Don’t miss Hank Angel and his Island Devils at the Vancouver Island Rockabilly Festival in Chemainus on Saturday, July 27. (Submitted)

Lexi Bainas column: Duncan Has Talent returns, casting call for teens, rockabilly festival offers super lineup

Check out what’s happening around the Valley this week

Duncan Has Talent returns this week after a one-week hiatus.

This week, it’s the turn of those incredibly brave performers: the singer/songwriters.

Yes, on top of getting up on the Buckerfield’s Stage at The 39 Days of July, they have to perform their own material.

In recent years, there has been a loyal group who are working on their songwriting ability, helped by the mentoring available to those who enter Duncan Has Talent.

The finals are scheduled to be held starting at 5 p.m. on Friday, July 26 at Charles Hoey Park.

C’mon out and support them.


Imagine That! on Craig Street in Duncan has announced their feature artists for the month of August.

In fact, the display starts July 26.

Check out West Coast Perspectives by Michael Dean, an Englishman who started painting in late 1960s and continued his passion, inspired by local beauty and the marine life around Vancouver Island after moving to Canada in 1972. His main interests have been working coastal vessels, historical coastal scenes and, most recently, the forest and beach scenes of Vancouver Island.

Designs In Wood by Andre St. Cyr is the other display. At a young age, Andre St. Cyr was inspired to work with wood. Both his father and great uncle worked in sawmills and St. Cyr often watched and helped them build many projects.

In high school, he was the recipient of a woodworking award for his well-crafted and finished projects. Following a degree in education and working as a teacher/librarian in an elementary school, St. Cyr continued making wooden furniture and projects in his spare time. His hobby eventually turned into a part-time job. He works mainly with rare pieces of wood with beautiful colour and patterns. Most of the wood he uses is salvaged from windfalls, logged areas, and trees cut for development projects on Vancouver Island.


The Valley’s Taryn Neligan is not only an accomplished dancer but she also works hard on her school studies and also finds time to be a Big Sister through the Big Brothers Big Sisters organization and takes part in the reading buddies program in her high school.

Neligan has just returned from Moncton, N.B. and the Canadians Highland dance competition, where she was her most successful to date, placing in every event including the Canadian championship.

Shortly, this fine dancer will be traveling to Scotland to compete at six championships, including the world’s.

When in Scotland she will be competing in four championships leading up to the world’s qualifier on Thursday Aug. 29. If she qualifies she will then dance in the world’s on Saturday, Aug. 31.


Chemainus hosts the 2019 Vancouver Island Rockabilly Festival on Saturday, July 27, at Waterwheel Park, starting at 2 p.m.

It’s a celebration of the early rock ‘n roll music of the 50s, with a line-up of five great bands. The headliner is Hank Angel and his Island Devils will be a featured group; Hank’s band has performed at Tom Ingram’s Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekender, the world’s largest rockabilly festival, as well as at other major rockabilly events in the United States and Canada.

The Chemainus event will also feature Chevy Ray and the Fins, a Nanaimo-based band. The group was featured in Chemainus a couple of years ago for a truly memorable performance. Add to them Slim Sandy and his Hillbilly Boppers: an unusual group, using guitar, washtub bass and snare drum to create their memorable sound. The Glen Foster Group has just released its latest single, ‘Rockabilly Fever’ so the Chemainus audience will be among the first to enjoy Foster’s latest offering.

There’s also Black Moon Valley, a talented foursome with an outstanding sound. The group’s female singer provides some beautiful vocals and if you want to hear some of that Telecaster twang, then this is the band for you.

Come to the show dressed to impress and you could win the prize for the best-dressed couple in 50s rockabilly costume.

Admission is by donation, with an amount of $20 suggested for an adult for the afternoon.

Full details can be seen at


Open casting call: on Sunday, July 28 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and again on Monday, July 29, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., casting sessions will be held at the Ramada Duncan Hotel at 140 Trans Canada Hwy.

Freeman Casting is looking for kids aged 12-18 to be background performers on a feature film.

The dates you must be available are: Aug. 19 to Sept. 21. There is a height stipulation, so no one more than six feet tall need apply. The number of work days may vary depending on your availability. You do not have to be available for all days.

To apply, check and fill out the application form.


If you find yourself in Lake Cowichan on a Monday night, stop by Saywell Park, for Summer Nights, an outdoor market, music and, if they can make it happen, a movie under the Saywell Park gazebo. The market runs from 5:30 to 8:30 with the movie starting about 9 p.m.

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