Thursday, September 28, 2006

a bpNichol cerebration: jwcurry reading the entirety of The Martyrology in Toronto

Ottawa poet/publisher jwcurry has been planning this for months, to read the entirety of bpNichol's nine book poem The Martyrology (Toronto ON: Coach House Press / Coach House Books) as a fundraiser toward completion & publication of A Beepliographic Cyclopedia (& its side-project, a concordance to the martyrology) that he's been working on now for a decade or two. Since he doesn’t want any of his words posted on the internet, you'll have to write him yourself to get a copy of the magnificent little essay he published, "an announcement or more with regard to A Beepliographic Cyclopedia 5 september 2006" (published in an edition of 400 (?) copies as 1cent #378/newsnotes #12) to explain his interest in working a bibliography for the late Toronto poet bpNichol, as well as an information sheet on how to pre-order the set of eight volumes at $3000.00 (they increase by $1000.00 once they're published, & he's actually sold at least one set that I know of), & a space to provide information on any bpNichol publications that he might not (yet) know about. A while ago, he did his practice reading in Ottawa behind the Parliament Buildings [see my note on that here], partly to get a sense of how the audience would react to hearing that much text, & partly to see how his voice would be able to keep up.

If you want information on the bibliography, how to donate to the completion/production of the bibliography, or to order a set, would like to tell jwcurry about a bpNichol publication he might not (yet) know about (there is no such thing as too small a bpNichol reference…even his name in someone else's poem counts), or would like a report of some sort from him on how the reading went (since he's probably already been in Toronto for days), write him c/o #302 - 880 Somerset Street West, Ottawa, Ontario Canada K1R 6R7.

Thanks to an email that Toronto poet/publisher John Barlow sent to the lexiconjury email list, here is the information for this weekend's Toronto event:
The full and precise details for John Curry's complete reading of Nichol's books this coming weekend have now been proffered with wish that they be forwarded to those that could take interest.

Spectacular location: the property on which the readings will occur can be entered by way of 263 Niagara St, or 163 Walnut St. These two streets run north up from King St a bit west of Bathurst. There will be signage.

Re the cost of attending, I got relative if humoured agreement on the phrasing "pay what you can, but as much as you can." The costs haven’t been minimal for this project. He does need the money.

And most importantly, the precise schedule. He was quite adamant, saying, if he says the reading begins at 7, it doesn’t mean people filter in between 7 and 7.45 and the reading finally gets going 20 minutes after that, he means, 7 is when he will start reading. (It's all been timed.)

Right then, here's the precise schedule:


BOOK 1 - 7PM

BOOK 2 - 8PM

BOOK 3 - 9:30PM


BOOK 4 - 1PM

BOOK 5 - 2:15PM

BOOK 6 - 8PM



BOOK 7 - 2PM

BOOK 8 - 3:30PM

BOOK & - 4:30PM

BOOK 9 - 8:15PM

…I'd think that this wouldn’t be a reason not to enter if late, just approach more quietly.

Next year, the hosts hope to have Nicky Drumbolis read all of Shakespeare.

John (B)
This event is already legendary, so be sure to get out there if you can, & try to donate $100 or more to jwcurry to help him produce this nearly lifelong project; because he isn’t attached to any formal institution, there isn’t any funding for such a thing that he could ever be eligible for.

There are posts on the same event by Ottawa blogger John W. MacDonald & St. Catherine's Ontario poet/editor Gregory Betts here, with links to Coach House Books.

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