Lost Islands: a reflection on personal geography and memory presented by the Cygnus Trio, with guests Arie van de Ven and Paul Hopkins
Sound, music, images, geography: all these concepts influence our memory. Think of a place from your childhood. What do you hear, what do you see? How can you describe this feeling of remembering the past? In a sense, the places we have made our homes and have now left are lost to us; we may be able to physically return, but our memories preserve it in a different way. Stories of islands which disappear after a first discovery or even after being inhabited for a time permeate Canadian folklore, from the Thousand Islands in the St. Lawrence to more isolated islands in the Great Lakes and beyond. The prevalence of these stories suggests a deep collective sorrow for remembered times and places which, once gone, are gone forever. The Cygnus Trio, in collaboration with composers with deep geographical ties, offers a program of music and poetry reflecting on this loss and the relationship between memory and location. The program features works by four Canadian composers, folk tunes and poetry. Anita Perry and Selwyn Redivo offer musical meditations upon the landscape of the Okanagan Valley, past home of brothers Ben (flute) and Jonathan (guitar), and the trio will premiere Ontario native Arie Van de ven’s Algoma Miniatures. The musical components of the program are tied together with literary reflections by W. B. Yeats, Jane Urquhart and Nancy Holmes, tying a deep sense of place to the remembrance of the past.
This August, with your support we are taking this program on the road to perform nine concerts starting in Montreal, passing through Ottawa and North Bay, performing throughout the Algoma Region and finishing in Gananoque. This program is not only a reflection on the themes of memory and geography but also an homage to the inspiring beauty of Canadian landscapes and the artistry of its people. We want to share our vision of these physical and emotional landscapes on tour and in our debut album.
We have some incredible collaborators involved in our project: Arie van de Ven who wrote the 'Algoma Miniatures' and actor Paul Hopkins who performs the poetry in this program. We are raising funds to cover the expenses of touring, which include: transportation (rental car), food and lodging, venue rental, artist fees, presentation materials, and recording costs.
You can follow our journey on our website www.thecygnustrio.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/thecygnustrio, and on Instagram @thecygnustrio
Risks and challenges
Our tour will take us to some very small towns in rural Ontario, areas that we have never performed in before. We are faced with the challenge of discovering venues and generating support for our performances. In addition, we are organizing all of this *ourselves*: no tour manager, no co-presenters, this will be entirely self-produced.
We know how much work this is, having already planned and performed a similar series in the summer of 2016. On top of dedicating a lot of energy to performing and rehearsing our concerts, we need to plan meals, drive, communicate with venues, and set up lodging, not to mention needing to find some time apart from each other to rest! Each of us has strong skills individually that help us make our projects possible. Jonathan is a strong communicator and networker, Erica keeps us organized and prepared, and Ben makes sure we take care of ourselves and others.
From past experience and through personal networks, we are prepared to overcome our challenges. Through calling and connecting with members in the communities we intend to visit, we have seen that our project is something that will be valued. We have arranged lodging and developed our itinerary through friends and professional communities.
The biggest risk for us is financial. We are relying on the support of donors and grass-roots networking to make this project possible, both for initial funding and for generating ticket sales.
Because of the work we've put into past performances there is a lot of interest already in the performances that will see us return to Montreal, and Gananoque. We are confident and determined that, with your support, we can make this successful.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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