The focus of this year’s Folksteps Music Conference, part of the 29th Annual Lunenburg Folk Harbour Festival, was African Nova Scotian Folk Traditions. Curated and organized by the brilliant poet Shauntay Grant shauntaygrant.com, the conference had a full house at Zion Lutheran Church. Speakers included writer/scholar George Elliot Clarke and storyteller Al Johnson.
I spoke about Portia White’s performance of spirituals and Reeny Smith iamreeny.com performed Portia’s signature song, Think on Me, and her own heartfelt composition, Dream.
Sylvia D. Hamilton & Shauntay Grant
Sylvia D. Hamilton & Reeny Smith
Shalan Joudry, Basma Kavanah & Sylvia D. Hamilton
A new book and readings
And I Alone Escaped to Tell You
The settlement of African peoples in Nova Scotia is a richly layered story encompassing many waves of settlement and diverse circumstances–from captives to ‘freedom runners’ who sailed north from the United States with hopes of establishing a new life. The poems in And I Alone Escaped to Tell You endeavour to give these historical events a human voice, blending documentary material, memory, experience and imagination to evoke the lives of these early Black Nova Scotians and of the generations that followed. This collection is a moving meditation on the place of African-descended people in the Canadian story and on the threads connecting all of us to the African diaspora. Published by Gaspereau Press.
The BookMark, Spring Garden & South Park, Halifax
ANNAPOLIS ROYAL, NS
4 June at 7:00 P.M.
Sylvia Hamilton, Shalan Joudry and Georgette LeBlanc will be reading from their latest poetry collections at the ARTsPLACE Gallery, 396 St. George Street.
5 June at 7:00 P.M.
Sylvia Hamilton, Shalan Joudry and Basma Kavanagh will be reading from their latest poetry collections at Il Dolce far Niente, 16 Elm Street.