CO-OP Radio Interview on “When Spirit Whispers”

On December 8, 2014 Louis did a long interview on the CO-OP Radio talk show “When Spirit Whispers“. He was there as a guest with his BFF Eugene Lipinski, artist Gary Olver and host Gunargie O’Sullivan.

The programming directors at CO-OP Radio have kindly given us permission to transcribe the interview portion of the program and post it here, so that our hearing-impaired visitors may enjoy it as well. Many thanks to Leela from CO-OP Radio!

What is CO-OP Radio?

From their website: Vancouver Co-Operative Radio, CFRO, 100.5FM is a non-commercial, co-operatively-owned, listener-supported, community radio station. Located in East Vancouver and with long-time roots in the Downtown Eastside, Co-Op Radio is a voice for the voiceless that strives to provide a space for under-represented and marginalized communities. Co-Op Radio aims to increase community participation by encouraging examination of the social and political concerns of the geographic and cultural communities of BC.

Please check out their website and learn more about this worthy cause! If you’re in the Vancouver area, please tune in and listen! And if you are elsewhere, visit their website often and listen to recorded programs. And you can also listen online, on your mobile device and many other ways – check out the Listening Page.

Here are the direct links for the full content of the radio program. The music is fantastic, and it’s well worth listening to the entire show.

GO – You’re listening to Co-op radio 100.5 FM. Merry Christmas. We got a full house with Louis Ferreira?

LF – Ferreira works. Merry Christmas everybody. Happy Holidays. And my friend Eugene Lipinski is here.

EL – Hello!

(Sing along to Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer)

LF – Oh, we just love Phyllis Sinclair so much, we want to sing a song… a little karaoke in the booth.

LF – Happy Holidays! Merry Christmas everybody!

EL – Merry Christmas everybody!

GO – Merry Christmas everybody! And we got Gary Olver.

LF – Thank you Phyllis Sinclair for singing those wonderful songs for years, yeah, she’s awesome.

GO – Phyllis Sinclair, yes, we’ve been listening to her music. It’s her Christmas album, her very first Christmas album that she’s been trying to get out for quite some time. We started you off with the song Traditional, and then Snow Flakes, and then of course, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer with Louis Ferreira.

LF – Ferreira.

GO – Ferreira.

LF – “Ferrara” sounds like “Ferrari”.

GO – “Gunargie, gunozzi gnozzi.” And then Louis, I mean, I’m sorry, I keep getting people mixed up here, with Eugene Lipinski, and then we also have Gary Olver in the house with us.

EL – Po-tayto po-tahto.

GO – Po-tayto, po-tahto, to-mayto, to-mahto.

LF – Gunnergy O’Sullivan.

GO – Gunargie!

LF – O’Sullivan.

GO – Yeah, quite the mixed up name there.

LF – I like it.

GO – Some people say it sounds like East Indian, Irish slash who knows what.

LF – All of it, I love all of it.

GO – Well, speaking of names, where does Lipinski come from?

EL – From Poland.

LF – It’s better if he doesn’t tell you.

EL – Oooh, both of my parents were Polish. I’m an immigrant, actually born in the UK. So I’m not even a first generation Canadian. I’m an immigrant.

LF – Ditto for me.

GO – Is that right? Where’s your name come from?

LF – I’m, well, it’s Portuguese. I was born in the Azores and got to Toronto when I was six and a half years old.

GO – Really?

LF – Yeah.

GO – And Gary Olver, where does your last name come from?

Gary O – It’s actually a British last name. I’m from, actually, Britain.

LF – Olver?

Gary O – And when the family emigrated from Britain over to Canada, we uh, they took the “i” out of it. So it’s, my last name’s actually pronounced “Olver”. Not Oliver, it’s Olver.

EL – Oh!!!

LF – That’s cool. Why’d they take the “i” out of it? Do you know that story?

Gary O – It shows a generation from European to Canadian. There’s a lot of immigrants that had that happen when they were from England, they would take an extra letter, a vowel, out.

EL – Yeah. Immigrants used to change their names. I met Jamie Oliver in the Spring, I was over in London…

LF – That’s Oliver with an “i”?

EL – Yeah, Oliver with an “i” and he’s a cook. Yes, and he’s got his restaurant and my friend, Quint, is his buddy, so we went to his place in Kingston and we had a meal and it was good.

LF – He did one of the best TED Talks ever. Yeah.

EL – Oh really?

LF – Yeah, good times. Good times. Now I’m remembering the two girls, that skit from SNL when they do, when they’re the radio host, you know? And they do that… yeah, that’s, yeah good times. And they’re very, sort of, deadpan. Maybe it’s just me.

GO – Kind of like me.

LF – Had to be there.

EL – Getting a little static-y.

GO – Okay, my name is Gunargie, but it’s said: Gunnargy, Gunnazzi, some people have called me “gun-orgy” which is not acceptable. All kinds of things.

LF – That’s inappropriate. Kind of like Schweddy Balls.

GO – Okay, I asked for that.

LF – Schweddy Ball.

EL – I worked with Kim Basinger. She was, that was with…

LF – Alec Baldwin. Yeah. That was another SNL skit. But it was with those two ladies were the host.

GO – Well, Eugene?

EL – Yes, love?

GO – Gary has some questions for you.

Gary O – Yeah, hey Eugene, so, you’re originally from England and so you’re in Vancouver right now and what are you working at right now?

EL – Well, I just finished doing this web series called Paranormal Solutions. And then at 3:30 I’m going to go meet the director of this next project I’m going to do called The Unseen which is sort of sci-fi show.

LF – The Unseen.

EL – So, yeah I do, I do some film. I did the film with Al Pacino and Colin Farrell called The Recruit. And I’ve been doing, I’ve been doing TV here in Vancouver, Intelligence and Da Vinci’s City Hall and I was in all five seasons of Fringe. So, yeah, I’ve been pretty busy, so.

Gary O – So in the movie The Recruit with Al Pacino, that was…

LF – Al Pacino!

Gary O – That was filmed in the United States, correct?

EL – Some of it, we filmed it in Langley, Virginia and also in Toronto.

Gary O – Oh, cool. So you actually played, what, a villain, right?

EL – Yeah, I played a guy who worked for the CIA but my task in the movie was to break Colin Farrell. Because Al Pacino sets him up as a spy, but I won’t give you a spoiler alert, but, so it’s like, yeah, things are not what they seem to be in The Recruit.

LF – Booyah!

Gary O – So, Louis, so, you’re from Toronto, right?

LF – I grew up in Toronto.

Gary O – Yeah. So, the other night we were at an acting class from, what was it, Bannock Productions?

GO – The Greasy Bannock Productions Theater with Sam Bob, Curtis Ahenakew, people like Duane Howard, Mark Redsky was there and little Aisha O’Sullivan was auditioning for Mark Redsky. It was awesome to see you guys supporting our First Nation’s people at a community level. And it seemed like you were mentoring the actors there, giving them a helping hand.

LF – Yeah.

EL – Yeah, it was like, because I know Mark, because Mark Redsky, he’s also a carver and I buy lots of his carvings because they’re beautiful and his wife, Julie, paints exotic flowers. So I buy them, too, for presents.

And so then Mark said, “Oh, we’re…”, well, I know Curtis as well, so we were having this acting thing on Thursday come along, and I asked Louis if he’d be kind enough to come along and it was really good because Louis is such an established, recognizable face, right? And so when he walked in, everyone said, “Wow!” you know. And I think it makes people feel like they’re doing the right thing. It makes them feel substantial when someone like that walks in and is prepared to help.

GO – Yeah, and then you guys all went Indian on us and sat at the Pow Wow drum.

LF – Yeah, well, fun! That was a privilege!

EL – We know the beat, I’m from Saskatchewan, so you know.

GO – Yeah?

LF – Yeah, and but for me, it was one of those things where, I’ve always looked for opportunities to volunteer and to give back and to, you know your life becomes about, at some point, doing that. And I was privileged and humbled to be there. I was actually so impressed with the actual material that they created for themselves and, you know, we need to support one another in all areas. And it’s wonderful that there’s all these smaller community theaters doing just that. And it was, I don’t know, I ended up having such a great time with all of it.

EL – Yeah. Well, the great thing about being an artist is like you’re a member of a fraternity, right? No matter if you’re Polish or Portuguese or Native or Asian or whatever, right? All artists seem to really support each other. Because that’s the overriding philosophy that we all have that we create things.

LF – Yeah, and for me it was like, you know, having been raised in Toronto, pretty much as a street kid for most of my life, it was the community programs and the after school programs and youth leaders that made a difference in my life. So I looked for mentorship throughout my life. Not having parents, really, so giving back in that capacity just seems like a very natural progression for me.

Gary O – So Louis, is… you’re in town and you film a production here, do you?

LF – Yeah.

Gary O – And what production…

LF – It’s a show called Motive. We’re in our third season.

Gary O – Oh, cool. I’ll have to check that out sometime. Um…

GO – That should be fun since you don’t have a TV.

LF – I think you can get it online, I don’t know.

GO – Yeah, you can.

EL – Yeah, you can get it online. It’s a good show, too.

Gary O – Is it?

LF – It’s a why-done-it. You meet the killer and the victim and you try to figure out the motive. It works in reverse.

Gary O – So what season is that TV show?

LF – Season three. We’re doing… this is our third season right now.

Gary O – Season three, wow.

LF – With a great, great group of people that I work with for a very long time. Before this show a lot of the crew for me were, there were a lot of people on the show I did called Stargate Universe.

Gary O – Okay.

LF – So it’s just like, I just feel so blessed to have that family to go to work with because the comfortability factor alone, which is a big thing, always in our lives when you just get to that place where you just feel like this is like another home for me, so I feel very, very beyond blessed and grateful to have been part, and be a part of, this show. So yeah.

GO – Yeah, and now tell us more how you began your acting career. Let’s start with Eugene Lipinski.

EL – Okay.

LF – Great story! True story!

EL – I told it the other night at the acting circle.

So I was in grade eight and Ken Kramer of the Globe Theater came to our school to do a play. They asked for volunteers to be rocks and trees. So I volunteered to be a tree.

And then I started swaying in the wind, you know, and everyone was laughing at me and I thought it was just fantastic. So then I went to the guidance counselor, the priest, and I said, you know, well no, first I asked the actor, “Do you get paid for doing this?” he goes, “Yeah” and then I went to the guidance counselor and they directed me to the Regina Little Theatre. And then I met a couple people who were at the University of Regina drama program. And they always needed men because there were lots of girls in the program, but not enough guys.

So I went and just kept going like that and then I went to school in England at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts and studied there. And then I did stage work in London and films and lived in London for twenty-five years. And then I wrote a film called Perfectly Normal. Came here to Toronto and I’ve stayed in Canada since. That was like 1994.

GO – Okay, and Louis?

LF – Bravo Eugene!

GO – Some people call you “Louie”.

LF – Luigi, Louie, any version works.

GO – All right. And how did you get your start in theater and film?

LF – Well, one of the things about me, I think, just growing up the way I grew up, I was always known for being very silly. (fart noises) Excuse me. And uh…

GO – Did you just fart, on the air?

LF – No, no, no.

GO – No? Okay.

LF – (More fart noises) Oh, sorry about that. The thing about growing up when you’re silly, you just find outlets that allow you to fully express yourself. (More fart noises) Sorry about, again… at all times, and so I’ve never really taken myself, (more fart noises) that seriously in life. And I feel that that’s…

(GO laughing)

LF – I really apologize, that’s embarrassing. But then all that happened was at high school level I ended up having to help my mom out. Because we were on welfare. And so I started working at a factory where my brothers and sisters still work and I was in grade twelve and I was working in that factory full-time and it was the last semester of school and there was some… There was a friend in high school who thought for some reason that I should be in the business. And there was literally an open call in the Toronto Sun where they were casting for a film. And I lined up with like five hundred guys to say one line. And it was Sarah Polley’s mom who was a casting director. And I went in there, did the line, and she reacted to me and got me an agent on the spot.

And I sort of accidentally fumbled into it. And so that’s kind of how I actually began. But I never took it seriously.  I was always thought, oh, it’s a matter of time before I go back to the factory job, sort of thing.

And then as years passed and I was like, oh, I’m still working, oh I like this, oh, it’s actually some sort of craft in this and it means something and it is a service, and it is giving back. And I learned to, you know, I fell in love with acting, sort of by, just, circumstance.

And so that’s sort of, that’s my story roughly. But the silliness thing always helps.

(Movie clip playing in background.)

Gary O – Yeah, that was just a clip, actually, from a Star Wars clip that Eugene got to perform in years ago.

GO – At the beginning of his career.

Gary O – We were just talking… at the beginning of his career. And, basically, he was pointing out that he knew some of the actors that were in that one scene.
EL – Let’s talk a little bit about that.

Gary O – Yeah.

EL – So that was, that was Star Wars. I was in the one that Irvin Kershner directed called The Empire Strikes Back, I think. And so how that happened was I didn’t even have an agent then and I had met a casting director called Mary Selway, she cast all the James Bond movies until she passed away and now Debbie McWilliams casts all the James Bond movies.

So, I was hired with a group of about six to seven other guys. We were the rebel pilots.

And it was really funny watching that clip because they only had one x-wing fighter and it was set up in front of a blue screen. So they didn’t even have green screen back then in the seventies, right. And so they had one x-wing thing and you’d get in and then they had all the stage hands underneath the stage and they would be shaking the stage so it looked like the x-wing fighter was going through space.

And then they’d say, “We’ve been hit!” so my line was, “We’ve been hit, Luke, we’ve been hit!” So, but I don’t think I made the cut.

And, but that’s okay. I had some nice memories, got some nice photos of the team. And Mark Hamill and Irvin Kershner. And John Morton and Denis Lawson. And also Lee Marvin’s nephew, Richard Marvin. He was one of the x-wing fighters as well.

So, yeah, no, it was really, it wasn’t like it is now. It hadn’t become iconic or anything. It was just, you know, a sci-fi little space sci-fi movie then.

Gary O – Yeah. Exactly.

EL – But I  met Harrison Ford, then, of course. And then I worked with Harrison Ford then and then on Hanover Street. And then on K-19. And so, yeah, it was good, yeah.

Gary O – So, what was that like working with Harrison Ford? Did you get a chance to work with him?

EL – Yeah, well, in those days he wasn’t the Harrison Ford that he became, you know? But, all through time, he’d always been very nice.  You know, he was nice in Raiders of the Lost Ark, he was nice at Star Wars, nice at Hanover Street, nice at K-19. You know, he’s like a dude.

GO – Yeah.

EL – You know. He’s very tall, like six foot six. And very polite.

LF – Is he that tall?

GO – Yeah.

EL – Yeah. Way taller than me.

GO – How tall are you?

EL – Six foot one.

LF – Ooh! You’re taller than me! I’m short! I’m tall for Portuguese stature though. Five foot nine.

GO – Five foot nine?

LF – So yeah, it’s tough in my land.

GO – I’m a big five three and a half.

LF – Nice. And you? You’re tall.

Gary O – I’m six four.

LF – Yeah, you’re six four, you’re tall. We need you, you’re a power forward. You’re power forward height.

GO – How about, oh, carry on.

Gary O – Yeah, I just, yeah, I wanted to go back to Louis there. Louis?

LF – Yes?

Gary O – When you, when you first started out, you were found, right? You were working in a…

LF – Yeah. I was working in an upholstery factory.

Gary O – Upholstery factory, in where, Leamington?

LF – No, Toronto. Just North Toronto. It was Dufferin and Steeles. Like I say, my brother and sister, who married a brother and sister, still work there, all four of them. They’ve been there for over thirty-eight years.

Gary O – Wow.

LF – Yeah.

Gary O – That’s pretty cool.

LF – Yeah, yeah, yeah but I was mad because I was like a fifteen year old kid. And the boss was like, “I’ll give you $4.50 an hour, kid. You got a future here. Don’t leave!” (laughs) I mean like, you know? And my mom was like, “Yeah, yeah, it’s good.”

And I was like, ah, something felt funny. So I was, I was off the… it was just the way it was. My culture, you know, you did that, you kept things going. You did what the people before you in your family did. And I just sort of took a risk, a chance, and went outside it. And you know, I actually came to discover that really the journey of our lives is actually what helps us be creators and artists and I was able to sort of use that and find a lot of therapy, because of the way I’d grown up, in the ability to find characters that allowed themselves to, you know, I could really sort of just integrate all that stuff that I’d gone through and use it in my work.

EL – And that man helped you along, didn’t he?

LF – Yeah, I had a great mentor who was my grade 12 theater teacher also, Mr. Allen who was instrumental in my life. And I was living in the Ontario housing projects and he took me out of there, built me a little basement apartment in his little humble home, and so I had this sort of father figure for three years in my life that made a big impact and difference in my life during that initial three year period where I started. We’re still very much, we’re still good friends.

Gary O – So, basically when you were growing up you spent a lot of time in, like, acting, like stage? Did you do theater?

LF – Well I took, I was one of those kids who took theater and gym. I did really good in grades 9 and 10 when I was at a Catholic school. And then I went to public school and it just all fell apart. I was like, I took gym and music and gym class, I mean, I wasn’t about school, really, it wasn’t my deal, per se.

But, I think secretly I liked the theater. But I loved sports even more than. And the…just, I don’t know, just sort of happened that way.

Gary O – It’s funny how, it’s just kind of life, you fall into life.

LF – That’s right. I think that’s, when people say, what, did you ever train, I’m like life’s your best teacher ever. And it truly is, right?

Gary O – It is, it truly is.

Gary O – So, Eugene, I have this question that I had somebody that I talked to this morning and I told him a bit what I was doing today and he asked me to ask you. And his name was Matthew Atkins. He wrote a book from the United States. Anyway, he’s an old friend of mine. And Gunargie did some work with him before and he wanted, he was a large Star Wars fan. And what he wanted to do, he wanted to ask you, what, you know what the Jedi is, right? In Star Wars, right?

EL – Yeah.

Gary O – You know that’s considered a religion? In some parts of the country, now. You can actually write that down as a religion.

EL – I know, my friend Bob McCallum, he’s a recovering person, you know?

Gary O – Yeah.

EL – And, like you know, they in recovery they, like you have to have a higher power to try to take you away from the drugs and the alcohol. Well, his higher power is The Force.

Gary O – Yeah, right? Right on!

EL – Yeah! Thirty years sober, so it’s working for him.

LF – Whatever works.

Gary O – Well, why not, hey?

EL – He says, “Eugene, it’s The Force, man. The Force.”

Gary O – That’s awesome, man. That’s just awesome the way you came back on that one. That was, that came out of left field for me.

EL – I was brought up in Saskatchewan. There’s, we had lots of opportunities there to do drama and stuff. There’s a really, even though it’s Saskatchewan and it’s in the middle of nowhere, it’s very popular, all, like drama, writing.

At one point, seven out of the last twelve Governor General Award winners for literature were from Saskatchewan. Nothing to do there except freeze in the winter and get bitten by mosquitoes in the summer.

Gary O – Yeah, that’s true. So what’s the funnest production you’ve ever done? Which one impressed you the most?

EL – Well the funnest show I ever did was a film called Shock Treatment which was the sequel to The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Have you ever heard of that? The Rocky Horror Picture Show and it was, we all were singing and dancing and were playing guitars and playing idiots and yeah. It was lots of fun and we got paid, so, you know, it was very good.

Gary O – Awesome. Louis, same question. What was the funnest production you ever were involved in?

LF – I don’t know. I’d like to think that I try to make them all fun. You always get different aspects in each one. I mean there’s the actual product that’s being made, but don’t forget a lot of times being on set is, there’s a lot of hurry up and wait. So you spend more time not rolling than you do rolling. And so, to me, a fun production is one where there’s a family unit working together with none of the typical things that sometimes will make productions not fun.

Extreme egos for example. Or someone who’s kind of one person ruining it for all because really, the crew is there, seventy hour weeks. So to me, my fun comes with being with them and enjoying them and being silly and making them…and so it’s like, I really try to make myself have a good time, at this point of my life, if I’m, you know, I chose to be an actor. It was never brain surgery to begin with so for me to go and take it that seriously just goes against everything, you know, it’s not really why I became an actor. So I try to make each experience fun.

And there’s always obstacles and struggles obviously, but the choice is a daily one that I get to make. So, right now, for example, this is the most fun I’m having.

EL – Louis was in Breaking Bad.

GO – Was he?

LF – Yeah. Probably a weird thing to say. I really had fun on that one! That one was hilarious! That was one of my favorite. I’m currently wearing a shirt with Heisenberg on it.

EL – Oh yeah, that’s right.

LF – This was a Christmas gift.

Gary O – We’ll post that later. We’ll post some of this footage from this radio station on Facebook. On Spirit Whispers.

EL – Spirit Whispers. I love that name.

LF – It’s really cool.

GO – Actually, yeah, it’s a great name. We were talking about names earlier. This show has a life of its own. People call it When Spirit Whispers. When Spirits Whisper. They call it When Spirits Whisper. And it’s just forever changing.

How about Frosty the Snowman, do you guys know that song?
LF – I love you wanting to sing the Christmas carols!

GO – Let’s do it!

(Sing along with Frosty the Snowman)

GO – So, what brought you to Greasy Bannock Productions on the Hot Dog Church, of all places? Downtown Eastside.

EL – Louis?

GO – Louis?

LF – Well, Eugene brought me. You invited me. That’s how I got there. We talked about it.

EL – But then you went yesterday and gave out hot dogs.

LF – I did. I sponsored a couple of, I think three, days of it. And met the pastor there and me and…

GO – Barnetson.

LF – Yeah. Me and my wonderful son and my lovely girlfriend, we went and we served about 230 people down there, yesterday. And it was awesome. They had 2 hotdogs each. Lots of condiments. There’s music playing. And wonderful people. And the, it was really,  honestly it was really, it’s one of those things where you just, you know, it’s about giving back.

And, when you’re there you just, I feel privileged and humbled to be there. And that’s what it was for all of us. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

GO – What’s interesting about Randy Barnetson is like he is a pastor from the downtown Eastside, the Hot Dog Church has been there for eons.

LF – I love that you call it the Hot Dog Church. That’s awesome.

GO – We call it the Hot Dog Church. It was closed down a while ago but has recently re-opened. And Cheryl Bear Barnetson is also a singer, she’s an actress, she’s a really fabulous person. She is his wife and here is some of his music. We’ll be right back.

EL – Wow!

LF – This is awesome!

(music plays)

GO – All right. That was Cheryl Bear Barnetson, one of the founders of the Hot Dog Church, along with her husband Randy Barnetson.

LF – For those of you listening you should YouTube it because she is gorgeous, incredible, and it’s a beautiful piece. That was awesome wasn’t it? So awesome!

GO – That was called The Lord’s Prayer.

LF – Cheryl Bear! I love you, well, that’s what it was, yeah.

GO – Well it was the nicest version of…

LF – I’m a good Catholic boy, I know The Lord’s Prayer.

GO – Are you?

LF – I sure do.

GO – Right on.

LF – Every day I was in school… you say The Lord’s Prayer?

EL – I do.

LF – And then people ask for forgiveness.

GO – Yes, well, we met you over at the Hot Dog Church while you were supporting a group of actors from Greasy Bannock Productions where we found people like Mark Redsky, Curtis Ahenakew, Sam Bob, work-shopping a play that’s going to be happening very soon.

EL – Yeah, it was, they performed about the first fifteen minutes. Your daughter, as well, was in it.

GO – Aisha.

EL – And she sang.

GO – She gets to sing with Cheryl Bear actually.

EL – Oh really?

LF – Oh, that’s going to be fun.

GO – A song by Susan Aglukark called Hina Na Ho.

EL – I love Susan Aglukark. How do you say her name?

GO – I say Susan Aglukark. But it’s one of those to-mayto to-mahto things.

EL – Yeah, yeah.

GO – We’re sitting here with Eugene Lipinski and our friend Lou or Louis…

LF – Ferreira.

GO – Ferreira. And I’m Gunargie O’Sullivan plus Gary Olver. And we’re having a really great time. We sang you songs like Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

EL – Frosty the Snowman.

GO – Frosty the Snowman. And then we’re going to talk, go on to like serious…

LF – After Cheryl Bear we should probably stop singing.

EL – Yeah.

GO – Yeah. I don’t know, I think you could do it, you could hit it one more time if you tried.

LF – I’m going to pass.

GO – Okay, yeah. Even I’ll pass.

EL – I thought the acting was really good.

LF – So good.

EL – And after they put on the little fifteen minutes of the play then they started doing like cold readings you know because I thought it was right what Curtis said it’s something that it’s really good to know for the business of acting, you know? And the cold readings were great as well. They read for Mark Redsky, scenes from his, he’s trying to get a web series off the ground as well.

GO – Yeah. Awesome, because he started out mostly as an actor. And he’s worked his way up to writing his own screenplays and producing. He’s very dedicated, self-motivated and has a lot of discipline. I’d like to see where he goes with all of this.

And I thought the cold reads were brilliant because it’s a good exercise. Any clues for those people who are listening who are hoping to become actors? What should they be… how should they prepare themselves for a cold read? I mean, how do you prepare yourself for a cold read? You don’t get the script ahead of time, you just get it a few minutes ahead of time, and…

LF – I think before that even happens, you know, just get involved, if that’s something you’re interested in doing. Go find where you can get classes. Get involved with community groups, do whatever you can as far as just immersing yourself in the ability to actually act, perform. It’s in doing it that you learn. Always. And so, it’s just a matter of, you know, putting yourself out there a little bit. And if that’s a calling, a desire, you should do whatever you can to get involved with a group, like the one we’re talking about. Or wherever you can in your community because that’s really the first step, isn’t it? Just sort of get out there and do it.

EL – And also one exercise you can do if it’s something you’re interested in is read a lot and read out loud. Because some, like I’m not a great reader but I practice and I practice and I practice. And now I feel confident in cold reads, but for years and years, if they’d say it was a cold read I would just like sweat, because I couldn’t read very well.

GO – Cold sweat.

LF – Yeah, and I sometimes, I go in the rooms and I get nervous (fart noise in background) when it happens it makes me feel really uncomfortable. (more fart noises) Because I’m nervous.
EL – Louis, someone’s talking behind your back.

LF – (laughs) Sorry I’m such a ridiculous…

GO – You work on Motive, right?

LF – Yeah. It’s a very serious show.

GO – Serious stuff.

LF – We don’t mess around.

GO – No, you don’t mess around. So, I notice you have the Metro there. We talked a little bit about some disturbing things that happen like rape and murder and people going missing. Is that how you sort of keep in tune with some of the work you’re doing on Motive? Where do you get your motivation?

LF – Ah, well, that’s cute. I… what’s your motivation, Eugene Lipinski? Well, no, I mean, there was just something about,  in the Vancouver Metro today that talked about, there was, yesterday at False Creek there was a Rally. Aboriginal women who have disappeared or been murdered. They started this campaign called Am I Next?

And it started as a social media campaign involving women taking pictures of themselves with a sign asking if they could be the next missing or murdered Aboriginal woman which I thought was just powerful and happened to be on the front cover today.

It’s not so much that I’m personally that involved in it all. But I think as human beings there are causes that you just can’t turn your back on if you’re, in my opinion, we’re all connected. We’re all human beings, so, I think as they present themselves there, there’s opportunities for you to certainly contribute or get involved as much as you can or not at all but there’s just awareness and consciousness. I think this is the new reality that’s out there and I think that that’s something that I want to choose, I’m choosing to be a part of and want to be a part of.

Yeah, it’s kind of, it’s weird because I was a single dad, my son’s grown up now, twenty-one, and there’s a part of me that’s like going, oh, next chapter of my life, what’s it about? And I’m, just, part of me is trying to figure that out. And I know a lot of that for me personally is about giving back and being of service. There’s something about that and it can, you know, translate to many, many different areas.

GO – Well, do you think that Motive has touched on the reality of the murdered and missing women?

LF – No, it’s not something we’ve… yeah, no, I don’t think it’s, it’s not, we have not dealt with a story-line like that at all. But it’s a great idea.

GO – I think it’s odd that nobody has picked up on the Robert Pickton Piggy’s Palace and stuff. I mean, when is that going to happen and maybe I think in some ways it has seeped through some of the story-lines, right? Without being really…

LF – Right, right, yeah, right.

EL – That was one of those things, I was listening to the radio this morning and there was like…

LF – Oh, CBC?

EL – Yeah, getting caught, hashtag, being white, or something like the white people would say, oh I stole and dahdahdah and then the police caught us and we cried and said we were sorry and they let us go. But if it would have been a native person or a black person like in the U.S. what’s going on right now they probably would get the crap beat out of them, right?

So, yeah, it would be good to get story-lines like that on the TV you know. Like I know for example say in Saskatchewan, you know, at the University of Regina, the native college and everything like that, but they go and graduate and it’s still hard, really hard, to get a job, you know, unless you go back to the reserve, right? It’s like impossible to get a job if you’re a native person, virtually in Saskatchewan, so yeah, things gotta change.

LF – Yeah, and that translates in many, how many times you get in a cab and someone’s from somewhere else and they were doctors in their country, or, you know, and that happens all the time so it’s across, that’s what I’m saying too, it expands across many different groups as well.

GO – Yeah, and the high rate of child apprehension has affected aboriginal people for years. Incarceration, 80% of our people are either in jail or in foster homes and group homes and this and that. But also the immigration, the people who are affected by immigration are also being incarcerated and their children are being apprehended simply because they have different cultural like identities and ways of living.

EL – It’s a really strange thing like I know even when we came to Canada you know it was weird because we were Polish, right. Even though everyone else was from Poland or Russia or wherever like that you know and the joke was, oh, you’ve been in this country two weeks and already some DP is trying to steal my job. You know, it was like, it’s very, very odd, the human animal, the human condition, how everyone wants to be on top of everyone.

GO – Hierarchy.

EL – It’s like, yeah, it’s very odd.

GO – Were you in Ricochet? A movie made a long time ago called Ricochet?

EL – No.

LF – Me neither.

GO – No? Nor was I.

EL – I’d like to have been in, it sounds like a good name.

GO – Okay, so, where do we go from here? It’s 2014, you’ve done a lot of work between the two of you, voice-overs, movies…

LF – Let’s talk about you for a little bit. We were talking about, tell me, you apparently have started your resolutions, right? You’ve already got a jump on them? You want to tell me what those…

GO – Yeah. I did.

GO – Thanks to Gary Olver. Just to give him some credit here. I was able to… do you want to get really down and personal?

LF – Bring it.

GO – Okay, I lost weight, for one thing, in a good way. But part of the reason I did lose weight was because I quit drinking alcohol.

LF – Congrats! That’s awesome!

GO – I still drink pop, right!

LF – The soda!

GO – Yeah, and it’s been like 5 months for me and it’s made a really huge difference in my life. In a positive way. And it made me realize that maybe drinking wasn’t really good for me. You know, looking back, in retrospect, a lot of bad things have happened as a result of alcohol, not just to me, because of alcohol, it’s been a crazy journey.

And so here I am. I jumped the gun. Get it, Gunargie jumped the gun.

LF – Did it again.

GO – Gunargie jumps the gun.

LF – She’s punning.

GO – Yes, and I quit drinking like about, I’ve been clean and sober for 5 months.

LF – Congrats.

GO – And so, it’s been really great. I’ve enjoyed it, my family is happier, I’m happier, and yeah.

LF – That’s awesome, congrats.

GO – Yeah.

EL – Gary’s a carver, a famous carver, he’s got pieces in a museum, the museum of? Where is? In Winnipeg or in Ottawa?

Gary O – In MoAD.

GO – MoAD?

Gary O – In New York City. Modern Museum of Art Design (MAD). Ah, the little art piece I did a number of years ago that’s actually in their permanent collection. It’s only like 2 ½ inches high by, I think it’s 2 ½ wide by, it’s only half an inch thick.

LF – Wow! Can you bring it up? On the computer? Can we see it? I’d like to see it.

GO – I can get it up.

LF – You can?


LF – She’s being hilarious, Gunargie! That’s what she said.

GO – I said it.

LF – She said it!

GO – I meant it.

Gary O – A number of my pieces end up in magazines and you know private collections. You know, they end up in museums, eventually. But that’s what I do, where I work spiritually, in my culture. That’s what, you know, brings me closer to the one I call God, right. So that’s kind of my gift. And then with, it kind of, you know, allows me to live, allows me to have my freedoms.

LF – Beautiful.

Gary O – Allows me to have a beautiful family. And be more spiritual.

LF – I love that.

Gary O – This is my work here. This is what kind of…

LF – I think, I think, it’s funny, not to get too serious with stuff, but I think at the core of it all, for me as I get older, realizing our human-ness, that spiritually is really the only thing that matters. As far as like our journey. It’s that connection to your higher power, whatever that is. And whatever works for somebody. But at the end of the day, that’s who I’m going out with. So I better connect with that, whatever it is for me, because it’s… these are beautiful, by the way, we’re looking at his artwork, so I’m slightly distracted.

GO – Yeah, these are catlinite pieces.

LF – Stunning.

GO – One is called the…

Gary O – This is a replica of the one that actually sits in that museum in New York City.

LF – You guys gotta check this out.

Gary O – I changed it a little bit because they end up owning the rights to it, right? So what I did is I did it opposite. So it, because you have to change it 20% right, because they own the original design now. So, when I did, you know, basically almost a copy of it, I did it the opposite.

EL – The left hand is way up.

Gary O – Yeah, so.

LF – Beautiful, man!

EL – They have the right handed way and you’ve got the left handed way.

Gary O – Left handed way, yeah. So, it’s the same story. This is a powerful story, this is about a halibut hook, one of our great fishermen and basically how he shared it with all the other Crees. Shared the salmon, see they’re all feasting on the salmon in the center of the halibut hook. And what it represents is sharing and unity.

LF – Community.

EL – Wow. That’s amazing. So you’re a Cree but is that considered West Coast origin?

Gary O – No, I was adopted into a British home from northern Manitoba when I was a boy. And later grew up out here. And the first natives that I actually met were Haida. And that’s where I just kind of fell in love with them and they taught me some things. Before, I never knew that that’s what would carry me through my life.

EL – Yeah, that’s beautiful, man.

Gary O – I carve out of the catlinite, the pipestone, which is the highest spiritual material item that us Crees have to honor the Haida people and that’s the reason I carve in their form.

GO – Yeah, so if you’d like to find…

LF – That’s inspiring! That’s really inspiring, man!

GO – Yeah, it is inspiring. But if you’d like to find out more about Gary’s work you can check him out, Google him at Gary Olver. You’ll see him, some of his work at Spirit Gallery and Canadian West Coast Art and so on and so forth. And Cheryl Bear Barnetson is how you find her on YouTube. And so, before we go, I know you Louis, Louis, I asked you a question and you turned the tables on me.

LF – I did!

GO – And tell me what your New Year’s resolution will be this year. I’m going to hold you to the question.

LF – Boy, I gotta be honest. I don’t really think I have one. To stay on the path? Perhaps. To stay, you know.

GO – To be more productive?

LF – Sure. Be more productive, I’ll take that. Eugene, add something. What have we got, we gotta lose weight? We losing weight?

EL – No.

LF – 5 pounds? I want to lose 5 pounds.

EL – It’s all paid for, there’s no mortgage on this baby. I’m just gonna live my life one day at a time. That’s what I’m gonna do.

LF – That’s it.

GO – Well, that’s a good way to live your life. And here we go, Jingle Bell Rock.

(Sing along to Jingle Bell Rock)

Many thanks to Casey for the huge transcript!

Here is a photo from the recording session that was posted on CO-OP Radio’s Twitter feed; unfortunately Louis’ face is right behind the microphone. From left to right you can see Eugene Lipinski, Louis Ferreira, Gunargie O’Sullivan and Gary Olver.

Interview with Matt Horn

on DemonFM (a UK radio station) – 2009

Listen to the interview here.

part 1:

part 2:

part 3:

You can also listen to the entire interview or download it at DemonFM Vault.

Interview with Mr. Showbiz