Check out these titles and local performances; explore the creativity of amazing artists, performers, poets, and more!

 

 

Aboriginal Music in Contemporary Canada: Echoes and Exchanges edited by Anna Hoefnagels and Beverley Diamond

 

This collection narrates a story of resistance and renewal, struggle and success, as indigenous musicians in Canada negotiate who they are and who they want to be.

It demonstrates how music is a powerful tool for articulating the social challenges faced by Aboriginal communities and an effective way to affirm indigenous strength and pride.

Find me at UBC Library! 

For upcoming shows and music series in the lower mainland! 

 

 

 

 

 

Where the Blood Mixes by Kevin Loring

 

A story about loss and redemption. Caught in a shadowy pool of alcoholic pain and guilt, Floyd is a man who has lost everyone he holds most dear. Now after more than two decades, his daughter Christine returns home to confront her father. Set during the salmon run, Where the Blood Mixes takes us to the bottom of the river, to the heart of a People.

Find me at UBC Library! 

For upcoming performances written and directed by Kevin Loring!

 

 

 

 

 

Children of God: a Musical by Corey Payette 

 

A powerful musical about an Oji-Cree family whose children were taken away to a residential school in Northern Ontario. The play tells the story of one family: Tommy and Julia, who are trying to survive in the harsh environment of a religious school, and their mother, Rita, who never stops trying to get them back. The impact of this experience on the lives of them all is profound and devastating, yet the story moves toward redemption

Find me at UBC Library!

For upcoming performances written and directed by Cory Payette!

 

 

 

 

Practical Dreamers: conversations with movie artists by Mike Hoolboom

 

Welcome to the world of fringe movies. Here, artists have been busy putting queer shoulders to the wheels, or bending light to talk about First Nations rights (and making it funny, to boot), or demonstrating how a personality can be taken apart and put back together, all during a ten-minute movie which might take years to make.

Find me at UBC Library! 

For upcoming films in the lower mainland! 

 

 

 

 

 

Indianland by Lesley Belleau

 

This collection of poems written from a female and Indigenous point of view and incorporate Anishinaabemowin throughout. Time is cyclical, moving from present day back to first contact and forward again. Themes of sexuality, birth, memory, and longing are explored, images of blood, plants (milkweed, yarrow, cattails), and petroglyphs reoccur, and touchstone issues in Indigenous politics are addressed.

Find me at UBC Library! 

For live performances and readings in the lower mainland! 

 

 

 

 

 

The People Have Never Stopped Dancing: Native American modern dance histories by Jacqueline Shea Murphy

In this first major study of contemporary Native American dance, Jacqueline Shea Murphy shows how these concert performances are at once diverse and connected by common influences. Illustrating how Native dance enacts cultural connections to land, ancestors, and animals, as well as spiritual and political concerns, Shea Murphy challenges stereotypes and offers new ways of recognizing the agency of bodies on stage.

Find me at UBC Library!

For upcoming dance performances in the lower mainland! 

 

 

 

 

 

Xwi7xwa would like to thank Elena Pederson, Publications & Web Services Assistant, from UBC Education Library for her work on designing our digital signage.

 

Above image is courtesy of Pixabay

 

In musical practice, there is an assortment of musical elements at “play”.

 

Just think. Real-time creative decision-making. Risk-taking. Collaboration.

 

So what happens when they all “play” together?

 

Improvisation! That is, musical improvisation.

 

“I’ll play it first and tell you what it’s called later.” – Miles Davis

 

The International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI) is known as “a central source for the collection and dissemination of research on the social implications of improvisational practices”.

 

Founded as a partnered research institute from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) project, “Improvisation, Community, and Social Practice” (ICASP), IICSI has its own research team. It consists of 58 scholars, students, creative practitioners, and community partners representing 20 different academic institutions including the University of British Columbia (UBC) and over 30 community-based organizations.

 

Together, they are “creating a vibrant intellectual hub and a focal point for leading-edge research and critical inquiry in the field of improvisation studies”. Through this network comes the following benefits such as ‘new technologies and models for practice-based research, knowledge transfers, new research, student training, and development of policies, instruments, and technologies’ to list just a few.

 

IICSI has three main strategic research priorities: 1) Improvisation as Practice-Based Research, 2) Improvisation, Community Health, and Social Responsibility, and 3) Improvisation, Intermediality, and Experimental Technologies.

 

Below is a quick soupçon of the IICSI sample research-intensive questions under current exploration:

 

Sample Research Questions re: 1)

How do arts-based improvisatory practices themselves suggest new models of knowledge transfer?

How might these practices help us measure the impact of our research activities, and how might they enable a broader range of stakeholders to engage with these activities?

 

Sample Research Questions re: 2)

How do improvisational arts-based practices contribute to the development and flourishing of healthy communities?

How (and to what extent) do these practices help communities (particularly at-risk and aggrieved populations) produce new understandings of identity, history, memory, and the body?

 

Sample Research Questions re: 3)

How can new technologies help facilitate the ability of communities to improvise across time, space, and ability limitations?

How might intermedial co-creation develop new opportunities for mobilizing knowledge?

 

With more research questions arising faster than they can be probed, it is good to know that IICSI has created an online research library housing a range of items such as films, articles, think pieces, and interviews.

 

At UBC, cIRcle is not only helping to disseminate IICSI research and make it openly accessible, it is also archiving and preserving this unique musical form of scholarly research for future scholars, practitioners and the general public.

 

Explore the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI) Colloquium cIRcle collection via UBC Library’s Open Collections portal and stay tuned for more!

 

Are you a UBC researcher? Click here to add your research to cIRcle, UBC’s Digital Repository

 

 

Above image is courtesy of Pixabay

 

In musical practice, there is an assortment of musical elements at “play”.

 

Just think. Real-time creative decision-making. Risk-taking. Collaboration.

 

So what happens when they all “play” together?

 

Improvisation! That is, musical improvisation.

 

“I’ll play it first and tell you what it’s called later.” – Miles Davis

 

The International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI) is known as “a central source for the collection and dissemination of research on the social implications of improvisational practices”.

 

Founded as a partnered research institute from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) project, “Improvisation, Community, and Social Practice” (ICASP), IICSI has its own research team. It consists of 58 scholars, students, creative practitioners, and community partners representing 20 different academic institutions including the University of British Columbia (UBC) and over 30 community-based organizations.

 

Together, they are “creating a vibrant intellectual hub and a focal point for leading-edge research and critical inquiry in the field of improvisation studies”. Through this network comes the following benefits such as ‘new technologies and models for practice-based research, knowledge transfers, new research, student training, and development of policies, instruments, and technologies’ to list just a few.

 

IICSI has three main strategic research priorities: 1) Improvisation as Practice-Based Research, 2) Improvisation, Community Health, and Social Responsibility, and 3) Improvisation, Intermediality, and Experimental Technologies.

 

Below is a quick soupçon of the IICSI sample research-intensive questions under current exploration:

 

Sample Research Questions re: 1)

How do arts-based improvisatory practices themselves suggest new models of knowledge transfer?

How might these practices help us measure the impact of our research activities, and how might they enable a broader range of stakeholders to engage with these activities?

 

Sample Research Questions re: 2)

How do improvisational arts-based practices contribute to the development and flourishing of healthy communities?

How (and to what extent) do these practices help communities (particularly at-risk and aggrieved populations) produce new understandings of identity, history, memory, and the body?

 

Sample Research Questions re: 3)

How can new technologies help facilitate the ability of communities to improvise across time, space, and ability limitations?

How might intermedial co-creation develop new opportunities for mobilizing knowledge?

 

With more research questions arising faster than they can be probed, it is good to know that IICSI has created an online research library housing a range of items such as films, articles, think pieces, and interviews.

 

At UBC, cIRcle is not only helping to disseminate IICSI research and make it openly accessible, it is also archiving and preserving this unique musical form of scholarly research for future scholars, practitioners and the general public.

 

Explore the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI) Colloquium cIRcle collection via UBC Library’s Open Collections portal and stay tuned for more!

 

Are you a UBC researcher? Click here to add your research to cIRcle, UBC’s Digital Repository

 

The University of British Columbia Archives recently assisted the Canadian Music Centre in British Columbia in the production of a short documentary film on the work of composer, ethnomusicologist, and UBC School of Music professor Elliot Weisgarber.

The film is part of CMC BC’s Legacy Composer Film Series, celebrating the first generation of Canadian composers to write Western concert music on the West Coast of Canada.  The films each honour one of five B.C. composers, in addition to Weisgarber:  Murray Adaskin, Barbara Pentland, Rudolf Komorous, and Jean Coulthard.  According to CMC BC, “Each of them contributed something unique, completely new and remarkable to the nation’s cultural mosaic, both through their body of work and the living legacy of students they inspired”.

The six-minute film, directed by John Bolton, is titled Aki-No-Hinode (Japanese for “Autumn Sunrise”), after one of Weisgarber’s short works for flute and piano.  Weisgarber’s daughter, Karen Suzanne Smithson, discovered the previously-unknown piece in her parents’ garage in 2002 while sorting through some of her father’s belongings looking for manuscripts to donate to the Archives.

Throughout the film, the sparse notes of Weisgarber’s composition, played on flute and piano, can be heard in the background, while the camera focusses on the manuscripts.  An emotional highlight is Smithson’s story of her discovery of the Aki-No-Hinode manuscript, and playing it “possibly for the first time”.

Aki-No-Hinode was shot in the Mackenzie Seminar Room in UBC’s Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, with additional scenes showing the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) where the Weisgarber manuscripts are stored.  Karen Smithson and archivist Erwin Wodarczak are featured.  Smithson talks about her father and his work, his fascination with Asian music, and how as a composer he was a pioneer in incorporating Asian (in particular Japanase) influences and instrumentation into Western concert music.  Wodarczak describes how archival collections are stored and can be retrieved from the ASRS.  “There’s a story behind every document, behind every collection” like Weisgarber’s, he says, and describes how gratifying it is when such collections are entrusted to the Archives for safe-keeping.

The film had its debut at an Elliot Weisgarber celebration at the CMC BC’s Creative Hub in Vancouver in April.  It can now be viewed on-line.  The Aki-No-Hinode manuscript is one of 450 compositions by Elliot Weisgarber included in his collection, consisting of textual records and audio recordings, held in the University Archives.

The University of British Columbia Archives recently assisted the Canadian Music Centre in British Columbia in the production of a short documentary film on the work of composer, ethnomusicologist, and UBC School of Music professor Elliot Weisgarber.

The film is part of CMC BC’s Legacy Composer Film Series, celebrating the first generation of Canadian composers to write Western concert music on the West Coast of Canada.  The films each honour one of five B.C. composers, in addition to Weisgarber:  Murray Adaskin, Barbara Pentland, Rudolf Komorous, and Jean Coulthard.  According to CMC BC, “Each of them contributed something unique, completely new and remarkable to the nation’s cultural mosaic, both through their body of work and the living legacy of students they inspired”.

The six-minute film, directed by John Bolton, is titled Aki-No-Hinode (Japanese for “Autumn Sunrise”), after one of Weisgarber’s short works for flute and piano.  Weisgarber’s daughter, Karen Suzanne Smithson, discovered the previously-unknown piece in her parents’ garage in 2002 while sorting through some of her father’s belongings looking for manuscripts to donate to the Archives.

Throughout the film, the sparse notes of Weisgarber’s composition, played on flute and piano, can be heard in the background, while the camera focusses on the manuscripts.  An emotional highlight is Smithson’s story of her discovery of the Aki-No-Hinode manuscript, and playing it “possibly for the first time”.

Aki-No-Hinode was shot in the Mackenzie Seminar Room in UBC’s Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, with additional scenes showing the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) where the Weisgarber manuscripts are stored.  Karen Smithson and archivist Erwin Wodarczak are featured.  Smithson talks about her father and his work, his fascination with Asian music, and how as a composer he was a pioneer in incorporating Asian (in particular Japanase) influences and instrumentation into Western concert music.  Wodarczak describes how archival collections are stored and can be retrieved from the ASRS.  “There’s a story behind every document, behind every collection” like Weisgarber’s, he says, and describes how gratifying it is when such collections are entrusted to the Archives for safe-keeping.

The film had its debut at an Elliot Weisgarber celebration at the CMC BC’s Creative Hub in Vancouver in April.  It can now be viewed on-line.  The Aki-No-Hinode manuscript is one of 450 compositions by Elliot Weisgarber included in his collection, consisting of textual records and audio recordings, held in the University Archives.

Webcast sponsored by the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre and hosted by alumni UBC. From his Oscar-winning score for The Red Violin to his opera The Ghosts of Versailles, his acclaimed Symphony No. 3, Circus Maximus, and his Grammy-winning Conjurer: Concerto for Percussionist and String Orchestra, American composer John Corigliano has built one of the richest, most unusual, and most widely celebrated bodies of work of any composer in the last forty years. His “architectural” method of composing has allowed him to forge a strikingly wide range of musical materials into arches of compelling aural logic. Take a look into the mind and method of this internationally-renowned composer.

This event took place November 18, 2016, at the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts on UBC’s Vancouver campus.


Speaker Biography

mmmc_corigliano_757x422-560x312John Corigliano continues to add to one of the richest, most unusual, and most widely celebrated bodies of work any composer has created over the last forty years. Corigliano’s scores, now numbering over one hundred, have won him the Pulitzer Prize, the Grawemeyer Award, five Grammy Awards, an Academy Award, and have been performed and recorded by many of the most prominent orchestras, soloists, and chamber musicians in the world.

Recent scores include One Sweet Morning (2011) a four-movement song cycle premiered by the New York Philharmonic and Stephanie Blythe; Conjurer (2008), for percussion and string orchestra, commissioned for and introduced by Dame Evelyn Glennie; Concerto for Violin and Orchestra: The Red Violin (2005), developed from the themes of the score to the film of the same name, which won Corigliano an Oscar in 1999; Mr. Tambourine Man: Seven Poems of Bob Dylan (2000) for orchestra and amplified soprano, the recording of which won a Grammy for Best Contemporary Composition in 2008; Symphony No. 3: Circus Maximus (2004), scored simultaneously for wind orchestra and a multitude of wind ensembles; and Symphony No. 2 (2001 Pulitzer Prize in Music.) Other important scores include String Quartet (1995: Grammy Award, Best Contemporary Composition); Symphony No. 1 (1991: Grawemeyer Award); the opera The Ghosts of Versailles (Metropolitan Opera commission, 1991); and the Clarinet Concerto (1977). The Houston Symphony Orchestra commissioned Corigliano to create a new orchestral version of Stomp which premieres in fall 2015.

In 2015 Los Angeles Opera received wide acclaim for their stunning new production of The Ghosts of Versailles, conducted by James Conlon, staged by Tony Award-winning director Darko Tresnjac and starring Patricia Racette, Christopher Maltman and Patti LuPone.

Corigliano’s music is performed widely on North American and international stages. In recent years his music has been featured in performances throughout the US and Europe, Caracas, Melbourne, Shanghai, Beijing, Tokyo, Krakow, Toronto, Bosnia, and beyond.

Corigliano serves on the composition faculty at the Juilliard School of Music and holds the position of Distinguished Professor of Music at Lehman College, City University of New York, which has established a scholarship in his name. His music is published exclusively by G. Schirmer, Inc.


Select Articles and Books Available at UBC Library

Bergman, E. (2013). Of Rage and Remembrance, Music and Memory: The Work of Mourning in John Corigliano’s Symphony No. 1 and Choral Chaconne. American Music, 31(3), 340-361. doi:10.5406/americanmusic.31.3.0340 [Link]

Renthan, C. (2013). “History as it should have been”: Haunts of the historical sublime in John Corigliano’s and William Hoffman’s the Ghosts of Versailles. Twentieth Century Music, 10(2), 249-272. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.library.ubc.ca/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/1586011204?accountid=14656 [Link]

Townsend, A. (2003). John Corigliano’s “A Dylan Thomas Trilogy” The Choral Journal, 44(4), 29-37. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/23554579 [Link]


UBC Library Research Guides

Music

DeProfundis

De Profundis: Speaking of Music
Thursday, October 29, 2015
Roy Barnett Recital Hall, Music Building (6361 Memorial Road)
$15 Adults | $10 students
Available online at tickets.ubc.ca or by phone at 604.822.2697 or in-person at the Chan Centre Ticket Office

 

In advance of the De Profundis performance, the Library chatted with Dr. Terence Dawson (School of Music) and Dr. Gregory Mackie (Department of English) about the joint collaboration and inspiration behind the event.

Dr. Terence Dawson (School of Music)WITH DR. TERENCE DAWSON

What is inspiring about performing this piece given the context of the Wilde letters?

Dr. Dawson: The inspiration in performing the piece comes from the necessity to immerse oneself in Wilde’s desperate situation. This situation led [Oscar] Wilde to pen the words of his letter to Lord Alfred Douglas. One can only hope that Wilde’s experience of intense sufferings were somewhat eased by his expressions of sorrow, loss, madness and even hopefulness. His physical situation, which was his “plank bed, loathsome food, hard ropes, harsh orders, dreadful dress, silence, solitude and shame…”, he tried to transform into a “spiritual experience” and a “spiritualising of the soul”. Perhaps this alone saved him from insanity. 

How did the collaboration with Dr. Gregory Mackie arise?

I wanted to hear Greg’s opinions as a Wildean scholar who would shed some light on this journey. I read of the UBC Library acquisitions of Wilde manuscripts and it was as though Wilde himself dropped this opportunity right in front of me at the time I was preparing for my first performance of the work in March 2015. The panel discussion was a natural fit, as was the participation of my colleague in the School of Music, David Metzer.

What would you like the audience to walk away with at the conclusion of this performance?

I hope the audience will understand that Rzewski’s expressive music is driven by Wilde’s words. The fusion of the two elements of music and text is much like the pairing of Schubert and Goethe; one cannot imagine a more perfect union. Performing the work is a journey for me as a pianist, and I hope the audience will walk away having felt like they have experienced a kind of journey themselves.

Dr. Gregory Mackie (English)WITH DR. GREGORY MACKIE

How do Oscar Wilde’s letters during his imprisonment shed light into his life as an unconventional playright/author?

Dr. Mackie: De Profundis is actually one long (very long) letter. The title (“out of the depths”) was added by Wilde’s literary executor after the writer’s death. Wilde actually called it “Epistola: In Carcere et Vinculis” (Letter from Prison and in Chains). It’s his most autobiographical work, by far, and it’s largely the source of the legend of Wilde as the suffering martyr – a fatally misunderstood champion of art and beauty. It gives us a lot of information about Wilde’s life during the years leading up to his scandalous downfall in the trials of 1895. Wilde wrote it to Lord Alfred Douglas, his sometime lover. Douglas had goaded Wilde into launching the libel suit that ended in spectacular failure with Wilde being imprisoned for “gross indecency”- basically homosexuality.

How much does the letter provide a glimpse of the constraints of Victorian conceptions about homosexuality?

The letter doesn’t have all that much to say, specifically, about Victorian conceptions of homosexuality — it alludes to these things more indirectly, and instead offers up a more universal condemnation of injustice and oppression. It’s a very emotive, philosophical, and expressive piece, because Wilde is trying to make meaning from his abject humiliation and suffering – to extract something from the wreck of his life. The conditions under which it was written are also mind-blowing: Wilde was permitted to write only a certain amount per day over several weeks, and he demonstrates total recall of a great number of literary works, including his own.

musical notes

Interested in music books, CDs and scores?

Stop by the Dodson Room in the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Tuesday, November 25 for the Library’s annual music book sale. 

Items priced from 25 cents to $1. 

Contact Kevin Madill, Music Librarian, for any questions. 

 

*Cover image from Parthenia, composed by William Byrd (M2.6.H2 B9 1613A).

 

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