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Thursday Special Opening Presentation
Crying for the Moon: the Road to Becoming an Author
Acclaimed comedian Mary Walsh is best known for her multi-Gemini-Award-winning work on CBC's This Hour Has 22 Minutes, the long-running satiric current events program she created, and which showcases her dynamic range of hilarious characters. Outside of her work in television and film, Mary is also a respected mental health and addiction awareness advocate who shares her prior experience with alcoholism in an effort to create change in the lives of others.
Mary wrote, produced and starred in the Gemini award-winning show Hatching, Matching and Dispatching, and was nominated for two Genie Awards for her performances in the feature films Crackie and New Waterford Girl. Her recent television credits include appearances on Republic of Doyle, Rookie Blue, and on HBO Canada's Sensitive Skin, which garnered her a 2017 Canadian Screen Award nomination. Mary is also known for appearing in the films Mambo Italiano; The Divine Ryans with Pete Postlethwaite; Violet, in which she played the title role; and most recently in The Grand Seduction and Closet Monster, which were official selections at TIFF 2014 and 2015, respectively.
Among her many awards and honorary doctorates, Mary is also the recipient of the Order of Canada and the Governor General's Lifetime Achievement Award in the Performing Arts.
HUMBLE THE POET
Thursday Luncheon Keynote
Do Make Songs until the End of the World
Kanwer Singh aka Humble The Poet is a Toronto-bred MC/Spoken Word artist with an aura that embodies the diversity and resiliency of one of the world's most unique cities. With tattoos, beard, head wrap and a silly smile, Humble commands attention. He stimulates audiences with ideas that challenge conventional wisdom and go against the grain, with dynamic live sets that shake conventions and minds at the same time. Humble brings fresh tracks and huge truths from his own life every week on his popular YouTube channel. His distinctive style and point of view have also been featured on popular television programs like CBC's Canada Reads, where he took home the trophy for his unique defense of the Giller Prize winning novel Fifteen Dogs by Andre Alexis.
Humble recently released a new EP titled Righteous/Ratchet featuring new spoken word poetry and tracks that's available now via iTunes and Spotify. His two self-published volumes in his UnLearn series are available via Amazon books and other online retailers. Be sure to subscribe to Humble's YouTube channel as he takes you along through his life, his music and his words: www.youtube.com/humblethepoet
Thursday Banquet Keynote
A Yearning to Learn
Linden MacIntyre is a distinguished broadcast journalist who has won ten Gemini Awards for his work. For 24 years he was the co-host of The Fifth Estate. His bestselling first novel, The Long Stretch, was nominated for a CBA Libris Award and his boyhood memoir, Causeway: A Passage from Innocence, won both the Edna Staebler Award for Creative Nonfiction and the Evelyn Richardson Prize. His second novel, The Bishop's Man, was a #1 national bestseller, won the Scotiabank Giller Prize, the Dartmouth Book Award and the CBA Libris Fiction Book of the Year Award, among other honours. The books that followed, Why Men Lie (2012) and Punishment (2014) were both critically-acclaimed national bestsellers. MacIntyre's latest book is The Only Café.
Friday Breakfast Keynote
If You Give A Child A Book
Laura Joffe Numeroff is the New York Times bestselling author of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, Raising a Hero, and What Mommies Do Best/What Daddies Do Best. She was born in Brooklyn, New York, and graduated from Pratt Institute. Laura grew up as the youngest of three girls, surrounded by art, music, and books. An avid animal lover, Laura has always wanted to write a book about service dogs. She now lives in Los Angeles, California.
Friday Luncheon Keynote
The Road Less Travelled
Candy Palmater is a recovered lawyer turned feminist comic. She is an actor, writer, columnist, international speaker, activist, comedian and multiple award-winning TV and radio personality, and has executive produced three films on Mi'kmaw culture. As valedictorian of her class at Dalhousie Law School, Candy went on to practice Labour and Aboriginal law in a large corporate firm until show biz came knocking. Before pursuing entertainment full time, Candy directed First Nations education for the Nova Scotia Department of Education for a decade. She is currently working on a Masters of Education at St. Francis Xavier University and has taught in the Transition Year program at Dalhousie University.
Candy is the creator and star of her own national, multiple award-winning TV series, The Candy Show (APTN). She has a role on the Trailer Park Boys S10 (NETFLIX), appeared in Call Me Fitz (HBO Canada) and Sex and Violence (OutTV), and received a Screen Nova Scotia nomination for her role on Forgive Me (Superchannel). Candy's a Broadcaster with CBC Radio One where she has hosted: The Candy Palmater Show, Q, DNTO and currently appears on Because News and The Next Chapter. You can hear Candy's voice as the Narrator of CBC TV series True North Calling, and you may remember her as a panelist on Canada Reads 2017, defending The Break.
Candy has written and hosted many broadcasts including Ab Day Live, the Indspire Awards, and the imagineNATIVE Film Fest Awards Show. Candy has written and hosted many broadcasts including Ab Day Live, the Indspire Awards, and the imagineNATIVE Film Fest Awards Show. She has also just signed a book deal with HarperCollins for her first memoir, due out in the spring of 2019.