John Law, journalist for the Well and Tribune (Ontario, Canada) thinks that April Mullen should be nominated for the Niagara Falls Arts & Culture Wall of Fame. Do you agree ?
Like any wall of fame, it’s not just about who’s on it, but who’s missing. The criteria seems cloudy with our own Niagara Falls Arts & Culture Wall of Fame. There have been some odd choices over the years. People that certainly warrant recognition and respect, but I’m not sure what they had to do with arts and culture.
So, yeah, there have been some head scratchers. But most years, they get it right. Last year, an obvious inclusion like local blues legend John ‘T Bone’ Little was joined by fashion designer Kimberley Newport-Mimran, the late artist Jennifer Garrett, theatre producer Linus Hand, House & Home brand owner Lynda Reeves, and military documentary producer Daniel Rodrique.
A great group. And yet, heading into its 10th year, the Arts & Culture Wall of Fame still has a few bewildering omissions. This year’s inductees should be announced some time next month. Here are five names I hope to see on that list :
1. MICHAEL MADDEN – I’ve stopped asking him how many theatre shows he has directed. He probably lost count a decade ago. Madden has been a fixture at the Firehall Theatre for at least 45 years, giving hundreds of people their first experience on stage. He has slowed down a bit in recent years, and jokes he isn’t as crusty as he used to be, but can still be counted on to direct at least one show per season with the Niagara Falls Music Theatre Society.
2. GREG FRASER & STEVIE SKREEBS – When hair metal was a thing, Niagara Falls had a pretty big player in the game. Though they never broke through in the U.S., Brighton Rock – formed by Fraser and Skreebs in 1982 – had plenty of Canadian hits like One More Try and Can’t Wait For the Night. They still have devoted fans and tour with their original line-up, even with Fraser and Skreebs forming another band in 2007, Fraze Gang.
3. NANCY ZIMMERMAN – Zimmerman had a profound effect on several local artists while teaching at the Peterson Community Workshop in Chippawa. She started a citywide art competition among the high schools called the Peterson Cup, and her vibrant, colourful paintings frequently sell out. She’s a former member of the Niagara Falls Arts & Culture Committee and, oh yeah, she’s Deadmau5’s mom.
4. PETER KRANTZ – Krantz is currently in his 28th season at the Shaw Festival, and his versatile stint there has made him one of the company’s most respected performers. He has also done movies (Exotica, The Ref) and TV (The X-Files, Tek Wars), but his many memorable roles at Niagara’s world-reknowned theatre company makes him an obvious choice.
5. APRIL MULLEN – Though her career is still in its early stages, Mullen has already claimed her own unique corner of Canadian cinema. The former Miss Teen Niagara made a brief appearance in a David Cronenberg movie (A History of Violence), before directing her first movie in 2007, Rock, Paper, Scissors: The Way of the Tosser. Since then she has directed comedies (Dead Before Dawn, GravyTrain), a thriller (88) and the upcoming horror flick Farhope Tower, all of them filmed locally.
Source : Well and Tribune (29/08/2015)