NEWS RELEASE - Tuesday, October 30, 2018
Toronto, ON – Project Bookmark Canada is the only national, site-specific literary exhibit in the world. Board President Don Oravec is pleased to announce the production of four Bookmarks that will mark significant Canadian anniversaries with a project entitled, Commemorating Canada with Bookmarks on the CanLit Trail. Unveiled at public events in 2018 and 2019, a total of eight panels, four in French and four in English, will present writing from Jean Little, Michel Tremblay, Danny Schur with Rick Chafe, and Gregory Scofield, all acclaimed Canadian authors setting their imagined scenes in exact locations: Toronto, Montréal, Winnipeg and Batoche. “As visitors are reading these commemorative Bookmarks,” says Oravec, “they will learn about Canadian history while discovering literary works.” This project has been made possible in part by the Government of Canada with financial assistance from the Commemorate Canada Program of the Department of Canadian Heritage.
The first anniversary Bookmark will mark the 100th anniversary of the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918, with an excerpt from Jean Little's If I Die Before I Wake, The Flu Epidemic Diary of Fiona Macgregor (Scholastic Canada, 2007), a diary entry dated December 31, 1918, and set in Toronto, Ontario.
The 50th anniversary of the Parliament of Canada's passing of Bill C150, which included the decriminalization of homosexuality, on May 14, 1969, will be commemorated with an excerpt from Michel Tremblay's novel Le coeur decouvert (Lemeac, 1986), for a scene set in Montréal, Quebec. First published in English translation by Sheila Fischman under the title The Heart Laid Bare (McClelland & Stewart, 1989), the book was reissued by Talonbooks, in 2002.
The 100th anniversary of the Winnipeg General Strike of May 15, 1919, will be marked with a scene from Strike!, a musical by Danny Schur and Rick Chafe (Playwrights Canada Press, The Canadian Drama Publisher, 2007), set in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
The final Bookmark in the project will celebrate the 175th anniversary of the birth of Louis Riel on October 22, 1844, with “The Sewing Circle,” a poem from Gregory Scofield's Louis Riel: The Heretic Poems (Nightwood Editions/Gabriel Dumont Institute, 2011), set in Batoche, Saskatchewan.
Founded by writer Miranda Hill in 2007, the Bookmarks —21 and counting! — form a nation-wide trail of the country’s literature. Visitors are encouraged to read their way across Canada, online and in person. A launching place for conversation, collaboration and learning, the Bookmarks provide a unique reading experience and a deeper understanding of the country and its people. For updates about the four Bookmarks commemorating significant Canadian anniversaries, and others also in development, visit www.projectbookmarkcanada.ca.
Laurie Murphy, Project Bookmark Canada Executive Director
(647) 646 – 2622
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