Q&A: Blue Canoe’s Artistic Director, Maddy Scovil


Kingstonians! Blue Canoe has a new production running at the Baby Grand until January 21. They will be performing musical comedy The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. If you’ve had a chance to see past performances by these very talented young actors then you already know that you’ve got to see this show. If not, I can tell you from experience that this group of young people are incredibly talented and I always enjoy seeing them on stage.

Artistic Director, Maddy Scovil, took the time to answer a few questions about Blue Canoe and the musical comedy. Continue reading


Q&A: Fiver Talks About Audible Songs From Rockwood Album

Toronto artist Fiver aka songwriter Simone Schmidt will be performing at the Calvary United Church on Friday, January 12. The show is being co-presented by the Skeleton Park Arts Fest in a collaborative effort with the Prison4Women memorial.

She will be performing form her new album, Audible Songs From Rockwood – a series of songs based on the experiences of women housed at Kingston’s Rockwood Asylum for the Criminally Insane between 1854-1881.

I sent Simone a few questions via email about her experience reading through the asylum’s archives for two years and turning that experience into an album. Learn why she chose these archives to write about, how this experience made her view our current mental healthcare system and her thoughts on these patients’ experiences.

Keep up with Kingston: What drew you to these particular archives?Fiver-Rockwood-Asylum-Album Was the plan always to turn it into an album?

Simone Schmidt: I read an article in the newspaper at random, while doing research about detention and incarceration in Canada. Somehow got onto this article about how the women inmates at Rockwood Asylum for the Criminally Insane were housed in the horses stables as an interim measure for 12 years while prisoners from the Kingston Pen were building Rockwood as it stands today. It rattled me to think about and I wrote a song right away. That was back in 2012, and so I sang that song for a few years, and every time I sang the song, I would wonder about what life was really like for the people there. Information about Rockwood hasn’t been widely published (though a great writer, Kathleen Kendall is releasing a book about it in the next few years), so archival research was the only way to find out. And yes, it was always with the intent of writing an album because I’m a songwriter and that’s my way. Continue reading

Shop Local: Downtown Kingston Gift Guide

I’ve made a list for a little downtown shopping gift inspiration! A place to shop for each special person in your life.  Continue reading


Black Dog Hospitality Houses Perfect Venue for Private Parties

Black dog food Lab
I am always looking for new ways to enjoy Kingston — new places to visit and new foods to try. Luckily, there is always a new spot opening up in our wonderful foodie city for me to explore!

I recently celebrated a birthday and wanted to try a new space that my friends and family wouldn’t have visited yet. I saw that Black Dog Hospitality Group — the umbrella company of popular restaurants Dianne’s, Chien Noir, Atomica and Harpers also offers catering. Initially I thought I would host everyone in my house and cater in but decided against that idea (boo clean up!) and settled on hosting a dinner in their catering space – Black Dog Food Lab. This hidden space downtown on Ontario steet is decorated beautifully and perfect for an intimate gathering! Continue reading


Shop Local: Kingston’s Holiday Markets

Photo by Kari Shea on Unsplash

The countdown to Christmas is officially on and this is the perfect time to share all of the goodness that Kingston’s makers have to offer. Thanks to a few very festive markets
— you can easily support local and treat loved ones this season. Scroll down to see where you can find your locally sourced Christmas gifts.

Kingston Holiday Market – 274 Princess Street – Saturday, November 18th (Open for 6 weekends)
From locally made chocolate and jewelry to bath products, furniture and more! Some of my favourite Kingston makers will be here!
Keep up on Instagram: @kingstonholidaymarket
Continue reading


Q&A With A Passage to Bollywood Director Ashley Lobo

Stage musical A Passage to Bollywood will be coming to The Grand Theatre on November 25. This vibrant show has traveled all over the world from China and Germany to Turkey, South Africa, US, Bahrain and Israel. Award winning director and choreographer Ashley Lobo took some time to answer some of my questions about show. Read below to learn about A Passage to Bollywood.

Keep up with Kingston: I read that you moved back to India in 1998, what brought you back?
Ashley Lobo: I left India for Australia because I wanted to train in international dance as there was no formal education system for it in India. I went back to India in ’98 because I thought it was important to start up a dance school so others could have the opportunity that I did not have.
Continue reading


Five Shows I Can’t Wait to See This Season at The Grand

I am so excited to announce a fun sponsored collaboration with The Grand Theatre. As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve grown up attending shows like The Nutcracker at The Grand but they offer so much more than a holiday ballet. Performers travel from around the world to share their talents with us Kingstonians and we are incredibly lucky to have this theatre that can house these performances in such an intimate and beautiful space.

I’ve picked a few of the shows I look forward to and I’ll have an opportunity to interview someone who is a part each of these shows ahead of each performance. Plus, I’ll be pairing each article with a contest! Continue reading