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Arts, culture, fun in London this weekend and beyond (Dec. 26-Jan. 1) – The London Free Press



What’s happening in and around London this weekend and into next week.

Londoners Deborah Hay, as Marry Poppins, and Mark Uhre as Bert stars in the Grand Theatre’s production on until Dec. 29. (Derek Ruttan/The London Free Press)

What’s happening in and around London this weekend and into next week:


Call the Office: Xxxmas: A Christmas Tragedy with Euphoria, Mesa, Road to Elysium, Saturday, 8 p.m.; The Discarded and Back Breaker, Ditchbanger, Dave Rocket and The Jobbers, Ty Flies, Sunday, 8 p.m., $10, 19+; NYE No Scrubs Dance Party with DJ Wolf Pup, Tuesday, 10 p.m., $10, 19+; 216 York St.

Eastside Bar and Grill: Juice, Friday, 10 p.m.; Big Bang, Saturday, 10 p.m.; NYE with Zed, Tuesday (sold out); 750 Hamilton Rd.; 519-457-7467.

Jimbo’s Pub And Eatery: Karaoke Party hosted by Maggie, Fridays, 10 p.m.; 920 Commissioners Rd. E.; 519-204-7991 or visit

London Music Club: Pete Denomme and The Cosmic Cowboys, Emm Gryner, Keelan Purchase, Brent Jones, Dave Cowell, Saturday, 6:30 p.m.; NYE with The LMC All-Stars, Tuesday, 7:30 p.m.; 470 Colborne St.; 519-640-6996.

London Music Hall: The London Boys Reunited with Thymios Partalas and Friends, Friday, 9 p.m., $40, 19+; The Penthouse, Tuesday, 9 p.m., $25, 19+; 185 Queens Ave.; 519-432-1107.

Norma Jean’s: No Heros, The Skraggs and Spinster Jones, Saturday, 9 p.m.; 1332 Huron St.; 519-455-7711 or visit

Rum Runners: The Weathered, The Black Box Review, Gracie Mae, Saturday, 10 p.m., $5, 19+; NYE 2020 The Party Continues with Saad Ayub, Alex Hawken, Basso, Joel Demoor, Richard K, Sanad, Tuesday, 9 p.m., $13, 19+; 178 Dundas St.; 519-432-1107.

St. Regis Tavern: A Very Bluegrass Christmas VII with Kevin’s Bacon Train, Saturday, 9 p.m.; 625 Dundas St.; 519-432-0162.

Wortley Roadhouse: Rumblefish, Friday and Saturday; Rev. Doug and The Old South Boys, Sunday, 4-8 p.m.; NYE with Geoff Masse Band, Tuesday; 190 Wortley Rd.; 519-438-5141.


Come Dancing: Ballroom, Latin and swing dance with Robert and Patricia, Friday, 8 p.m. at Polish Hall, 554 Hill St.; admission: $10, includes coffee, tea and snacks; everyone welcome; 519-421-7234.

Latin Dance Night: Come out and do the Salsa, Merengue, Reggaeton and Bachata with JaviDj, Saturday, 10 p.m., free admission; Jimbo’s Pub, 920 Commissioners Rd. E.; 519-204-7991 or visit

New Year’s Eve Celebration: Dance to the music of Wolfeman DJ, Tuesday at German Canadian Club, 1 Cove Rd.; tickets: members $40, non-members $50, includes party favours, light buffet and midnight champagne toast, available at the club or online at; 519-433-2901.

New Year’s Eve Dance: Dance to the music of County Road Country Band, Tuesday, 8 p.m. at Victory Legion, 311 Oakland Ave.; tickets: $30, includes late lunch, available at the bar; 519-455-2331.

Royal Canadian Legion – Lambeth: Dance to the music of CW Country, Saturday, 2-5 p.m., free; New Year’s Eve Dance to the music of Mike Fagan, Tuesday, tickets $45, includes dinner; Levee Day, dance to the music of Country Versatiles, Wednesday, opens at noon with Colours marched on at 2 p.m., followed by music; 7097 Kilbourne Rd.; 519-652-3412.

Royal Canadian Legion – Victory: Dance to the music of T.L.A. Band, Saturday, 7:30 p.m., $10; NYE with County Road, Tuesday, 8 p.m. (downstairs, NYE with Sideline, 8 p.m. (upstairs); 311 Oakland Ave.

Singles Dance Party: Year-end dance to the music of Wolfeman DJ, Saturday, 8 p.m. at Polish Club, 554 Hill St.; admission: $7, all welcome; 519-433-2579.


New Year’s Levee: Celebrate the New Year with a visit to Eldon House and enjoy musical entertainment in the elegant drawing room, exchange greetings and gather with friends for hot cider and treats in the Interpretive Centre, Wednesday, drop-in 1-4 p.m.; admission by donation; 481 Ridout St. N.; 519-661-5169.

Read. Learn. Live.: Celebrating its 60th anniversary this year, CODE has launched this photography exhibit by internationally renowned Canadian photojournalist, Peter Bregg, opens Tuesday, runs till Jan. 13 at Central Library, 251 Dundas St., 1st floor Library Commons; free admission.

Ornate rooms are on display in London’s oldest home, Eldon House, where they are celebrating a Victorian Christmas until Jan. 1. (Mike Hensen/The London Free Press)


Art With Panache: Featured artists for December include Tony Furlong, Paul Snoddy, Lyn Tremblay, Lynne Pinchin, Mary Lillyman, Kit Cutting, Lois Fuchs, Audrey Cooper, Margaret Crosby, Nic DeGroot and Andrew Gillet; hours: Monday to Friday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; 140 Fullarton St.; 519-870-7218.

Eldon House: London’s oldest residence contains family heirlooms, furnishings and priceless treasures of the Harris Family; hours: Wednesday to Sunday, noon-5 p.m.; admission by donation; 481 Ridout St. N.; 519-661-5169 or visit

Elgin County Heritage Centre: Voices from the Engraver: Canadian stamps and bank notes – design to printing – features original art, printing plates, videos, interactives, stamps and money, runs till Jan. 11; hours: Tuesday to Thursday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Friday, Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; 460 Sunset Dr., St. Thomas; 519-631-1460 ext. 193 or visit

Michael Gibson Gallery: The Hockey Show, hockey-themed exhibition features 20 Canadian artists, runs till Jan. 4; hours: Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; 157 Carling St.; 519-439-0451 or visit

Museum London: Esmaa Mohamoud: To Play in the Face of Certain Defeat, Ways of Being: Yhonnie Scarce and Michael Belmore, both exhibits run till Jan. 5; London Lens: Ian MacEachern and Don Vincent, runs till Jan. 19; The Lost City: Ian MacEachern’s Photographs of Saint John, runs till Jan. 26; 421 Ridout St.; 519-661-0333.

St. Thomas-Elgin Public Art Centre: Contemporary Selections from the Permanent Collection: Celebrating 50 Years, in Gallery One and Two and White Walls and Substantial Forms: Small Sculpture from the Permanent Collection, in Gallery Three, both exhibits run till Feb. 15; hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Thursday, Friday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Saturday, noon-4 p.m., Sunday, noon-3 p.m.; 301 Talbot St., St. Thomas; 519-631-4040.

Westland Gallery: The Big Little Christmas Show features small scale artwork by local artists, ends Sunday; hours: Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sunday, noon-4 p.m.; 156 Wortley Rd.; 519-601-4420 or visit

Woodstock Art Gallery: Dancing on the Grave: Dil Hildebrand and Patrick Thibert and Life on the Back of a Turtle: Woodlands and Plains Indigenous Art, both exhibits run till Jan. 25; Walk On: the ongoing sculpture project of John McEwen, runs till June 27; 449 Dundas St., Woodstock; 519-539-6761.


Nature London: New Year’s Day Bird Walk along the Thames River, looking for birds along the river and in the adjacent parklands, Wednesday, 10 a.m.-noon; meet the leader in the parking lot for the Springbank Gardens Community Centre, 205 Wonderland Rd. S.; 519-472-48-64.

Saturday Morning Walks: Walk through Sifton Bog Natural Area, meet at Hazelden park, 400 Hyde Park Rd., on the west side of Hyde Park Road, north of Riverside Drive; walks are approximately one hour; families with children are welcome, no dogs; John Clark, 519-641-0442 or visit


Mary Poppins: A Disney musical, ends Sunday on Spriet Stage, Grand Theatre, 471 Richmond St.; tickets $20 adult, $15 senior/student by calling 519-672-9030 or visit

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Canadian students create program that turns your thoughts into abstract art | Venture – Daily Hive



A team of students from the University of Alberta has developed a program that turns its wearer’s thoughts into pieces of abstract art.

Called RemBRAINdt, the program uses a 3D-printed headset and electroencephalography (EEG) to record a user’s brain activity through their skull, explained Eden Redman, the president of NeurAlbertaTech and team lead on the project.

After a baseline reading, the wearer is then shown various words and images that are intended to illicit an emotional response.

A graph is created from that heightened brain activity which RemBRAINdt, using machine learning, is able to translate into abstract art.

Rather than simply reading happiness as yellow or anger as red, though, the device measures emotions and feelings on a gradience, Redman said, ranging between “valance” and “arousal.”

Valance records positive or negative feelings, and arousal measures how calming or exciting something is.

The result is beautifully swirled lines of colour, each piece giving a new look into someone’s mind.

abstract art

RemBRAINdt art/Eden Redman

abstract art

RemBRAINdt art/Eden Redman

Redman, 24, is currently studying Industrial Design and East Asian Language Studies as an “after-degree,” but has a background in psychology and computational neuroscience.

He first came up with the idea for RemBRAINdt in January 2020 as a way to support a fundraiser at the University of Alberta’s Neuroscience and Mental Health Institute.

Although the project was temporarily stalled when COVID-19 hit, the NeurAlbertaTech team picked it back up, remotely, in the summer.

Since then, RemBRAINdt has eared them some “pretty decent funding,” Redman said, including $20,000 from NeuroNexus 2020, a neurotechnology design competition in Alberta.

It’s also been incorporated as an official business under the name RemBraindt Neurotechnologies Inc.

Post-pandemic, Redman’s long term goal remains having the device at public and private events. Short-term it’s “nose to the grindstone,” as the team continues to improve RemBraindt.

“People are getting interested,” Redman said. “I’m pretty excited.”

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Art and technology combine for new Minecraft residency at Mackenzie Art Gallery – Global News



An immensely popular video game will be the vehicle for the creation of a new exhibit co-hosted by Regina’s Mackenzie Art Gallery.

The Mackenzie is partnering with Ender Gallery, an online exhibition space based on a Minecraft server, to exhibit artworks created within the creative, sandbox-style video game.

“So many arts and cultural events have had to find their online forms last year and this year. So I suppose this is an attempt to do that in a way that we haven’t really seen,” said Sarah Friend, artist and co-curator of Ender Gallery (“Ender” is the name of one of Minecraft’s digital realms).

“It’s fun, new and crosses different creative communities.”

Read more:
City of Kelowna replicates city in Minecraft virtual world

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Friend says the residency will be the first project hosted on Ender Gallery.

Via Zoom

Friend, who is also a software engineer and is based in Berlin, approached her friends Cat Bluemke and Jonathan Carroll with an idea to create a virtual art space last year.

Bluemke is the digital operations coordinator at the Mackenzie and Carroll is the digital programs coordinator, .

“In talking with them the idea got fleshed out and turned into its current form in partnership with the Mackenzie,” Friend explained.

The first of four planned two-month residencies is scheduled to begin in March.

Anyone with a Minecraft account will be able to log into Ender Gallery to view the art pieces. Friend said discussions are ongoing about finding a way to display the art somewhere within the Mackenzie itself, and added that the Ender Gallery team is planning to document the exhibitions via video as well.

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“Though Minecraft is the best-selling video game of all time, its not something that everyone has access to,” Friend said. “So we want this to be available to the widest audience possible.”

Read more:
Welcome to Twitch U: Pandemic has some profs streaming lectures on gaming platform

The Mackenzie Art Gallery hired Digital Coordinators Cat Bluemke and Jonathan Carroll in 2019 to lead the creation of a Digital Lab and collaborative digital arts training initiative at the gallery.

File / Global News

Applications for the residencies are being accepted until end-of-day on January 31.

Applicants will need to select their preferred residency period, a written proposal and a portfolio, among other things, but don’t need to be experienced artists or have extensive experience with Minecraft to apply.

Each artist will be paid a $1,600 fee.

“Proposals are already coming in. Some of them look like buildings, filled with different creations, that someone on the server can see and walk through. Other proposals are creations that tell a story as you view them,” Friend said.

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“We even have proposals that would be something not built on the server, but installed on the server. Minecraft has a modding community where people create new game functionality within Minecraft, or new skins so that it looks like a different game.”

Friend said the residency follows a growing trend of projects highlighting the artistic potential of video games.

“I think we’ve only begun to see the amount of creative content that will come from that intersection.”

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Thames Art Gallery seeking community submissions for Black History Month art quilt – CTV News Windsor



The Thames Art Gallery is calling on members of Chatham-Kent to celebrate Black History Month by participating in a community art “quilt.”

“Celebrating Black Lives” is the theme of the digitally based installation.

For those who wish to participate, the gallery asks that you complete a work of art on the theme in any media, whether it’s a painting, drawing or writing.

Once complete, photograph your work and send it to

Gallery staff will print and assemble the works into a community art “quilt” which will be on public display in the ARTspace window for the month of February.

A donation will be made for each participating artist involved to support the distribution of the film “The North Star: Finding Black Mecca.”

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