Archives For author


The Vertigo Series will collaborate with community organizations for events during Culture Days 2013:

Friday, September 27, 2013

C.R. Avery Workshop (free)

4:30 pm – 6:30 pm @ Creative City Centre 

C.R. Avery feature performance
at CVAF Culture Days Poetry Slam (free)

7:30 pm @ The Mercury Café

The power of collaboration brings performance artist, C. R. Avery, to Regina! This beat-box poet, punk piano player and outlaw harmonica player will offer a writing and performance workshop on Friday afternoon. Join us Friday evening to experience his work as the featured artist of the 2013 CVAF Culture Days Poetry Slam. These events are made possible through a partnership between The Vertigo Series, The Saskatchewan Writers Guild, the Cathedral Village Arts Festival and Word Up Wednesday (Creative City Centre).

Vertigo June 2013 Poster

Greg Frankson Light Background

The Vertigo Series Open Stage

in partnership with the Cathedral Village Arts Festival

Monday, May 20th

@ St. Mary’s on 15th
3337 15th Ave.

Feature performance by spoken word artist Greg ‘Ritallin’ Frankson from Ontario.

Performance will be followed by an Open Stage.

Open Stage: bring your words and ideas – share your poems, stories, lyrics, spoken word!

All styles welcome!

This event is free and open to people of all ages.

Vertigo Poster May 2013

Vertigo April Poster 2013

Vertigo March 2013 Poster

The Vertigo Series

Monday, Feb. 25, 7:30pm

Vertigo Poster FEB 2013

Vertigo Jan 2013 Poster

Open Stage @ the MacKenzie!

Thursday, Nov. 8, 7:30 pm

Vertigo Series Performances and Open Stage
@ MacKenzie’s Thursday Night Live

Join hip-hop artist InfoRed, singer/spoken word artist Tara Dawn Solheim, and musicians from the Local Onlyz with special guests for a night of performance inspired by the exhibition Carl Beam at the MacKenzie Art Gallery. Audience members are invited to bring their own art-inspired writing to the stage for an open-mic portion of the evening. Cash bar. The reduced $5 admission fee is supported by The Vertigo Series.

Thursday Night Live is presented in partnership with the MacKenzie Art Gallery.

The Vertigo Series

Tuesday, Oct. 30, 7:30pm

Crave Kitchen + Wine Bar
1925 Victoria Ave

Brenda Niskala
Nora Gould
Barbara Langhorst


Writing Workshop @ the MacKenzie!

Saturday, Oct. 20, 2:00pm

Vertigo Series Writing Workshop

Join spoken word artist, poet, singer, and songwriter Tara Dawn Solheim for an afternoon of writing and response at The MacKenzie Art Gallery. Participants will explore writing tools and styles while experiencing the exhibition Carl Beam. Any new work inspired by this workshop can be presented at the Thursday Night Live Open Stage on November 8. Registration is required. Call 584-4292 to register for this FREE workshop.

This workshop is presented in partnership with the MacKenzie Art Gallery.

The Vertigo Series

Mon. Sept. 24th, 2012


Change of Venue!!!

Now at the Cathedral Freehouse!!! 

2062 Albert St.

Open Mic for Writers hosted by Vertigo Series and the Cathedral Village Arts Fest Mon. May 21, 2012

Literary Open Mic with Vertigo Series and CVAF Join the rain of words – bring your writing – share your work! The Vertigo Series and the CVAF Literary Committee team up for an open mic session at the Fainting Goat. More info in CVAF Guide.

Vertigo Celebrates Irving Layton’s 100th Birthday!
Presented by Brown Communications Group
Mon. Mar. 12th, 2012, 7:30pm

Hosted by: Crave Kitchen + Wine Bar
1925 Victoria Ave

Vertigo Reading Series
Presented by Brown Communications Group

Mon. Feb. 13th, 2012, 7:30pm

Hosted by:
Crave Kitchen + Wine Bar
1925 Victoria Ave
Suggested Donation – $5


Ken Fox

Fionncara MacEoin

Caitlin Ward

Bernadette Wagner


Ryan Anderson

Ken Fox

Ken Fox lives in Regina, Saskatchewan with his five-year-old daughter Shania and partner Aleks, with whom he co-edited Utilitarian Donuts in 2010. He likes to write things that smell, and sometimes even look, like poetry, and has self-published 12 chapbooks of such verbal waste-matter. He is the host & programmer of Naval Aviation In Audio on CJTR.

Fionncara MacEoin

Fionncara MacEoin is a writer living in Saskatoon. Her poetry has appeared in The Society, Transition and CV2. Recent publications include a chapbook Even the Sky Parts (JackPine Press 2011). MacEoin is currently the Programme Assistant at Sage Hill Writing Experience and studies at the University of Saskatchewan.

Caitlin Ward

Caitlin Ward is a Saskatoon-based writer. Her poetry has previously appeared in The Society, in medias res, and Grain Magazine. Her literary non-fiction has appeared in Spring, and she is a regular columnist for The Prairie Messenger. She has performed spoken word on many occasions, including at the Saskatoon Slam Semi-Final in summer 2011. Ward teaches creative writing to newcomer youth at the Saskatoon Open Door Society on a volunteer basis.

Bernadette Wagner

Bernadette Wagner is a multi-genre writer from Regina SK. Her collection of poetry, This hot place (Thistledown), was shortlisted for a 2010 Saskatchewan Book Award. This past summer she participated in the Widening Embrace recording project with Carolyn McDade & Friends. This fall, an excerpt from her unpublished fiction manuscript won first place for Children’s Literature in the SWG Short Manuscript Awards. She serves as Co-ordinator of the Literary Arts for the Cathedral Village Arts Festival and as Secretary of the Sage Hill Writing Experience.  And she’s happy to be back at Vertigo!


Ryan Anderson – Musician/Actor

Well music has been a staple in my life since I could pick up a tennis racket and pretend to be the Beatles or The Rolling Stones. This seemed to go over very well during some of my parent’s many parties. In high school I taught myself to play a real guitar and sing everything I learned. A couple years after graduation started “NUM” in 1994 a band I’ve been in ever since. We’ve played all over Saskatchewan and Southern Manitoba, but manly here in Regina in the local bars. We spent many years sharing the stage at Bart’s On Broad with Donny and the Moon Dogs and Jack Semple on occasion. When I’m not playing with the band I’m writing and acting in local comedy theater. So long story short, my heart is in the arts. I’m not rich but it’s a nice place to be.


Vertigo Reading Series
Presented by Brown Communications Group

Mon. Jan. 23rd, 2012, 7:30pm

Hosted by:
Crave Kitchen + Wine Bar
1925 Victoria Ave
Free admission

Kathleen Wall 

Kathleen Wall teaches at the University of Regina, where her specialties are Jane Austen, Virginia Woolf, feminist theory, creative writing, modernism and postmodernism, and aesthetics.  She is at work on her second book of literary criticism, Virginia Woolf’s Aesthetics of Engagement.  She recently published ““Ethics, knowledge, and the need for beauty:  Zadie Smith’s On Beauty and Ian McEwan’s Saturday” in the University of Toronto Quarterly.  She has also published two books of poetry, Without Benefit of Words (Turnstone, 1991) and Time’s Body (Hagios, 2005).  Her novel, Blue Duets, was published by Brindle & Glass in 2010 and was nominated in the Fiction category for a Saskatchewan Book Award.

She believes passionately in the conversations that connect, transform, and query.  Since art is a culture’s way of thinking about and reflecting on ourselves and our world, it is one of the best inspirations to conversation we have.


Rolli writes – and draws a little – for adults (Hayden’s Ferry Review, New York Tyrant, Rattle) and children (Ladybug, Spider, Highlights). He’s the author of God’s Autobio (short stories) and Plum Stuff (poems/drawings). Visit his blog (, and follow his epic tweets @rolliwrites.

Nicole Pivovar Bio

Nicole Pivovar, an unpublished writer, is sharing her passion for photography and poetry publically for the first time.  Her education and career have allowed her a terrific journey as a communications professional, with a keen knack for sales.  She deeply believes living should be the least of our hards, even though that’s not always the case.  She credits her whole life to her Faith in God and seeks to know others the same way God knows her.  Her curiosity for extraordinary people and experiences has inspired the collection she will share.  When asked why she chose to write and photograph pieces of her life this past year; she explains simply “It makes my heart happy!”  She is most often found outside with her sneakers on; running is her other favoured pass time.  Humbled by this opportunity to share her hobby, she wishes to say Thank You to the Vertigo organizers for all they do to make Regina better.

Jack Walton

Singer, songwriter, guitarist and author Jack Walton offers an eclectic sampling of melody and words sautéed in melancholic sauces of jazz, blues, swing and roots. His songs, poetry and short stories are drawn from a well travelled Canadian landscape and the real and imaginary people he has met along the way.  A New Brunswicker by birth, he has comfortably called himself a ‘prairie maritimer’ for half a life time.

Vertigo Reading Series
Presented by Brown Communications Group

Tuesday, Nov. 8th, 2011, 7:30 pm
Crave Kitchen + Wine Bar
1925 Victoria Ave

We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts and
The League of Canadian Poets for this event.

Vertigo Reading Series
Presented by Brown Communications Group

Monday, Oct. 3rd, 2011, 7:30 pm
Crave Kitchen + Wine Bar
1925 Victoria Ave


Vertigo Reading Series

Presented by Brown Communications Group

Monday, Sept. 12th, 2011, 7:30 pm
Crave Kitchen + Wine Bar
1925 Victoria Ave

Steven Ross Smith

Rhona McAdam

Betty Jane Hergerat

Many thanks to Shelley Banks of Regina for providing the photos for Vertigo–and thanks to our readers Betty Jane Hergerat, Steven Ross Smith, and Rhona McAdam for entertaining a good crowd on Easter Sunday!

Warren James

Rodney Ashfield

Bob Friedrich

Amy at the Book Table


Photo Credit:  Erica Clark.

Warren James is a storyteller and cryptozoologist living in Regina.
When not out monster hunting, he can be found haunting the stacks of
the Regina Public Library.


Bob Friedrich a former federal public servant turned author enjoys writing
poetry, children stories and travel memoir stories. He also has a
television production company called Pooch Productions with title credits
such as Whats in your Garage, and Yes, Gargoyles do live in Saskatchewan.


With only long-distant publishing credits and a book or two in the hopper, even though Rodney Ashfield has enjoyed poetry for as long as he can remember – which is less and less daily – he was still humbled to be included in this evenings event. Rodney enjoys sharing the air with words. When not writing, snuggling with his wife, or working with doctors in the care of people’s feet, he enjoys watching the world unfold

The Book Table

— Thanks again to Melissa Richardson for Volunteering to work the book table!

Our fantastic performers of the evening

— Sharon Plumb, Bernadette Wagner, and Kelley Jo Burke [left to right].

Our Beautiful Audience!

The handsome staff of Orange Izakaya

— Grant and Josh [left to right].

Kelley Jo Burke puts on an amazing show!

Those who could not attend missed a treat, indeed!

Vertigo Reading Series Director:  Kris Brandhagen

January 23, 2011


Kelley Jo Burke is an award-winning playwright and poet, a director, storyteller, documentarian, and broadcaster. Her plays have been produced and published in Canada, and around the world, including her stage plays, “Ducks on the Moon”,  “The Selkie Wife”, “Jane’s Thumb”, and “Charming and Rose: True Love, and her most recent radio play “Big Ocean“, which was heard in 7 countries in 2000.

She dramaturges, directs and produces for stage and radio and is the host/producer of CBC Saskatchewan’s radio art performance hour SoundXchange. Kelley Jo also has written and produced a number of documentaries for CBC Radio’s Ideas.

She is the 2009 winner of the Saskatchewan Lieutenant-Governor’s Award for Leadership in the Arts, the 2009 City of Regina Writing Award, and the 2008 Saskatoon and Area Theatre Award for Playwriting.


Sharon Plumb grew up writing stories in a small town that no longer exists, in the mountains of British Columbia. After she moved to the flat prairies, she studied Computer Science and switched to writing computer programs. When her three sons came along, she enjoyed reading to them so much that she started writing stories again.

She has written picture books, novels, poems, and plays. Her picture book Bill Bruin Shovels his Roof was published in 2006 as part of Scholastic Canada’s Literary Place for the Early Years. Draco’s Child, a YA fantasy novel, was published by Thistledown Press in March 2010.You can find out more about her and her books at the website for her writing group, the Saskatchewan Children’s Writers’ Round Robin:


Author Photo:  Cherie Westmoreland   /   Cover Art:  Kim Menzies

Bernadette Wagner grew up on a small family farm forty-five minutes north of Regina. The gently rolling parkland instilled in her the spirit of the prairies, a love of land, and a commitment to community, all of which come through in her writing. Her poetry and nonfiction have appeared in journals, anthologies, and magazines and on radio, television and film, in schools, on stages, in the streets and on the web. She has been recognized with the Jerry Rush Scholarship, the W. O. Mitchell Bursary Award, an apprenticeship in the Saskatchewan Writers Guild Mentorship Program for Emerging Writers and a Saskatchewan Arts Board Individual Assistance Award. She extends her gratitude to the strong writing community in Saskatchewan, including the Saskatchewan Writers Guild and its many excellent programs, her family, friends, and communities for their love and support, and Thistledown Press, her publisher, for helping her to make a dream come true. This hot place is her first book.

Mark your calendars for the reading on January 23rd!  Details Below.

Oct. 4th – Please note venue change to Cafe Orange Izakaya

2136A Robinson St. Regina, SK S4T-2P7


John Toone’s first collection of poetry, From Out of Nowhere, was published by Turnstone Press in spring 2009. He published two kids’ books in fall 2009, Catch that Catfish! and Hope and the Walleye. His poems also appear in the story Sixgun Quixote from the new graphic novel The Imagination Manifesto (Alchemical Press). John is past president of the Manitoba Writers’ Guild. Three of his books are shortlisted for five Manitoba Book Awards.


Jonathan Ball is the author of the poetry books Ex Machina (BookThug, 2009) and the forthcoming Clockfire (Coach House, 2010). He holds a Ph.D. in English with a focus in Creative Writing from the University of Calgary. His film Spoony B appeared on The Comedy Network, and his writing has appeared in The Believer and Harper’s. He is the former editor of dandelion and the former short films programmer for the Gimli Film Festival. Visit him online at  Clockfire is newly published.




Ariel Gordon is a Winnipeg-based writer and editor. She has two chapbooks to her credit, The navel gaze (Palimpsest Press) and Guidelines: Malaysia & Indonesia, 1999 (Rubicon Press), and this spring, Palimpsest published her first full-length poetry collection, Hump. She recently won the John Hirsch Award for Most Promising Manitoba Writer at the Manitoba Book Awards. When not being bookish, Ariel likes tromping through the woods and taking macro photographs of mushrooms.


gillian harding-russell three poetry collections published: Candles in my head (Ekstasis 2001) Vertigo (River Books, 2004), and I forgot to tell you (Thistledown, 2007), and  the chapbook Apples and Mice (Alfred Gustav Press, 2008). Her  poems have appeared  in several anthologies and chapbook anthologies and many literary journals across Canada. She has won several awards for her poetry, and most recently had her poem “Autumn Meditation on her name and becoming” short-listed for the Winston Collins’ Award for 2010.

Harding Russell has a chapbook coming out next spring with Leaf Press, entitled “Poems for the Summer Solstice.” She will be reading from recently published work in journals, a poem that was short-listed for the Winston Collins’ Award in 2010.

Harding Russell will read one of Elizabeth Brewster’s poems, who unfortunately suffered a stroke last year after the launch of her last poetry collection, Time and Seasons.

Harding Russell will bring copies of previous poetry collections, Vertigo,  and I forgot to tell you.


Brenda Niskala‘s novella Of All the Ways to Die (Quattro) was published 2009; her short stories have appeared in several anthologies and literary journals. Her poetry has been published in chapbooks, the co-authored Open 24 Hours, and collected in Ambergris Moon. For the Love of Strangers (Coteau Books 2010) is her first book of short fiction.

Brenda has taught Creative Writing for the University of Regina Extension Department, the Festival of Words and the Sage Hill Writing Experience Teen Camp. She has read her work to audiences across Canada, and in Finland and England. Saskatchewan born and raised, she currently makes her home in Regina.


A few years back, when Wes published out his chap-book Humble Beginnings, no one was more surprised than him at how well-received it was.  This inspired him to keep plugging away at his sort-of-memoir Dead Rock Stars.  Shortly after being released, his novel was a pick-of-the-month for the local C95 book club and was a subject on several local radio and television talk shows.  It was short-listed for a Saskatchewan Book Award and received an Honourable Mention for Writers’ Digest International Self-Published Book Awards.

Besides dabbling in real estate and working part-time in healthcare, Wes enjoys writing the Life on Broadway column in Saskatoon’s Neighbourhood Express Magazine.  He also stays active in the Saskatoon Writers Coop and putters away at another manuscript.


Tara Dawn Solheim has performed poetry and music in many contexts throughout Canada, America, England and Japan. From 2004 to 2005, she worked with the Mackenzie Art Gallery in Regina to develop and host a jazz and poetry performance series called the Seldom Sessions. Tara has been commissioned to create original musical and poetic performances for CBC, various dance shows and local festivals including the Cathedral Arts Festival, the Regina and Brandon Folk Festivals, and the Her-i-cane Women’s Art Festival.

After moving to Tokyo in 2005, Tara began to focus on music and performed regularly with bands. Her original music draws on blues and jazz from the 1920 / 30’s and early rock ‘n’ roll. Tara returned to Canada last year and is now working on a new album to be recorded in autumn 2010. She is also in the process of bringing a prairie superhero back to life through the serial poem, “The Adventures of WonderWalker”.


Kris Brandhagen used the University rag as a vehicle for her first publications in 2001, and the story goes on from there to publish in Spring Magazine, In Medias Res, Transverse Journal, Carousel, Ramble Underground, Cahoots, Poetry Reviews, Contemporary Verse 2, and Regina Fine Lifestyles Magazine.

As far as education goes, Kris completed a BA in English literature and Visual Arts from the University of sunny Regina in 2004.  She then did a little housekeeping in Canmore, Alberta before heading off to Seoul, South Korea in 2004 to splash her feet in cultural waters and teach English as a Second Language.

Running parallel to the story of Kris as a writer, there is the story of Kris as a photographer.  What brought her back to Canada in 2005 was the Commercial Photography program at Dawson College in Montreal, where she spent two years being squeezed like a lemon.  Regina was happy to have her back in 2007.  She did a little of this and a little of that.

In 2008 she applied for and received a grant from the Saskatchewan Arts Board to work on her book-length manuscript of poems, Jennifer.  Kris is currently hard at work on her second, third, and fourth manuscripts as well as several visual and interdisciplinary projects.

June 7, 2010


Born in Toronto, Colin Morton grew up in Alberta where he completed an MA in English in 1979. He works as a teacher, editor, and writer in many media and has performed and recorded his poetry with First Draft and other music poetry groups, as well as in the animated film Primiti Too Taa. Also a novelist, he has been writer-in-residence at Concordia College in Minnesota (1995-96) and at Connecticut College (1997). Morton has won numerous awards including the Archibald Lampman Award for Poetry for Coastlines of the Archipelago (BuschekBooks 2000). Colin Morton lives in Ottawa, Ontario.


Heather Cadsby was born in Belleville Ontario and currently lives in Toronto. She is the author of four books of poetry. A Tantrum of Synonyms (Wolsak and Wynn) was a finalist for the Pat Lowther Award for the best book of poetry in English by a Canadian woman. Recently her poetry has appeared in such journals as PRISM international, The New Quarterly, The Malahat Review, The Antigonish Review as well as the anthology, Best Canadian Poetry in English, 2008 (Tightrope Books). Her fourth collection of poetry titled Could be was published by Brick Books in fall 2009.

She has conducted poetry workshops through the League of Canadian Poets’ Poets-in-the-Schools program, as well as for MASC’s Young Authors’ and Illustrators’ Conference, Phoenix, A Poets’ Workshop and the North York Board of Education.

Her magazine awards include Grain Postcard Story, 2000: 2nd prize and The Antigonish Review Poetry Contest: 3rd prize, 2001.

She is the author of Could be(Brick Books, 2009), A Tantrum of Synonyms (Wolsak and Wynn Publishers, 1997), Decoys (Mosaic Press, 1988) and Traditions (Fiddlehead Poetry Books/Gooselane Editions, 1981).


Adrienne Gruber publishes regularly in Canadian literary magazines and has been short-listed for ARC’s Poem of the Year contest, Descant’s Winston Collins Best Canadian Poem contest and the CBC Literary Awards. She has an MFA in Creative Writing from UBC and her first poetry manuscript This Is The Nightmare was published with Thistledown Press in September 2008. Besides working on her writing projects, Adrienne is a belly dancer and scuba diver and is the Writer-in-Residence for Notre Dame School in Toronto through Descant Magazine’s S.W.A.T. program (Students, Writers and Teachers).  Adrienne currently resides in Toronto.


Joanne Gerber will be reading from her novel-in-progress, Like Manna. Her story collection, In the Misleading Absence of Light, won three Saskatchewan Book Awards, the Jubilee Award, and was short-listed for the Toronto Book Award and the Danuta Gleed Award. Joanne’s other works include stage drama, a song cycle and the libretto for a chamber opera with composer David L. McIntyre. Since 2005, she has worked for the Saskatchewan Arts Board: she is Program Consultant for Literary and Multidisciplinary Arts. She has also been an editor at Coteau Books and Grain Magazine (fiction), and a writing instructor.

May 10, 2010


Anthony Bidulka’s mystery series tells the story of a half-Ukrainian, half-Irish, Saskatchewan, gay, ex-farm boy, ex-cop, world-travelling, wine-swilling, Canadian prairie private detective living a big life in a small city. The Russell Quant series is a multi award nominee including for the Crime Writers of Canada Arthur Ellis Award and Saskatchewan Book Award. The second book in the series, Flight of Aquavit, was awarded the Lambda Literary Award for Best Men’s Mystery.

Anthony has toured extensively throughout Canada and the US. A great believer in community involvement, he currently sits on the boards of the International Association of Crime Writers, Crime Writers of Canada, and is a co-founder of Camp fYrefly-Saskatchewan (a life skills camp for LGBT youth). In June 2008, Anthony was MC for Canada’s premiere mystery conference, Bloody Words.

The Russell Quant books: Amuse Bouche (2003), Flight of Aquavit (2004), Tapas on the RamblasStain of the Berry (2006), Sundowner Ubuntu (2007), Aloha, Candy Hearts (2009), Date With a Sheesha (2010). (2005).

Bidulka’s last book, Aloha, Candy Hearts, has just been shortlisted for an Arthur Ellis Award for best Canadian Crime Novel. Awards will be handed out at a gala in Toronto on May 27th.


A new collection out, the fifth, from Hagios Press. Working away with fellow editors on a history of the Regina Public Library in the context of a changing city. Still working on a biography of the visual artist Arthur Mckay; a new poetry collection.

May 17, birthday; also Norwegian Independance Day

From Facebook: I like writing, walking, talking, dinners, learning something new, listening to music: Mahler, Mozart, Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan, Serena Ryder, Ian Tyson; movies: favourites are Truly, Madly, Deeply; Zorba the Greek; Tom Jones; The Big Chill; The Tree of Wooden Clogs; Annie Hall, The Reader.

I am lucky to have a great family and friends, and to be able to enjoy music and film. Well, to be alive.


Shelley Banks grew up in B.C., Jamaica and the Cayman Islands, went to university in Ontario, and worked in Vancouver, Montreal and Ottawa before moving to Regina about 12 years ago.  She writes fiction, non-fiction and poetry, and her work has been published or is forthcoming in Grain, Spring, Room, The Antigonish Review, Carousel, Other Voices, The Society, and Spring.  She recently completed her Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing at the University of B.C., and is now working on her first poetry collection.