Gracias a la Vida Project

Music provided sonic support for the world during 2020, and it is helping us move into a new year. For Toronto and Vancouver– based singer-songwriter, Gisun, this arrives via The Gracias a la Vida Project – a collaborative, philanthropic music initiative crossing an array of countries and communities. Today, Gisun launches the project with the release of Gracias a la Vida (thanks to life) – a special cover of Chilean singer Violeta Parra’s iconic 1966 song. Produced with friends and former colleagues from her time at the New School and beyond, Gisun gathered a diverse ensemble of five vocalists to create a unique take, each person contributing a verse with their own flair. The project is partnering with Music Heals is to bring attention to the importance of music therapy, where proceeds of the song will be donated to support their work and to encourage public involvement.

“Despite such a hard year, for all of us around the globe, we have been given the gift of family and togetherness during a time where plague has riddled us with separation and loneliness. It brings such happiness to be able to sing the words gracias a la vida, as we are grateful that it has given us a united family. This is a time where gratefulness can really help us heal, spiritually and physically. Through re-connectivity with others and ourselves, we have regained a deeper appreciation for community, family, and friends,” says the ensemble on The Gracias a la Vida Project. “Gracias a la Vida is an interesting song, because it stands in the midst of forking paths. On one hand, this song has become a global song of humanism and of hope. But on the other, this is the goodbye letter of songwriter Violeta Parra to the world. Being able to expand on the possibilities of collaborating with musicians from around the world has been a shining light.”

The Gracias a la Vida Project was developed in the early stages of the pandemic as Gisun reflected on daily gratitude. Throughout this very transformational year, she especially connected with the Mercedes Sosa version (Homenaje a Violeta Parra) of Gracias a la Vida. As it is one of the most widely covered Latin songs to date, Gisun brought an incredible team of artists, all within the Latin American Diaspora, to bring an array of styles and backgrounds into the fold; Montreal, Quebec’s Ada Lea, Italian-Congolese artist, Sans Soucis, and two artists based in New York: Bianca Muñiz, Joy Morales, and Guayaquil, Ecuador-based, Luz Pinos. In addition, guitarists, Stephen Orr and Alper Tuzcu, perform on the track.

Canadian singer-songwriter Gisun is influenced by her Uruguayan background and South Korean roots to showcase her own style of Latin and soul-inspired music. Her songs weave together stories that reflect distinct chapters and stages of life. Since 2017, she has released three EPs: Suspiras, Partes, and Fin, in collaboration with musicians and sound engineers in New York, Spain, Toronto, and Vancouver. Currently, Gisun is working on her first full-length album with musicians from all over the world.

The video was produced by Rodrigo Ferrat, compiling performance videos independently filmed by each artist. With an aim to reach a global audience, particularly connecting with Latin American communities, the music video includes closed captions in English, French, Italian, and Portuguese.

Music Heals increases access to music therapy for patients in children’s hospitals, seniors centres, palliative care, AIDS & HIV programs, at-risk youth, rehabilitation, and bereavement support. To date Music Heals has funded over 32,000 music therapy sessions. You can learn more about Music Heals and support the organization by donating or getting involved at musicheals.ca.

Jason Camp and the Posers presents: an extravaganza of sights, sounds ,and songs for a severely severed socialite society or something in association with Begelco.tm or something

In the depths of the great potluck ban of 2020, Jason Camp and The Posers recorded a live basement session on Haida Gwaii. Showcasing some new songs on a boring afternoon, some of the lost chronicles of Jonny Begel and his quest to return to his motherland, and some reminders that its good to focus on trying to smile as the world crumbles around you. So lean back and settle in, and join the Haida trio as they help you waste another afternoon.

Dreams2Reality Band

Dreams2Reality shares a Showcase BC Livestream event, “An Evening of Music” thanks to the generous funding from Creative BC. A collection of our favourites along with a preview of a few brand new originals that will be performed for the first time ever! Please Join us for some much needed ‘Live Music’.

Feature Documentary “4 Dancers’ Dreams” Directed/Produced/Narrated/Lyrics by Nancy J Lilley

4 Dancers’ Dreams is a Canadian Feature Documentary that is an inspiring story of 4 dancers’ dreams to go professional and the trials and tribulations it takes to get there. It not only teaches all about the dance world , it wows, entertains and inspires with spectacular dancing, while telling the intimate stories of these 4 friends. It was shot over 2 years as it followed these girls in their last year of dance school and where they ended up after graduation. We are taken into the rehearsals, around BC in local competitions, as well as Seattle, WA. at the Semi-Finals of the Youth America Grand Prix and Germany for the World Tap competition by the International Dance Organization. Principal photography of the film started in the fall of 2015 and was completed in June of 2017 with a re-edit done in 2020. In August, 2017 it had it’s World Premiere in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA and travelled all over North America and Europe including Italy and Spain in the film festival circuit of 2018/2019. It won many awards including Best Documentary Feature, Best Director, Editing, Narration, Cinematography, Ensemble Cast, a Scientific and Educational award and a Rising Star Award from the 2019 Canada International Film Festival. There is a lot of wonderful music to go along with the tap, ballet, lyrical, contemporary, hip hop, musical theatre dancing including 3 original songs written for the film.

As of November 8, 2020 “4 Dancers’ Dreams” will be streaming on Amazon Prime for one year in Canada and the USA only.

Bill Reid Gallery: Resurgence: Indigiqueer Identities — October 21, 2020 – January 24, 2021

The Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art presents the exhibition Resurgence: Indigiqueer Identities, curated by Jordana Luggi – which celebrates the deeply personal and profound work of four emerging artists – and their unique identities and stories as queer Indigenous people, on display October 21, 2020 – January 24, 2021. The featured works from artists Levi Nelson (Lil’wat First Nation), Jaz Whitford (Secwepemc), Morgan Whitehead (Plains Cree) and Raven John (Coast Salish/Sto:lo) explore the roles they see themselves playing in their communities today, influenced by their own rich experiences that reflect the diversity of Indigiqueer love and life. Delving into themes of Indigiqueer existence, resistance and resilience, Resurgence: Indigiqueer Identities showcases various mediums from large-scale portrait and abstract paintings, traditionally-inspired jewelry, clothing and accessories with a twist, and colourful and creative sculptural art. Supported by the BC Arts Council, and presented as part of the Chief James Hart Emerging Artist Program.

Admission details and information at: billreidgallery.ca