Archive for February 2011
two songs.one take. a new session every wednesday watch them here “Small Town Sessions is a project aimed to celebrate the incredible artistic energy that is fostered by a small place, like Charlottetown. It isn’t always natural talent that creates wonderful artwork but the community and environment that nurtures it,” -Becka Viau for more info visit here this town is small would like to acknowledge the support of: PEI Community Cultural Partnership Program of the Tourism, Culture and Libraries Division of the P.E.I. Government, and the Island Media Arts Coop for their support towards this project.
written by Shona Pottinger
When approached by this town is small to write up a little ditty about music therapy, I was excited and nervous at the same time. I get the question “What is music therapy?” all the time – yet still don’t feel I have a great answer for people.
Unfortunately for me, it is a profession that is difficult to explain with words or a written definition. It is much easier to explain when you witness it.
That being said, I will start with the old stand-by definition found on the Canadian Association of Music Therapy’s website:
“Music therapy is the skillful use of music and musical elements by an accredited music therapist to promote, maintain, and restore mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual health. Music has nonverbal, creative, structural, and emotional qualities. These are used in the therapeutic relationship to facilitate contact, interaction, self-awareness, learning, self-expression, communication, and personal development.”
Say what?? I know. You begin to get a vague idea about what it is in a verbal definition. Most people, after hearing my short form definition, say something along the lines of “Yeah, music does make you feel good!” or “That makes sense…music is great for everyone. But what do you actually do?”
Hopefully I can shed a little light by sharing why I chose this fairly unknown profession to start with. It happened when I was trying to decide where to go after high school. Initially, I wanted to be a veterinarian as I have a great love of animals and hate seeing them suffer. However, that idea was shot down very quickly once I realized just how much I disliked science and how I did not do well in those courses.
To make a longer story shorter, I felt that I somehow had to use my talent in music throughout my life. Having been taught music from the ripe age of 4, I had a strong bond of love and respect for all things musical. This led me to discover music therapy at the suggestion of my piano teacher. She had heard tidbits on the profession over the years, and knowing my caring and helpful personality, suggested I do a little research.
Wow. What a beautiful way to be able to help people! Not only do I use my creative art form of music in my work, but it actually helps people. Imagine.
My client base ranges from special needs (autism, cerebral palsy, Downs Syndrome, etc.) to dementia, depression, anxiety, traumatic brain injury, pregnant youth, and troubled youth. These are not the limits of music therapy. There are many other venues that music therapy can be used with, but these are the few that I currently work in.
With each client, what I do with music varies. The best I feel I can explain it to you is to use a specific example.
With dementia or Alzheimer’s patients, the need of music is great as music is apparently the final “language” humans tend to lose the ability of in the brain. Many patients become non-verbal as the disease progresses. However, I have come across clients that, although being non-verbal in daily conversation, will start to sing when a song they can still recall is presented during therapy. Pretty cool, eh? I cried the first time this happened.
I hope this sheds a light for you, the reader, on the small but growing field of music therapy. And why I do what I do. All because I am able to improve lives with music.
Written By Becka Viau
The scope of this designation was announced today, and I have to say there is a lot happening in a very short amount of time. The Cultural Capital program will kick off during the ECMA awards and conference week in April and artists, organizers, and community partners will be busy busy busy until January 2012.
Some exciting highlights that were announced this morning are:
1. Cultural Captial Launch – A Sound Celebration
The East Coast Music Association (ECMA) in partnership with the City
of Charlottetown – a designated Cultural Capital of Canada – Symphony Nova Scotia, and Music PEI will
present ‘A Sound Celebration’ to officially kick-off East Coast Music Week 2011 and formally launch the
2011 Cultural Capital of Canada programming.
‘A Sound Celebration’ will feature solo and collaborative performances by Symphony Nova Scotia under
Music Director Bernhard Gueller and Resident Conductor Martin MacDonald, and Prince Edward Island
artists Jenn Grant, Meaghan Blanchard, Paper Lions, Richard Wood and Vishtèn.
The concert will take place in the Confederation Centre of the Arts’ Homburg Theatre on Thursday, April 14
at 8:00pm. Tickets are available for purchase at the Confederation Centre’s box office or online at
www.confederationcentre.com. A limited amount is also available via ticketpro.ca.
*** a great part of this initiative is that the artists working with Symphony Nova Scotia will have charts of their music developed that can translate to other symphonies around the world.
2. ECMA Arts Linkages Program -Art @ Night - Supported by the Cultural Capital Designation, and IMAC
This program will showcase artwork by local and Maritime multi-media artists in vacant storefront windows
around downtown Charlottetown during evening hours. Local and Maritime multimedia artworks will be
presented for free to the public in various storefront windows. To view the call for submissions please visit here.
3. Pen & Inkling Festival and other Literary Events
Coordinated by the Prince Edward Island Writers’ Guild, a series of events and initiatives celebrating and
supporting literary arts in the Cultural Capital: Introduction of French student submissions accepted for the
Island Literary Awards; an extensive Writers in Schools program connecting published Island authors with
students in the two Charlottetown families of schools (30 school visits); and a compelling Literary event,
the Pen & Inkling Festival, featuring workshops, readings, the Island Literary Awards, songwriters’ circle,
lectures, book launches, exhibits, and guest reading and lecture by one of Canada’s leading Native authors.
(September 30 – October 2, 2011)
4. Film & Interactive Digital Media Productions – “Through my Eyes” Legacy Series
In partnership with the Island Media Arts Co-op, the Island Film Factory and the Interactive Media Alliance,
the City’s Cultural Capital of Canada programming will support production of five new short film and
interactive digital media works from local creators, featuring the designation theme and reflecting
Charlottetown. These works will become lasting documents of Charlottetown’s cultural identity and
creativity. The selected projects will be announced at the Island Media Arts Festival in May, and presented
at a special screening event in the fall – potentially as an opening or closing event to the Pen & Inkling
5. Young Company!! – Confederation Centre
A brand new Young Company production, The Talking Stick, respectfully telling our First Peoples’ stories, using music, dance and spoken word to remind all people of the great diversity and surprising commonalities of our First Nations communities. Aboriginal and First Nations students from every province and territory are invited to audition for the twelve roles with the expectation that P.E.I. students will show great interest and pride in the production.
This is a great opportunity to showcase the amazing cultural community in Charlottetown and to build sustainable partnerships and initiatives that will continue to benefit Island artists in the future. Exciting.
written by Becka Viau
I thought it would be a nice thing for me .. to help keep all of these calls for artwork straight … and to share with the small town followers what I have gathered… I know there are more but here is a start!
here are some exciting initiatives on PEI and in the Maritimes that are looking to show some Art or give you space to make Art and sometimes even pay you to make Art
Island Poems: A collaborative art project (PEI)- Deadline to sign up for the challenge, Midnight FEB 18th
Island Media Arts Festival (PEI)- Submission deadline is March 1st, 2011 (post-marked by March 1st, 2011)
“Art @ Night” ECMA Arts Linkages Program (PEI) – Submission Deadline March 30th
Nocturne @ Night, Call for independent projects (NS) – Submission Deadline March 14, 2011
Celebration of Craft 2011 (PEI) – Submission Deadline Feb 28 2011
International Women’s Day Centenary Show! (PEI ONLY) – Submission Deadline Feb 28 2011
“Cute as a …” Call for submissions! (PEI) – Submission Deadline Feb 25th 2011
The 2011 Herman Voaden Playwriting Competition – (National) – Submission Deadline April 15 2011
The Roberts Street Social Centre Residency Program (NS) – Proposal Deadline March 1st (for reals)