“How to Fail as a Popstar” – Vivek Shraya’s tale about fame and personal transformation
Vivek Shraya is a multi-media artist whose art, music, novels, and poetry and children’s books explore the beauty and the power of personal and cultural transformation. How to Fail as a Popstar is Vivek’s debut theatrical work, a one-person show that chronicles her journey from singing in shopping malls to “not quite” pop music superstardom with beguiling humor and insight. A reflection on the power of pop culture, dreams, disappointments, and self-determination, this astonishing work is a raw, honest, and hopeful depiction of the search to find one’s authentic voice.
The book includes colour photographs from the show’s 2020 production in Toronto, and a foreword by its director Brendan Healy, a theatre director whose credits include the premiere production of Vivek Shraya’s How to Fail as a Popstar at Canadian Stage in Toronto in 2020. Healy is a regular instructor at the National Theatre School of Canada.
Virtual book launch takes place via Facebook on March 2, 2021 at 8PM in conversation with Bif Naked. Hosted by the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival and Arsenal Pulp Press in partnership with the Hillside Festival, The Bookshelf (Guelph), Another Story Bookshop (Toronto), Glass Bookshop (Edmonton), Massy Books (Vancouver) and Shelf Life Books (Calgary).
Book is available from Arsenal Pulp Press.
Vivek Shraya is the author of the young-adult collection God Loves Hair, the novel She of the Mountains, the poetry book even this page is white, and the children’s picture book (with Rajni Perera) The Boy & the Bindi (all published by Arsenal Pulp Press), as well as I’m Afraid of Men and What I Love About Being QUEER. She is editor of the Arsenal Pulp Press imprint VS. Books, dedicated to work by young black, Indigenous, and writers of colour. Vivek was the 2014 recipient of the Steinert & Ferreiro Award for leadership in Toronto’s LGBTQ community, the recipient of Anokhi Media’s inaugural Most Promising LGBTQ Community Crusader Award in 2015, a 2015 Toronto Arts Foundation Emerging Artist Award finalist, and a 2015 recipient of the Writers’ Trust of Canada’s Dayne Ogilvie Prize Honour of Distinction. Originally from Edmonton, she now lives in Calgary, where she is an assistant professor in the University of Calgary’s Department of English.
About the Author
Bryen Dunn is a freelance journalist based in Toronto with a focus on tourism, lifestyle, entertainment and community issues. He has written several travel articles and has an extensive portfolio of celebrity interviews with musicians, actors and other public personalities. He’s willing to take on any assignments of interest, attend parties with free booze, listen to rants, and travel the world in search of the great unknown. He’s eager to discover the new, remember the past, and look into the future.