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June 21, 2023 @ 9:15 pm


Lawn Chair Luminata 2023 | Outdoor screening


Wednesday, June 21, 2023
Meridian Place, Downtown Barrie
Admission: Free
Starts at dusk, weather permitting (rain date June 22)


Documentary | 90 min. | Canada | 2022

Directed by Madison Thomas

Featuring: Buffy Sainte-Marie, Joni Mitchell, Robbie Robertson, John Kay, Jackson Browne, Taj Mahal, Sonia Manzano, George Stroumboulopoulos, Jeremy Dutcher, Logan Staats

Content advisory: themes of abuse and addiction



The life, music, and activism of legendary Indigenous singer-songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie are explored in this documentary that is as captivating as its subject, who smashed through barriers to become an inspiration to fans and fellow musicians alike.

Innovator, musician, songwriter, performer, activist, philanthropist, and educator. Buffy’s career spans over sixty years and includes countless milestones: she became famous by writing the anti-war anthem “Universal Soldier”; made one of the first electronic albums in 1969; was the first Indigenous person to win an Academy Award (in 1983 for “Up Where We Belong”); made the first album over the internet in 1991; and became the oldest person ever to win the Polaris Music Prize in 2015.

A prolific and unique songwriter, Buffy has been covered and sampled by everyone from Elvis and Barbra Streisand to Courtney Love and Kanye West. This film offers a retrospective on Buffy’s unique life and career, utilizing archival material (some never seen before) and cinematic recreations. The film also looks ahead at what’s next for this trailblazing icon, sharing Buffy’s unique message and approach to life: “Sometimes you have to carry the medicine a while before people are ready for it.” The film will examine not only Buffy’s medicine, but if the world is now ready for it.


Awards: 3 wins, 5 nominations

Won – Allan King Award for Excellence in Documentary, Directors Guild of Canada, 2022
Nominated for 5 Canadian Screen Awards (best writing, best direction, best editorial research, best sound documentary), 2023



Screening Includes documentary short “The Land Knows You” by Anushay Sheikh about The Land Knows You art installation on the pink building in downtown Barrie. The film features the creator of the artwork, Indigenous artist Alanah Astehtsi Otsistohkwa (Morningstar) Jewell, with Anishinaabekwe storyteller and activist Sarain Fox. (4:55)



Screened as part of National Indigenous History Month and National Indigenous Peoples Day programming hosted by the City of Barrie and the Downtown Barrie BIA, in partnership with the Barrie Film Festival, with support from Meridian Credit Union and 107.5 KOOL FM.


Arrive early for pre-show activities starting at 7 pm. For more details, list of events throughout June, and programming partners, CLICK HERE




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June 21, 2023
9:15 pm


Barrie Film Festival


Meridian Place
30 Simcoe Street
Barrie, ON L4M 1A7 Canada
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