Media information

The Ukrainian Women’s Organization of Canada – Toronto Branch (OYK) presents a film screening of Chapters and Verses: Action Bill’s Walk Through Life, November 9

Toronto, October 31, 2018 – Wasyl (Bill) Kuryliw (1910-2004) was one of the most vividly remembered leaders of the Sudbury, Ontario Ukrainian-Canadian community. A documentary about his life, Chapters and Verses: Action Bill’s Walk Through Life, will be screened at the Ukrainian National Federation (UNF) Hall on Friday, November 9.

The 2017 film has been shown previously in Toronto, Sudbury and Edmonton, and is directed by his daughter, Oksana Kuryliw, and produced by her and her husband, John Leeson.

Using archival video, audio and photographs as well as interviews with those who remember him, the film tells the story of a man whose energy, dedication and positive attitude made an indelible mark on the Ukrainian community in Sudbury for almost 70 years, and whose larger-than-life character engages and appeals to a broad audience.

Although the film’s subject is one man, its significance is broader, and is unique in its subject matter. Most Ukrainian-oriented films that have been shown in Canada in recent years concern Ukraine, focusing either on historical subject matter such as the Holodomor, or the current situation in Eastern Ukraine. There are few films (documentary or other) about the Ukrainian-Canadian experience, or about Ukrainian-Canadians’ contributions to their community and to the country. Chapters and Verses tells one of those stories.

Orest Sushko, director of the documentary Music of Survival: The Story of the Ukrainian Bandurist Chorus says Chapters and Verses “provides a timeless tribute to our previous generations and an enriching narrative to present to our community.”

About Wasyl Kuryliw
Wasyl Kuryliw came to Canada from the village of Potochysche in western Ukraine in 1928 at the age of 18 with $5, a grade 3 education and a powerful zest for life.

His unflagging energy and dedication to promoting Ukrainian organizations and culture earned him the nickname “Action Bill”. He was a founder of the Ukrainian National Federation’s Sudbury branch as well as the Sudbury Ukrainian Credit Union. He is also well remembered for his recitations of the poems of Ivan Franko poems at any community event he attended.

One of his lasting contributions was establishing the “Wasyl and Anna Kuryliw Family Fund Ivan Franko Scholarships” in Ukrainian folklore at the University of Alberta in 1988.

He was a proud booster of Sudbury, and when he moved to Toronto in 1997, members of Sudbury Regional Council gave him a moving tribute.

Chapters and Verses: Action Bill`s Walk Through Life
Documentary film, 67 minutes

Ukrainian National Federation (UNF) Hall
145 Evans Avenue (at Islington), Toronto, Ontario

Friday November 9, 7:00pm
Reception to follow

Sponsored by:  Ukrainian Women’s Organization of Canada – Toronto Branch (OYK)

Admission: Free, donations accepted at the door in support of:
– The UNF Foundation
–  New Pathway Ukrainian News

The producers will be in attendance.

More information and a trailer are available at:

For more information contact:
Oksana Kuryliw  or John Leeson
contact <AT>

Hi-res photos  available below, along with poster: (All photos from Kuryliw family collection)

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This film has been funded in part by:

  • The Olzhych Foundation
  • The UNF Foundation
  • SUS Foundation of Canada
  • Shevchenko Foundation, The Temerty Family Foundation Community Development Fund
  • Ukrainian Credit Union Limited
  • Prometheus Foundation