Reassuring The Arts Crowd. Or Not.

Hélène Chalifour Scherrer fears that she may have gotten off on the wrong foot with Canada’s arts community, and she wants to make amends. The newly appointed Heritage Minister, who (apparently unintentionally) terrified arts leaders when she told a reporter that sports was the part of Canadian culture that interested her the most, is taking great pains to point out that she also loves opera and theater. She also wants everyone to know that her lack of experience in the arts won’t affect her ability to run the ministry: “Culture is a tool. And you need a vision to be the guardian of the Canadian identity. You don’t necessarily have to know what books were published last week.”