Noh-influenced libretto by renowned Canadian poet Daphne MarlattThe Noh-influenced libretto of Shadow Catch recounts the dreams - or are they dreams? - of the Runaway, a teenage boy who ends up one night in Oppenheimer Park in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside. Here four troubled spirits from the park's past appear to him: the Maple Tree Spirit from K'emk'emeláy whose grove was decimated by loggers, a member of the brilliant Asahi baseball team whose players were sent off to Japanese internment camps, the keeper of a 1920s brothel who is haunted by the tragic death of one of her women, and a roughneck policeman from the 1930s who gave in to corruption. This is a story not only about characters from Vancouver's historical and cultural past, but about the journey and transformation that must take place in order to confront one's greatest fears and regrets.
Each of the four acts in this sparse, poetic libretto were set to music by composers Dorothy Chang, Benton Roark, Jennifer Butler, and Farshid Samandari. Replete with contextual material, this book includes brief histories of the Asahi baseball team, the Battle of Ballantyne Pier, and an Indigenous history of Vancouver's Downtown Easts
About this Author
Daphne Marlatt is one of Canada's pre-eminent feminist poets. She was at the centre of the West Coast poetry movement of the 1960s. Her early literary associations with the loosely affiliated Tish group encouraged her non-conformist approach to language and form. For her, writing has been a lifelong ethical project, deeply engaged with feminism, immigrant experiences, and ecological issues. Her innovations in the prose poem form have influenced an entire generation (and beyond) of Canadian poets. Recent works include Then Now, Intertidal: The Collected Earlier Poems, 1968-2008, and Reading Sveva. Marlatt's The Gull, the first Canadian play staged in the ancient, ritualized tradition of Japanese Noh theatre, won the prestigious 2008 Uchimura Naoya Prize. In 2006, she was appointed to the Order of Canada in recognition of a lifetime of distinguished service to Canadian culture. In 2009, she was awarded the Dorothy Livesay Prize for Poetry, for her innovative long poem The Given, and in 2012 she received the George Woodcock Lifetime Achievement Award.
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