25th Trillium Award

Terry Burns appointed Owen Sound’s Newest Poet Laureate

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From our friends at the League of Canadian Poets:

Terry Burns appointed Owen Sound’s Newest Poet Laureate

The Owen Sound Little Theatre (OSLT) is delighted to announce the appointment of Chatsworth-area poet Terry Burns as Owen Sound’s fourth Poet Laureate. Chosen from a field of ten strong applicants, Burns say she has “always written poetry.” She is not only an accomplished poet and performer, she has written novels, short stories and essays. She is also known for her non-fiction writing. Readers in Grey and Bruce may be aware of her work through Mosaic, for which she has written a variety of articles over a number of years. She has served as coordinator the Words Aloud Spoken Word and Storytelling Festival for the past three years.

“I’m honoured, a little nervous but really looking forward to the challenge,” said Burns. She is eager to open people’s eyes to the ways in which we are surrounded by poetry. “We think of poetry in academic terms, that’s the accepted canon as far as poetry goes,” she said. “We forget about the fact that people continue to practice it every day way in a populist way – things like rap and hip hop. Those are some of the things that fascinate me.”

The Poet Laureate program is hosted and sponsored by the OSLT which is housed in Owen Sound’s historic Roxy Theatre. “We are delighted to host this program and to encourage this unique partnership of performing arts and poetry here at the Roxy,” said OSLT President Mark Vigneux. “The OSLT may well be the only community theatre in the country, perhaps even the world, hosting a Poet Laureate program, “said Liz Zetlin, former Poet Laureate and chair of the Poetry Laureate Advisory Committee. “Terry’s poetry is beautifully crafted and performed and, with her background in theatre as an actor and stage manager, she’s well suited to be OSLT’s first Poet Laureate.”

As part of her duties, Burns will write poetry about the area, do public performances and work with local poets and writers. “I’ve been struck by the wide range of poetry being practiced today and it’s become a real fascination for me,” said Burns. “As I explore my own poetry, I also want to reach out to poets around the region and explore together.”

Burns will serve her term from October 1, 2023 to September 30, 2015. She will be officially introduced at the Roxy Theatre’s 100th Anniversary Celebration on Saturday, October 19, when she will read a poem written for the occasion.

The Owen Sound Poet Laureate is a program of Owen Sound Little Theatre. It is sponsored by investment advisor David Madill, CFP of BMO Nesbitt Burns, with additional support from Frank Dabbs, the author from Annan, Ontario.

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