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Chapters And Verses: Action Bill’s Walk Through Life

A young “Action Bill”

This 2017 documentary tells the story of the remarkable life of Wasyl (Bill) Kuryliw, a larger-than-life figure in the Sudbury Ukrainian-Canadian community.

Directed by his daughter, Oksana Kuryliw, and produced by her and her husband, John Leeson, the film has screened in Toronto, Edmonton and Sudbury. Watch here for some screenings in the fall of 2018.

Click here for more about Bill and some background about the film.

See the trailer below on this page.

Upcoming screenings:

Friday, November 9, 7:00pm
Ukrainian National Federation (UNF) Hall
145 Evans Ave. (at Islington), Toronto
Sponsored by: the Ukrainian Women’s Organization of Canada – Toronto Branch (OYK)
Updates & more information about the event will be posted here.

There may be some other upcoming screenings in Ontario.

Audience reaction:

After our most recent screening, former MP & MPP Yuri Shymko wrote:

This film is truly of epic proportions, epitomizing the social and economic challenges faced by the second wave of Ukrainian immigrants who settled in Canada’s urban centers during the years between the two World Wars.

See more audience responses to the film on this page.

Our screenings!

Full house for the April 19 screening at St. Vladimir Institute

To date, we’ve had four screenings in Toronto, one in Edmonton, and two in Sudbury. Photos, notes (and a brief video clip of Bill’s salute to “Sudbury – that’s my heart”) on this page.

Our most recent screening (April 19, 2018) was held at St. Vladimir Institute in Toronto, sponsored by the Ukrainian Museum of Canada, Ontario Branch in conjunction with the closing of their exhibit Trunk Tales: Leaving Home… Finding Home on Ukrainian immigration to Canada.

St. Vlad’s newsletter

NEW!  Read an article about the film and screening (PDF), written by Greg Hamara, on the front page of the St. Vladimir Institute Summer 2018 Newsletter here. 

More showings likely this fall; stay tuned.

NEW: Bill and Anna’s love letters go on tour!

Look for this exhibit at the Toronto Ukrainian Festival, Sep. 14-16. (Kule Centre booth is near Bloor & Durie)

Those who have seen the film, know that one of the more moving segments is about Bill & Anna’s 8 year “courtship by mail”, and featured excerpts from some of the letters they wrote each other, after Bill moved to Canada, and his future wife, Anna was still in Ukraine.

The Kule Folklore Centre at the University of Alberta has just launched a new exhibit, touring Canada entitled “Love Letters from the Past: Courtship, Companionship, and Family in the Ukrainian Canadian Community”, which features letters between different couples at varying times and circumstances, including those of Wasyl Kuryliw, and his bride-to-be, Anna Zabolotna.  The exhibit was on display at Ottawa’s Capital Ukrainian Festival the weekend of July 20-22, and will also be at the Toronto Ukrainian Festival, Sept. 14-16.

See a CBC news article about the Ottawa event here, and you can also listen to an interview with one of the exhibit’s creators, Larisa Sembaliuk Cheladyn, here.

Interview with Oksana

Prior to our first screening last September, Oksana was interviewed by Ron Cahute of Kontakt TV. Portions of the interview was broadcast on Kontakt April 14l it is also posted on YouTube – viewable below.


Chapters & Verses earns its director her first award!

On Wed. Nov. 15, Oksana was recognized with a Canada 150 “Change Maker” award from Parkdale-High Park MP Arif Virani.




Below is a 4 minute  trailer;.  Click full-screen icon (to left of “vimeo”.)

Trailer Credits

Film Directed by: Oksana Kuryliw
Produced by: Oksana Kuryliw & John Leeson


“Kalina Nehh Verba”
Traditional, performed by St Nicholas Mandolin Ensemble,
Lawrence Pshyk conductor
Used with permission of Lawrence Pshyk

“The Parting”
Traditional, arranged by Brian Cherwick & Mykola Kusch
Performed by The Kubasonics
Used with permission of Brian Cherwick

“Ma-Ma FC”
Composed by Vincent Segal
Performed by Ballaké Sissoko & Vincent Segal
Used with permission of Vincent Segal and No Format! Records


Sudbury Regional Council Meeting from Northern Cable Services
Used with permission of Eastlink TV

Radio Interview with Bill

From “Memories & Music” on CKSO-FM
Used with permission of Vale Canada Limited and Newcap Radio


Kuryliw family collection. Sudbury “Welcome” arch courtesy Bruno Zaoral


Funding for this film has been provided in part by:

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