Applications for dancing girls now being taken.

Posted: August 19, 2009 in Uncategorized


Margaret Atwood’s book tour for ‘Year of the Flood’ will feature live performances with original music, local actors and the author herself as narrator.

August 18, 2009

Bruce DeMara – entertainment reporter

Margaret Atwood is radically redesigning the concept of a standard book tour. The acclaimed Canadian author is using a live performance with original music, local actors and the author herself as narrator to promote her latest novel, The Year of the Flood, her publisher announced yesterday.

Her tour for the book will feature six Canadian stops, including St. James’ Cathedral at 65 Church St. in Toronto on Sept. 24.

“It’s a chance to break free from the traditional structure of a book tour,” Atwood said in a statement. “I felt this particular novel deserved a more complex presentation. It’s also a great chance to work with other creative minds and see their interpretation of the story come to light.”

Ellen Seligman, publisher of fiction at McClelland & Stewart and editor of Atwood’s 13th novel, which will be released Sept. 22, called the project “unprecedented” in the annals of publishing.

The Year of the Flood, a follow-up to Atwood’s novel Oryx & Crake, is set in a future where the world has undergone dramatic change as a result of decades of environmental degradation. The final blow comes in the form of a pandemic that decimates virtually all of humanity, leaving a scattering of survivors.

But Seligman said, despite the book’s dark nature and theme, “there is definitely a sense of hope (by the end) because it’s people gathering in groups together.” That’s where the idea of live performance and bringing together people from local community meshes with the book, she said.

“The idea of this performance and gathering the public – these are public performances and very inexpensive tickets – is a way of kind of joining everybody together in this global concern, which is our world and life as we know it.”

The hour-long performance will feature 14 hymns – one for each chapter – which Atwood wrote, to the music of L.A.-based composer Orville Stoeber.

A three-person cast will perform along with a choir, all of whom will be local talent. Atwood has helped to design an interactive website for the book tour, including a blog and a Twitter feed.

In her first entry, Atwood said she and husband Graeme Gibson are travelling to the U.K. by ship and said two Coronation Street cast members will perform with her in Manchester. Events will also be held in Ottawa, Kingston, Sudbury, Calgary and Vancouver, with proceeds going to Nature Canada.

Details of the Toronto cast have yet to be finalized. Ticket information is available at


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