Power of music evident at Voice in the Park 0
Sarah McLachlan. (QMI FILE PHOTO)
One of Canada's most acclaimed recording artists, Sarah McLachlan spearheads Saturday's Voices in the Park benefit concert featuring Stevie Nicks, Bryan Adams, Jann Arden, Hedley and former President Bill Clinton, among others, at Stanley Park's Brockton Point. Joe Leary spent 24 seconds with the Vancouver-based chanteuse.
24: What came first: the idea to do an outdoor concert in Stanley Park or the list of artists to do something with?
SM: Well, I love playing outdoors and I love Vancouver in September. A few years ago we put something like this together in Ambleside Park as kind of an end of summer thing to raise funds for the Sarah McLachlan School of Music and my intention was to do it every three years. The possibility of Stanley Park became available and I thought what an amazing place to do it.
24: Do you find that when you drop invitations to music-industry types that Vancouver is an easy sell?
SM: The folks I know, yes, and that was part of the selling point. I knew Hedley, I knew Bryan, I knew Jann, I knew Stevie, and I just basically had to ask.
24: Is it possible that Bill Clinton will be playing a little sax during the show? SM: I told him to - let me rephrase that; I asked him to and said it would be kind of nice. He laughed.
24: When you play a venue like this outdoors, what challenges does it present to you?
SM: I become a business person and an organizer and a bit of a control freak. I'm in there looking at all the details, and all the budgets, so it's been quite an education for me. Putting on one concert like this is probably no different than putting together an entire tour where you create the model and take it everywhere with you. They had never done a show like this in Stanley Park, so the whole venue and architecture of the site had to be designed. There's a lot of moving parts and it's been great for me to learn a whole new part of the industry.
24: As an artist, is there a distinction between how you present yourself outdoors versus an indoor venue?
SM: No really, I'm just playing to the people whoever is in the room. But in this case, having Stanley Park and the ocean and mountains in the background is pretty inspiring.
24: How important do you feel music is in the life of a young person?
SM: I don't think it's any small thing to say that it saved my life. It really did. I had a lot troubles growing up as a lot of kids do. I didn't fit in and I got teased and picked on a lot and music was the one thing that served as a constant to me that I knew I was good at. It gave me so much confidence and self-worth and got me through all those tough years and continues to get me through tough years.
As far as the importance of having music in children's lives, I think it's absolutely imperative for the growth, both emotionally and academically . With technology advancing so quickly and people speaking only on computers - whether texting or emailing - it's imperative that teenagers have a communal place where people come together and actually share themselves. It's really powerful.