HALIFAX - Nova Scotia's fiddling premier has taken his musical talent to the Internet as part of a quirky campaign to persuade late-night host David Letterman to visit the province.

It all started when Halifax actress Ellen Page appeared on Letterman's "Late Show" earlier this month to promote her movie "Juno." During the exchange, Letterman said he's heard that Nova Scotia is "beautiful," and mentioned that he'd like to visit the Maritime province.

The local CBC Radio morning show latched onto the comment, and started urging listeners to send in their own top-10 lists of reasons why Letterman should make the trip.

Premier Rodney MacDonald joined in this week, reading his own list and fiddling on a video clip that's been posted online and shown on local TV news broadcasts.

On the video, MacDonald pokes fun at the names of local landmarks including Balls Creek and Shag Harbour and notes that in Canada triple-bypass surgeries are free - a reference to Letterman's heart surgery several years ago (although Letterman actually underwent a quintuple bypass).

His No. 3 reason pays tribute to the province's wilderness.

"You haven't lived until you've camped on the world-famous Cabot Trail and been chased by a love-struck moose," MacDonald says on the clip.

And the premier's No. 1 reason?

"Nova Scotia's political leader, yours truly, plays the fiddle," he says, before playing a few bars with a traditional step dance.

"Top that, Mike Huckabee," the premier adds, referring to a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination who's been seen playing the bass guitar on the campaign trail.

There's no word on whether Letterman has seen the video, or whether he's considering the invitation.

Letterman recently returned to air after a writer's strike prompted a two-month break. His production company struck a deal with the union to allow his writing team to return to work, unlike other hosts who have also returned but without their writers.


On the web: www.novascotialife.com

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