GUEST BLOG: Pursuing Art in Toronto


submitted by Craig Currie, Philadelphia

Greetings from Toronto!

Entry to Victoria College

Hmm ..  I’ve waited 14 years to get to Classical Pursuits, perhaps a little longer, explained below, and I am not disappointed.  It has been worth the wait.  Basic details may be know to you all, but are worth commenting on.

First, the event  is well organized in a comfy laid back way, all gets done in a timely fashion but without any glancing at a stopwatch.  Subtly choreographed might be a better description.[singlepic id=154 w=320 h=240 float=right]

Betty Ann at Gladstone

Second, the faculty are impressive.  I’m taking the “art” class which is a well mixed salad of textual discussion of John Berger’s “Ways of Seeing” and then walks & rides to museums and other sources of artistic treasures (e.g. churches.).  Show & tell.  Our instructor, Betty Ann Gordon, is delightful.

Now, two for one:  my wife is taking the seminar on the concerto and after two days, she is still precisely describes her reaction as “blown away.”  Third, the setting for all of this is again a salad of a bucolic campus for the class room stuff and meals, etc. and the cacophony of the City.  Toronto is very cool.

Ann Kirkland + Leslie Sauber catch up + compare notes

Finally, like the mark of any great teaching institution, aside from faculty and resources, what makes it uniquely successful is the opportunity to mix-it up with the student body, a very diverse, colorful crew.  Schmoozing with them while immersed in the aforementioned stew of sights and sounds is not only fun, it’s practically life-affirming.  How can there be so many other people who want to ask the questions I want to ask and argue the points I want to argue?  How can there be so many other interesting people whom I have not already met?  Life’s great surprises.

My perspective on all of this might be somewhat unique since I have known the founder of CP – Ann Kirkland — since middle school,  and we have remained very good friends during that time.

So, I remember her  taking the course “Music Art & Literature” in high school (boys did not usually attend).  And how, many years later, the idea of her launching Classical Pursuits matured from a mere pipe dream to reality.  It’s exciting to know that sometimes people can pursue their passion, make a living, and bring joy to so many.


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