For immediate release
(Ottawa, April 8, 2021)
The video “Gil’s Hootenanny 2021: Singing Together Apart”, a retrospective of highlights of past Hootenannies along with some exciting new songs, will be released on May 1st at 4pm at https://gilshootenanny.ca/.
Since the first Gil’s Hootenanny in 2010, this May Day event has featured outstanding Canadian musicians leading sold-out audiences in singing songs of hope and protest which celebrate the stories, struggles and victories of working people. With an introduction by singer-songwriter and Gil’s team member Arthur McGregor, “Gil’s Hootenanny 2021: Singing Together Apart” is a selection of some of the best of these performances from the Gil’s archives. Emphasizing sing-along songs, the video encourages viewers to sing along with the performers, as if they were attending an in-person Hootenanny.
Among the performers featured in the video are Maria Dunn, Tony Turner, Chris White and Eve Goldberg. Other musicians will be announced next week.
The video includes the Hootenanny Band and others from a sing-along workshop at the Ottawa Grassroots Festival and footage from a Gil’s in the Schools program which brings protest music to high school history classes.
Gil’s Hootenanny is inspired by the legacy of Gil Levine, who spent his life working for social justice and was the founding Director of Research at the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE). A great lover of folk music and an enthusiastic supporter of folk musicians, Gil believed in the collective power of song to bring people together to speak up and sing out for change.
In 2019, Gil’s Hootenanny created a 20-minute video to celebrate Gil’s vision of singing together for change and recognize the community of supporters who continue to keep his vision alive. The video, Voices for Change, captures the history, values and accomplishments that underpin Gil’s Hootenanny. It can be found at https://gilshootenanny.ca/.
Singing together has played a key role in helping people face adversity through the centuries. As folk legend Woody Guthrie said, “There’s several ways of saying what’s on your mind…One of the mainest ways is by singing.”
Stay safe and healthy; and stay tuned for further information.
613-729-7252 or 613-404-4553 (cell)