Prairie Panorama

Introducing Prairie Panorama, a new series of creative Crankie collaborations celebrating rural Manitoba’s creative community. 

Prairie Panorama brings the most important elements of the Crankie Festival beyond Winnipeg, featuring a series of five collaborations in rural Manitoba communities with original work from a local visual artist created to illustrate a specific song. 

In Flin Flon, Gimli, Clearwater, Lorette, and Killarney, young, emerging artists have been paired with established mentor artists to write an original song. Their song has been given to a local visual artist to create a Crankie to illustrate the song’s story. A sneak peek at these collaborations will be revealed at the Winnipeg Crankie Festival on Saturday, November 6.

Prairie Panorama Collaborations

Flin Flon: MJ Dandenau + Imrianna Jones, with Crankie by Mike Spencer

In partnership with NorVa Centre and the Flin Flon Arts Council. 

MJ Dandeneau is one of Manitoba’s biggest movers and shakers in the music scene. A virtuoso on the upright and electric bass, she is also a celebrated producer, booking agent, and agent provocateur in terms of lifting up other musicians. Imrianna Jones are a vocal Group from Flin Flon, who are all three teachers. The mentorship provided by MJ was multi-dimensional and included guidance in performance, song arrangement, songwriting and more.

Mike Spencer from The NorVa Centre produced a unique projected Crankie, putting images to song and adding greatly to this unique and fun collaboration.

Gimli: Ray Co-Co Stevenson (Walking Wolf) + Kael Sauerborn, with Crankie by James Culleton

In partnership with the Gimli Film Festival. 

Walking Wolf Ray Co-Co Stevenson is the most respected Indigenous singer and drummer in Manitoba. He’s a leader in any community he visits, immersing himself completely in the causes he champions. Right now a great cause of importance to him, and the communities we live in, is reconciliation. He hopes, and we believe, it can happen in Canada, involving all indigenous nations and the rest of the population. Kael Sauerborn is a very talented and emerging songwriter, guitar player hailing from Gimli Manitoba, a town where Ray’s elders used to fish and work.

Together they tackled this very tough topic through storytelling and music in a way that encourages us to seek and to be understanding of one another, and to approach reconciliation as friends. Renowned Winnipeg Visual artist, James Culleton captured the lyrics, and the spirit beautifully with a unique modified puppet show-style Crankie.

Clearwater: Del Barber + The Heide Sisters, with Crankie by Andrea Gorda

In partnership with the Harvest Moon Festival.

This collaboration celebrates shades of rural life, living and farming on the prairies in Southwest Manitoba. Together with the Heide Sisters, Andrea Gorda and Sara Marzoff, Del Barber paints lyrical pictures of life on the farm like no other.  Del selected the Heide sisters as mentees because not only do they share the experience of living in southwest Manitoba, but they are farmers too and sing so well together.

In addition to her co-writing contributions, Andrea Gorda was also the visual artist who put the words to art on paper and into moving pictures with her Crankie.

Lorette: Andrina Turenne + Alexandre Tétrault, with Crankie by Candace Lipishak

In partnership with L’Union Nationale des Métisse de St.Joseph du Manitoba and Le Musée de Saint-Boniface Museum

This collaboration highlighted the efforts of The Métis people and their struggle to build and form The Province of Manitoba. Andrina Turenne, one of Manitoba’s most travelled and diverse Franco-Métis Artists, alongside mentee Alexandre Tétrault, a rising Franco-Métis fiddler, produced a beautiful story song about the struggles of Jean-Baptiste “Johnny” Sansregret who fought alongside Louis Riel for Métis rights in 1869-70 at Red River and again in 1885 at Batoche.

This story is accompanied by a Crankie created by multidisciplinary Franco-Métis artist Candace Lipischak.

Killarney: Keri Latimer + Hailey Hunter, with Crankie by Chris Cooper

In partnership with Killarney/Turtle Mountain Arts Council. 

Keri Latimer is one of the most unique songwriters in Winnipeg. Her songwriting with noted bands Nathan, and most recently, Leaf Rapids have been on the forefront of creative arrangements in folk music for over 20 years.

Hailey Hunter, a vocalist and guitar player emerging on the scene, is a shining star who we are sure will soon also be a household name. Together they explored themes linked to missing the way things were and produced a song about everlasting love and the nostalgia of places and relationships. Southwestern Manitoba-based visual artist Chris Cooper added imagery to Keri and Hailey’s music through the creation of her Crankie which responded to the emotions and storyline of the song.

The creation and presentation of these Prairie Panorama works will be captured in a series of five short documentaries and podcasts. The songs and Crankies will also be featured in Winnipeg at the Crankie Festival, to celebrate and share perspectives from some of the diverse artistic talent in Manitoba. The Prairie Panorama Crankies and songs, as well as others featured at the Winnipeg Crankie Festival, will also be showcased later at rural community art galleries in Manitoba.