Leonard Cohen Glenn Gould Award Ceremony – Another Prize, Another Gala

"I love to speak with Leonard"

Cowboy Junkies, John Prine, Adam Cohen, Adrienne Clarkson To Honour Leonard Cohen At Glenn Gould Prize Gala

The announcement that Leonard Cohen, the Canadian singer-songwriter, poet, novelist, icon, and ace award ceremony speaker, had won the Glen Gould Award was made public one year ago.1 At that time, Cohen sent this message thanking the Glenn Gould Foundation.

It is a great honour, sweetened by my love of the work of Glenn Gould and our collective appreciation of his invigorating and enduring presence in the world of music and imagination.

Now, Leonard Cohen will be recognized as the Ninth Laureate of The Glenn Gould Prize Monday, May 14, 2012 at 8:30 p.m. at what is being officially billed as The Glenn Gould Prize Gala Concert in Honour of Leonard Cohen, with the festivities to be held at Toronto’s Massey Hall.

The star studded [official adjective] event will be hosted by Colm Feore and will include musical performances by Cowboy Junkies, Adam Cohen, Serena Ryder, folk singer Basia Bulat, award-winning country singer/songwriters John Prine, James McMurtry, Jimmie Dale Gilmore; and poetry readings by Gordon Pinsent with Greg Keelor (Blue Rodeo) and Travis Good (the Sadies). Former Governor General and long-time Cohen friend, The Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson will also deliver a spoken tribute. Prior to the Gala Concert, a celebratory dinner will be hosted at the newly renovated Arcadian Court.

Tickets to this bash go on sale to the general public on April 12 at 11:00 a.m. (Details below)

The Glenn Gould Prize & Leonard Cohen

The following is taken directly from the press release:

The Glenn Gould Prize, valued at $50,000 (CDN), has been referred to as “The Nobel Prize of the Arts” and is awarded biennially to a living individual for a unique lifetime contribution that has enriched the human condition through the arts.  After accepting his Prize, Mr. Cohen will present The City of Toronto Glenn Gould Protégé Prize of $15,000 (CDN) to an outstanding young artist of his choice.

A master songwriter, musician, poet, novelist and visual artist, Leonard Cohen’s stunning body of original work has touched the lives of millions with a career spanning six decades. His dual careers in music and literature have continued fueling each other over the decades – his songs revealing a literary richness rare in the world of popular music, and his poetry and prose informed by an intense musicality.  Cohen’s Book of Longing (2006), a collection of prose, poetry and drawings, was the first book of poetry to reach the top of Canada’s bestsellers’ lists, and formed the basis of a memorable musical and theatre collaboration with composer Philip Glass.

 Leonard Cohen is one of the most covered artists alive today, influencing generations of songwriters, and his music has earned the accolades of other artists in tribute albums in France, Norway, Canada, Spain, the Czech Republic, South Africa, and the United States. “Hallelujah”, one of Cohen’s best-known and best-loved songs has been covered by over 150 artists including Willie Nelson and Bono.  His music has been extensively featured in films and on television.  Numerous documentaries, awards, and tribute albums acknowledge the far-reaching contribution Cohen has made to music.  He continues to refine and deepen his art, and as a musician he is constantly exploring new territory.

 Ticket Info

Tickets to The Glenn Gould Prize Gala Concert in Honour of Leonard Cohen go on sale to the general public on April 12 at 11:00 a.m. and are available by calling 416- 872-4255 or online at masseyhall.com or roythomson.com. Proceeds from the gala concert support the ongoing work of The Glenn Gould Foundation.

 Prior to the Gala Concert, a celebratory dinner will be hosted at the newly renovated Arcadian Court.  Tickets are available online at vipgouldprize.eventbrite.ca or by calling 416-962-6200.

 Glenn Gould 80th Birthday Celebration

The Glenn Gould Prize Gala Concert and Dinner preface the 80th anniversary of Glenn Gould’s birth on September 25, 2012, which will be marked by major commemorative events across Canada and around the world honouring this Canadian icon’s enduring contribution to music and global culture.

 The Glenn Gould Foundation honours Glenn Gould’s spirit and legacy by celebrating brilliance, promoting creativity and transforming lives through the power of music and the arts with the Foundation’s signature activities, including The Glenn Gould Prize. The international award is presented biennially to a living luminary who has made a unique lifetime contribution through the arts.  The Foundation seeks to use the prize to stimulate projects of social impact and significance, as is reflected in its motto: From Celebration to Inspiration to Transformation.  Nominations for the prize are made by the general public and a laureate is subsequently chosen by an international panel of judges who convene in Toronto for deliberations.  A tribute to Glenn Gould’s artistry and his multifaceted contributions to culture, the prize promotes the vital connection between artistic excellence and the transformation of lives.  Past laureates include Dr. José Antonio Abreu (2008), founder of El Sistema, Venezuela’s free music education program for children and youth, Pierre Boulez (2002), Oscar Peterson (1993) and Yo-Yo Ma (1999).  For more information on the foundation, prize and laureates visit www.glenngould.ca .

DrHGuy Editorial Note: In honour of the intensely Canadian flavour of  this story and because, heck, some of my best friends are Canadian, I am making a conscious, vigourous effort to rigourously defer to the spelling favoured by our neighbour to the north when writing about the Glenn Gould Prize.  Toward this end, I have doubled this blog’s usual order of the letter “u” and also increased our reserve of doubled consonants. In all candour, it may be gruelling to change my lifelong spelling behaviour, and I can only hope that the inevitable errors do not give more than meagre offence or cause any nationalistic sabre rattling.  The results should be marvellous – or macabre. In any case, it will be a labour of love.

Credit Due Department: In the photo atop this post, the sculpture of Glenn Gould, located outside of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Studios on Front Street in Toronto, is by Ruth Abernethy. The image of Leonard Cohen is from the cover art of his Old Ideas album and is based on a photo by Kezban Özcan. The Glenn Gould prize statue, displayed halfway through the post, is also by Ruth Abernethy; it was found on the Glenn Gould Foundation site.

  1. See Leonard Cohen Wins Glenn Gould Prize []

3 responses to “Leonard Cohen Glenn Gould Award Ceremony – Another Prize, Another Gala

  1. You can go aboot your business comfortably – as you’ll find your Canuck friends particularly forgiving at this time – due, perhaps, to a number of factors, including: the start of the Stanley Cup (ice-hockey) playoffs is only days off; the season of snow will soon be over – throughout most of the land; there are new recipe variations emerging regularly for poutine.

    Write on!

    • This proud Canadian applauds and appreciates your inimitable editorial effort to honour Leonard Cohen and Glenn Gould, two Canadian icons. What irks me, is anyone tacking on a sports description to the Stanley Cup. The Stanley Cup is the Stanley Cup. And even more egregious to this proud Canadian, hockey is hockey, not a hyphenated anything else, just hockey, eh.

  2. Coco Éclair

    One thing’s for certain though; ‘troubadour’ is spelled the same way everywhere, and something with which I’m sure all fans of this blog agree – never has there been a more deserving recipient of the Glenn Gould Prize than our favourite troubadour, Leonard Cohen.