And a friendly regional director, too

Tara Thorne keeps it funny, even in the hot hot heat.

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Big news out of the TV world this week—chill dudes, Dwight D'Eon is still safe on Idol!—Andrew Cochran, of Theodore Tugboat fame, has been named regional director at CBC Television. Cochran is a producer, writer and director who has been involved in various capacities with Pit Pony, Blizzard Island, Canada AM and the CTV National News. (In his spare time he teaches Entertainment Law and Information Technology Transactions at Dal.)

"Andrew Cochran has an impressive track record as an innovator, producer and leader, as well as as a committed member of the Maritime community," says Fred Mattocks, the executive director of regional programming for CBC English television. "Maritime television has a track record of program excellence in service of its communities. This is a very good match."

Cochran replaces longtime regional director and Dope Show fan Ron Crocker, who retired in July.

Decoding ring

Former Halifax resident, long-time Halifax legend and now-Montreal filmmaker Colin MacKenzie made a film last year called Decoding the Undertow, starring (and co-directed by) dancer Sally Morgan and a team of dancers and skateboarders practicing the art of Contact Improvisation. It premiered in the Atlantic Film Festival, but if you missed it, you have another chance on August 6, on Bravo at 9pm.

The refused unite

The first week of August always finds local filmmakers on edge as they wait for the programming team at the Atlantic Film Festival to start sending out the acceptance and rejection letters. If you get the latter—it happens! For all kinds of reasons! Chin up!—there's still a chance your film can be screened in Halifax during the festival when all those bigwigs are in town.

The seventh annual Salon des Refus<0x00E9>s Atlantique has released its yearly call to the rejected—send in your letter (and your movie, duh) and you will be entered into a lottery. Letters will be drawn at random to compose the one-day Salon program at the Khyber Club on Saturday, September 15.

For more info, keep an eye on salonatlantique.org.

Be so dramatic

In our final film item of the week, the Atlantic Filmmakers Co-operative has announced a new program. The Dramatic Film Lab, an immersion course aimed at newer filmmakers, launches this year with Jason Buxton at the helm. Buxton has created a handful of exquisitely photographed shorts; his latest, The Drawing, has been acquired by HBO.

"It's like a whole term of film school specifically for producers, writers and directors at a cost that would be unheard of in other regions," says AFCOOP's production coordinator Chris Spencer-Lowe. There are only 15 slots available in the program, which runs from September 27, 2007, to late January 2008, and costs $320 ($280 for AFCOOP members). To apply, contact AFCOOP by calling 420-4572 or emailing production@afcoop.ca.

Silver Live Art

The venerable Live Art Productions turns 25 this year, and has announced a stellar season in celebration of that anniversary.

From September 27 to 29, Belgium's Barbara Mavro Thalassitis will choreograph a new work featuring local dancers Jacinte Armstrong, Susanne Chui, Elise Vanderborght and vocalist Janice Jackson. On September 30, the 25 Alive Showcase will feature El Viento Flamenco, Gwen Noah, Mocean Dance and Lisa Phinney. Cristal Pite returns to Halifax from October 11 to 13 to perform Lost Action. Montreal Danse brings in a family show, Somewhat Like You, from December 6 to 8.

In 2008, another Montreal artist, Louise Bedard, brings her Hanna Höch-inspired Ce qu'il en reste to the Dunn from January 17 to 19. Toronto's Ame Henderson takes Live Art to the BusStop in April for a show of dance and song. And Tedd Robinson closes the season from May 15 to 17 with REDD, his farewell show and the final chapter in a trilogy that includes Rokudo and Rigmarole.

All shows save the BusStop performance take place at the Sir James Dunn Theatre in the Dalhousie Arts Centre, 6101 University. Get your tickets by calling 494-3820.

On stage or off, send your arts news to: tarat@thecoast.ca

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