Saturday, April 12, 2008

Emily Carr, "Blue Sky" (oil), 1936

Helloooooooooo!!!! Is this thing on????

Sorry (again) for the prolonged absence. I know I've been a bad blogger. There's been so much going on around here and I promise I will get around to telling all about it but it will probably have to wait until after April 20th 'cuz I'm just a little busy until then preparing for the WORLD PREMIERE OF AN OPERA THAT WAS WRITTEN FOR ME!!!!!

If you're in the Greater Toronto Area or anywhere in Southern Ontario, I am cordially inviting you to come: EMILY, THE WAY YOU ARE by Jana Skarecky and Di Brandt, a one-woman opera exploring the life and work of Emily Carr, will be premiered on SUNDAY, APRIL 20, 2008 at 1:30 p.m. at the McMichael Gallery Canadian Art Collection, in Kleinberg.

A bold visionary who articulated much of the imagery by which Canada knows itself, Emily Carr was a woman of exceptional courage who defied the conventions of her upbringing as she struggled to define herself and her country. Born into the strict confines of Victorian society in western Canada in 1871, her quest for independence and artistic truth took her from the studios of Paris to remote native villages deep inside the west coast forests on a lifetime journey of mythic proportions. The two great themes of her work were the native culture of the Pacific coast, and the power of nature expressed in images of rain-forests and seascapes.

Presenting Emily Carr’s story at the McMichael Gallery which has long been home to some of her art work highlights the connection between her achievements as a visual artist, her writings, and the inner drama of her life.

The concert, part of the Canadian Music Centre’s “New Music in New Places” program, will feature The Talisker Players chamber ensemble with conductor Gary Kulesha will include other music by composer Jana Skarecky performed by pianist Joseph Ferretti, as well as poetry and prose by Di Brandt and by Emily Carr. The concert is free with gallery admission (adult $15, student/senior $12, family $30).

This is an incredibly wonderful opportunity and artistically very exciting: I get to create a new role that's been written with me in mind and has never been performed before! It's been in the works for a couple of years now, but even after all this time I'm still a bit stunned when I stop and think about it: Dudes, they actually wrote this for ME.


Really, I'm fine. I just need a minute. And maybe a shot of Scotch.

Okay, I'm just going to go breathe into this paper bag for a couple of minutes...


No, really - don't go - I'm still here!

So, um,... I need to admit this whole thing is a wee tiny bit nerve-wracking. Lest you think it's ALL sunshine and roses (and believe me I am NOT complaining at all, just releasing some anxiety), here's how it's going: I just received the last section of the score TODAY (emailed from the composer at 4:00 am this morning), I have a rehearsal TONIGHT with the pianist, and then with the chamber orchestra and conductor on Monday, which is the only rehearsal before the “dress” rehearsal and the performance next weekend.

No pressure.

Actually, I think I am amazingly calm under the circumstances. I really should be running naked through the house (or street) babbling obscenities or rocking in the corner and winding and unwinding the same poor overworked skein over and over again while drooling silently, but alas I haven’t got time for my nervous breakdown right now.

Whew. Okay. I just needed to get that out of my system. I'm feeling MUCH better now. Thanks.


eusebius said...

Fabulous!! I am so excited for you. I wish you a wonderful experience! Those campanulas are really gorgeous - good move enlisting that designer, as it seems you have a few other things to think about just now ;)

Carol said...

How freaking exciting! Written just for you. Totally blown away over here. Wish I lived closer...

Jennifer said...

How awesome--and nerve-wracking! I have a good friend who did a premiere a few years ago...but I'm sure your experience will be better then hers. (Don't ask...) Toi toi toi!

affectioknitter said...

Congratulations! the new opera sounds wonderful - I just googled Emily Carr - wow!