Available September 24, 2013 CLICK HERE TO ORDER
CD LAUNCHES in CANADA September 24 : Owen’s Gallery, Sackville, N.B., 4.30 to 6pm Sponsored by the Department of Music and the Centre for Canadian Studies, Mount Allison University October 6 : PIPA Restaurant, 1685 Argyle Street, Halifax, N.S., 4.30 to 6pm Sponsored and hosted by The Elizabeth Bishop Society of Nova Scotia October 22 : Massey College in the University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, 5 pm Sponsored by Massey College November 12: Wallis House, Ottawa, Ontario 5:30 – 7 pm By invitation “I Am in Need of Music” is one of three Legacy Projects from the Elizabeth Bishop Centenary Festival which took place in Nova Scotia in 2011. A CD of ten wonderful settings of poems by Elizabeth Bishop for soprano and chamber orchestra (The EB Players directed by Dinuk Wijeratne), soprano and string quartet (The Blue Engine String Quartet) and a trio for soprano, clarinet (Mark Simons) and piano (Robert Kortgaard) by four prominent canadian Composers (Emily Doolittle, Christos Hatzis, Alasdair MacLean and John Plant) paired with a documentary by Linda Rae Dornan “Walking with EB”, about retracing Bishop’s footsteps during a 1932 walking tour in Newfoundland. This package will be released by Centrediscs, the Canadian Music Centre label in September 2013.
How it all began….
I found a leaflet about Elizabeth Bishop in St. James United Church in Great Village, Nova Scotia, on August 3, 2007. A photo of her gentle, round face was on the cover and the inside contained a few words about the house where she grew up, just across the street from the church. She radiated individuality. I pocketed the leaflet. Weeks later, I found her first book of poetry: North & South. I read “The Map” and was mesmerized by Bishop’s view of things. I now like to compare her to a bird because, often, she begins a poem by describing things in great detail from up close and as she metaphorically takes flight, her view widens to include the entire Universe. The Map (Elizabeth Bishop)
I then met Alasdair MacLean, a composer from Nova Scotia and a long-time fan of Bishop’s work. He introduced me to Sandra Barry, herself a poet and an independent Bishop scholar. Sandra told me of Bishop’s Newfoundland walk in 1932 and I was fascinated because I like to walk also. I decided I would follow in her footsteps by taking the Newfoundland journey myself while getting familiar with her work. The weaving continued when I met Linda Dornan, an artist in Sackville, New Brunswick, who eventually joined me on the walk and asked if she could document it. Our trip was very different from Bishop’s because we were traveling with camera equipment and some of the old roads on which she had walked had either disappeared or been turned into highways. Before Linda and I set off for Newfoundland in 2008, Sandra and I talked about Bishop’s Centenary in 2011. We realized that we would both be turning 50 that year which meant that, cumulatively, we would be turning 100. We began to make plans and the result was a dazzling multitude of literary events, art exhibitions, film and writing competitions and concerts throughout that year. One of our main goals was to celebrate Bishop’s Canadian identity and her deep connection to her motherland: Nova Scotia. Sandra had always dreamt of having Canadian composers set Bishop’s poetry to music. Bishop was a great music lover and connoisseur and was proud of her Canadian heritage. I immediately embraced this idea and we began working on the project. We found the composers, or they found us, with the same serendipity that had led me to Bishop in the first place. I hope you will enjoy this music inspired by Bishop’s poetry. VISIT LINDA RAE DORNAN’S WEBSITE VISIT SANDRA BARRY’S WEBSITE VISIT CHRISTOS HATZIS’S WEBSITE VISIT EMILY DOOLITTLE’S WEBSITE VISIT JOHN PLANT’S WEBSITE