Dr. Marcia Ostashewski, Director

Dr. Marcia Ostashewski is dedicated to investigating the creative and cultural expression of communities across Canada as well as internationally. These diverse populaces include Eastern and Central Europeans, Indigenous groups, at-risk youth, and newcomers to Canada. A Canada Research Chair in Communities and Cultures at Cape Breton University facilitates this commitment. Dr. Ostashewski’s collaborative work connects her with an array of experts and laypeople on several continents and across sectors with whom she conducts critical scholarly inquiry into music and dance and, more broadly, sound and movement. She also devises and co-produces digital media projects that address community issues and…

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Patricia Nalepa, Projects Assistant

As the current Research Projects Coordinator for the Centre of Sound Communities, Patricia is responsible for aiding in the liaising and the consultation of local community organizations and university partners to support development, coordination, and delivery of outreach activities, and to facilitate their promotion and media relations in both English and French. Through technology and media, Patricia seeks to demonstrate how material from that cultural archive can evolve to be more tangible to the communities from which it was collected. Patricia was responsible for the gathering of materials and content for the East and Central European Community Project, interacting with…

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Nadine Prosper

Nadine Prosper completed her Bachelor of Arts degree (spring 2021), majoring in Mi’kmaq studies at CBU, and is now enrolled in the Bachelor of Education Program. She has great passion for expressing her Indigenous and Mi’kmaw culture, both personally and academically. She expanded her skills and knowledge by participating in the CSC ‘Songs, Stories, and Sacred Fire’ project as research assistant, and feels it is important to incorporate a holistic approach as she develops her own teaching methods, playing an active role in the decolonization process for the benefit of future generations. Nadine was featured in “My CBU Story” of…

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Eric Escudero

ERIC ESCUDERO • CSC MITACS BSI Intern, working with the SSHRC-funded “Piloting an Emerging Model for Community Music Education in the Time of COVID-19” project Eric Escudero has collaborated with Dr. Ostashewski on various projects and is currently working as project manager in the release and promotion of Bala, Lassana Diabaté’s CD of balafón music recorded and produced at The Centre for Sound Communities. Originally from São Paulo, Brazil, Eric holds a B.A. in Communication and Multimedia from the Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo and an M.A. in Music and the Environment from the University of the Highlands and…

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Dr. Sheila Christie, past Associate Director

Dr. Sheila Christie is an Associate Professor of English and Drama at CBU. Her research and artistic practice includes dramatic literature, fanfiction, stage management, and applied theatre (particularly theatre for social change). She is dedicated to helping students, community members, and fellow researchers develop the skills and experiences they need to make the world a better place and foster hope in the face of local and global challenges. As of July 1, 2021, Dr. Christie leaves her post (a three-year term) as Associate Director at The Centre for Sound Communities to take on a new role as Chair of the…

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Dr. Shauna MacDonald, incoming Associate Director

Dr. Shauna M. MacDonald is a storyteller, academic creative, and performer. She returned to Cape Breton University as an Associate Professor of Communication in July 2020. While she has spent 15 years at U.S. institutions of higher education, being from Cape Breton has always grounded her life and work, and she is thrilled to return to CBU, where she earned her B.A. in 2005. As of July 1, 2021, Dr. MacDonald steps into the role of CSC Associate Director, following Dr. Sheila Christie’s three-year term. Dr. MacDonald’s research projects and practices include studying performance and place, memory, and culture; experimenting…

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Dianne Friesen

Dianne Friesen is a Mitacs BSI intern working with Dr. Ostashewski in collaboration with Membertou First Nation chief and council to develop the Mi’kmaw part of the Atlantic Military Park in Sydney Mines. She lives in Sydney, Nova Scotia, and is a Ph.D. student at University of Victoria. Dianne studies Mi’kmaw syntax in close collaboration with Mi’kmaq colleagues from Eskasoni.

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Darene Roma Yavorsky

DARENE ROMA YAVORSKY • Communications, Editing & Creative Design Art, literature and music were the lens through which Darene began to see the world from an early age, and the focus intensified into a passion and synchronous occupation as her career has unfolded. Production management for an advertising agency and a software-writing firm; newspaper and magazine editing; freelance work for government, industry, educational institutions and charitable organizations ~ leading to her formation of The Word & Image Studio where creative pursuits have made her an affiliate of Access Copyright, The Canadian Copyright Licensing Agency under three categories: writer, publisher and…

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