Saturday 24 June—4.00 p.m. Di Brandt read from her work. Here is a brief biography.
Di Brandt is the author and editor of more than a dozen books of poetry, fiction, creative essays and literary criticism. She has received numerous recognitions and prizes for her writing, including the Gerald Lampert Award for “best first book of poetry in Canada” for her bestselling debut collection questions i asked my mother (which was recently re-issued in a 30th anniversary tribute edition with afterword by Tanis MacDonald); the McNally Robinson Manitoba Book of the Year Award for Agnes in the sky; the CAA National Poetry Prize for Jerusalem, beloved; the Foreword Gold Medal for Watermelon Syrup: A Novel (with Annie Jacobsen and Jane Finlay-Young), and the Gabrielle Roy Prize for “best book of literary criticism in Canada” for Wider Boundaries of Daring: The Modernist Impulse in Canadian Women’s Poetry (with Barbara Godard). Now You Care was shortlisted for the Griffin Poetry Prize, the Trillium Ontario Book of the Year, and the Pat Lowther Award.
Di Brandt’s collaborative multimedia works include Emily, the Way You Are, a one woman chamber opera about the life and works of Emily Carr, with composer Jana Skarecky; and Awakenings: Poetry and Music in Four Voices (with Dorothy Livesay, Rebecca Campbell and Carol Ann Weaver). Di Brandt has taught at five Canadian universities including the University of Alberta, the University of Windsor, Ontario, and Brandon University, Manitoba, where she held the first Canada Research Chair in the Creative Arts, and developed an innovative multimedia creative arts program that was emulated in new interdisciplinary programs across the country. She has given readings, lectures and workshops around the world, and held guest fellowships in Scotland, New York, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Austria and Japan. She currently lives in Winnipeg.
Two young cellists, Gillian and Rachel Young, played after the reading. Following this there was, of course, the usual finger food and drinks so that we could exchange ideas and experiences.