Gord Downie's Secret Path in Concert to premiere Sunday, October 22 on CBC
The special will premiere on the 51st anniversary of Chanie Wenjack's death
UPDATE: Gord Downie passed away Tuesday night surrounded by his children and family. He was 53. Sunday's premiere broadcast of Gord Downie's Secret Path in Concert, commemorating the 51st anniversary of Chanie Wenjack's death, will proceed at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT) on CBC TV and streaming at cbc.ca/secretpath.
Gord Downie's Secret Path in Concert will make its broadcast premiere on Sunday, October 22 at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT) on CBC TV and streaming on both cbc.ca/secretpath and the CBC Arts Facebook page, commemorating the 51st anniversary of Chanie Wenjack's death.
Filmed at Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto on October 21, 2016 with more than 30 members of the Wenjack family in attendance, the one-hour, commercial-free special captures Downie's remarkable and emotional Secret Path live performance with musicians Kevin Drew (Broken Social Scene), Kevin Hearn (Barenaked Ladies), Josh Finlayson (Skydiggers) Dave Hamelin (The Stills) and Charles Spearin (Broken Social Scene), interwoven with intimate backstage moments and footage from The Secret Path animated film that premiered on CBC last October.
A multimedia project conceived by Gord and Mike Downie spanning a Juno award-winning album and graphic novel by Jeff Lemire in addition to the animated film, Secret Path acknowledges a dark part of Canada's history — the long-suppressed mistreatment of Indigenous children and families by the residential school system — with the hope of starting a national conversation and furthering reconciliation. Downie began Secret Path as 10 poems inspired by the story of Wenjack, a 12-year-old boy who died of exposure on October 22, 1966 as he was attempting to walk home from the Cecilia Jeffrey Indian Residential School near Kenora, Ont. to return to the family he was taken from over 600km away.
Proceeds from the Secret Path project are being donated to the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation and the Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund.