Monday, 20 October 2014

Children's Author Michael Kusugak Comes to Fort McMurray

Frosty Michael and Geraldine

The Rotary Club of Fort McMurray and the Fort McMurray Public Library are pleased to present A Family Evening of Storytelling, featuring award winning children’s author, Michael Kusugak. All ages are welcome to attend this event which will be taking place tomorrow at the Fort McMurray Public Library, 6:30pm– 7:30pm.

Michael Kusugak grew up in Repulse Bay, NWT (now Nunavut). Until the age of twelve Michael and his family lived a traditional Inuit lifestyle, living in igloos, travelling by dog sled, hunting, fishing and storytelling. In Inuit culture storytellers learn their craft as children by listening to the tales of their elders.  These ancient and compelling legends are told over and over again, changing only slightly with each new teller. Michael’s performances are said to leave audiences both young and old mesmerized and wanting more.

Michael currently lives in Rankin Inlet, on the west coast of Hudson's Bay. He is the author of seven picture books, including Northern Lights: The Soccer Trails, winner of the Ruth Schwartz Award; Hide and SeekMy Arctic 1, 2, 3; and Baseball Bats for Christmas; and was co-writer of A Promise Is a Promise (with Robert Munsch). He was awarded The Writers’ Trust of Canada award and The Vicky Metcalf Award for Children’s Literature in 2008. 

The Vicky Metcalf Award honours a Canadian author of children’s literature whose body of work is judged to demonstrate the highest literary standards. This is what the jury had to say about Michael's work;  

Michael’s children stories are primarily set in the 1950’s of his childhood in Repulse Bay, a small Inuit community of only 100 people, at the north end of Hudson’s Bay within the Arctic Circle. He draws upon personal experiences of living in the North. He reflects upon the beauty of the Arctic landscape, its variety of seasonal change and animal and human activities, the close knit life of the Inuit community, the presence of mythic imagery and belief. Kusugak’s voice is unique with Inuit diction and metaphor — falling stars are “star droppings”. Kusugak writes of family love, folk tricksters, residential school, pre-contact era shamanism in a unifying spirit of place and culture, offering Canadian child and adult readers a living version of a rich way of life.  (-2008 Vicky Metcalf Award for Children’s Literature Jury: Jean Little (Guelph, Ontario), Susan Perren (Toronto), and Judith Saltman (Vancouver)).

Don’t miss this unforgettable night of storytelling with one of Canada’s greatest storytellers, tomorrow, 6:30pm-7:30pm at the Fort McMurray Public Library. For more information please contact the Fort McMurray Public Library’s Children's Help Desk: 780-743-7804. 

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