Three B.C. writers with Interior roots gather next week in Kamloops to headline a fundraiser for Western Canada Theatre.
Adam Lewis Schroeder, Ian Weir and Steven Galloway will read from their recent books Wednesday, 7 p.m., at Calvary Community Church, 1205 Rogers Way.
The authors offered to do the readings for free in support of WCT. Both Schroeder and Weir have been doing such readings in support of the arts.
Like other B.C. arts organizations, the company is dealing with funding cuts by senior governments.
"It's a really tough time for the arts in B.C. and across the country," Weir said. "I find there have been some quite shocking cuts in the arts over the last year or so."
Yet artists across the province have rallied together in a variety of ways to support one another, he added.
"I guess where the idea started is that Kamloops has a strong artistic vision in all sorts of areas, and Western Canada Theatre is essential to the cultural life of the community," Weir explained.
Weir grew up in Kamloops and went on to become WCT's most produced playwright (Island of Bliss, The Man Who Shot Chance Delaney). He presents his debut novel, Daniel O'Thunder, a comic tale of fist-fighting and faith set in the slums of London, England, in the 1850s. The novel is among finalists in the 26th annual B.C. Book Prizes (Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize).
Also raised in Kamloops, Steven Galloway reads from his international bestseller The Cellist of Sarajevo, which was nominated for the prestigious Giller Prize and the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize. His novels have been translated into more than 20 languages.
Schroeder, a CBC regional columnist from Vernon, now living in Penticton, gives an animated reading from his third book of fiction. The Fabled East is a literary adventure set against the backdrop of French Indochina.
Weir recalled reading a submission of Galloway's writing when he was working with the younger writer's high school class years ago in Kamloops. He spotted an emerging talent then.
"I read a short story by this 16-year-old high school student that just completely blew the doors off."
For more information on the fundraiser and the authors, see www.westerncanadatheatre.bc.ca.