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The Charming Redhead

Anne of Green Gables—The Musical™

Review by Luke Arbuckle

Anne of Green Gables—The Musical™How does one properly review a play that’s been on the stage for 50 years? Perhaps the longevity of the production speaks directly to its quality and should be considered above all else. That being said, the cast and crew of Anne of Green Gables—The Musical™ have done it yet again, half a century after the first production.

There can be no wonder why people around the world have been struck by the charming redhead who called PEI her home, she’s as witty, vocal and charismatic as she’s always been, a colourful character not afraid to speak her mind whit a flare for the dramatic and always a pleasure to watch.

Enjoyed by millions of people from around the world, since 1965, Anne of Green Gables—The Musical™ has called the Confederation Centre her home. One might think 50 years of performing the same play each year might become tiresome, but the cast and crew of this year’s performance have stepped things up and deliver a wonderful performance.

Filled with the songs and stories we’ve come to know and love, the show features a cast and crew of 76 brilliant and inspiring people who have kept the play as fresh, funny and exciting as it ever was, perhaps even more so.

The scene changes are seamless, the music is powerfully delivered and set designs are more beautiful and intricate than ever before.

Officially the longest running musical in Canadian history, Anne of Green Gables is on it’s 16th Anne, but the performance from Katie Kerr (who’s playing Anne for her second season) is second to none.

The performers use an obvious passion for theatre to provide a captivating rendition of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s 1909 vision of Anne. With remarkable well choreographed dance, high energy line delivery and humour in all the right places, this year’s show is pulling all the stops and leaving audiences mesmerized and even more infatuated with the freckle-faced free spirit.

Anne of Green Gables helps remind Islanders of the beauty of our soil, our land, and our communities. Visitors to the Island will leave the Confederation Centre auditorium with a better sense of what it means to be an Islander and how proud we are of our history.

I’ve seen the play several times throughout my life and have never seen it performed so well, with so much enthusiasm or as seamlessly. It’s a very impressive production and Islanders should be proud to call it their own.

The play has been performed 2,837 times at the Confederation Centre and I don’t think anyone will be shocked if it performed another 2,000 more, particularly with the excitement it carries this year, its 50th anniversary.

If you’re from the Island and it’s been a while since you enjoyed an evening with Anne, perhaps it’s time to see it again, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

If you’re visiting and have not yet had the privilege of seeing the production, I strongly suggest you complete your Island experience and visit Anne of Green Gables this summer at the Confederation Centre of the Arts.

Refined Rural Cuisine

Gordon Bailey of Lot 30

Chef’s Table
by Luke Arbuckle

Gordon Bailey (photo: Luke Arbuckle)Gordon Bailey isn’t just a chef and he isn’t just a business owner, he’s both and is proudly amping up his culinary expertise this summer. Owner and executive chef at Lot 30 in Charlottetown, Gordon has an extensive history of high profile positions in kitchens around Canada and Europe.

Originally from Winnipeg, Gordon got his start in the kitchen at a breakfast restaurant and worked his way through the ranks. “I very quickly fell in love with the high-energy, fast-paced chaos of the kitchen,” says Gordon.

By the time he was 21, he’d done the circuit in Manitoba and felt it was time for a change. Over the years he’d developed a passion for seafood cuisine and in keeping with his sense of adventure, made an impromptu move to PEI.

Although his plan was to only stay for a couple of years, Gordon says the Island bug bit him hard. “It was really easy to call this place home,” he said. “It’s a beautiful place with an amazing history and the best seafood you could ask for.”

Gordon got his PEI culinary feet wet while working at the Seasons in Time restaurant in Summerside before being selected to represent Canada at the Junior Chef Challenge in Vienna, Austria. From there, he spent the next three months working at different restaurants in Nice, France.

Upon his return to PEI, the now 23-year-old Gordon was asked to join the team of the Inn at Bay Fortune, where he took the helm as executive chef for the next three years. “That was a proud moment for me,” he said.

Before long, Gordon was approached by a couple of restaurant connoisseurs from New York who believed in his skills enough to help him start his own restaurant and in 2005, he opened Dayboat in Oyster Bed Bridge. “We wanted to refine rural cuisine,” he said. “The theme of the business was straight from the boat to the plate.”

After only two years in business, Dayboat was voted the third best new restaurant in Canada. “It was quite an honour,” says Gordon. “We were only open during the summer months, but cars would line up down the highway to get in.”

But Gordon wasn’t done yet, he wanted a year-round business in the Island’s capital city  of Charlottetown. In 2008, he found exactly what he was looking for. “I wanted a place that was the right size, with the right lines a modern feel,” he said. “Then I found the building on Kent Street that I knew would become Lot 30.”

Seven years later, business is booming and the 68-seat restaurant has become one of the leading culinary hot-spots in Charlottetown. “We do produce and product driven cuisine and have forged really great partnerships with many local suppliers,” says Gordon. “I love it here and encourage anyone taking in the 2014 celebrations this summer, to stop in for a meal and a friendly chat.”

A fan of Island history, Gordon named the restaurant Lot 30 in honour of the Wright-Patterson plan of 1771 which divided Charlottetown into five sets of 100 lots, often referred to as the 500 lots. The property used by Gordon these days was Lot 30 of the fourth hundred.



Talking Bands
by Luke Arbuckle

Coyote (photo: Luke Arbuckle)Charlottetown band, Coyote, are no strangers to the pages of The Buzz. With proven dedication, Coyote has forged a reputation for high-energy, high-movement rock shows and continue to spread the fever across eastern Canada.

Things are really picking up for the progressive pop-rock band, and early this summer they’ll be releasing the much anticipated follow-up of their debut EP Tracks which earned them four Music PEI nominations including Album of the year and Artist of the Year.

Comprised of Josh Carter (vocals, guitar), Bruce Rooney (lead guitar), Evan McCosham (bass), Bradford Rooney (synth/keys), and Mike King (drums), the band is ready to start the next chapter of their sonic adventures with the release their new single “Old News” on June 3.

Bruce says the band laid low over the winter and kept mostly to rehearsals and the odd off-province gig, it was hard, but worth it. “We had a pretty low-profile over the winter in terms of live shows, but we recently finished recording the album with Colin Buchanan(Paper Lions) and we’re about to release a lot of new material.”

Until the release of the new album, the band plans to periodically release content from their latest work. “Every couple of weeks until the album is released, we want to upload video clips or samples online,” said Bradford. “It’s a good way to let people know what we’re up to.”

Evan said the winter recording helped the band write new songs, explore new sounds and really focus on the music. “It’s been the plan all along,” he said. “We’re committed to what we do and loving every minute of it.”

The tour dates have been announced, the van is packed and the guys couldn’t be more excited. Later this summer, Coyote will even be highlighted by CBC’s Heavy Weather program, featuring east coast performers in interesting places, including PEI. “It’s going to be a lot of fun,” said Josh. “It’s a great opportunity to represent the Island music scene.”

There’s a lot of common ground amongst the members; Josh, Bruce and Evan are childhood friends, Bradford is Bruce’s brother and Mike is the definition of kindred spirit. Together, over the years, they’ve developed a passion for making people feel. “Sometimes people just want to dance,” says Bruce. “That’s why we do this, we love make people dance.

Appropriate then that Coyote will be hitting the stage at festivals including Paddlefest, Evolve and Follyfest, and 1864 Week in Victoria Park, to name a few. “We want to be a busy as we can be, we want to play everywhere,” said Josh. “It’s awesome to play any kind of show, but festivals can be kind-of special.”

A task they do well and perhaps even better now that Mike has finally, and permanently, moved to PEI. “I’m here to stay,” says Mike. “We’re closer now than ever before, we’re more dedicated and organized than ever.”

It’s often a difficult task to summarize the sounds, ambitions and motivations of growing bands in 500 words. As for Coyote, I can safely encourage anyone looking for a good time and great music, to check the upcoming shows section of The Buzz and do party with the boys from Coyote this summer.

Oh, and make sure to visit them at for regular updates and tour listings.

Organic Practice

Rob Arthur squeezes out a living at The Juice Box

The Chef’s Table
by Luke Arbuckle

Rob Arthur (photo: Luke Arbuckle)Organic farming practices have become a common theme among Island chefs in recent years. More now than ever, head chefs are looking for local organic suppliers to fill their menus and none more than executive chef Rob Arthur at the Juice Box in Montague.

For over 40 years, Rob has been building his recipes around his access to organic products. At times, it’s proven to be a difficult task. “I started in the kitchen at Ponderosa when I was 16,” Rob said. “We didn’t really have anything very organic back then, but over the years it’s become a more viable option.”

Rob said it was fate that he end up on PEI. Originally from Britain, Rob moved to Ontario at age 11. By the time he was in his 40s, he’d received a degree geological exploration (gold), worked in kitchens across Canada, owned an organic farm and opened his own 40 seat restaurant. “I’ve tried to do as many things as I could,” he said.

“Last February, I sold the restaurant in Newfoundland and was on my way back to Ontario. I must have been looking for something a little different, I just turned around and decided to visit PEI.”

A few days later, it was decided. Rob was making the move. “I fell in love with it and saw the potential,” he said.

“I knew right away I was going to live in the Cardigan/Montague area.” Last summer, while visiting the Cardigan Farmer's Market, Rob ran into Jana Furness, Owner of The Juice Box, a small, organic juice, soup and sandwich shop at the market. “She mentioned that she was expanding her business and was looking for an organic chef,” he said.

“I told her a little about my history and intentions on PEI and we’ve been a team ever since.”

Now, from their Main Street location in Montague, Rob specializes in gluten free cuisine, organic soups, salads, sandwiches and baked goods. He uses as many local producers as possible and makes everything on the menu from scratch. “Recipe development and creativity are interchangeable to me,” he said. “I like to try different things, many chefs put too many constraints on their flavours, I try to keep things a little more free. Berries in a sandwich, ham in a gluten free, savory muffin. Healthy food is really exciting.”

Rob said he’s here to stay and soon hopes to have another organic farm in the works. “I want to start it up and supply local establishments with their produce,” he said. “It’s a growing market, one I’m already experienced with and I am passionate about it.”

The soup menu alone at The Juice Box is enough to convince most people of Rob’s outside-the-box take on traditional cuisine. Ranging from Caribbean Curry, to Carrot and Lentil, Parsnip and Pear, Kale and Garlic, Rob offers a wide variety of healthy options and delicious flavours.

“If we can get it from PEI, we do. If we can get it organic, we will,” he said.

Poster Boys

Talking Bands
by Luke Arbuckle

Chris Moore (left) and Chris Barrett (photo: Wayne MacDonald)Often times, when one thinks of an exciting concert or a high-energy musical performance, they think of a three to five piece rock band, bright lights, and thundering volumes.

Charlottetown’s Poster Boys are changing that. The Poster Boys are 27-year-old Chris Moore and 21-year-old Chris Barrett. A high-energy acoustic duo, they are becoming regular fixtures at venues across the Island.

Chris and Chris met last year while working at a chemical plant in Charlottetown. Chris M. said the two got to talking and before long, realized they shared an interest in music. “We got together a couple of time and started playing some covers,” he said. “I think we both knew right away that what we were playing was a little different.”

Chris B. said they ran through a few covers and quickly made the move to original tunes. Now when they play a show, the audience can expect to hear a large variety of musical genres. “We pride ourselves on our diversity and the energy we try to put into each song,” Chris B. said. “I think because we’re working so hard at this we can tell it’s an evolutionary process, realizing that is encouraging.”

The boys spend up to 14 hours a day writing, practicing, and tightening their sound and musical repertoire. Chris M. said it can be challenging to find a balance between their practice times and everyday life, but admits those are the compromises an artist makes. “People who love what they do work hard at it,” he said. “We work hard, we play hard, and love every minute of it.”

Fluent in musical genres ranging from early blues to pop, country, jazz, and heavy alternative rock, The Poster Boys compliment their diversity with an equal show of stage presence. “We just enjoy what we do,” said Chris B.

And it shows.

Prior to their first Charlottetown appearance, The Poster Boys made a series of videos and posted them to youtube. Before long, the channel had amassed hundreds of views and has steadily increased since. “It’s very encouraging,” said Chris M. “Feeling good about what you do is great, but knowing it makes other people feel good too is awesome.”

Chris M. is a professional street performer, a juggler, a fire-breathing entertainer by trade. Chris B is a high energy soul with a give-it-all attitude. The boys are gearing up for upcoming festivals and hope to land more than a few gigs over the summer. “It’s going to be a busy one for sure,” Chris B. said. “But we’re ready for it.”

True to Island spirit, The Poster Boys couldn’t pass up the opportunity to publicly thank some of the people involved in their lives, their music and their success.  “We absolutely have to thank our families and friends, Spencer Soloduka, the boys from LARQUE and Pipe Dreams, anyone who views our YouTube channel or comes to the shows. Wayne MacDonald for his art, and Ryan Gillis at Evolve Entertainment,” Chris B. said.

“We wouldn’t be where we are now without their help and support. See you this summer.”

A Place of My Own

John Pritchard is at the helm of Terre Rouge Bistro Marché

Chef’s Table
by Luke Arbuckle

When asked to return from the kitchen with something he would like to showcase in a picture, chef Pritchard returned with his staff. From left, Eric Palmer, chef and owner John Pritchard, Scott Carrier, chef Adam Sweet, Greg Doucette (back), chef Mike Clarke, and Emily Miller. (photo: Luke Arbuckle)Many people seek a profession that will allow them to travel to new places and try new things. Few make such allowances. Such is a benefit of life in a kitchen. For chef and now owner of Terre Rouge in Charlottetown, John Pritchard, it never really mattered where the kitchen was.

With nothing more than natural talent, a tuned pallet and backbreaking work ethic, John has climbed the rungs of the food industry and now sits at the peak as a successful business owner. “I’ve been at this a long time, put a lot into it, it defines me I guess,” says John. “My first cooking job was in 1989 and it’s been non-stop since.”

John has taken his profession and his food to several kitchen around the world. He’s worked in Bermuda, Grand Cayman and the US. He also starred in his own cooking show on Global TV. “I filmed 130 episodes here in Canada and in Bermuda,” he says. “It was call Red Hot and Ready, it was a lot of fun and as much as I was trying to teach people, I was always learning too.”

John made the move back to PEI about 10 years ago, worked at the Dunes Restaurant, started his own catering company and envisioned his own establishment. It took some work, but by October, 2012, he was ready to open the doors at Terre Rouge.

“It’s always been something I’ve wanted to do, something I wanted to work towards,” he says. “Everything started coming together and I knew it was the right time.”

Not only did John open a restaurant, he took advantage of the open concept at his location on Queen Street, and incorporated a small charcuterie, sells pastries, organic vegetables, artisanal cheeses, fresh seafood and other specialties.

Terre Rouge is a farm-to-table establishment that prides itself on the 100 mile concept of food growth, production and consumption. “I’m proud of what we’re doing,” says John. “It’s something a little different and the whole concept is meant to be healthy and supportive of the local economy. We want to help farmers help us.”

Like many Island establishments, the restaurant slows down in the winter and John operates with about five staff. During the summer is another story. John requires up to 27 staff members to properly operate the unique business. “It get’s crazy in here sometimes, but I have a great team to help out with things,” he says. “Honestly, they’re great and this place would not run as smoothly without them.”

When asked which menu item he recommends, John thought for a moment, furrowed his brow and said he didn’t have one. “We alter the menu fairly often, we like to try new things and what we can make depends on the season,” John says. “What I can tell you is this. Our servers are the best in the business and they can tell you day to day which menu item you should try. I always tell people to trust their servers.”

Pipe Dreams

Talking Bands
by Luke Arbuckle

Pipe Dreams is, from left, Josh Buttery, Duncan Williams, Jordan Ward, and Andy MacInnis. (photo: Luke Arbuckle)They may not have made it to the glittering stages of the ECMAs this year, but the Charlottetown band, Pipe Dreams aren’t disappointed. These young musicians have discovered they key to success by paying close attention to the dreams of those before them.

There’s a common theme among award winners, among those celebrated this month. It’s the pursuit of a dream, a trail blazed by passion. It’s the unrelenting desire to spend a lifetime in love with how your time is spent and wanting to share it with others. Getting there takes time, effort and discipline, but can be inspirational.

Pipe Dreams arrived to the local scene shortly after vocalist Duncan Williams moved to the Island from Pictou County last summer. He played an acoustic set on the evening of his arrival and before the night was out, bassist Andy MacInnis, guitar player Josh Buttery, and drummer Jordan Ward were solid. They had the effort and discipline covered in no time.

It’s been a quick rise for the group. Within a few months, Pipe Dreams have toured the Maritimes and are playing regular gigs across the Island. “We’re trying to stay as busy with it as we can right now,” Jordan says. “We know what it’s going to take and we know it’s going to take time to get there.”

“I think we knew our direction as soon as we heard it,” says Duncan. “We jammed together a few times and heard something we thought we’d want to listen to, it was actually pretty cool.”

“Worked out perfectly,” says Andy.

The band gets together once or twice a week for rehearsals and borrow their friend’s jam space. “It’s awesome,” says Josh, “They’re really nice people and they really support what we’re doing.”

“Yea,” says Duncan. “They even feed us, we have an awesome relationship.”

Jordan would be the first to admit although they like what they’re doing, the dream is big and it takes work to get there. “We’re working on the details of another Maritime tour in May and we’re currently running in a competition to play at the Warped Tour in Montreal this summer,” says Jordan. “Aim high.”

Frequently found on stage at local venues in Charlottetown, the band has set aside much of their personal lives (no small feat for anyone in their early twenties), and focus their attention to the tasks at hand, refining and marketing their art.

Aided by the reach of Jordan’s marketing business, Chubby Bunny Entertainment, the band are on the fast-track to a glittery stage.

“I think this is a sound a lot of people around here can enjoy, we like to be versatile and keep things as exciting as we can,” says Josh.

“Oh, make no mistake, we’re here to stay, this is a combined dream,” says Andy. “For a while people wanted to say we are ‘aspiring artists’, well, let me speak for us all when I say, we’re not aspiring, we’re inspired.”


Talking Bands
by Luke Arbuckle

 Banokkburn is Darcy Cudmore on guitar and vocals , JD Geldert on drums, Dan Cudmore on bass, Darcy Cudmore on guitar, and Ian Murray on guitar and back-up vocals. (photo: Luke Arbuckle)Formed by three brothers who love to play music, Banokkburn is an Island band from Charlottetown that is amping up its sound and performance this spring.

In their mid-twenties, Banokkburn is Darcy Cudmore,23, Cody Cudmore, 20, JD Geldert 24, Ian Murray, 22, and Dan Cudmore, 27, on Bass.

The band formed just over a year ago when Dan was living on the Bannockburn Road. He said his brothers would come over and the three would play music while they wondered what else they should do. “We’ve always enjoyed playing music, says Dan. “After jamming a few times, we figured we might as well take it a little more seriously.”

“So, we recruited a couple of our friends, wrote some tunes, and played our first shows at the 2013 Q93 Battle of the Bands,” added Ian.

The band placed second after a close battle in the finals, but the experienced left the guys encouraged and hungry for more. “It was a great experience and we were just getting started as a band at the time, so we definitely had some kinks to iron out,” said Darcy.

“But we knew right away that we were going to practice up, playas many shows as we can until we come back to the battle next year,” JD cut in.

The guys are performing at their second Q93 Battle of the Bands at The Guild on March 6 and are hopeful to make the finals and walk away victorious this year.

The guys define their sound as a blend between old-school Guns & Roses rock and more modern artists like The Trews. “We’re true to heart rock fans, but like to keep things interesting,” says guitar player Ian Murphy. “We make sure to play a variety of hooks and melodies and draw inspiration from a lot of different places.”

The band is currently working with award-winning producer, Jon Matthews in Emyvale to record their first EP and have recently finished recording their demo with Eric Fortune at the Guild. “Again, it’s all about the experience,” says Darcy. “We hope to spend the next few months playing more venues around the Island and really getting our name out there, getting more exposure.”

JD says a big part of the band’s focus is stage presence. With five of them playing, it’s easy to fill the sound, but JD said it’s their performance that often inspires bar goers to hit the dance floor. “It’s important to us to make good music, but we also want to be entertaining, we want people to be tired and sweaty when the show is over,” says JD.

“No,” Darcy laughs. “We want them tired and sweaty half way through.”

Banokkburn can be seen at venues across the Island this season and still hope to expand their shows to include some of the many summer festivals Atlantic Canada has to offer. “We’re going to play everywhere we can,” says Dan.

“Just sign us up.”

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