Okanagan Symphony Orchestra music director Rosemary Thomson in action at the podium. Photo by Lynda Miller.

Kelowna filmmaker gets funding to create new ‘Local Heroes’ documentary

The documentary will be focused on the director of the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra and Opera

After months of uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Okanagan Symphony Society is back in action with a modified season.

While symphony lovers across the Okanagan can once again rejoice to the sound of music, the artistic director of both the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra and Opera Kelowna spent most of the last year battling a series of issues.

READ MORE: Okanagan Symphony launches new season amid COVID-19

Rosemary Thomson took on the roles at the symphony and the opera at the start of 2020, only to have the music scene shut down two months later. It was also at this time she was diagnosed with ADHD.

The struggles and perseverance of Thomson will be highlighted in a new film titled, “The Treble with Rosemary”, thanks to funding from Telus Storyhive’s Local Heroes Documentary Edition.

Kelowna filmmaker Gillianne Richards was selected to receive $20,000 to produce the full-length documentary on Thomson.

“Through her incredible creativity and strength, she has become a hero and advocate for those who feel lonely, struggling with their mental health, and the future of the arts community in Kelowna,” claimed Richards.

Richards’s project was one of 40 selected from 171 applications to receive not only $20,000 in funding but also mentorship, customized career training and distribution.

The Local Heroes Documentary Edition is expected to be viewed by 1 million people across Western Canada and will highlight inspiring stories of local resilience and personal growth after a year of unprecedented local, national and global challenges.

Telus Storyhive has been assisting filmmakers to bring their projects to life since 2014.

READ MORE: Quigley Elementary students win $6,000 in books

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