Calgary Establishes Poet Laureate Program
- Posted July 25th, 2011
Calgary City Council today approved a motion establishing a Poet Laureate. The Poet Laureate will compose and present poetry for official City of Calgary occasions, raise awareness of local issues through commissioned works, and act as an ambassador for the arts in Calgary.
Found in cities across Canada and around the world, the Poet Laureate’s role is to act as a cultural ambassador for the city, and for the arts. Formed as the result of a citizen-led initiative, the two year position will be funded through a grant from The Calgary Foundation and five Calgary-based corporate sponsors. Calgary Arts Development will develop, administer and promote the Poet Laureate program, in conjunction with The City of Calgary.
“The Calgary Foundation is proud to be involved in this project…which will see poems composed and presented at City of Calgary events to help raise awareness of local issues and the local arts community to citizens,” says Dan Thorburn, Vice President, Grants and Community Initiatives for The Calgary Foundation.
Saskatchewan’s first Poet Laureate Glen Sorestad said, "Each time you write a poem you share a small part of yourself, often a very vital part. I am a person who likes to listen. I record – sometimes objectively, sometimes becoming emotionally involved. I see this as part of a time-honoured tradition that goes back to the minstrels of the Middle Ages."
After a selection process, it is expected that Calgary’s first Poet Laureate will be appointed in January 2012, and will receive an honorarium to carry out her/his duties.