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Access to the 2021 Whistler Writers Festival video recordings of readings and workshops

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TICKETS ON SALE AUGUST 31

SCHEDULE

All times noted in the schedule are PDT – Pacific Daylight Time, or UTC – 7 (Coordinated Universal Time).
Do you need to convert your Time Zone to Whistler, BC? Click here.

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 13, 2022

PUBLISH LIKE A PRO: WORKSHOP SERIES

Writing is an art, but publishing is a business. Whether you decide to trade, publish, or self-publish, this set of workshops will help you understand the industry and learn how to best position your book. Invest now and avoid costly mistakes in the future.

Both online and in-person sessions are available. The online option is only offered as a complete, all-in-one workshop package for $60. The in-person option is offered in single sessions for $55, or in an all-in-one package for $150.

Presented by: Vivalogue Publishing

 

WORKSHOP 1: PUBLISH LIKE A PRO: Preparing your Manuscript

With Kilmeny Denny

9:00 a.m. – 9:45 a.m. PDT 

In-Person: All-in-one: $150 or Single Sessions: $55 each | Online: All-in-one: $60

Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre & Online

“The End” is just the beginning. Do you need an editor? What does an editor do? Should you invest in one and how does that work? This session also includes practical advice that will help you produce a professional manuscript yourself.

Presented by: Vivalogue Publishing

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WORKSHOP 2: PUBLISH LIKE A PRO: Preparing to Publish

With Lynn Duncan

10:00 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. PDT

In-Person: All-in-one: $150 or Single Sessions: $55 each | Online: All-in-one: $60

Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre & Online

Should you consider self-publishing? What is hybrid publishing? Do you need an agent? How do you find a publisher? This session includes a questionnaire that will help participants make the right choice for them. It concludes with a worksheet “homework” that helps participants identify their book’s unique selling features that will be used in the afternoon session. 

Presented by: Vivalogue Publishing

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PUBLISH LIKE A PRO: WORKSHOP SERIES

Writing is an art, but publishing is a business. Whether you decide to trade, publish, or self-publish, this set of workshops will help you understand the industry and learn how to best position your book. Invest now and avoid costly mistakes in the future.

Both online and in-person sessions are available. The online option is only offered as a complete, all-in-one workshop package for $60. The in-person option is offered in single sessions for $55, or in an all-in-one package for $150.

Presented by: Vivalogue Publishing

WORKSHOP 3: Preparing to Promote

With Kilmeny Denny & Lynn Duncan

2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. PDT

In-Person: All-in-one: $150 or Single Sessions: $55 each | Online: All-in-one: $60

Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre & Online

Every author needs to prepare to be the primary advocate for their book. The first part of this workshop will focus on ways to find and engage with potential buyers. This will be followed by an opportunity to prepare an effective information package—a “sell-sheet”—using the homework from the previous session. Participants will then have the opportunity to submit their draft sell-sheet anonymously to receive honest feedback from the group. 

Presented by: Vivalogue Publishing

BUY TICKETS

PUBLISH LIKE A PRO: WORKSHOP SERIES

Writing is an art, but publishing is a business. Whether you decide to trade, publish, or self-publish, this set of workshops will help you understand the industry and learn how to best position your book. Invest now and avoid costly mistakes in the future.

Both online and in-person sessions are available. The online option is only offered as a complete, all-in-one workshop package for $60. The in-person option is offered in single sessions for $55, or in an all-in-one package for $150.

Presented by: Vivalogue Publishing

READING EVENT 1: Opening Night Showcase: New Voices & Social Après

Canada’s Best Independent Authors of 2022

5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. PDT | In-person or Online | FREE (RSVP)

Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre 

Accomplished writers are increasingly turning to independent publishing as a financially and creatively satisfying alternative to the traditional model. Meet some of the best independent authors in the country as finalists for the Whistler Independent Book Awards (WIBA) read from books nominated in children’s literature, fiction, and non-fiction categories. Winners will be announced at Friday night’s Literary Cabaret. 

Moderator: Lynn Duncan

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READING EVENT 2: Sharing Traditions: An Evening of Oral Storytelling 

With Tsawaysia Spukwus and Tanina Williams

7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. PDT | In-person $22 | Online $12

Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre 

Sponsored by: Nesters Market

New this year, the Whistler Writers Festival celebrates the art and tradition of oral storytelling featuring the talents of Tanina Williams (Lil’wat Nation) and Tsawaysia Spukwus (Squamish Nation). Eight local storytellers will share the stage with these two powerhouse keepers of stories and songs indigenous to the shared Lil’wat and Squamish territories. Don’t miss this opportunity to experience the beautiful tradition of oral storytelling, historically practiced in the winter when people had more time to relax and share stories.

Moderator:Rebecca Wood Barrett

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FRIDAY, OCTOBER 14, 2022

WORKSHOP 4: Insights from Insiders: Trade Publishing in Canada Today

Jim Gifford (HarperCollins), Sarah Howden (Orca), Vici Johnstone (Caitlin Press), Kelly Joseph (Penguin Random House), Doretta Lau (Greystone), Hazel Millar (Book*hug), Stephanie Sinclair (CookeMcDermid)

10:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. PDT | Online $15

Sponsored by: SFU Continuing Studies – Creative Writing

Dreaming of a publishing deal, but don’t know where to start? Join our guest publishers, editors, and agents to find out what they’re looking for in a manuscript, how to contact them, and how to best position your book for a successful acquisition. They’ll provide an overview of the industry and give sage advice on getting your book published. 

Moderator: Katherine Fawcett

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WORKSHOP 5: Pitch your Book or Story Idea to a Trade Publishing Pro

Jennifer Croll (Greystone), Sarah Howden (Orca), Vici Johnstone (Caitlin Press), Kelly Joseph (Penguin Random House), Rachel Letofsky (CookeMcDermid), Julia McDowell (HarperCollins), Hazel Millar (Book*hug)

1:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. PDT | Online $75

Shine a spotlight on your publishing dreams and pitch your heart out! Use your 15 minutes of one-on-one time with some of Canada’s most respected publishing decision-makers to pitch your book or story idea. This is a fantastic way to garner feedback and advice for writers at every stage of their career. Come prepared with a five-minute pitch and/or questions for these publishers, editors, and agents.

The session includes up to two pitches to our guest publishing experts on a first-come, first-choice basis. Pro tip: Research your choices before booking to ensure a good fit for your book or pitch (read their bios, or Google them!).

Limited space is available for this event.

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READING EVENT 3: The Booklovers’ Literary Salon

With Marsha Lederman

4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. PDT | In-Person $25 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Sponsored by: Penguin Random House

Stella Harvey will lead an in-depth book-club-style conversation with arts journalist and author Marsha Lederman. In her work, Kiss the Red Stairs: The Holocaust, Once Removed, Lederman explores what happened to her parents during the Holocaust, and the impact of that on her own life, one generation later. Amid personal grief and a pandemic, Marsha Lederman’s book delves into history and science to understand intergenerational trauma and epigenetics to offer us this beautiful work about the Holocaust, trauma, parenting, community and ultimately hope.​

Participants and book clubs are encouraged to read Kiss the Red Stairs to fully engage in the discussion. Visit your local bookseller or the fine folks at Armchair Books in Whistler (www.whistlerbooks.com) to get your copy.

Moderator: Stella Harvey

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READING EVENT 4: The Literary Cabaret: We’re Back, Live Baby!

7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. PDT | In-Person $25 | Online $12

Maury Young Arts Centre 

Sponsored by: Canadian Authors Association

Thrilling live music. Enthralling in-person author readings. Can it be true? Bring your literary and music-loving friends to enjoy a night out at the Maury Young Arts Centre. Our amazing guest authors include Amber Cowie (Last One Alive), Joseph Dandurand (The Punishment), Norma Dunning (Kinauvit?), Gary Geddes (The Oysters I Bring to Banquets, The Ventriloquist: Poetic Narratives from the Womb of War), Tamar Glouberman (Chasing Rivers: A Whitewater Life), Hasan Namir (Umbilical Cord), Mari-Lou Rowley (Catastrophe Theories) and Shyam Selvadurai (Mansions of the Moon).

The West Coast Front band, featuring Geeta Das (trumpet, saxophone and percussion), Rajan Das (upright bass), Jason Overy (percussion), and Rosalind Steel (piano and electric keys), will improvise musical pairings with author readings to create an experience you won’t soon forget. The winners of the Whistler Independent Book Awards will also be announced. Be sure to get your tickets now before this popular event sells out! 

Moderator: Stephen Vogler

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SATURDAY, OCTOBER 15, 2022

Coffee, Writing & Networking Suite

9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. PDT | FREE

Fairmont Chateau Whistler 

Back by popular demand! The Federation of BC Writers welcomes festival presenters and keen workshop participants to stop by for a chat and talk about all things writing! We hope you’ll feel inspired by the festival and take advantage of the space to write, meet fellow writers, and connect with our team. Coffee, tea, and treats are on hand to kickstart that festival vibe.  

Join us for a Writing Sprint with accompaniment from pianist Andrew Sims on Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and a Quiet Writing Sprint from 4-5 p.m.

On Sunday the room will be open from 9 a.m. to noon for quiet writing and connecting.

Presented by: The Federation of BC Writers

RSVP

WORKSHOP 6: Using Journalism Skills in Memoir Writing

With Marsha Lederman

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. PDT | In-person $30 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Are you working on a memoir, but having trouble with memory? Are there details from your own life that you just can’t recall? And have you stalled out, unable to work around these gaps? Join award-winning journalist and bestselling author, Marsha Lederman, who faced similar problems when she wrote her own memoir. She will lead workshop participants through a series of exercises, ideas and discussions on how to investigate and dig deep into your own life, in order to pull out the story and theme beneath, to create your memoir.

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READING EVENT 5: Writers of Non-Fiction Panel

With Kagan Goh, Merilyn Simonds, Debra Thompson, WIBA Winner

10:00 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. PDT | In-person $25 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Sponsored by: BDO

Our guest authors will share their stories of intimate journeys on life’s surprising pathways. The non-fiction writers panel and audience discussion will center around readings by Kagan Goh (Surviving Samsara), Merilyn Simonds (Women, Watching: Louise de Kiriline Lawrence and the Songbirds of Pimisi Bay), and Debra Thompson (The Long Road Home: On Blackness and Belonging in North America). The event will also include the winner of the Whistler Independent Book Award for non-fiction.

Moderator: Leslie Anthony

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WORKSHOP 7: Poetry: Sharing our Gift

With Joseph Dandurand

10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. PDT | In-Person $30 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Join poet Joseph Dandurand (The Punishment, Sh:lam (The Doctor), Hear and Foretell, The Rumour, I Want, The East Side of It All) as he describes how life’s journeys shape his award-winning work. Joseph will lead workshop participants through three invigorating writing exercises exploring the nature of time and identity(ies) and discuss the poetry publishing landscape in Canada.

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READING EVENT 6: Poetry: Deeper Conversations: Loss, grief and finding our way home

With Gillian Jerome, Jónína Kirton, Sarah de Leeuw, Tolu Oloruntoba

11:30 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. PDT | In-Person $25 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

In our ordinary lives we all experience confusion and loss. Loss of language, loss of voice, loss of loved ones. Poetry is an art form that has always been a resource in times of crisis. During the pandemic, people turned to poetry. The great naturalist Barry Lopez said, “poetry is a door anyone can walk through.” It’s about bearing witness and about hope. This year at the Whistler Writers Festival we have four poets who build bridges with grace and courage – Sarah de Leeuw (Lot), Gillian Jerome (Nevertheless), Jónína Kirton (Standing in a River of Time), and Tolu Oloruntoba (The Junta of Happenstance and Each One a Furnace).

Moderator: Mary MacDonald

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READING EVENT 7: Thrills and Chills: Mystery and Crime Writers Panel

With Charles Demers, Daniel Kalla, Anna Pitoniak, Sandra SG Wong

1:15 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. PDT | In-Person $25 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Sponsored by: The Grocery Store

Amber Cowie investigates four new thrillers by award-winning authors Charles Demers (Noonday Dark), Daniel Kalla (The Darkness in the Light), Anna Pitoniak (Our American Friend) and Sandra SG Wong (In the Dark We Forget) to uncover the secrets behind their suspense. Tension will crackle, mysteries will entice, and one lucky winner will bring home all four amazing books! Every audience member will be invited to solve the mystery within a fanfiction crime story based on one of the authors’ characters. The winner will take home all the loot. Armchair detectives unite!  

Moderator: Amber Cowie

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WORKSHOP 8: Mastering the Art and Craft of Creative Writing through Narrative Poetry 

With Kagan Goh

1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. PDT | In-Person $30 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

How do you find and sustain your writing practice? This is a common problem that author Kagan Goh (Surviving Samsara, Who Let in the Sky?) will help workshop participants address. It is a fine balance; the need for creative play to support passion and inspiration in the writing process, and the grit and perseverance needed to polish your written work. Kagan will lead several powerful exercises inviting participants to marry elements of poetry with creative fiction and non-fiction writing and demonstrate some tools for effective self-editing once your story is on the page.

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WORKSHOP 9: Baring the Bones: How to Make the Story Part of the Story

With Merilyn Simonds

3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. PDT | In-Person $30 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

There’s the story, then there’s the story about the story—the finding of it, the wrestling with it, the writing of it. The story itself may be fiction or nonfiction, but the story about the story is inevitably memoir. When should writers insert themselves as a character into their writing project? What are the pitfalls and what can be gained by blending genres? Join Merilyn Simonds, author of the hybrid memoir/biography, Woman, Watching, as she explores, through examples and exercises, how a memoir thread can be woven in seamlessly, without distracting from the main story you want to tell.

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READING EVENT 8: Writers of Fiction

With Guy Gavriel Kay, Chelene Knight, Shaena Lambert, Zarqa Nawaz, WIBA Winner

4:00 p.m. – 5:15 p.m. PDT | In-Person $25 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Sponsored by: Pasta Lupino

Join moderator Charles Demers as he and the author panel discuss wide ranging topics that drive their work: isolation and loneliness, the search for meaning and connection, persecution of race and faith, feminism, and environmental politics. Featuring Guy Gavriel Kay (All the Seas of the World), Chelene Knight (Junie), Shaena Lambert (Petra), and Zarqa Nawaz (Jameela Green Ruins Everything). The event will also include the winner of the Whistler Independent Book Awards for fiction.

Moderator: Charles Demers

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READING EVENT 9: Sharing Stories Together: A Festival Celebration & Fundraiser 

Featuring Special Guests of the Festival

6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. PDT | In-Person $20 | RSVP

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

It’s time to come together and share how stories make a difference. For over two decades the festival—founded and organized by Stella Harvey—has connected readers with authors and inspired conversations about important ideas. We’ll hear personal stories from special guests about the impact of the festival on the literary industry and how we created a vibrant, local literary arts scene in the Sea to Sky corridor. Come join us as we mingle to live music, share a tale, enjoy delicious appies, and raise a glass to celebrate how our community has come together to make the festival what it is today. All are invited to help us kick-off our Literary Arts Legacy Fund endowment campaign!

RSVP

READING EVENT 10: Saturday Night Gala

Marsha Lederman in Conversation with Méira Cook and Iain Reid

8:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. PDT | In-Person $25 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Sponsored by: RGF Integrated Wealth Management

Join moderator Marsha Lederman’s conversation with Méira Cook (The Full Catastrophe) and Iain Reid (We Spread) as they discuss intriguing themes in their latest books. These two formidable authors intricately paint the portraits of lives lived while weaving important societal issues and commentaries expertly throughout their works; the nature of conformity, defining oneself, art, productivity, community, and ultimately, the relationships that define us.

This is a conversation not to be missed!

Moderator: Marsha Lederman

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SUNDAY, OCTOBER 16, 2022

Coffee, Writing & Networking Suite

9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. PDT | FREE

Fairmont Chateau Whistler 

Back by popular demand! The Federation of BC Writers welcomes festival presenters and keen workshop participants to stop by for a chat and talk about all things writing! We hope you’ll feel inspired by the festival and take advantage of the space to write, meet fellow writers, and connect with our team. Coffee, tea, and treats are on hand to kickstart that festival vibe.  

Join us for a Writing Sprint with accompaniment from pianist Andrew Sims on Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and a Quiet Writing Sprint from 4-5 p.m.

On Sunday the room will be open from 9 a.m. to noon for quiet writing and connecting.

Presented by: The Federation of BC Writers

RSVP

READING EVENT 11: A Walk to Lost Lake, and Back Again

With Jónína Kirton, Tolu Oloruntoba and Merilyn Simonds

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. PDT | In-Person $30
Includes a warming hot chocolate and tasty treat.

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Take in the fresh mountain air and enjoy exciting readings and lively literary conversation with awarding-winning authors, Jónína Kirton (Standing in a River of Time), Grant Lawrence (Return to Solitude), Tolu Oloruntoba (The Junta of Happenstance, Each One a Furnace) and Merilyn Simonds (Women, Watching: Louise de Kiriline Lawrence and the Songbirds of Pimisi Bay). Starting from the Fairmont Chateau Whistler, we will meander through the forests of Lost Lake Park to the lakeside and back. The flat gravel trail is a 3.2 km round trip, rain or shine, so please bring appropriate outdoor wear. 

Moderator & Author: Grant Lawrence

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WORKSHOP 10: Writing Thrilling Fiction: The Perfect Crime Needs the Perfect Plan

With Amber Cowie 

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. PDT | In-Person $30 | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

A perfect crime requires a perfect plan. A perfect crime novel needs a perfect outline. Join Amber Cowie for a one-hour workshop on how to construct an outline for a thriller, crime, or mystery novel. We’ll cover tension-building, twisted plotlines, and the ultimate reveal. All participants will leave with a customized template for developing both an outline and a tempting synopsis for pitching and promotion. 

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READING EVENT 12: Sunday Book Talk: Coffee and Conversation

With Cody Caetano, Lisa Moore, Heather O’Neill and Jamal Saeed

11:00 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. PDT | In-Person $40 (includes coffee, tea and pastries) | Online $12

Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Sponsored by: Sea to Sky Welding and Fabrication

Ease into your Sunday morning, relax and enjoy a breakfast pastry and cuppa, while learning about what makes great authors tick. Join moderator Wayne Grady as he and our panelists ponder the common threads in their new books; the tangles of family history and the nature of conflict, love and acceptance in all its beautiful and terrifying forms. Featuring Cody Caetano (Half-Bads in White Regalia), Lisa Moore (This is How We Love), Heather O’Neill (When we Lost Our Heads), and Jamal Saeed (My Road to Damascus). 

Moderator: Wayne Grady 

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WORKSHOP 11: Wri(gh)ting the World – A Creative Writing Workshop for Eco-engaged Middle Schoolers

With Ann Eriksson

11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. PDT | In-Person FREE (RSVP) | Online FREE (RSVP)

Whistler Public Library

Sponsored by: Vision Pacific Contracting

Do you love creative writing? Do you love the planet? Join biologist and author Ann Eriksson to learn how to use your love of creative writing to help heal the planet. Ann has written five environmentally engaged adult novels and three ecological literacy non-fiction books for younger readers. She’ll share tips about all aspects of writing and guide a fun collaborative writing exercise. Bring a pen, your ideas and your questions. 

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READING EVENT 13: Finding Light through the Darkness: Nurturing Hope in Children’s and YA & Lit

With Ann Eriksson, Jen Ferguson, Jamal Saeed and WIBA Children’s Book Winner

1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. PDT | In-Person FREE (RSVP) | Online FREE (RSVP) 

Whistler Public Library

Sponsored by: Marquis Book Printing

Why is it important to tackle tough topics and ideas when writing for children and young adults? Moderator Sara Leach delves into this discussion with acclaimed children’s and YA authors, Ann Eriksson (Urgent Message from a Hot Planet: Navigating the Climate Crisis), Jen Ferguson (My Summer of Bitter and Sweet), and Jamal Saeed (Yara’s Spring). These authors’ stories and non-fiction work explores climate science, activism, and hope; teenage angst and secrets, and all the spectrums that make up a person; and a girl’s coming of age against all odds during the Arab Spring. The event will also include the Whistler Independent Book Awards children’s book winner. 

Moderator: Sara Leach

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WORKSHOP 12: Page to Stage: Using Improvisation to Generate Character

With Brandon Barrett

3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. PDT | In-Person $30 | Online $12

Whistler Public Library

This introductory workshop blends acting and writing for the aspiring creative and performer. Modeled from the unique “Mike Leigh Improvisation Method” from the award-winning British director, we will use improvisation, mimicry and writing exercises drawing on students’ personal experiences to generate an authentic character, dialogue and story. After this class, you will have the framework to begin fleshing out your own three-dimensional character and scene, as written by you. Prior performance and/or creative writing experience is recommended, but not required. 

Participants should come prepared with ideas on a character or a scene to create during this workshop and be ready to move and improvise! Participants, please plan and dress accordingly.

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TICKETS ON SALE AUGUST 31