A forest in the palm of your hand
Activities • Families • Music album
“We have exchanged bows and sticks, mingled our breath with that of the shells and skins of the drum and of the cello, with that of the rivers and the wind.”
Your turn to play!
Here are 12 activities you can do as a family or in daycare while listening to the album G’zaagiin maleńki - je te promets une forêt, based on the show of the same name. Whether or not you have seen the show, we invite you to explore, with your family or in class, the activities, the visual artworks that accompany them, and our music with your little ones, to create moments of laughter, sharing and bonding between you, beyond the show. The platform is designed to be used at your own pace and at the rhythm of the kids.
You don’t have the time to do the activities? You can look at the images together and ask each other what they make you think of.
You don’t feel like looking at a screen? No problem! The music can be listened to on its own, either one track at a time or the complete album all the way though! The album was released on the avant-guard music label Ambiances Magnétiques.
You prefer physical objects? Write to us! The activities will soon be available in “playing card” format. We’ll let you know how you can obtain them as soon as they’re done being printed!
Artistic direction for the project EMILY MARIE SÉGUIN, MARIE-HÉLÈNE MASSY EMOND, MILENA BUZIAK
Composition and performance EMILY MARIE SÉGUIN, MARIE-HÉLÈNE MASSY EMOND as well as ROBIN SERVANT for 8 - Grands vents
Production, studio sound recording, mixing and mastering ROBIN SERVANT
Development of activities ANNE-SOPHIE TOUGAS et EMILY MARIE SÉGUIN
Cultural adaptation BRENDA RIVERS, KATY TANGUAY et EMILY MARIE SÉGUIN
Images: dessins d'EMILY MARIE SÉGUIN sur biochromes de RENATA BUZIAK
Album recorded in December of 2021 at Studio Daïmôn, Hull
Listen to an excerpt from the album
Like a tiny forest
Show me the way
The impression things make
The symphony of water
An invented language
A leaf in the wind
The wind chime
We are a landscape
Do you hear?
The talking balloon
Share your experiences !
To learn more
We speak of a forest as we would speak of a shelter, a house to be lived in together, today and tomorrow. This forest is where we met to listen and improvise together.
G’zaagiin means I love you in Anishinaabemowin, the language that Emily Marie Séguin, composer and performer, reclaims through her community.
Maleńki is little one in Polish, the language that director Milena Buziak had to leave behind, but which she passes on to her children.
I promise you a forest is addressed to our young audiences, who are at the heart of our approach, of our commitment to the future. It is the part of the title that is in French, the mother tongue of Marie-Hélène Massy Emond, composer and performer, because it is this language that brings us together here today. We carry this promise like a flag, an offering, a prayer.
The album and the show were created on the unceded traditional territory of the Anishinaabeg. It is our responsibility to support Indigenous communities in their efforts towards sovereignty and self-determination.
Our theatrical performance is composed of sounds, images, and actions. Your gaze as the audience, your place in our set, and the relationship we create with you are aspects we play on throughout the performance. To help us transform our performative universe into a music album, we called upon soundscape creator Robin Servant.
Based in the Bas-Saint-Laurent, Robin translates the images of the landscapes sourrounding him into noises, sounds, and music. A self-taught artist, he plays the diatonic accordion (among other things) both in traditional music bands and in electroacoustic performances, and records the unusual sounds around him.
We invite you to enjoy the warm and authentic voice of Emily Marie Séguin, whose drum beats like the beating of our hearts; the incredible sound pallette of Marie-Hélène Massy Emond (it’s not only the strings of her wooden instrument that make music!), the noises we recorded during different stages of the creative process, and the sound universe of Robin Servant. All of this comes together to allow us to travel from one corner of the territory to another, from season to season, going back in time, crossing history and taking side roads in order to hear the familiar with a new ear.
An intercontinental collaboration
Emily Marie Séguin and Renata Buziak, artists who work with nature and share a passion for the preservation of ancestral knowledge and medicinal plants, collaborated by fusing Emily’s designs with Renata’s biochromes to round out the themes and intentions of our activities.
Bending the rules of traditional photography through the interaction of photographic materials with organic matter, Renata has developed a unique process of artistic creation that she calls the biochrome. She often works with medicinal plants, oral history, and scientific research to represent our ties with nature in an abstract way. Her research has led her to work with the Indigenous peoples of Australia, where she lives.
For Emily, learning from nature and engaging in a balanced relationship with it is a way to better understand our ecosystems and ourselves. Each biochrome was selected with a precise goal, by associating the medicinal plant represented with the themes of each activity. Emily passes on the freedom for the viewer to interpret them in their own way.
The images born of this intercontinental collaboration encourage us to look more closely at the hidden life that surrounds us and to explore it, to reflect on the importance and the spirit of the plants that resemble us in so many ways.
Notes from the artists and adapting the activities
The activities can be enjoyed as a family, in a daycare, or at school. Feel free to adapt them to your situation!
If the children are too young to follow most of the directions, we recommend that an adult do the proposed exercise instead. Either the children will imitate what they see and the activity can be carried out without getting lost in verbal directions, or they will become absorbed in the sounds and the movements of the adult, which will almost become a performance in and of itself. The main thing is for the children to hear the music and take a moment to observe what they feel (emotions, vibrations, etc.).
NOTES FROM THE ARTISTS
Some of the activities are preceded by notes from the artists. If possible, we suggest that you read these aloud.
Several of the activities require gathering objects found in nature: pine cones, sticks, stones, dead leaves, etc., so please plan a gathering expedition in advance. When you’re out gathering objects, take the time to say, “Hello!” to the Earth and to thank it for the little gifts it gives us, but which do not belong to us. When you’re finished with the objects you found, don’t throw them out! Put them back outside to return them to their home. The music you will hear is out of the ordinary and gives a lot of space to sound. We create the sounds of the forest!
While doing the activities, take your time.
Breathe, and have fun!