Winnipeg Arts Council

Thin Air 2023 begins in ONE WEEK!

THIN AIR / Livres en fête 2023 is just one short week away! Once again, we're hosting a true hybrid festival, with a bunch of in-person events (many of them live-streamed), a handful of online events, and a fancy website chock full of delightful videos submitted by this year's featured writers. Our special festival website,, goes live on Wednesday, September 20, but you keep track of developments on our regular website, In the meantime, we're thrilled to announce that our colourful print programs are now circulating. You can grab a copy (and a couple for your friends) at McNally Robinson Booksellers, and they'll soon be available in library branches throughout Winnipeg as well as at various cafes and shops which support the arts community. Big shout-out to Friesens, one of the country's top-ranked printers, for making this possible, and to Brian Hydesmith, our maverick designer, for figuring out how to consolidate so much information in a beautiful map-style package. But if you can't wait, here are details on the first three events of Thin Air 2023, including our kick-off at Kilter Brewing. Wednesday, September 20, 2023, 7:00pm CT ForeWords (in-person) Location: Kilter Brewing Co., 450 Rue Deschambault Admission: PWYC It’s our festival kickoff party!  Join us at Kilter Brewing  for some book-centered wit, delivered by a handful of master improvisers. Stick around to chat with friends over one of the tasty ciders or specialty ales on tap. Street parking in the neighbourhood. *** C’est le lancement du festival! Venez nous joindre à Kilter Brewing pour un peu d’humour littéraire grâce à des maîtres improvisateur.trice.s. Restez après pour bavarder avec des amis, en savourant un cidre ou une bière. Stationnement disponible autour du quarter. 

Thursday, September 21, 2023, 7:00pm CT An Evening with David Bergen (hybrid) Host: Maurice Mierau Location: McNally Robinson's Grant Park & Online Admission: free David Bergen’s new novel Away from the Dead (Goose Lane Editions) is set in early twentieth-century Ukraine amidst the chaos of war and revolution. In the words of Noah Richler, "Bergen's humanism breaks the heart and honours it." This event features a reading and a conversation hosted by Maurice Mierau. A book signing will follow.

Friday, September 22, 2023, 7:00pm CT An Evening with Joan Thomas (hybrid) Host: Chris Hall Location: McNally Robinson's Grant Park & Online Admission: free In her new novel Wild Hope (HarperCollins Canada), Joan Thomas "holds a mirror up to our current moment and dares us to consider the big questions in the face of a changing climate and a future increasingly determined by a privileged few" (Saleema Nawaz). The event features a reading and a conversation hosted by McNally Robinson co-owner Chris Hall. A book signing will follow.

The virtual part…
From September 20 through October 18, our destination festival website ( will be accessible 24/7, allowing you to wander through and discover the writers and books we’re featuring at whatever times suit you best. Once again this year, our writers are submitting imaginative, entertaining, insightful, personal video shorts to give you a better picture of who they are and what they write.

The in-person part…
Our long-time partnership with McNally Robinson Booksellers makes up the core of our in-person programming. Together, we are co-presenting half a dozen hybrid events at the Grant Park Store. These will also be live-streamed on McNally’s YouTube channel.

We are also stretching out a bit. We’ll host an in-person festival launch on September 20 and festival wrap-up on October 18 at Kilter Brewery in St Boniface.