The works on WOMAN RUNS WITH WOLVES represent, in some form, the dichotomy in life between chaos and order, destruction and creation, nature and civilization. From the edgy dubstep style of the young composer Laura Silberberg’s Up and Down Dubstep to the representation of a spirited woman in Alice Ho’s dramatic musical journey based on Clarissa Pinkola Este’s tale of « La Loba ». Christos Hatzis’ Arctic Dreams lustfully captures the sound of the Inuit throat singers (in a slightly jazzy, new age style) musically reflecting the expansive northern landscape of Canada’s territory, Nunavut. In the Fire of Conflict is a plea from a desperate young man trying to recapture a sense of hope in life amidst extreme physical and psychological turmoil.Tim Brady’s intense work Rant! deals with humans’ natural ability to complain! Tim has used Rick Mercer’s rant entitled « Who Polls the Pollsters » for this unrelenting work for piano and percussion. Micheline Roi’s poignant work Grieving the Doubts of Angels deals with a sense of struggle that both performer and composer often experience during the creative process. And at last we reach the summit of our lives, where we cherish the simple expressiveness of the sound of the marimba aptly captured in David Occhipinti’s melodic piece Summit.


1. Arctic Dreams – Christos Hatzis (6:41)
with / avec Susan Hoeppner, flute and / et Lauren Margison, soprano

2. Rant! – Tim Brady (9:10)
with / avec Pamela Reimer, piano

3. Grieving the Doubts of Angels – Micheline Roi (11:57)
with / avec Pamela Reimer, piano

4. In the Fire of Conflict – Christos Hatzis (6:05)

5. In the Fire of Conflict – Christos Hatzis (4:02)

6. Woman Runs With Wolves – Alice Ho (14:12)

7. Summit – David Occhipinti (1:55)

8. Up and Down Dubstep* – Laura Silberberg (8:59)
with / avec Pamela Reimer, piano

* »Up and Down Dubstep » credits the following users for samples provided on Chimpy, Crk365, Robinhood76, Mikobuntu, TasmanianPower, Keygenerator, Asdftekno, Elektrocell, Yewbic, Suonho, Mab, Owyheesound, Meowtek, Dodgy C, Timbre, RutgerMuller, Lematt , Hy96, Spexis, Bcjordan,, Fonogeno, Smidoid, Robgrace , Corsica_S, Halima Ahkdar, Djgriffin, RHumphries and Sazman.

Beverley Johnston, percussion


Featured as « Disc of the Week » on CBC’s « In Concert. »
« It’s a fascinating journey through which Johnston says she recapturing her « soul and expression in a fast-paced and sometimes incomprehensible world. » Hop on. It’s a wild, invigorating ride. » – Denise Ball, CBC Music Producer of « In Concert »

« Johnston’s deft instrumental mastery, power and virtuosity unite the collection in expressive clarity. » – Jason van Eyk, Musicworks

« The sound engineering on this disc is fantastic. Each separate instrument and indeed each timbre is rich, balanced, and distinct from one other. This is attributed to very meticulous stereo placements, and also how well each instrument was recorded to maintain as much of its live timbre as possible.

The CD begins with Christos Hatzis’ Arctic Dreams, a shimmering arctic soundscape complete with Inuit throat singing, the wash of the northern lights, and bird calls, which achieve an overall icy, tranquil mood. Rant! by Tim Brady kicks up the energy—it’s a piece based on an impassioned Rick Mercer waxing philosophic. It has the great tension building and release as a cutting argument would, and the overlapping of voices with text from Rick Mercer himself is arresting. Micheline Roi’s Grieving the Doubts of Angels opens with Pärt-esque calmness, the character of each percussion instrument here used to great effect. Eventually the piece tumbles into an intricate dance and then a driving finale. In The Fire of Conflict is another soundscape by Christos Hatzis, this time featuring the unlikely timbre of a rapper sampled in the electronic backing. The title track, composed by Alice Ho, is half-piece-of-music, half-ritual, full of faux throat singing, barking, inhuman background singing, and ominous foreboding rhythms. It is perhaps the most evocative piece on the CD. Summit by David Occhipinti is a charming, melodic solo marimba piece that is a perfectly timed palette cleanser for the final piece, Up and Down Dubstep by Laura Silberberg. There are so many sounds in Silberberg’s piece it would have taken a more focused listen to note them down after the first go.

The pieces by Silberberg, Ho, and Hatzis best illustrate what I think is the most remarkable feature of this CD: the great amount of variety across the repertoire but also within the pieces themselves. It is the work of no small force that has wrangled all of these sounds into a cohesive whole, thanks to some clever sequencing of well written pieces and stellar performances. A wonderful CD for those who have eclectic tastes! » – Jason Caron, Notations

« This new release by Canadian superstar percussionist Beverley Johnston has everything a listener loves?—?stellar performances, strong compositions and clear sound quality.

The title track, Woman Runs With Wolves by Alice Ho, is based on the myth La Loba from Women Who Run with the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes. It is a dramatic work, with Johnston vocalizing a text of an invented language while playing hand-held percussion instruments. The work also involves acting and movement but Johnston’s precise rhythmic patterns and surprising range of vocal colours make it moving even without the visuals.

Christos Hatzis’ In the Fire of Conflict is a two-movement solo marimba and audio playback version of an earlier work also featuring cello. The marimba part adds a contrapuntal melodic line to the haunting rap tracks by Bugsy H. (aka Steve Henry) and tape effects, while the rhythmic component breaks down the boundaries between classical and pop music. Hatzis’ Arctic Dreams also features flutist Susan Hoeppner and soprano Lauren Margison in a soundscape of jazzy marimba, trilling flute and lush vocals against a wilderness-evoking tape part.

David Occhipinti’s moving marimba solo Summit, and three duets with pianist Pamela Reimer?—?Tim Brady’s rhythmically driven Rant! (based on a Rick Mercer « Rant »), Micheline Roi’s Grieving the Doubts of Angels and the film score-like Up and Down Dubstep by Lauren Silberberg?—?add compositional contrast and colour.

Johnston’s sense of phrase, tone colour and respect for the composers shine throughout this perfect release from a perfect musician. » – Tiina Kiik, The WholeNote

« Anyone familiar with Beverley Johnston’s outstanding solo CDs […] will be thrilled by her latest CD, Woman Runs With Wolves. This collaborative CD brings forth her versatility, virtuosity and creativity as well as her dedication to commissioning and performing Canadian contemporary music. […] this CD is a very worthwhile investment. I hold Johnston in even higher regard now than before and applaud her willingness to continue and stretch the limits of percussion performance with challenging works that she says « represent my journey of recapturing my soul and expression in a fast-paced and sometimes incomprehensible world. » – Susan Martin Tariq, Percussive Notes