Personal Reflections on

2010 CFMA Broadcast

This may have been the most challenging and satisfying thing I’ve ever done as a producer. When CFMA swung the doors open to us by allowing us to broadcast the Canadian Folk Music Awards from Winnipeg “if we could raise the money”, my first reaction was one of sheer horror. If there was something that ate me alive while in the community radio sector, it was the pleading for money that volunteers are forced to resort to twice a year by management to “remain on the air”. Figuring we’d need about $10,000 to bring us to Winnipeg, I held out slim hope.

I decided to seek out a wonderful old friend who had no such hangups. Paul Gellman came through in spades, getting us much needed sponsorships and doing so with great integrity. Webcasting is still a rough science. Who the hell knew how many viewers we’d have? (1640 as it turned out) Then, out of the blue, a generous cheque arrived from one Shelagh Rogers – you may have heard of her. And then the gentle, loving snowball began to form. Trevor Mills popped up a donation can on this website, and whamo, by the cut off date of November 7, 2010, we were in business. And while Roots Music Canada will absorb a loss between $1,000 and $2,000 , it was well worth the experience, and for that, we thank the following people and organizations:

Paul Gellman, Bill Garrett, Trevor Mills, Rachel Barreca, David Cool, Shawna Cooper, Dave Borins, Howard Trager, Ana Miura, Tannis Slimmon, Caroline Brooks, Jaime Almond, Eve Goldberg, Lesley Marie Boileau, Rosemary Phelan, Sue Cutler, Richard Fletcher, Olivier Demers, Trisha Klein, Barry Bien, Tricia Brubacher, Lisa Weitz, Genevieve Nadeau, Chris Lusty, Andrew Strauss, Brenda Tacik, Shawna Caspi, Suzie Vinnick, Donna McTaggart, Susan Bramm, Janet Webb, Alfred B Bonnar, Susan Peters, Pierre Kerr, Sheila Carabine, Stephen McNie, Jane Harbury, Richard Flohil, Alejandra Ribera, Shelagh Rogers, Tom Cochrane, Grit Laskin, Six Shooter Records, CFMA, True North Records, Borealis Records, Long and McQuade, The Ontario Council of Folk Festivals, Ottawa Folklore Centre, Linda Turu, Judy Wark, Robert Howard, Katelyn Adach, Rick Scicluna, Dawn Harwood-Jones, John Kaminski, Winnipeg Folk Festival, Roots Music Canada, David Newland. If I forgot you, email me: andy@rootsmusic.ca and I will adjust the list – I would hate to forget anyone who helped make this happen.

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As for the broadcast itself, I am eternally grateful to the aforementioned Rick, Rob, Kate, Judy, Dawn, and a little angel provided to us by Pantages Playhouse when we arrived, John Kaminski, a former lead ballet dancer for the Winnipeg Ballet, who on this night acted as a stage hand and cameraman. John helped in every way, knew his way around the huge stage, the crews, the rules, (including “lights-out” for dinner break – one-hour before our broadcast – which created a minor panic) and handled the balcony cam with dexterity. Moments after the lights went back on, we were “on the air” for some 4.5 hours (never a guarantee in the internet-broadcast age). There were some hiccups,  a few things a TV crew equalling more than seven folks could have prevented, but we did it, and did it well.

Special thanks to Judy Wark of Calgary, Alberta, an actress, broadcaster, violin player, mum, Hospice Calgary employee, and uber-volunteer who mothered us through the tough times, from underwear runs (yes), medicine runs, photography, web-chatting and co-hosting the broadcast, Judy was a star. As for my director Rick and his camera crew Rob, Kate and JK, stunning, stunning work from beginning to end. I am so proud of all of you.

Finally, thanks to all the viewers, performers, participants, and readers who believed in this crazy idea. Let’s do it again soon.

FAQ: Will we rebroadcast the show? A: Maybe, depends on a number of factors. Stay tuned.

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  1. avatar
    Dave Cool 24 November, 2010 at 07:23

    “Let’s do it again soon.”

    I hope so Andy, you guys did a great job! This is no doubt the future of broadcasting, and hopefully next time around you guys will break even with more support from the community (and then waves of corporate sponsors will take care of the rest in the future 😉



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