Portia White

Portia White is a poetry collection by George Elliott Clarke and Lara Martina.

George Elliott Clarke, art by Lara Martina

In his unique brand of spoken word, Africadian poetry, the incomparable George Elliott Clarke explores a personal subject: his great-aunt Portia White. The result is a stirring, epic poem vibrating with energy and music that spans White's birth in 1911, a coming of age amidst the backdrop of two World Wars, and her life-long love affair with music — from singing in to directing the Cornwallis Street Baptist Church choir to her bel canto tutlege at the Halifax Conservatory of Music to her final, command performance before Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in 1964.

Portia White is a stunning testament to the first African Canadian to become an international star. Features vibrant illustrations by contemporary artist Lara Martina. (From Nimbus Publishing)

Portia White is available in Nov. 2019.

George Elliott Clarke was Canada's parliamentary poet laureate and was the fourth poet laureate of Toronto (2012-2015).

Interviews with George Elliott Clarke

George Elliott Clarke

14 years ago
Duration 22:20
Award winning poet, playwright and literary critic, George Elliott Clarke hails from Windsor, Nova Scotia. A seventh-generation Canadian of African-American and Mi'kmaq Amerindian heritage, Clarke has written in a variety of genres including poetry, opera, screenplay, and song
Canada’s Parliamentary Poet Laureate George Elliott Clarke is on a mission to make his role relevant to the average Canadian. more stories from this episode
George Elliott Clarke says poetry 'the soul of the arts' can't die. Radio Radio's first all-English album c'est right la fun. U.K. comedian Dawn French on developing resilience through humour.

‘It’s really crucial that poets and artists be asked to comment on social political issues’

6 years ago
Duration 8:08
George Elliott Clarke, Parliamentary Poet Laureate, discusses U2 using two of his poems in their upcoming tour

George Elliott Clarke reads the poem he wrote for civil rights activist Joan Jones

4 years ago
Duration 1:54
CBC News met up with poet George Elliott Clarke at the Halifax airport on Sunday night to capture him reading, 'For Joan Jones, Sanctified and Righteous.'

Celebrating Portia White

11 years ago
Duration 2:13
African Nova Scotian Portia White is being celebrated in what would've been her 100th year.

More about Portia White

Portia White on life in Toronto in 1958

3 years ago
Duration 2:50
Portia White has been living in Toronto this past year and tells Tabloid viewers what she's been doing.

Other books by George Elliott Clarke



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