We are the Ton Beau String Quartet (TBSQ), a group based in Toronto, Canada, and we’re in the process of creating something very special called the Black Fish Project.
We have been working on The Black Fish Project since 2019, and we are very grateful to have received funding from Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council, and the Canada Council for the Arts since the very beginning of the creative process. However, an ambitious project like this needs your support too!
In November 2021, we recorded this captivating piece in one of Toronto's foremost recording studios along with our amazing fellow musicians, sound engineer and album producer. We are asking for your generous help with post-production expenses so we can release this album in May 2022 under the award-winning Canadian label, Centrediscs.
***Once we reach our first goal of $10,000, we will start raising funds to plan for an Album Release Concert in May 2022 and you get to see us perform the Black Fish Project LIVE!
The Black Fish Project began in 2019 when TBSQ approached composer Keyan Emami to write music that is loosely based on the book, Mahi Siahe Kuchulu or The Little Black Fish. In this book, our protagonist, the little black fish, is wondering what lies beyond his little home inside the brook. Despite getting warned and ridiculed by his family, he embarks on a life-changing journey outside of the brook, leading to rivers and lakes to ultimately enter the ocean. On this journey, the little black fish learns just as many things about the outside world as he does about himself.
While this iconic book was the starting point for this project, our music tells the story of each of us as the Black Fish, and our own journey of self-discovery through the adventure of life!
The Black Fish is a three-movement, forty-minute composition scored for narrator, chamber ensemble and electronics by Keyan Emami. This work is the third creation of Keyan’s autobiographical trilogy. The composition explores the composer's lived experience, forming a musical interpretation of the mixed and conflicting emotional landscape of an adventurer.
To expand the musical expression of this work, The Ton Beau is joined by 4 additional musicians with backgrounds in Jazz, Middle-Eastern, and improvised music. These versatile performers have helped us capture the world of the Black Fish beyond what would have been possible with the string quartet alone.
After 3 successful grant applications and numerous workshops with the composer and all the musicians, the music for the Black Fish Project was created in 2021.
We were fortunate to be joined by one of Canada's best producers, Roberto Occhipinti, and the gifted sound engineer, Pouya Hamidi as our recording production team. On November 27 & 28 of 2021, the entire team gathered at the prestigious Revolution Recording Studios in Toronto to record the music for the Black Fish Project. After 16 hours of recording, we now have enough material to create our album.
One of the fundamental stages in the recording process is the post-production stage. Due to the complexity in recording this music, our post-production costs are very substantial and we want to make sure that the final result is up to a high standard. Here is a breakdown of the post-production:
- Audio Post-Production ($4500)
- Album Production Costs ($5500)
- Album Artwork
- CD and Vinyl Pressing
- Liner Notes and translation(s)
- Marketing and Administration
***The initial goal of this fundraiser is to raise funds so we can complete the post-production and release the Black Fish album in May of 2022.
An exciting part of every album launch is the activity that takes place on the day of the scheduled release (i.e when the album goes live). Once we reach our initial fundraising goal for post-production, we will solidify plans for our Album Launch Concert. Scheduled for May 2022, this event will feature the complete performance of the Music for the Black Fish Project (approximately 40 minutes) LIVE at a venue in Toronto. We will plan this event in accordance with Toronto Public Health guidelines, aiming for both in-person and virtual audiences.
Another exciting element of the Black Fish Project is the creation of a film that will be inspired by the very music that we have recorded. Our talented creative visual team will start to work on this project in 2022, and we anticipate the film to be completed in the fall of 2022. Stay tuned for additional information about the Black Fish Project Film, including a separate fundraiser dedicated to the creation of this film!