Performing Memories with pianist Michael Park

Performing Memories with Michael Park

Unravelling a queer boy’s coming out, through recollections at the piano
Co-presented by Erato Ensemble Solo Series and Queer Arts Festival + SUM gallery
Jan 19, 7:30 pm
Tickets: $25 regular admission, $15 concession (plus fees), free for students & First Nations patrons

Performing Memories is a 35-minute solo piece blending speech and piano, written by Michael Park during the pandemic. In recounting the first moment he looked back at objects from his past, the narrator takes the audience on a journey of self-discovery through themes of isolation, shame, fear and death; but also joy, love, exploration and belonging. The performance includes works by composers Cecilia Livingston, Edward Grieg, and Richard Greig. Park has collaborated with director Esteban Guti to create a film version of the piece incorporating performance footage, dramatic reenactment, and illustration/animation by Héctor Rivera. This event features the world premiere screening of the Performing Memories film.

This project was made possible by the generous support of the BC Arts Council and Canadian Council for the Arts.

ABOUT Michael Park
Michael Park (he/they) is a pianist and composer with a keen interest in speech, humour, and improvisation. His aim is to give audiences an experience beyond the realm of traditional concert-going.

Michael is a passionate champion of new music. He’s performed dozens a of B.C. premieres as resident pianist with Vancouver’s Erato Ensemble, and supported the creation of more than 100 world premieres as founder and co-director of Art Song Lab, an innovative program that teams composers, poets, and world-class performers.

For more than a decade, Michael has collaborated with dancers, choreographers, and companies including Winnipeg’s Contemporary Dancers, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, and Ballet BC. Taking inspiration from the movement style at hand, Michael has developed a fluency in improvisation that has been praised by dancers and teachers alike.

Michael’s own compositions have been performed in Vancouver at the VSO’s Jean Coulthard Reading Session, Sonic Boom Music Festival, Songfire Festival of Song, Queer Arts Festival, and Music on Main. His music has also been performed across North America, with notable premieres in Winnipeg, Boston, and New York.