This Month in Arts History
1926: Playwright James Reaney was born in Easthope,
near Stratford, Ontario.
1945: Novelist Victor-Lťvy Beaulieu was born in Saint-Paul-de-la-Croix, Quebec. He won a Governor Generalís Literary Award (French fiction) in 1974 for Don Quichotte de la dťmanche.
1995: Poet Earle Birney died in Toronto. He won two Governor Generalís Literary Awards (poetry or drama): for David and Other Poems in 1942, and for Now is Time in 1945.
1895: Painter Antoine Plamondon died in Neuville, Quebec. He specialized in portraits of the bourgeoisie and copies of religious works.
2000: Soprano Isabel Bayrakdarian won First Prize in the international Operalia competition.
2000: Videographer and master story-teller Vera Frenkel received the Canada Councilís Bell Canada Award in Video Art.
1969: Painter Frederick Varley died in Toronto. Romantic and independent, he was known as the "gypsy" of the Group of Seven.
1959: Pianist Angela Cheng was born in Hong Kong, moving to Edmonton as a child. She often performs with her husband Alvin Chow and her brother Alan Cheng.
1924: Haida chief and master artist Charles Edenshaw died in Masset, British Columbia. His artistry and traditional knowledge first came to the attention of anthropologists and museum collectors in the 1890s. He worked in wood, argillite and precious metals.
1925: Composer Harry Somers, C.C., was born in Toronto. His music was performed around the world and he composed major scores for stage, concert hall, film, radio and television. He was a founding member of the Canadian League of Composers.
1934: Jazz pianist Oliver Jones, O.C., was born in Montreal. Trained exclusively in classical piano, he turned later to jazz, and played in the Festival international de jazz de Montrťal every year from 1981 to 1999, opening and closing the festival seven times. He also toured widely in Canada, Europe, Africa and the Caribbean.
1943: Novelist Michael Ondaatje was born in Colombo, Sri Lanka. In 1992 his novel The English Patient won the Governor Generalís Literary Award (fiction) and shared the UKís Booker Prize.
1985: The Calgary Centre for the Performing Arts opened with a gala performance featuring Brian Macdonaldís choreography for R. Murray Schaferís composition The Garden of the Heart.
1901: Dance teacher and choreographer Gweneth Lloyd was born in Eccles, England. A co-founder of the Winnipeg Ballet Club in 1939, she helped transform it into the Royal Winnipeg Ballet.
2005: English horn player Harry Freedman, O.C., died in Toronto. After 25 years (1946-71) playing with the Toronto Symphony, he turned to composition, writing , in addition to orchestral works, music for film, television and theatre. He received three commissions to write full-length scores for the Royal Winnipeg Ballet.
1939: Dancer and choreographer David Earle was born in Toronto. Co-founder of the Toronto Dance Theatre in 1968 and of the Dance theatre David Earle in Guelph, Ontario in 1996, he has choreographed over 130 works. In 2006 he won the Canada Councilís Walter Carsen Prize for Excellence in the Performing Arts.
1963: The Canada Council received a gift of $600,000 from the Molson Foundation to endow two annual prizes to persons who, through their work in the arts, humanities or social sciences, have enriched the cultural or intellectual heritage of the nation.
1976: The first full-scale retrospective exhibition of the work of Jack Bush opened at the Art Gallery of Ontario.
1934: Poet, novelist and singer/songwriter Leonard
Cohen, C.C., was born in Montreal. His reputation as a poet was made with
the publication of The Spice Box of Earth (1961), as a novelist with The
Favourite Game (1963) and Beautiful Losers (1966). He moved to the USA in
1967, and became acclaimed as a singer and songwriter.
1984: Jon Kimura Parker of Burnaby, B.C., won the prestigious Leeds International Piano Competition in the UK in a televised performance.
1835: Thomas Chandler Haliburton first presented the character of Sam Slick in a series of sketches in the newspaper The Novascotian.
1904: William Goodridge Roberts was born in Barbados of a Canadian literary family and grew up in New Brunswick. A painter of landscape, figures and still life, he was an official war artist in England, 1943-45.
2000: Alexander Brott handed over the baton of the McGill Chamber Orchestra to his son, Boris Brott.
1946: Playwright John Gray was born in Ottawa. His celebrated play, Billy Bishop Goes to War, scrutinizes the ace pilotís rise to heroic stature.
1924: Novelist Josef Skvorecky was born in Nachod, Czechoslovakia. He won the Governor Generalís Literary Award (fiction) in 1984 for The Engineer of Human Souls.
1959: The National Ballet School opened in Toronto. Celia Franca was the founder and Betty Oliphant its founding principal.
1952: The CBC Symphony Orchestra made its broadcasting debut under Geoffrey Waddington, playing the overture to Rossiniís La Cenerentola and Sibeliusís Symphony No. 3.
1944: Writer and soundpoet bpNichol was born in Vancouver. He won the Governor Generalís Literary Award (poetry or drama) in 1970 for four separately published works: Still Water ((Talonbooks), The True Eventual Story of Billy the Kid (Weed/Flower Press), Beach Head (Runcible Spoon Press) and The cosmic chef: an evening of concrete (Oberon Press).
2003: Tenor Ben Heppner delivered "a searing performance full of conviction and artistry" in the role of Tristan in the Metropolitan Operaís production of Tristan and Isolde in New York.
Donít stop here. Google this monthís featured artists to learn more about Canadian cultural history. And visit the Canada Councilís 50th anniversary web site atwww.50.canadacouncil.ca or the Historica Foundationís web site at www.histori.ca.
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