An exquisite intersection of my favourite things: Dear Life at the NAC Orchestra

by DaniGirl on September 13, 2015 · 0 comments

in Life in Ottawa

You might remember that I had the chance to see the debut performance of the National Art Centre Orchestra’s new concert master Alexander Shelley last spring. I was intrigued and charmed by his playfulness and joie de vivre, and felt a curious connection with him that made me want to follow his career with the NAC Orchestra.

Dear Life, Opening Night at the NAC

You can then imagine my delight when I was offered tickets for the upcoming opening night for the 2015 – 2016 season of the NACO coming up this week. It wasn’t until I started reading about the performance that I realized what an incredibly ambitious production it would be, and how it would weave several threads that have always been dear to my heart.

In addition to more traditional pieces by Mahler and Elgar, the opening night performance will feature the world premiere of a new score commissioned by the NAC and based on Dear Life, the short story by Alice Munro. It will be a multi-media piece featuring the photography of Larry Towell, the first Canadian Magnum photographer and known for his work featuring the same southern Ontario landscape that Alice Munro weaves into so many of her stories, the same southern Ontario landscape where I grew up, and which drew me in to Munro’s short stories in the first place.

So wait: a new concert master at the National Arts Centre, conducting a newly commissioned piece based on the work of one of my favourite authors, featuring world-class photography of images inspired by the people and places where I grew up? A photographer who published a body of work called “The World from My Front Porch”? How could I not be giddy with excitement over a performance like that?

Intrigued? You should be – I’ve only scratched the surface of the incredible ambition of this uber-Canadian performance. Read this article in the Citizen for more: NACO’s cutting edge: Dear Life leads the way into a new form of musical presentation . If you don’t mind the spoiler alert, you can even read the adaptation of Munro’s short story, Dear Life, in the program notes for the performance (opens as a PDF). And of course, tickets are available through the NAC website for performances on September 16 and 17.

Disclosure: the NAC is my longest-standing bloggy sponsor, and I was offered complimentary tickets to this performance. However, this post was predicated on nothing more than sheer giddy enthusiasm. The more I read about this performance, the more excited I get. I can’t wait!


{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: