Daily Archives: May 4, 2002


Found quoted in those helpful little blurbs Google comes up with to show you it’s found your search criteria:


Ah. The humour of it.


Oh, isn’t that nice… CBC Radio Two is playing Enya’s May It Be from The Lord of the Rings soundtrack.

Howard Shore is Canadian!? The host must be joking.

After a quick Google search: Dear gods. It’s true. He’s Torontonian. We’ll forgive him, though, and concentrate on his Canadian-ness.


I had the most amazing night out yestereve!

The Mediaeval Baebes have just blown my concert standards way out of the water. From the first moment when the lights dimmed and their silvery shapes ghosted out onto the stage to stand at a semi-circle of microphones twisted with vines, and the repeated eerie wordless call that a single voice begins to cry out in the darkness to open the show with Spiriti, to the very end where we were still standing on out feet, applauding and crying out for more as the house lights came up, the audience was entranced. Dorothy Carter, the mediaeval music specialist who inspired Baebes founder Katharine Blake to grab a gang of friends and set some mediaeval texts to music, had a pile of zithers, dulcimers, psalteries and hurdy-gurdys around her, and received what was possibly the evening’s largest single collection of whistles, cheers and applause (and rightly so!). The fantastic drummer has my husband trying to find room for a full kit somewhwere; not a traditional kit, mind you, but more like three large bass drums set up around him with slightly different tones. My favourite effect: drawing a bass bow down gently along the edge of a cymbal. Spooky.

Eight women, wearing fantasty outfits thematically linked by colour, with sticks, tambourines, chanters, shakers and recorders. Ethereal voices. A drummer, a hammered dulcimer. A club of perhaps two hundred people, hanging on their every note.

What a fantastic night.

We had the best seats in the house – dead centre right behind another couple, the fruits of being the third party in line. We had terrific company too – this is the second concert I’ve been to with Dimitri, and he’s just too much fun. Maia and Gab and Marc were there as well, and I think we had an excellent blend of people to share ita ll with. We also met a wonderful new person by the name of Jenny, who scooted over at the intermission and asked if the seat in front of Marc was taken (it wasn’t; he’d been leaving room for the gentlmeman in the wheelchair to maneuver if necessary). She fit in just fine (both the chair and the group) and she seems darned familiar to everyone, although none of us can figure out why. She’s a native of Saskatchewan, here for school (studying massage!) and although it turns out she’s been to the bookstore we work in once or twice, we all know that’s not why we know her. Hmmm… a mystery!

Curiously, I could understand certain songs better than I can with a CD and the lyrics in front of me. I’ve taken Middle English courses, and I’ve studied medieval French texts as well, and I’ve always had to read things aloud to “get” them. However, this was different somehow. Perhaps it was the immediacy of the sound, that crackling “live” quality that gets lost once you trap the sound with the recording process. Or, maybe it was just the electric energy they raised as soon as they reached their mikes, grounded (oh yes, you could see it), and began opening themselves up to something they very obviously enjoyed without shoving it at the audience. They allowed the audience to enjoy as well, to share, to discover. I have no patience with performers who are narcissistic and are there for their own self-gratification. As a performer myself, yes, there is an element of “I have to have fun”; if you’re not enjoying yourself, neither is your audience; they sense it. There are performers out there, though, who are so wrapped up in their own sound, their own presence, that they seem to be there for themselves and only themselves, which is such a cheat: your audience is there to share, and if you don’t pour yourself out to them, what do they have to give back to you? Performing is like a volleyball game; you serve, they return your serve, you pass it back to them… and each time the ball gets passed, it grows bigger, stronger, wilder, purer. A selfish performer is a performer I will not see again. Loreena McKennitt falls into the latter category, unfortunately. The first time I saw her during her Visit tour, she was phenomenal and gave the audience more than any performer I’d ever seen before. The second time I saw her, during her Mask & Mirror tour, she was self-absorbed. I still buy her albums, but I’ll probably not see her live.

The Mediaeval Baebes, I will see again. Frequently. Often, if possible.

Now, if I could just figure out how to raise that kind if spine-tinging, hair-prickling energy in ritual, I’ll be happy.


Congratulations to Hobbes, King of May 2002!

A native of Montreal has been declared Mr. Pagan International! Hobbes, local �writer, storyteller, actor, charmer-extraordinaire� (as well as an MPRC volunteer) has been declared King of May 2002 by the votes of hundreds of Pagans worldwide. We at Owls’ Court (well, that would be me and Maggie-cat on my lap) wish to extend our heartfelt best wishes to the newly crowned King of the May, and hope that his reign brings abundance, honour and inspiration to our community. We are blessed by his friendship.

To see the photos of King Hobbes and the King�s Merry Men (as well as a link to the May Queen and her Handmaidens), just go to the Mr Pagan International site.

For personal commentary from the King, check out his web journal.

Gods bless the King!