PuSh Blog

Curatorial Q and A for David Carr

December 24, 2012

David Carr

Tell us about yourself.

Fiona Black, Director of Programming at the NSCU Centre at Capilano University. I program three series: jazz, global roots and speakers as well as the North Shore Jazz series in partnership with the Vancouver International Jazz Festival. As primarily a music programmer, I love my job and am always knocked out by how much talent, indeed hidden talent, there is out there waiting to be discovered.  It’s a privilege to do what I do.

Tell us about David Carr: Truth and Lies in Life and Art in three sentences or less.

In the spirit of Hunter S Thompson and gonzo journalism, David Carr is another such maverick who has built his career in journalism on the cult of personality and not always playing by the rules. Carr will address the blurring of lines between fact and fiction in life and art as it pertains to his own memoirs and discuss how pervasive this issue is in today’s high tech world.  

Why did you choose to present this show?

David Carr is exactly the type of speaker that I seek out for my speaker series. Someone asked me when I first started the series what kind of speaker was I looking for? I said someone that has something to say. Our speakers needed to have expertise, unique insights or have lived through something extraordinary. It might seem simplistic but my intent is that it not be a celebrity speaker series.  I wanted the level of discourse and debate to be deep. David Carr has lived an incredible life, has unique insights, and as the media and culture columnist for the New York Times, is regarded as an expert in his field.  

When did you first encounter this artist’s work?  

A friend suggested the book The Night of the Gun to me written by David Carr.  I was on a junkie memoir binge at the time having read in succession, A Million Little Pieces by James Frey, Life by Keith Richards, and Straight Life by Art Pepper, so I was definitely on a roll. The Night of the Gun was my top pick from this list. It dug a little deeper for me than the others and it was quite profound at times. David Carr is the one I would most want to have dinner with of the four writers.    

Give us three reasons why we should see this show?

The topic is compelling – Truth and Lies in Life and Art. David Carr is particularly sensitive to this topic as his memoir was written in a journalistic style, reporting on his own life to try to get at the truth, not trusting his own memory.  

David Carr is a true survivor, and thus fearless. His talk will, no doubt, be raw and unflinching. He speaks from the heart and he speaks the truth.

David Beers, editor from the Tyee will be moderating the Q & A. Beers is also a crusading personality who holds no punches. Expect the dialogue to be razor-sharp, probing and profound.

What’s been the best/ most exciting/ most rewarding part of your involvement with the PuSh Festival?

I enjoy seeing shows that challenge and affect me viscerally. I like to be provoked and not necessarily to be comfortable at a performance. The more intense it affects me, the more it’ll stay with me. This is what PuSh does the best!

What does crossing the line mean to you?

Going past your comfort zone and challenging yourself. You should feel different when you come back to the line.

How does this show relate to other shows that the PuSh Festival has presented before?

David Carr’s rebel heart should fit right in.