Our Gifts - A Song by Glenn Gould


Our Gifts is one of Gould's earliest surviving compositions. He composed this little song, for two vocal parts with piano accompaniment when he was ten years old and a student at Williamson Road Public School, in the Beach neighbourhood of east-end Toronto. The last page bears the date 25 March 1943, at which time Canada had been involved in the Second Would War for more than three years. As the title page of the song's text suggest, the students at Williamson Road, as at other Canadian schools during the war years, were involved in patriotic and fund-raising campaigns like those of the Red Cross.

The original sheet music was produced in facsimile in The Glenn Gould Magazine Volume 8/Number 1 in the Spring of 2002, which was published by The Glenn Gould Foundation. You can download the music, written in Gould's hand as a .pdf by clicking the image above. It was reproduced from Gould's papers in the Music Division of the National Library of Canada.

This Saturday, members of the Williamson Road Public School choir (mostly 10- to 12-year-olds) are excited about taking a bus trip to Ottawa for their big moment  at the National Arts Centre where they will perform Our Gifts. Accompanied by a pianist, their high-pitched voices will be heard by a gala crowd of hundreds attending the annual Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Gala, where  veteran Toronto actor R.H. Thomson, who played Gould onstage several times in a play by David Young will be presented with a lifetime achievement award. Read more about this event in the Toronto Star here.