Anna Jacyszyn

Last week, I became involved in a local project with a global view, under the banner of heART Speak, which was the inspiration of two campaigners for creativity, Karen Close and Susan Leblanc.

These women became involved with the Global Citizen movement to create awareness of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, which were created to provide a blueprint for peace and prosperity for all people and our planet.

They reached out to local artists to share their expressions on how to achieve the sustainable development goals.

HeART Speak had its own call to action and invited anyone at any age to join with their own interpretation in a painting, poem, dance or any creative expression.

The response was illuminating and an upcoming video will open your minds.

From a pre-teen girl narrating her views on how she feels when hungry after school by creating a splatter painting (goal 2; zero hunger), to a teenage boy who used spoken word and music to connect to goal No. 1 — no poverty.

The age range was as diverse as the inventiveness that we witnessed.

Next week in this column, I will have a link of the culmination of creativity for you to watch and share.


Today at the Rotary Arts Centre you can visit the exhibition for Arts for Social Change, another Global Citizen Event in the form of a creative exhibit, featuring the art work and video entries of students in the Central Okanagan in Grades 8-12.

This “pitch your project” challenge is elaborated through their website at

The passion and energy of these youth and how they were able to express their thoughts on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals through their creative talents, simply made me awe-struck.

This is the last day of the exhibit. The exhibition is on the second floor at the Rotary Centre for the Arts, 421 Cawston Ave. from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. It’s free to the public.


The year is up for Kelowna’s inaugural artist in residence, Melany Nugent-Noble, and applications are now being accepted for a new artist or artist collective for a 10-week residency to create a work of art that addresses the topic of social inclusion.

Nugent-Noble was selected because of her innovative creations she named “When It Is Necessary To Stand Still.” It was a series of 25 beacons that change colour and become brighter when they are closer together and dimmer when they are further apart. She gave these globe lights to various people in the community. Visit her website for details on this fascinating work at

All artists of all disciplines including visual arts, digital or electronic arts, performance art or the written word are welcome to apply to be the artist in residence. Interested applicants can submit their expression between March 2-29 through the city website at

Interested artists or artist collectives can learn more about the program and application process at one of two upcoming virtual information sessions, the first being on Tuesday, March 2, from noon to 1:30 p.m. or on Thursday, March 4, 5-6:30 p.m.

The information sessions are free, but registration is required through: – following the links to “our community” for a drop down menu to arts/culture/heritage, and there you will see the link.


Since COVID-19 has shut down most of my favourite social gathering places, walking has become more of an event or outing for me, than just getting out to get some exercise.

I thoroughly adore finding trails to walk and it’s a nice surprise seeing a familiar face doing the same. This week, Paul’s Tomb Trail has closed for maintenance reasons. Work to widen the trail and reinforce the wall along it has begun and the city anticipates the work to be completed by March 10.

I have not walked this trail in years and look forward to checking it of my list. For some good ideas of where to walk, visit:


When Kelowna rebooted its Fringe Festival in 2019, I was among the hundreds of ticket holders who got excited about how this annual event was honing itself out to be a major player for creative arts.

In 2020, the festival was forced to close, but good news was announced this week that the Fringe Festival 2021 is slated to happen in mid-September.

Bonnie Gratz and her dedicated team at New Vintage Theatre are taking the helm to organize it and with promises to continue to be an edgy, exciting celebration of live performances that include plays, cabaret, musical theatre, storytelling, improv, drag, burlesque, stand up, and at more locations than just the Rotary Centre. Shows will also turn up at Creekside Theatre in Lake Country and wineries in West Kelowna, making it more of a regional celebration.

There is an online session being held tomorrow, Feb. 25, at 6 p.m., for interested community members who would like volunteer, participate or just to learn more about the Fringe. Register to attend at

Anna Jacyszyn is an award-winning jazz singer. Email: