Video: Leonard Cohen Becomes Ninth Laureate Of Glenn Gould Prize – 2012

glenng Leonard Cohen was honored at the Glenn Gould Prize ceremony held May 14, 2012.  The following excerpt is from the YouTube blurb:

Leonard Cohen was honoured as the Ninth Laureate of the Glenn Gould Prize at a music-filled gala at Massey Hall on Monday night. ZoomerNews Videographer Darrin Maharaj has the details.

Signs Of Leonard Cohen: Massey Hall Bulletin Board Update – 2012 Glenn Gould Prize, Toronto

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Arlene Dick captured the 7 AM adjustment of the sign on Massey Hall announcing the Leonard Cohen-Glenn Gould Prize ceremonies scheduled for tonight [at time of original posting]. For comparison, see Signs Of Leonard Cohen: Massey Hall Bulletin Board – 2012 Glenn Gould Prize Toronto

Note: Originally posted May 14, 2012 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Signs Of Leonard Cohen: Massey Hall Bulletin Board – 2012 Glenn Gould Prize Toronto

mh-billboardx-scaled500The modest bulletin board on the front of Massey Hall in Toronto lists the investiture of Leonard Cohen as the Ninth Laureate of the Glenn Gould Prize to be held at that site. (Also see Signs Of Leonard Cohen: Massey Hall Bulletin Board Update – 2012 Glenn Gould Prize, Toronto)

massey-hall-left-billboardx-scaled1000Credit Due Department: Photos taken May 13, 2014 by Arlene Dick

Note: Originally posted May 14, 2012 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Video: Leonard Cohen’s Acceptance Speech At 2012 Glenn Gould Prize Ceremony

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Leonard Cohen Tells Of Meeting Glenn Gould

Leonard Cohen Acceptance Speech-Glenn Gould Prize Gala Concert
Massey Hall, Toronto: May 14, 2012
Video by Arlene Dick

Update: For related discussion, including details of Leonard Cohen’s interview with Glenn Gould, see Leonard Cohen Wins Hearts As Well As Glenn Gould Prize With Gracious Donation & Speech

Note: Originally posted May 15, 2012 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Leonard Cohen & Glenn Gould: “A Canadian Shield Of Soul”

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It makes you wonder. Maybe we’re [Canadians] all wrong about ourselves. Maybe we’re not a timid, tightly trapped between Empires, hesitant and icy. Maybe we’re what Gould and Cohen both were and are – passionate, powerful, ironic, yes… but with something immensely valuable the world responds to: An understanding of depth, of the bedrock of feeling, a Canadian Shield of soul that is quiet and contemplative, enduring.quotedown2

 

From Leonard Cohen and Glenn Gould – An Appreciation by Robert Harris (The Ninth Glenn Gould Prize Program, May 14, 2012).  Update: The original program is no longer online but this segment is quoted in Leonard Cohen: A specialist in longing, loving and losing beautifully by Brad Wheeler (Globe and Mail: May 15, 2012)

Note: Originally posted July 4, 2012 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Leonard Cohen Wins Hearts As Well As Glenn Gould Prize With Gracious Donation & Speech

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The $50,000 Donation

Leonard Cohen accepted the Glenn Gould Prize last night, but donated the $50,000 that accompanied it to the Canada Council for the Arts.

The Speech

Note: Leonard Cohen’s complete acceptance speech may be viewed at Video: Leonard Cohen’s Acceptance Speech At 2012 Glenn Gould Prize Ceremony

The Speech: Leonard Cohen interviews Glenn Gould

In his acceptance speech, Cohen gave his account of interviewing Gould for Holiday magazine in the “late 1950s or early 1960s.” The pianist, having “apparently heard of a little book I [Cohen] had written, … accepted the interview.”

Cautioned not to shake his hand,1 Cohen met Gould in the lobby of Gould’s apartment building in Toronto.

“This was before the days of tape recorders,” explained Cohen, who soon became “so engrossed by what he [Gould] was saying, I stopped taking notes.”

The interview, scheduled for only a few minutes, lasted for a “couple of hours.”  Cohen thanked Gould and returned to his Montreal home to write the article, at which time those words he thought “were burned into my soul” dissipated. As Leonard Cohen put it,

I couldn’t remember a word that he said

After stalling his editors over the phone for some time, Cohen changed tactics:

Finally, I stopped answering the phone

And after the admonitory telegraphs from the editor began to arrive, his strategy once again shifted:

I finally joined the witness protection program.

DrHGuy Note:  This excerpt from Various Positions by Ira Nadel re-tells the same story, offering the benefit of identifying the year (1963) and some additional specificity about the topic of the article Cohen was to write. it also mentions the editor’s suggestion, inexplicably absent from Cohen’s speech last night, that Cohen and Gould do the interview while walking about Montreal wearing false beards. The “novel” in the first line is Cohen’s “The Favourite Game,” published in fall 1963.

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The Speech: Cohen & Gould meet again

Cohen then segued into the second time he met Gould,  years after the first encounter, at a Columbia Records studio in New York.

He was recording something sublime, I was recording something otherwise.

Cohen, noting that he was, at the time,” infected with the new hip language,” animatedly informs the audience that he hailed Gould with

Hey man, what’s shaking?

To which Gould replied

I didn’t know you were from Memphis, Tennessee.

The Speech: Assuagement of performers’ anxieties

Cohen informed those about to perform in his tribute concert that they need not worry about singing his songs in front of him because, as he has pointed out several times in the past,

I go into an immediate, childish ecstasy and paroxysms of gratitude … whenever anyone covers one of my songs.

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  1. “His fanatical fear of germs is part of the Glenn Gould legend. He refused to shake hands with people he met for fear of contracting illnesses or having his hand crushed.” From Variations On Glenn Gould – CBC []