Words that denounce, rhythms that soothe, and images that dare. Teatime has never been so infused with raw emotion as when twelve good friends of Phi took up the challenge of showing themselves in a new light. How? By reciting for us their favourite poem, allowing us, at the same time, to discover some poetic voices. In the first part of this unique video series produced and created by Phi, Lydia Képinski, Narcy, and Casey Spooner agree to explore uncensored the interplay between rhymes and sounds, sharing with us a moment of quiet introspection.

I love you as the plant that never blooms
but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers

Casey Spooner reads XVII (I do not love you…), by Pablo Neruda

Casey Spooner is both half of the electroclash duo Fischerspooner and a visual artist who became the face of gay culture. Newly Parisian, he advocates a nude philosophy (“I want muscles made of joy,” he says), but demonstrates a passion for mind-blowing fashion on his wildly couture Instagram thread. He had to wait nine years for the release of his third album, produced by Michael Stipe, formerly of R.E.M. Troubled by love, a problematic word that he has long detested, and jumping with both feet into contradiction, Spooner recites a sonnet about love by the great Chilean poet Pablo Neruda.

Narcy reads Because I Cannot Sleep, by Rumi

He sees hip-hop as a bridge between East and West, an art that can bring about social change. That’s why rapper, activist, actor, and producer Narcy—born Yassin Alsalman—teaches hip-hop at Concordia University. This musical insomniac has worked with Dave Chappelle and Spike Lee, has been nominated for a Juno award for his video R.E.D. for A Tribe Called Red, and has done voice-over work for Assassin’s Creed: Origins. The poem he chose was by his spiritual master, Rumi, the Persian Sufi poet who wrote about insomnia and alienation, in the 13th century!

Because I cannot sleep
I make music at night.

Lydia Képinski reads Pour mon rapatriement, by Gaston Miron

Lydia describes herself as a fine, albeit grumpy, human being, the surprising result of genetic mixing for parents bewildered by their born-to-rebel daughter diagnosed with giftedness, ADHD, and oppositional defiant disorder. After taking first place at the Francouvertes music festival in 2017–a feat she refers to as the great purgatory of emergence–this poetic-synthetic, all-terrain, multi-instrumentalist impressed us with her finely chiselled pop and her songwriter’s DNA. Not surprising that she chose Gaston Miron, Quebec’s national poet, who combines formal and informal language, words of snow, and words of love in his quest for repatriation.

je n'ai jamais voyagé
vers autre pays que toi mon pays
About Centre Phi
The Phi Centre is a versatile space with venues that adapt to accommodate the event at hand: launches, conferences, seminars, screenings, exhibitions, concerts, performances, interactive installations. It has creative studios and production suites equipped with the latest technology for all artistic needs. It’s a multifunctional centre where art can express itself in its various forms. It’s a space where people can exchange, learn, discover, launch, shoot, record, and more.

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