ManiFest Jeunesse, a youth performing arts production and visual arts exhibition, is back for its second edition. Premiering via Facebook on June 8 at 7 pm, ManiFest Jeunesse 2.0 will remain true to the mission of its first edition in 2014, celebrating the cultural diversity of the Acadian and Francophone communities in PEI while helping to develop and showcase the artistic talents of each new generation of young Island Francophones.
ManiFest Jeunesse was developed by the Fédération culturelle de l’Île-du-Prince-Édouard in partnership with Jeunesse Acadienne et Francophone de l’Î.-P.-É. The production retained its original format by pairing young Island Francophones with professional local artistic mentors who assist them in cultivating their artistic practice—whether it be dance, music, songwriting, poetry, theatre or visual arts.
Mentors for 2021 are songwriters Lennie Gallant, Patricia Richard and Mario LeBlanc, actor Josée Boudreau, comedian Ryan Doucette, visual artist Norah Pendergast, and contemporary dancer Marissa Laderoute.
The production team, composed of Emmanuel LeBlanc, Pastelle LeBlanc and Pascal Miousse (all members of the ECMA award-winning Acadian band Vishtèn), chose to replace the original live-performance format due to pandemic restrictions, and went with a professionally shot hour-long video filmed at Watermark Theatre in North Rustico. By choosing to film, the team introduced the young artists to performance within a television and recording context, providing them with useful experience in navigating the realities of artistic performance in the age of the pandemic and an increasingly internet-centered world.
“I think the fact that these young musicians and artists get to experience working with real videographers and recording engineers is so valuable right now,” says Rowen Gallant, who performed alongside songwriter Jenna Marie Gallant during the filming of ManiFest Jeunesse 2.0. “Learning how to work in different contexts is really powerful, and I think it helps young Island musicians, especially Francophone musicians, think about the possibilities of sharing their art not just locally, but with a much wider digital audience.”
The ManiFest Jeunesse 2.0 video will go live on June 8 at 7 pm via the ManiFest Jeunesse Facebook and Instagram pages. It will be available for viewing for one month.