XARA CHORAL THEATRE
The Hours Turn to Nothing
Canada’s Premier Choral Theatre Ensemble returns to King’s Theatre!
Named the top women’s choir in the country in 2013 by the National Choral Competition.
Nationally acclaimed women’s vocal ensemble Xara Choral Theatre and renowned author Ami McKay are joining forces in the creation of an inter-disciplinary performance called The Hours Turn to Nothing. The show will tell the stories of midwives and nurses in the aftermath of the 1917 Halifax Explosion.
The historic blast is being commemorated across Nova Scotia throughout this centenary year. It killed 2,000 people and seriously injured another 9,000. Amid the many stories of death, ruin, and injury, it is lesser know that most pregnant women living within range of the explosion went into spontaneous labour from the force of the explosion, regardless of the gestational age of their unborn children. Midwives from across Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Northeastern USA boarded trains within hours of hearing the news knowing that their unique skills would be needed.
The Hours Turn to Nothing is now in production and is based on years of research undertaken by McKay when she wrote her award-winning novel, The Birth House. The show is set to premiere with three performances in Halifax on April 28-29 before touring the Maritime provinces. Featuring 24 singers, the work is shaped by seven ethereal choral pieces and several improvised soundscapes. It also includes text written by McKay and will be staged using expressive movement, costumes, and lighting. The choral repertoire includes two world premieres by Canadian composers Don Macdonald and Jenny Trites.
This ground-breaking artistic collaboration is being supported by the municipality of Halifax, Arts Nova Scotia, the Canada Council for the Arts, and the 150 Forward Fund.
Xara Choral Theatre Ensemble, Christina Murray, Co-artistic director and Conductor, Claire Leger, Choreographer, Ami McKay, Co-creator, Jenny Trites, Composer in Residence, Matthew Downey, Lighting Design, Jordyn Bochon, Costume Design
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