Glenn Gould: The Sounds of Genius
September 28, 2007 - August 10, 2008
Glenn Gould, April 1974 Library and Archives Canada/Glenn Gould fonds/MUS 109-760 Reproduced with the permission of Don Hunstein, Sony Music Entertainment Inc., the Estate of Glenn Gould and Glenn Gould Limited.
Photo Don Hunstein

The Exhibition

Glenn Gould: The Sounds of Genius presents an overview of the life, ideas and accomplishments of this complex and multi-talented man. It does so through an engaging mix of artifacts, videos, photos, documents, and voice and music recordings. For the most part, Gould is the exhibition host, telling his own story through his own words and music.

The exhibition explores the musical genius of Glenn Gould but it also explores other facets of his personal and professional life. Gould was a prolific writer, innovative recording artist, and imaginative radio and TV producer. He also saw himself as an intellectual and philosopher. And he was definitely an intriguing, enigmatic personality.

The person
Glenn Gould: The Sounds of Genius offers an insight into Gould’s childhood, personality, tastes and interests. Through a wide array of artifacts, it notes, among other things, his love of solitude, his eccentricities and his sense of humour.

The musician
The exhibition traces Gould’s remarkable musical career:  from the child prodigy who became a professional musician at age 15 to the aspiring conductor.  Notable artifacts from Gould’s musical career include his pianos and the unique chair on which Gould sat while playing.

The broadcast personality and producer
Glenn Gould had a long association with the CBC. He went on to produce groundbreaking radio documentaries, and he developed and hosted numerous television specials.

The writer and theorist, composer and conductor
Gould was a prolific writer of magazine and newspaper articles, album liner notes, and personal letters. Examples of his writing and his critical thinking are displayed in text or presented in audio or video clips.

Glenn Gould: The Sounds of Genius concludes with a look at Gould’s lasting influence and enduring fame. On display are large collections of books about Gould and currently available CDs of his music — still in demand 25 years after his death.

Glenn Gould: The Sounds of Genius
is definitely an exhibition best toured with an audioguide. The audioguide will enrich the visitor’s experience with additional recordings of Gould as storyteller, musician, and radio artist. The material is drawn from taped interviews, live and studio performances, and his innovative radio documentaries. Users will gain a deeper insight into Gould’s creative genius and intriguing personality. Generously sponsored by Bell Canada, the audioguide offers about 60 minutes of content.