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CREATIVES & ARTISTS
Mike comes from a Military family and joined the CAF in 1984 when he had his calling. During his first few years, he was involved in training videos for other soldiers. After his basic engagement as a Radio Operator was completed, he went to college for studies in Computer Science and served in the Comm reserve. After working for a few years, he was invited back to the Military as a CELE officer. Mike concluded his Military career in the early 90’s and moved into IT Consulting, training video/movie creation, and voice-overs, and completed a BSc in Business management, in 2006. Comedy, live music, and photography are major passions of his life along with the SITA program. Mike looks forward to enrolling in the Second City Improv Program in January and pursuing further entertainment roles.
Garth served in the CAF for about a decade (1972-1982) as an Artillery Officer until he was medically released. He has been involved in community theatre for many years. Selected credits include; Tom in Table Manners (Simcoe Little Theatre), Claudius in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead (Sudbury Theatre Guild), Jake in Jake’s Women (Glen Productions), Bill Sykes in Oliver! (Glen Productions). He has also played Sir William Cosgrove in Heart Strings – The Musical at the Annex Live. He has appeared in Fear Thy Neighbour (Investigation Discovery) and other TV series, short films such as Keegan’s Choice and Abhorrent. His feature films include; 41 Pianos and Trigger. He has provided voice over for the Invictus Games Foundation’s 2022 year-end video. Garth is a graduate of the Second City Improv Program and has been involved with Soldiers in the Arts for the past year.
Actor, Singer, Voice Over Artist
Amanda Lloyd is a multifaceted artist who draws inspiration from a diverse range of themes and mediums. As a military spouse, part of her work delves into the unique aspects of military life, offering a modern and intimate perspective on what it means to serve in the armed forces or be part of a military family.
One of her signature series, the "Boots" collection, takes a contemporary approach to military iconography. Instead of the polished and formal depiction of boots, it explores the poignant moments when those boots return home, their laces untied and casually placed by the door. This series beautifully encapsulates the essence of life as a service member or a military family - a balance between duty, sacrifice, and the mundane moments at home.
Amanda believes in the power of art to connect people. Through her work, she aims to bridge the gap between the military and civilian worlds, offering a deeper understanding of the experiences that shape the lives of those who serve and their families.
Derrick Nearing, a retired Canadian military veteran, served in the Primary Reserves as a Field Engineer for 13 years and later in the Canadian Forces Medical Branch as a Medical Technician and Physician Assistant for 22 years. His extensive military career included deployments to conflict zones like Somalia, Rwanda, and Bosnia, where he witnessed the harsh realities of war and its impact on civilian populations.
As a Physician Assistant, he provided medical support to combat troops in Afghanistan, caring for injuries caused by improvised explosive devices. After two decades of experiencing trauma and suffering, Derrick left the military with PTSD, depression, and physical injuries. He has written a book, "Walking Them Home: A Soldier’s Journey in Postwar Rwanda," in which he shares personal insights from his journal during deployments. His first book, "Anchor of My Heart: Memories of a Cape Breton Childhood," was published in 2017.
Kirk Bowett is a survival instructor, actor, author and veterans community advocate.
In 2013 and after working for 2 decades in hostile environments around the world Kirk sustained life changing injuries including the loss of his left arm.
Kirk took this adversity and flipped it around using the performing arts to strengthen his journey of recovery and to inspire others to follow the path to the creative arts as a platform to post trauma recovery.
Kirk has written about his story in the autobiography Misadventure and has produced manuals in the art of survival to support training the UK Military in Combat Survival.
But Kirks real passion is stage and screen, in 2024 Kirk will be involved with Hedda Gabler on Prime and will be tapping the boards as Professor Callahan a regional production of the Broadway musical Legally Blonde.
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