Category Archives: Essays

A Knave in the House of Cards

A meditation on dayjobs A long time ago I was an undergraduate, a university student fresh out of high school. At the time a summer job was indispensable to help me afford my life between September & May, living in … Continue reading

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Disturbance in the Force: a Natural Experiment with Audiences

With all the performers, musicians, artists social distancing at home, you might think that this is an opportunity, that they’d be busy singing, strumming, painting…. All that time to create, right? Yet it’s not what I hear on social media. … Continue reading

Posted in Books & Literature, Cinema, video & DVDs, Essays, Music and musicology, Opera, Personal ruminations & essays, Psychology and perception, University life | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Musical Gentrification

I don’t know about you, but I’ve got lots of time to think, to ponder questions old & new. One of my oldest questions is the conundrum of popularity in music. It’s a complicated phenomenon, and I’m not saying I … Continue reading

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Wordless chorus

This subject seems apt right now. The voices in this music have no words, which is a perfect expression for a time when we don’t know what’s to come. Of course we never do, but it’s especially noticeable when we’re … Continue reading

Posted in Cinema, video & DVDs, Essays, Music and musicology, Personal ruminations & essays, Popular music & culture | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Douglas Chambers – Stonyground

I heard today that Douglas Chambers passed away this past weekend, and that the cause of his passing was COVID-19. I sometimes make big long preambles when I’m avoiding something. I can’t deny this time that I’m avoiding several big … Continue reading

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Talking to Stacey about fearing fear: Choose Joy

When you have a toothache you go to the dentist. When you’re feeling troubled in spirit where do you go? At times in my life I’ve gone to a psychotherapist or to a church for solace. Live theatre & concerts … Continue reading

Posted in Essays, Food & Nutrition, Interviews, Music and musicology, Personal ruminations & essays, Psychology and perception, Spirituality & Religion | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Lenten Casualties

It’s the most perfect Lenten season I have ever seen. For those of you who aren’t deeply into the Christian calendar, Lent is a 40 day period before holy week, corresponding to Jesus’s own meditations in preparation for his Crucifixion, … Continue reading

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Robert Wilson and Turandot

I’ve been reading a bit about Robert Wilson in anticipation of the new Canadian Opera Company Turandot that is to launch the 2019-2020 season at the Four Seasons Centre, a co-production with Teatro Real & Lithuanian National Opera. Online pictures … Continue reading

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A reception experiment: Lucia last night

I remember from Psych 100 that one of the ways scientists learned about the brain was from what they called natural experiments.  In the war, sometimes a man would suffer a catastrophic wound to part of his head, allowing scientists … Continue reading

Posted in Essays, Psychology and perception, Reviews | 2 Comments

Pageants of Power

Whenever a new pair of presenters come out onto the stage at the Academy Awards, the pit band begins to play something suitable. Nobody does that when I walk into a room. I was thinking about this after reading some … Continue reading

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