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Carmen Braden debuts ‘Songs of the Invisible Summer Stars’

Carmen Braden
Carmen Braden is pictured in a promotional image. Photo: Hannah Eden

Composer Carmen Braden performs selections from her new album, two years in the making, to a home Yellowknife crowd on Thursday.

Songs of the Invisible Summer Stars is Braden’s second studio album, one she calls a “deep dive” into her compositional world.

“It’s almost all instrumental chamber compositions. So my kind of contemporary take on evoking northern landscapes and my own space in them in string quartets and piano trios,” Braden told Mornings at the Cabin.

The title track features seven musical instruments, a septet Braden created with chamber musicians on the east coast.



The album is informed by Braden’s field recordings in the natural landscape of the NWT as well as her contemplation of it, a news release states. Producer and percussionist on the album is Mark Adam and recording engineer is John DS Adams of Stonehouse Sound.

Braden’s album release party takes place on Thursday at the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre’s cafe, with a live performance and stories of the album’s conception. Admission is by donation.

Cabin Radio will stream a full recording of the release party at a later date.

Braden is also involved in bringing Anastasia Rizikov to the Northern Arts and Cultural Centre stage on Saturday night. The 20-year-old solo pianist made her orchestral debut at age seven and has since played with major orchestras from Canada to Hong Kong.



Braden was approached by Piano Six New Generation, an organization dedicated to inspiring future musicians and fans by bringing performers like Rizikov to remote communities.

“That kind of combination really appeals to me for getting involved with young people and music, especially ones who are interested in playing both traditional repertoire from classical times, but also Canadian music which she’s including on her program,” Braden said.

Local musicians Alice Twa and Ben Russo are playing a pre-show starting at 6:30pm.