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Memorable Manitobans: Gerald Phillip “Gerry” Atwell (1959-2019)

Musician, writer.

Born at Winnipeg on 14 August 1959, son of George Ivan Henry Atwell (1925-2017) and Frances Helen Brown (1923-2015), he was student council president in his last year at high school in St. Norbert, and was active in the Navy League and Sea Cadets, playing trumpet in their marching bands. He was a keyboard player and vocalist with bands such as Eagle and Hawk (with whom he won a Juno Award in 2002), Ministers of Cool, Rockalypso, the Boogie Nights band, and Voice of Boom, where he was known for his vigorous on-stage performances. He served as President and Artistic Director of the St. Norbert Arts Centre, was a Musical Director for Sarasvati Theatre and Rainbow Stage, and he was a writer for theatre, television, radio, and film, with such works as The Hands of Ida (1995), Soul on Ice (1996), The Last Stop (2001-2002), Life of the Party (2002), Barbara James (2003), Hotel Babylon (2005), New Beginnings (2018), and the CBC radio drama Soul Games. He died of a heart attack at Winnipeg on 23 November 2019. He is commemorated by the Gerry Atwell Memorial Mentorship Fund.

Sources:

Obituary [Frances Helen Atwell], Winnipeg Free Press, 26 September 2015.

Obituary [George Ivan Henry Atwell], Winnipeg Free Press, 22 August 2017.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 30 November 2019

In memorium, Winnipeg Free Press, 21 November 2020, page C15.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 21 November 2020

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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