Natalie Zed: Defying Gravity

Friday, June 08, 2007


Last night's Flywheel was excellent. I am used to attending events where one or two of the readers are new to me, especially if they're form out of town, since I am still relatively newish to the Calgary scene. Last night, though, three of the four local writers (Tom Muir, Emily Cargan, and Emily Elder) I'd never seen perform before. Emily Elder has just moved back into town and both Emily Cargan and Tom Muir have been hiding out since before I arrived in town. Sharanpal Ruprai, the only reader I'd been lucky enough to see perform before, read all new material as well.

What struck me about this particular reading was how different the styles of the four readers are. Tom's work was the most lyric, and his pieces tended to be longer. I found myself often listening more to the cadence of his voice, the sound of the words rather than their sense, the pattern that they made in his voice. Emily Cargan did something I haven't seen in a while: she actively played with point of view. Her pieces were all written in different voices, almost characters, which affected the way she wrote and performed the pieces. Emily Elder performed her pieces more than she read them, changing her voice as well as her body depending on the piece. She mixed up poetry and fiction as well, all under the guise of a (life?) long project called Working Thru the Minotaur. Sharanpal's work had the feel of a ceremony to it. She held all the words in her mouth carefully, as though they must be released just so and with proper reverence for her performance to work. Her pieces have the feel of little ceremonies too, all the smaller pieces coming together to make something.

If only I could work a mic properly. Damn my shortness.


Natalie Zed updated @ 11:08 a.m.!!