Diverse voices. Daring visions. A curated look at dance, drama, design, music, poetry, cinema, song, photography, opera and more. All 21st C. All dazzling. All Canadian. Online, and free. Starting at noon on Friday 1 October. One new entry a day, for a month.

Shanawdithit (Tapestry Opera and Opera on the Avalon)

Canadian-Indigenous opera Shanawdithit unfolds the story of a woman who was the last of the Beothuk – the indigenous peoples of the island now known as Newfoundland. Supported by a powerfully evocative libretto and score (by Yvette Nolan and Dean Burry, respectively), the extraordinary Marion Newman sang the title role in a performance the Globe and Mail described as “disturbing in its subtlety, certainly no echo of the operatic trope of a wide-eyed young woman…”

Comfort Ye – Ev’ry Valley – Messiah/Complex

Against the Grain Theatre’s Messiah/Complex premiered online in December of 2021 to critical praise. Incorporating newly commissioned translations into Dene, Inuktitut, Southern Tutchone, Arabic and French, Handel’s perennial favorite – accompanied by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra - featured singers from every territory and province in Canada. Here, set against vibrant Vancouver locales, tenor Spencer Britten takes us from the hushed intimacy of Comfort Ye to the exuberant flourishes of Ev’ry Valley.

The Human Voice, with Isaiah Bell

Boldly reimagined and performed by librettist-tenor-translator Isaiah Bell, with Roger Parton at the piano, Poulenc’s classic La Voix Humaine takes on new relevance for our physically-distanced times in this City Opera production, filmed at The Cultch's storied Historic Theatre.

Bhangra dancing to Celtic music in the Yukon wilderness

Please join us in wishing national treasure Gurdeep Pandher the happiest of birthdays. Gurdeep continues to bring joy to us all, carrying Banghra into delightful fusion with many of the traditional dances found across Canada. Behind it all: a man of incredible hope and deep faith in the message he carries - acceptance and understanding for everyone, and a celebration of the human family. To you, Gurdeep, the happiest of days today – and from all of us – thank you.

Encounters: Indigenous Voices

This program of songs by Métis composer Ian Cusson (who also curated it) and Diné composer Raven Chacon - sung by Métis mezzo-soprano Rebecca Cuddy - was presented in July as part of Soundstreams’s Encounters series, where the music of some of today’s most fascinating creators is performed and discussed virtually. The program is dedicated to the memory of the over 4,100 children who perished in the horrors of the residential school system, and includes a searching discussion with Ian Cusson and Soundstreams Founding Artistic Director Lawrence Cherney.

Dissolver – Peggy Lee and Hard Rubber Orchestra

Improvising remotely, members of Hard Rubber Orchestra recorded the various sections making up cellist/composer Peggy Lee’s Dissolver, with Melissa Hubert’s energetic animation illuminating the resulting track. “Each step of the process revealed qualities of the music that I hadn't anticipated… Melissa's beautiful video was the final revelation and I couldn't be more happy with her visual response to the music.” – Peggy Lee

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