The Woods Are Burning
Sunday, October 6
4 to 6:30 pm
About the event
In The Woods Are Burning, novelist and poet Anne Michaels and singer-songwriter David Sereda lead a stellar ensemble to celebrate the life, art and passion of Tom Thomson.
Over a century ago, Thomson’s painting and spirit galvanized his fellow Canadian artists, many of whom would later become the Group of Seven. Thomson, the Group of Seven and their contemporaries would change the way we see our country.
The Woods are Burning follows Thomson’s journey his childhood singing in the church choir, wandering the woods and fishing in the bay, to his years in Toronto with the friends who would become the Group of Seven, and north to Algonquin Park, where he finds his true calling as an artist. The intricate weaving of spoken word and songs will show audiences a side of Thomson rarely discussed: joyous, yearning, restless, humble, light-hearted and very aware of his own mortality.
Above all, The Woods Are Burning strives to interpret and understand the passion which drove Thomson to create paintings that continue to captivate audiences around the world.
To attend this event please RSVP below.
“Tom did not romanticize the northern landscape. He took it in, as one eats when one is starving, or drinks when one is parched. In the last years of his short life, each sketch was a draining of the glass. He could not have known he had no time left, but he painted as if he knew.” – text from “The Woods Are Burning” by Anne Michaels
“These songs are responses to Tom the man, the guy who loved fishing, who lived to paint but hated talking about painting, who loved singing. He was made into both hero and martyr and controversy hangs over his puzzling death: this also pumps up the legend status. But here’s the true mystery to me: how did Tom Thomson paint those brilliant works in the span of five years?” – David Sereda
The ensemble features readings by Anne Michaels, and music by David Sereda (piano and vocals), Keira McArthur (cello and vocals), Sandra Swannell (violin and vocals), Terry Young (mandolin and vocals) and Tyler Wagler (bass and vocals).
This two-act performance begins in front of the Thomson Shack (weather permitting) and, as the autumn evening falls, continues for the second act in Gallery 8.