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KaBoom! goes Port Moody for one-night arts event
It may have the smallest population of the three cities.
But Port Moody has the biggest concentration of visual and performing artists in the Tri-Cities, whether they be working as professionals or amateurs.
Next week, Port Moody will host its first major gathering of the city’s artists, with dozens of them displaying their talents — for free — under one roof.
Among those lined up include the Caulfield School of Dance, Rebel Haunt thespians, Coastal Sound Music Academy and actor Dave Secunda.
And while the performances are happening, the work of nearly 100 visual artists affiliated with Port Moody will be projected on surrounding screens.
Spokesperson Jillian Hull envisions KaBoom! to be like an insect colony, where 350 spectators will “swarm” to new shows every 10 minutes.
“Think of lots of movement,” Hull said. “There will be something exciting to see all the time.... and there’s an immediacy and an energy to that.”
Giving the cues will be “ringmaster” Frankie Cena, a Port Moody resident, model and public speaker who last year was named Mr. World Canada.
Though he’s a bit unsure about what to expect, Cena said he’s honoured to chosen as the master of ceremonies for such a creative party.
Still, while Cena’s title is the KaBoom! ringmaster, “it won’t be a circus,” Hull stressed. “It’s meant to be a way where artists can riff off each other and give the community a better idea about why we call this the City of the Arts.”
She added, “Port Moody is becoming a touchstone to the arts in the region and there’s a kind of gravitational pull here. The vibe is evident.”
The concept for KaBoom! came up last year when Port Moody artists and business owners Rainer and Helen Daniels suggested the city put on an untraditional pop-up event for local artists to mingle with the public in one spot.
Under then chairperson Coun. Zoe Royer, the city’s arts and culture committee — of which Helen is a member — championed the idea and, for months, the KaBoom! dream team has met regularly to get it off the ground.
Its organizers are among the most-respected in the arts community: Helen Daniels, Sarah Dixon, Brad Letwin, Chris Wong, Gaetan Royer, Salomeh Honarmand, Cathy Cena, Elham Sarvi, Nikki Bryce, Geoff Scott, Markus Fahrner, Pam Gole and Jim Millar.
“They’re a composite of the arts scene in Port Moody,” said Hull, citing their backgrounds in theatre, history, architecture, film and visual arts.
But KaBoom! is more than just an exhibition, said event co-ordinator Rose Kapp. It has also been a journey of discovery about who’s in Port Moody.
As a result, a 64-page event directory that includes profiles of most of the city’s artists is being created and will be handed out to attendees.
“KaBoom has helped us to know who they are and what they’re doing here,” Hull said.
• KaBoom! is a free, all-ages event on Saturday, April 5 at Port Moody city hall at 7 p.m. Registration is required by visiting portmoody.ca/kaboom.