This year is the tenth anniversary of the Great 2013 flood. It devastated Calgary particularly, Elbow Park, Bowness, and Roxboro. It also wiped out neighbouring communities including Siksika. It was an experience that no one can ever forget. It was a time when neighbor helped neighbor, and we saw the best in each other.
Christ Church Elbow Park was on the shores of the flood, and provided food, a place to clean up, and a place to find solace. To reflect on the flood, Christ Church Elbow Park through the generosity of two members of its community, commissioned Paul Halley “a Grammy award-winning Canadian composer” to write something that would reflect the best of the flood experiences. He used the oral histories collected by the communities and called the composition “Hope Rising.”
The world debut will be June 11 at 10:30 at Christ Church Elbow Park. When asked what would describe the piece, the Choir Director, Margaret Newman, after thoughtful reflection, said “grand cathedral music.”
The commemoration of the flood came out of a desire to collect Elbow Park and Siksika memories of that year which were still strong after a decade. A booklet of oral histories collected from first responders and those who were impacted is also being published through a grant from the City of Calgary. It offers the recollections of two communities: Siksika and Elbow Park. What it showed more than anything was the strength of community and neighborliness. During the summer the same grant from the City of Calgary will also see an Indigenous Blackfoot traditional commemoration of the flood at both Christ Church and on the reserve. There will also be a small exhibit of photographs collected from the various communities. There is not cost to any of the performances.
Keep your calendars open June 11 at 10:30 for the world premiere of “Hope Rising” at Christ Church Elbow Park. And watch for the drumming commemoration in Siksika and at Christ Church this summer.
Contact: Frits Pannekoek, 403-620-35465 firstname.lastname@example.org or Margaret Newman at 403-243-6506 (h) or 403-607-5973 (c).
We are grateful for funding from Treaty Seven Community Futures, the City of Calgary, and Young Canada Works for making these events possible.
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