These are interesting times, we can probably all agree on that. Isn't there always some spectacle to talk about at work, the bus stop, or the grocery store lineup? Positively, I remind myself that people are coming together to show support for each other and speak up for inclusiveness, equality and truth in record numbers, and that’s exciting. It’s also what #beBoldforChange is all about, the theme of this year’s International Women’s Day benefit concert.
Cantala is excited for the bold endeavour of the Penthelia Singers to bring together 5 Women’s choirs and Suba Sankaren from Toronto to show an act of solidarity and strength in a choral benefit concert for the Street Haven Women’s Center on International Women’s Day.
The Penthelia Singers are hosting and organizing this event and have invited the Cantala Womens Choir, the Echo Womens Choir, Lirit Women’s Chamber Choir, the Street Haven Women’s Choir and special guest Suba Sankaren to all preform solo works as well as mass choral numbers.
Special guest Suba Sankaren is a JUNO nominated world fusion vocalist and will conduct the two mass choir numbers, “Sankofa” (C. Wilson) and “Shaking the Tree” (Peter Gabriel and Youssou N’Dour). “Sankofa” is a powerful word which means to “Go, return and look”. It is represented by an image of a bird with its feet squarely looking forward but his head reaching backwards. To the Akan tribe in Ghana, Africa this powerful image reminds them that it is not taboo to reach back and get what is at risk of being left behind. This is an important message today as we strive to take care of those in our society that are in need and too often do get left behind. “Shaking the Tree” has been described as one of the most inspirational songs for women. It speaks to the women’s movement in Africa where men traditionally do not allow them much rights. Both of these pieces have powerful messages of hope, solidarity and strength and with over 100 women’s voices joining together this surely will be a moving part of the concert.
Cantala will present a short solo program including Canadian composer Eleanor Daley's "Rise Up my Love", R. Murray Schafer’s “Gamelan”, Hungarian composer Miklos Kocsar’s “Salve Regina”, and the Canadian folksong gem “Land of the Silver Birch” arranged by Finnish composers Olli Pohjola and Pentti Paalanen.
TIckets are “pay what you can” with the proceeds benefiting the Street Haven Women’s Center in Toronto. The concert takes place at Crescent School Auditorium on Wednesday March 8th, 730pm, Toronto. Come and #beBoldforChange with us!
To learn more about International Women’s Day and to learn about events near you in your city go to www.internationalwomensday.com.