Nov. 26, 2022

A “talking” bench made from weathering steel, reclaimed oak and coloured concrete made its debut as Winnipeg’s newest piece of public art.

Bizindaadiwag, which means “they listen to each other” in Anishinaabemowin (Ojibwe), was conceived and created by artist and architect Ryan Gorrie, a member of Bingwi Neyaashi Anishinaabek, and landscape architect Suzy Melo.

The installation in Point Douglas’s Michaëlle Jean Park is part of Urban Shaman Contemporary Aboriginal Art gallery’s Speech Act Project, created in partnership with the Winnipeg Trails Association.

This project is an action to make Indigenous language audible, present and publicly available.

Saturday, Nov. 26, 2022

MIKAELA MACKENZIE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Architect and artist Ryan Gorrie designed Bizindaadiwag, a bench with sound installation that is Winnipeg’s newest piece of public art.

Nurses choir proves as much a salve for the singers as for listeners

AV Kitching 4 minute read Preview

Nurses choir proves as much a salve for the singers as for listeners

AV Kitching 4 minute read Thursday, Nov. 24, 2022

Every Monday evening at 7 p.m., long after the students at Balmoral Hall have gone home, the school’s music room resounds with nurses’ voices.

The Winnipeg Nurses Choir, led by retired music teacher Bill Quinn and accompanied by pianist Megan Dufrat, meet there every week, from September to early June to hone their craft.

Comprising both retired and practising nurses, the choir is currently rehearsing for its first public concert of the season, taking place on Sunday.

The choir will perform 15 songs at the concert, ranging from favourites such as Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah and The Sound of Silence by Simon & Garfunkel to more festive classics such as holiday staple Let It Snow.

Thursday, Nov. 24, 2022

Unique concert a ‘cinematic musical circus’ close to home

AV Kitching 3 minute read Preview

Unique concert a ‘cinematic musical circus’ close to home

AV Kitching 3 minute read Friday, Nov. 18, 2022

Described as a “magical mix of music and theatre,” The DreamPlay Collage Concert series — featuring soloists Duncan Mercredi, Scott Nolan and Victoria Sparks — is set to thrill audiences with its mix of songs and stories this coming weekend.

Conceived by composer and musician Glenn Buhr, the concert will also feature the 15-piece Fallen Angels Orchestra and the Broken Songs Band performing on the floor of the West End Cultural Centre.

Buhr first started producing these concerts when he was co-director of the WSO’s New Music Festival in the ’90s. The event uniquely presents performers hidden in plain sight, dotted between members of the audience.

“These concerts were always our most popular shows at the WSO New Music Festival. It’s a stimulating and entertaining way to appreciate an eclectic collection of musical art,” Buhr says.

Friday, Nov. 18, 2022

Supplied

Percussionist Victoria Sparks, left, will appear and reappear throughout the show.

Transforming Winnipeg into a twinkly winter wonderland is a year-round job

AV Kitching 9 minute read Preview

Transforming Winnipeg into a twinkly winter wonderland is a year-round job

AV Kitching 9 minute read Monday, Nov. 14, 2022

It’s -3 C on a cloudy Wednesday morning, mild by Manitoba standards, and the pavements of Higgins Avenue and Main Street are thronging with pedestrians.

Contractor Glynn Thomas directs people to walk around a truck as its jointed arm reaches six metres into the sky.

His colleague Dustin Kipling, safely ensconced in its bucket, clutches an aluminium-framed snowflake studded with LED lights. The arm extends towards an existing light pole and Kipling drills the snowflake onto its post.

Pedestrians pay heed to Thomas’s directions; no one wants to be knocked down by a super-sized snowflake.

Monday, Nov. 14, 2022

MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
Dressing the streets for the holidays.
Dustin Kipling a technician from MyTEC installs a snowflake light on a light standard on Main Street close to Higgins Avenue Wednesday morning.
See AV Kitching story
221109 - Wednesday, November 09, 2022.

Award-nominated picture book details displacement, relocation of Chemawawin Cree Nation in both English and Cree

AV Kitching 6 minute read Preview

Award-nominated picture book details displacement, relocation of Chemawawin Cree Nation in both English and Cree

AV Kitching 6 minute read Monday, Nov. 14, 2022

Doris George and Don K. Philpot believe telling stories is important.

For them, stories are a link to the past, a way for present and future generations to learn about fast-disappearing traditions that are swiftly being swallowed up by modern developments.

But most crucially, stories are key to keep a language alive.

“Your language is very, very important. I think it defines you as a person. It is your identity. Being able to speak your language is powerful,” says George, a Cree educator and principal of Chemawawin Schools in Easterville, Man.

Monday, Nov. 14, 2022

Supplied by Heritage House Publishing)

Written in Cree and English, kā-āciwīkicik / The Move has been nominated for a Governor General’s Literary Award.

Jewish cultural festival returns to fully live format

By AV Kitching 7 minute read Preview

Jewish cultural festival returns to fully live format

By AV Kitching 7 minute read Friday, Nov. 11, 2022

Almost everything Primrose Madayag Knazan writes has an “essence” of her life.

The Winnipeg playwright and author has penned many pieces about the Filipino-Canadian experience, being a mother, and her conversion from Catholicism to Judaism in 2002.

“I write about specific experiences that have been embellished and enriched to the point that they no longer resemble the original seeds of the story,” Madayag Knazan says.

Madayag Knazan will be one of the many talents appearing at this year’s Rady JCC Tarbut: Festival of Jewish Culture lineup.

Friday, Nov. 11, 2022

MIKAELA MACKENZIE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Winnipeg playwright and author Primrose Madayag Knazan will discuss the intersection of Filipino and Jewish cultural identity in her writing at the Rady JCC Tarbut: Festival of Jewish Culture.

Soprano Millicent Scarlett returns home for première of compositions by African-American women

AV Kitching 4 minute read Preview

Soprano Millicent Scarlett returns home for première of compositions by African-American women

AV Kitching 4 minute read Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022

It’s a doubly special performance.

Winnipeg-raised soprano Millicent Scarlett is returning to the hometown stage for the first time since 2004, performing what will be the Winnipeg première of a musical program written by African-American women.

“Growing up, I had never heard of any Black woman composers, so the fact that I get to present their compositions at this time in my career means a lot to me as a singer, and as a Black woman,” Scarlett says.

Flipside Opera & Art Song Collective’s In Plain Sight: Compositions by African-American Women features works by women such as Florence Price, B.E. Boykin, Margaret Bonds, Rosephayne Powell and Undine Smith Moore.

Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022

DANIEL CRUMP / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Winnipeg-born soprano Millicent Scarlett (right) and local pianist Darryl Friesen pause during rehearsal for their upcoming performance, In Plain Sight. The pair have not worked together before.

Debut documentary follows Filipina filmmaker’s journey to regain her mother tongue

AV Kitching 6 minute read Preview

Debut documentary follows Filipina filmmaker’s journey to regain her mother tongue

AV Kitching 6 minute read Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2022

As a child, MC de Natividad was fluent in her mother tongue. When she emigrated from the Philippines to Canada with her family in 1991, the four-year-old communicated solely in her native dialect of Tagalog.

Her grasp on the language soon faded. Thirty years after she arrived in Winnipeg, de Natividad found herself struggling to speak the words that had once so smoothly rolled off her tongue.

English had taken root in her mouth, erasing all traces of Filipino.

“I came here speaking fluent Tagalog. Filipino, which stems from Tagalog is, the national language of the Philippines and my parents, I don’t think it was intentional, but my parents wanted me to learn English really well,” she says. “They encouraged us (their children) to speak English. They didn’t encourage us to speak Tagalog back to them.”

Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2022

MIKAELA MACKENZIE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Winnipeg-based emerging director/producer MC de Natividad just finished her first film, Bumalik.

When it comes to performing and cooking, Melissa Langdon is a chip off the old block

AV Kitching 8 minute read Preview

When it comes to performing and cooking, Melissa Langdon is a chip off the old block

AV Kitching 8 minute read Monday, Oct. 31, 2022

Pasta salad tossed in store-bought dressing may not be the obvious choice of comfort food, but for actor and theatre practitioner Melissa Langdon, this meal brings a flood of childhood memories to the fore.

The combination of a handful of ingredients takes Langdon (who uses they/them pronouns) back to the kitchen where they used to watch their mother make it, with music from ’70s bands Eagles or Bread blasting in the background.

“This is comfort food; it binds me to my mother. I remember eating it as a four-year-old. My mom isn’t a very good cook and I’m the same way,” says the actor. “But it was that one thing she would make at dinner and thinking about it, I can instantly taste it in my head.”

Langdon and their mother are close. Our conversation is peppered with references to Emily Langdon, a classically trained dancer who studied at Royal Winnipeg Ballet before leaving for the School of Toronto Dance Theatre. A knee injury brought her back to Winnipeg, where she joined the professional program of Winnipeg’s Contemporary Dancers, before leaving after a year.

Monday, Oct. 31, 2022

ETHAN CAIRNS / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

For Melissa Langdon, chicken pasta salad is a simple comfort food harkening back to childhood.

Sweet, sweet verdicts

Ben Waldman, Jen Zoratti, Eva Wasney, Alan Small, AV Kitching and Ben Sigurdson 6 minute read Preview

Sweet, sweet verdicts

Ben Waldman, Jen Zoratti, Eva Wasney, Alan Small, AV Kitching and Ben Sigurdson 6 minute read Monday, Oct. 31, 2022

Halloween is all about snacks.

Yes, there are costumes, 12-foot-tall skeletons and creepy pumpkins, but the reason we go door to door is to fill our bags and buckets to their fullest capacity with chewy, tangy, salty, sweet, caramely, tongue-numbingly sour candies and chocolates. Every trick-or-treater is on the hunt for their favourites — Mars bars, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Sour Patch Kids, bubble gum or toothbrushes. But what about those freebies that we always give away to our parents, siblings or friends, and never try for ourselves?

The Free Press arts and life team decided to sink its teeth into new edible territory, tasting for the first time a few cult classics, foreign specialties, locally made crunchies, and even a vegan-friendly pig snack. Yes, a vegan-friendly pig snack. Which ones are sick tricks, and which ones are honest-to-goodness treats?

BIG TURK tasted by Ben WaldmanI’ve always been fascinated by Big Turk. I’ve never seen anyone eat one, I’ve never heard anyone talking about one, and yet there they are, right on the shelf at every 7-Eleven.

Monday, Oct. 31, 2022

AV Kitching says Coffee Crisp is a "crime against candy." (Mikaela MacKenzie / Winnipeg Free Press)

Spooky tunes for boys and ghouls

Ben Waldman, Eva Wasney, Alan Small, Jill Wilson, AV Kitching, Jen Zoratti and Ben Sigurdson 9 minute read Preview

Spooky tunes for boys and ghouls

Ben Waldman, Eva Wasney, Alan Small, Jill Wilson, AV Kitching, Jen Zoratti and Ben Sigurdson 9 minute read Friday, Oct. 28, 2022

Halloween dominates October like Christmas dominates November and December, but while the yuletide soundtrack is vast and never-ending, with songs in every genre imaginable, All Hallow’s Eve is sorely lacking in musical accompaniment.

We can only listen to Bobby Pickett’s Monster Mash — which debuted 60 years ago — so many times before wanting to chop our ears off.

So the Free Press staff worked in the lab late one night and (de)composed this playlist of songs that should be played on and around Oct. 31, even if they aren’t traditional Halloween tunes. |

Friday, Oct. 28, 2022

Conference connects performers with local presenters

AV Kitching 3 minute read Preview

Conference connects performers with local presenters

AV Kitching 3 minute read Friday, Oct. 28, 2022

Manitoba Country Music Awards nominee Nelson Little, 2021 Juno Award winner Sammy Jackson and Winnipeg-based emerging talent Kwiat are just some of the artists performing at the Manitoba Showcase Conference in Portage la Prairie this week.

The multidisciplinary arts conference, which runs to Sunday, features more than 150 delegates from across Canada, including seven promising Manitobans. The event, held in-person for the first time since 2019, provides an opportunity for artists, musicians and singers to showcase in front of local and national presenters and galleries.

Along with discussion topics and workshops, there will be exhibitions from five visual artists, including Pepe Hidalgo and Alison Davis.

“Our conference brings together booking agents and industry experts with a focus on Manitoban presenters and galleries. The conference and showcase offers workshops, live performances, one-on-one meetings and networking opportunities,” says Rose-Anne Harder, the executive director of showcase organizers Manitoba Arts Network (MAN),

Friday, Oct. 28, 2022

At 50, MCO embracing technology, honouring tradition

AV Kitching 4 minute read Preview

At 50, MCO embracing technology, honouring tradition

AV Kitching 4 minute read Monday, Oct. 24, 2022

Maintaining continuity while still evolving and growing — that’s the plan for Manitoba Chamber Orchestra for the next 50 years.

The orchestra celebrates its 50th season anniversary this year and has a host of special programs planned to mark the occasion with 10 in-person concerts and six online shows over the course of the next few months.

On Wednesday, the Winnipeg Singers, led by conductor Yuri Klaz, join the MCO (conducted by Alexander Weimann) to perform Bach’s F major Lutheran Mass, filled with glorious choruses and deeply moving arias.

An ensemble of international repute, the 24-voice, Winnipeg-based choir also celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. This is their first collaboration since the pandemic.

Monday, Oct. 24, 2022

JEN DOERKSEN / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS FILES

The Manitoba Chamber Orchestra is celebrating its 50th season this year.

Forever Bicycles sculpture rolls on after 3 years at Forks

AV Kitching 6 minute read Preview

Forever Bicycles sculpture rolls on after 3 years at Forks

AV Kitching 6 minute read Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022

Set against the backdrop of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, Chinese dissident artist Ai WeiWei’s Forever Bicycles sculpture, composed of 1,245 bikes locked into place with bolts and bars, has been a firm fixture at The Forks for the past 37 months.

Based on the original 2003 artwork by Ai, which was constructed with 42 bicycles produced by Shanghai-based company Yong Jiu (Forever), the site-specific installation is rebuilt differently each time it moves locations, sometimes with as few as four bicycles and up to as many as 3,144, all in different configurations.

This week the area surrounding the artwork will be fenced off as a team of specialists begins disassembling the sculpture in preparation for it to leave the city it’s called home for more than three years.

“We were lucky to have it for such a long time,” says Jenna Khan, communications specialist at The Forks. “We want to let the public know they have a few weeks left to say goodbye to it.”

Saturday, Oct. 22, 2022

FortWhyte’s Sunset Goose Flights a chance to see birds at their most graceful

By AV Kitching 7 minute read Preview

FortWhyte’s Sunset Goose Flights a chance to see birds at their most graceful

By AV Kitching 7 minute read Thursday, Oct. 13, 2022

In England, in the area I used to live, Canada geese were barely tolerated. They were considered rowdy; their strutting waddles and arrogant posturing had taken over a small park popular with young children. The gaggle seemed to relish terrorizing these youngsters as they toddled by.

Dare to venture too close and out those necks would stretch, complete with sibilant hisses and menacing wings. Things got so bad council authorities considered elevating their status from mere inconvenience to the more serious “nuisance.” Forms were sent out, residents urged to tick boxes and lodge official complaints. At one point there was talk of a consultation with the Royal Society of Birds (RSPB).

I do not know what came of it all. By the time the situation worsened, I was already here. I had come to roost at the home of the goose.

There are at least six kinds of geese in Manitoba. The large Canada geese (branta canadensis) are as scary as I remember, often spreading out their wings and stalking me during my lake runs. This aggressive behaviour, coupled with their predilection for disproportionately large droppings, would cause me to avoid certain stretches of the path, veering towards the road while skipping over slimy goose muck.

Thursday, Oct. 13, 2022

MIKAELA MACKENZIE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

This year the migrating geese arrived early.

Well-loved children’s tale far from theatrically threadbare

AV Kitching 4 minute read Preview

Well-loved children’s tale far from theatrically threadbare

AV Kitching 4 minute read Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2022

With themes that continue to resonate a hundred years since it was first published, it’s no wonder The Velveteen Rabbit, a children’s story by Margery Williams, still captivates both adults and children alike.

A tale of enduring friendships between a boy and his toy rabbit, rooted in love and with a sprinkle of luck and magic, the timeless classic, first published in 1922, has been adapted on countless occasions both onscreen and onstage.

This fall a reimagining of the story, written by playwright Purni Morell, opens at Manitoba Theatre for Young People (MTYP).

The 60-minute production at MTYP (plus 10-minute intermission) is based on Morell’s original 2014 show, which debuted at Unicorn Theatre in London, England, during her tenure as the theatre’s artistic director.

Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2022

JESSICA LEE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Tom Keenan (left, as Rabbit) and Kamal Chioua (Boy) in The Velveteen Rabbit, which opens Friday at MTYP.

Morna-June Morrow has had a handle on handbells since 1969

AV Kitching 6 minute read Preview

Morna-June Morrow has had a handle on handbells since 1969

AV Kitching 6 minute read Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2022

Twenty-five handbells, nestled in a box, arrived one cold spring morning in March 1969 at Oakenwald Elementary School, where Morna-June Morrow was teaching.

They had been ordered by the principal, Miss Elsie Dewar, who had seen them in an article and wondered if Morrow would be willing to teach them to the students.

“Sure, I’m game to try anything that is new,” Morrow, 79, recalls responding.

Morrow put in a call to Fred Merrett, who was teaching music at Tec-Voc High School. Merrett, assisted by Audrey Jones, had formed the first handbell group in Manitoba in 1966 and Morrow was seeking direction.

Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2022

JOHN WOODS / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Handbell quartet Ring Out (from left) Patsy Andrews-Vert, Jewel Casselman, Morna-June Morrow and Susan Stevenson; Morrow was recently presented an honorary lifetime achievement award by the Handbell Musicians of Canada.

Memories of Métis dish sent culinary instructor on journey to explore culture

AV Kitching 7 minute read Preview

Memories of Métis dish sent culinary instructor on journey to explore culture

AV Kitching 7 minute read Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2022

Clinton Paul Ducharme is a formidable-looking man whose gentle demeanour belies his physical presence.

Broad-shouldered and muscular, Ducharme, 43, once harboured dreams of being an NHL player, but a burgeoning interest in food led him down a path that now sees him honing the skills of future chefs.

The culinary arts instructor at Paterson GlobalFoods Institute RRC Polytech will be cooking boulette today and has already assembled the meatballs for his soup.

“I wanted to make sure everything was ready,” he says by way of explanation. “This whole thing will take around 45 minutes.”

Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2022

MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Boulette is a traditional Métis soup.

La Liberté’s first film a tribute to families

AV Kitching 6 minute read Preview

La Liberté’s first film a tribute to families

AV Kitching 6 minute read Wednesday, Sep. 28, 2022

Flanked by two musicians, Anhelina Lavryk plaintively sings a Ukrainian tune.

“Until the storm passes, I will be with you,” her voice trembles Tuesday evening as she hits the high notes in The Sky, a song by Odyn v kanoe, an indie band from Lviv, Ukraine.

The song selection for Tuesday’s premiere of a film about their escape to Winnipeg was a fitting one. When the 12-year-old said goodbye to her father, Yurii, in May, she did not know when she would see him again.

The Lavryk family — father Yurii, mother Mariana and 8-year-old sister Zlata — once lived on the ninth floor of an apartment building in Ivano-Frankivsk, Western Ukraine.

Wednesday, Sep. 28, 2022

SUPPLIED

Big sister Anhelina Lavryk says she’s seeing changes in Zlata. “My sister’s English is so much better than before she came here and she has made a lot of friends also.’

African film fest brings full slate of features, filmmaker panels

AV Kitching 5 minute read Preview

African film fest brings full slate of features, filmmaker panels

AV Kitching 5 minute read Friday, Sep. 23, 2022

In the film The Gravedigger’s Wife (2021), set in Djibouti City, a man hunts for bodies, waiting to be chosen to dig graves for the dead. In return for this undertaking, Guled the gravedigger is paid a paltry sum which he uses to support Nasra, his dying wife, and emotionally distant son Mahat. It’s a heavy task to shoulder but he would do anything for his family.

Directed by Khadar Ahmed and starring Somali-Canadian model Yasmin Warsame, the Cannes award-nominated film will be screened at the fifth African Movie Festival in Manitoba (AM-FM).

The event takes place at the Gas Station Arts Centre today through Sunday and features 18 films chosen from 16 different African countries including South Africa, Cameroon, Zimbabwe, Senegal, Nigeria, Kenya and Somalia, as well as from the African diaspora in Qatar, Portugal, the U.S., France, the U.K. and Israel.

The festival provides a platform for a group that is rarely represented in mainstream media, says founder Ben Akoh.

Friday, Sep. 23, 2022

The festival provides a platform for a group that is rarely represented in mainstream media, says founder Ben Akoh. (Jessica Lee / Winnipeg Free Press)