It’s a talk show. It’s a concert. It’s completely irreverent… in a good way.
Co-created by Indigenous Artists Marion Newman, Melody Courage & Yvette Nolan
Performed by Marion Newman & Melody Courage
Directed by Yvette Nolan
Musical Direction by Rosemary Thomson
Accompanied by string quartet and piano
Ten years after the release of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission report on Canada’s Indian Residential Schools, institutions across the country have, in varying ways, responded to the 94 calls for action therein. What kinds of change are we experiencing as individuals as a result of all this work? What opportunities, and what burdens, have we created as a result of this process?
Wreckonciliation is a musical response to the last decade of learning, striving, and failing to reckon with Canada’s colonial past. Mezzo soprano Marion Newman, of Kwagiulth and Stó:lō First Nations with English, Irish and Scottish heritage; Métis soprano Melody Courage, and director Yvette Nolan (Algonquin), have teamed up with Opera Kelowna for an evening that upends expectations and invites everyone to take up the joy, and the work, of building a better future together.
Where do we begin? With the well-known genre of a talk show, of course. For folks that have laughed and sung along with the likes of Jimmy Fallon, the performance will be familiar in its rhythm of banter, and playfulness. Underpinning the wit is an exploration of how traditional Indigenous musics can walk alongside operatic traditions in ways that might inspire us all.
ABOUT THE STORY
Marion Newman and Melody Courage take centre stage as co-hosts of the first episode of their cheeky new talk show, “Wreckonciliation.” With their (surprise) guests, they tackle issues of the day with wit and compassion. Together, they explore what ‘reconciliation’ has come to stand for, not only in terms of new learning and opportunities, but in sometimes officious, and occasionally unwelcome ways as well. They weave together the deeply serious and fully comical, and they break into song whenever the words are not enough.
ABOUT THE MUSIC
The show features well-loved, and soon-to-be classics, crafted by Ian Cusson, Gabriel Fauré, Marion Newman, Gustav Mahler, Yvette Nolan & Dean Burry, Jacques Offenbach, and many others. The music will cycle through elemental themes of water, fire, air, and earth as a means of musically grounding a conversation in the heart of what makes living possible for us all.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Everyone is welcome! This unique evening begins at the door: audience members are invited to visit art installations related to the performance throughout the Rotary Centre for the Arts. Prior to the performance, Artistic Director Rosemary Thomson will host a pre-show talk with invited guests. Following a welcome from Syilx/Okanagan artists, the performance will take place in the Mary Irwin Theatre. Music will be performed in languages of their composition and translations will be provided. Following our ‘talk show’ experience, guests are invited to join the company and the artists in the RCA atrium for discussion and celebration, complete with food from Kekuli Cafe!