Our Contributors

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Derek BockingChrf Derek Bocking headshot
Derek Bocking has been working in the restaurant industry for over 15 years. He shares his favorite recipes on his blog derekskitchen.com He is sous-chef at Chez Ma Grosse Truie Cheri, a French Bistro that specializes in local ingredients. Derek was also contestant on the first season of Top Chef Canada.

Richard “Bugs” Burnett
(POP Culture)
Richard “Bugs” Burnett self-syndicated his national column Three Dollar Bill in over half of Canada’s alt-weeklies for 15 years, has been banned in Winnipeg, investigated by the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary over charges TDB was “pornographic”, gotten death threats, outed politicians like former Parti Quebecois leader Andre Boisclair, been vilified in the pages of Jamaica’s national newspaper The 5376_229469740250_651940250_7978728_7785269_nGleaner for criticizing anti-gay dancehall star Sizzla (who would go on to write the 2005 hit song “Nah Apologize” about Burnett and UK gay activist Peter Tatchell), pissed off BB King, crossed swords with Mordecai Richler, been screamed at backstage by Cyndi Lauper and got the last-ever sit-down interview with James Brown. Burnett was Editor-at-Large of HOUR until the Montreal alt-weekly folded in April 2011, is Editor-at-Large of The Charlebois Post (Canada), is a columnist and writer for both Fugues and Xtra, writes the POP TART blog for The Montreal Gazette, and is the pop culture pundit on The Barry Morgan Show every Friday from 8:30 – 9 pm on Montreal’s CJAD 800 AM Radio. Burnett was named one of Alberta-based Outlooks magazine’s Canadian Heroes of the Year in 2009, famed porn director Flash Conway dubbed Burnett “Canada’s bad boy syndicated gay columnist” and The Montreal Buzz says, “As Michael Musto is to New York City, Richard Burnett is to Montréal.”

Jessica Dionne jessicadionne
Jessica Dionne is perhaps better known locally and internationally as ‘that girl who got her arm signed by Paul McCartney’, and is a graduate of the Concordia Theatre department. She is passionate about live entertainment, storytelling and adventures; some of her most recent include driving to Connecticut to meet Robert Wagner and going to see Frankie Valli perform in Atlantic City. Native to the Laurentians, she lives with her cat Finnegan and can usually be found listening to records, playing guitar or watching episodes of ‘Hart to Hart

Maria Grassagliata
Feet planted in the financial world, but heart passionate about movies and vegan culture. She has a bachelor degree in Arts from UQAM where she studied creative writing and screenplay writing. She isn’t afraid to dip her toes into anything in the domain of art. An avid movie seer, she is always looking for ways to express her creativity and artistic flair. Outspoken and never censored, she isn’t afraid to give her two cents with passion, conviction and energy. She loves comedies, romance, mystery, suspense, horror, drama, documentary and foreign movies. Free spirited and open minded, she is able to deliver concise and down to earth opinions on subjects she is passionate about. A vegan lifestyle appreciator, there is no vegan meal that she will not venture into and express her feelings on the taste, preparation and enjoyment. Getting all her vegetables at an organic farm, she ensure the well being of her body and her wallet by eating earth friendly products.

Andrew Gryn  
(Technical Advisor, CUtv On-location filming, Music Scene)
Andrew Gryn’s major in Graphic Design at Concordia University lead him to a carreer in Animation and 1_Andy Gryn (Oct.2008)Live Action Movies.  Starting in the Art Department on TV specials like The Little Mermaid and The Happy Prince for Potterton Productions, his path lead to becoming Assistant Production Manager / Unit Manager on the 1980 feature Heavy Metal. This experience put him in touch with most aspects of the industry.  After a three year stint of live action commercials and feature films, Little Gloria Happy At Last and Joshua Then and Now being the largest of productions, Andrew returned to animation; this time in the voice recording department.  As Talent Coordinator at CINAR he worked on well over 800 episodes for more than 20 different shows including Arthur, Animal Crackers and The Little Lulu Show. For Vivatoon he worked as Casting and Voice Director on Sir Arthur Conon Doyle’s Lost World and The Little Match Girl. His production skills always came into play as he took care of scheduling sessions, booking talent, contracts with ACTRA and post-production sessions. Recent work has been self-produced short videos, commercial and art photography, plus voice workshops for up and coming actors.  Photography being one of his passions, you will find Andrew walking about and capturing images in the heart of Mile End where he grew up and raised his family.  Contact:  HYPERLINK “mailto:mileendgryn@gmail.com” mileendgryn@gmail.com

William Hrycyk  
(CUtv On-location filming, Multimedia Producer)
Bill’s passion encompasses all things of the “frame” from the moving picture to the still. Outside his Film Stuphotodies at Concordia University and at Ryerson & Humber (Television Production), he presently works at a major downtown university hospital in the multimedia department where he creates educational videos.  In this capacity, he wears many hats including director, producer, cameraman, post production editor and sound. Bill’s varied interests include his fondness for Music (emerging Indy artists, country, folk classical); the fifth generation Camaro (especially the V8 Convertible of he owns); Cinema (Documentary, Foreign & Indy Films); Cameras (35 mm & Digital SLR and 3 chip video), the Apple Macintosh and Theatre. Though his work takes him to the city, he craves & lives in the country taking long drives into the sunrise to stop to capture a vast array of life’s images.

Richard Jutras
(Broadway – Montreal and Out of Town, Movies)Rick (B&W)
2013 marks Richard`s 35th year as an actor. He has appeared on stage in musicals (Jeanne La Pucelle at Place des Arts), comedy (Damn Those Wedding Bells at Saidye Bronfman Theatre) and drama (Girl in the Goldfish Bowl at Hudson Village Theatre) – to name only a few.  Over the years, Richard has worked on stage, the big screen, television and radio and has had the honor of working opposite some of the finest artists in the entertainment industry and along the way scoring two Gemini nominations for Best Ensemble in a Comedy in the hit CBC series The Tournament.  For a listing of his professional credits, you can check him out at   www.imdb.com.

Andreas Kessaris 
(Books, Literary Arts)andreasreading
Andreas Kessaris was raised in the Park Extension District of Montreal, the son of Greek immigrants. He has a B.A. in Communications and English from Concordia University. His work has been published in The Write Place (The Journal of the Canadian Writers Society), on Suite 101.com, and his monthly column Read On! with Andreas Kessaris was  a popular feature of the now defunct West End Montreal community paper The Local Herald. Read his blog at essaysbyandreas.com and  follow him on Twitter @AKessaris.

Kris Leblanc
(Audio, CUtv Post Production, Voice Overs)kris1
Kris Leblanc has worked professionally in Radio, recording studios, and as a DJ for over 10 years. Kris is very passionate about the art of audio & video.  He has worked for Mix96, CJAD, Listen Audio Productions, & Sheldon Kagan International. With a home studio Kris is able to produce professional quality results for any project. His current projects include some real estate videos, music recording of a local Montreal band, Maria T. For Kris, there is nothing better than doing what you love.  www.studioskrs.com

Chef Michael Minorgan
(Culinary Art, Culinary and Cultural Excursions)
Michael Minorgan has 38 years of experience as a professional chef.  He began his career in 1974 as president and executive chef of the catering company Taste Buds Inc. He catered many high profile events in Montreal and is proud to have catered for her HighnessMichael Minorgan The Queen Mother on her last visit to Montreal. In 1991, he was executive chef and co-founder of the critically acclaimed Cajun and Creole restaurant La Louisiane and was the official supplier of all Cajun food to the Montreal International Jazz Festival in 1992 and 1993.  From 1994 -2000 he was host of several cooking shows on CF Cable and Vox TV Cajun Cooking with Chef Michel, Southern Cooking with Chef Michel, More Southern Cooking with Chef Michel, Chef Michel’s New World Cuisine and Grilling with Chef Michel.  Michael has also been heard on numerous radio shows and has taught at the Pearson Professional Culinary Arts Department. He was executive chef and co-owner of Mesquite Southern BBQ and Restaurant Ambre and has served as a food consultant to various restaurants in the Montreal area including Cajun Blues in Ste Anne de Bellevue. He has traveled extensively to Southeast Asia and is currently organizing 14 & 21 day Culinary & Cultural Excursions to Viet Nam and Thailand, beginning in April  2013.  Websites:  www.globalgourmets.ca   www.chefmichel-concepts.com

Rik Roe
(Music)Rik Roe
Rik Roe is a lifelong Montrealer; proud Father of 2, Husband of 1. Recognized as an accomplished photographer, he is known for his coverage of the Music and Cultural scene; as well as being a guitar-slinging musician, and a gearhead. Rik is also a writer, and an active columnist with Examiner.com with Montreal and National titles, focusing on arts, events, and his love of music. Rik is the founder and creator of Rtists and UP NORTH Per4mance.

Fast and furious in his passions, his love of all the Arts is what drives him to succeed in capturing and conveying the spirit of what he sees and hears through words and images; which are displayed throughout media and social networks.

Joseph Rossi
(Movies, Oldies and New)!cid_A2479C63-134A-4BA8-8510-40A1085AA304
Joseph Rossi is a graduate of Concordia University. He holds his BFA in Film Studies and an MFA in Educational Studies. The basis of his graduate work was the use of film as a tool for social education. In 2009 he directed Fathers and their Daughters, the first of several short films that have had their debut screenings at film festivals abroad. He is also one the creators of Foodtropolis Montreal, a local web series about food and culture in Montreal.


Abby Elizabeth Schacter
Abby has been working in the media and broadcast field for over six years. She currently works as a newspaper reporter69461_10151137526959716_1643101089_n for The Suburban Newspaper and as a freelance entertainment reporter in Montreal. Abby’s skills include: Radio content production, radio Show hosting, event and volunteer coordinating, technical producing, writing and editing, professional in-field interviewing, blogging, book and music reviews and PR. Her passions include books, music, socializing, discovering a device that allows teleportation (who needs vehicles when you can teleport…) and animal advocacy. Abby recently ended her five year stint as a community radio show host but plans on starting a new podcast that focuses on local talent.

Matthew Stone (In Memoriam)
(CU Web, Technical)
Matthew Stone has used his Bachelor’s degree from Concordia University tMatthew Stoneo work in the fields of Public Relations, content management, media, journalism and communications. As the content manager for an upstart economic newswire, he made contact with government officials and obtained accreditation at  international lock-ups Matthew has a passion for all media and worked in various aspects of radio from the age of sixteen, including technical production, scripting and promotions. Matthew has acted in commercials and film since he was a child and is an ACTRA accredited actor. He is currently studying in the evenings in Project Management, which he hopes to use while remaining in the previously mentioned fields of interest. Matthew is currently working with a new app called Kutoto to establish presence in the Montreal and Toronto markets.

Samantha WexlerP8250059 2
Samantha has always been surrounded by and deeply interested in art and history in all forms. This interest extends to ancient civilizations, Renaissance art and culture, mythology, religious iconography, and symbology. Sam originally trained and worked as a professional photographer, retoucher, graphic designer as well as studied the history of animation. Now, in the Art History Masters program at Concordia University, Sam is fulfilling her dream of becoming an art historian.