nymessage001This New Year of 2015 brings with it hope and optimism. It follows a year that was full to the brim here at Quinlan Road – with both the predictable and the unpredictable.

We continued to operate at a moderate level of activity, intentionally allowing space for personal time, as well as devoting time for maintenance and upkeep, such as revamping our website. There were tours and performances, time for creative exercises and for contemplating how we should approach the future.

We were also blessed with the opportunity to contribute to various benefit concerts, some close to where we live. We participated in events supporting the International Children’s Theatre Festival (coming to Stratford in 2016!), the London Waldorf School, and farther afield in New York City for The Golden Hat Foundation, devoted to families with autistic children.

On the non-musical side, I was recently appointed Honorary Colonel of the Royal Canadian Air Force, so some of my time was spent attending to duties and deepening my understanding of this unique community of people and their families. Like most  of you, I have an on-going need to expand my own personal development, whether it’s in gardening or cooking, or simply spending time with family.

And I am sure I am not alone in wondering where our world is leading us, whether it is professionally or personally. Nor can I be alone in wrestling with how overwhelming our contemporary lives can be, given the volume of stimuli and demands to which we are constantly exposed. Most people who know me well are aware of my concerns regarding the proliferation of unfettered technology in our lives and the role it has played in contributing to the unpredictability and breakdown in our societies, even though it has also brought significant benefits.

I can only hope that along the way we will not lose our capacity to experience life and communicate directly with each other without the aid of technology.  Instead, may we engage fully with the world, rich with all its nuances and wonder – as well as its blemishes – often found in the simplest of things. And in so doing, may we not diminish our interest and ability to be of service to others, to be mindful of those who may be in greater need than ourselves and to reach across the divide of differences to forge and maintain relationships which will be meaningful and lasting.

I would like to thank you again, one and all, for your support and may I also wish you and yours an enriched and fruitful New Year.