A Scattering of Seeds: The Creation of Canada
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General History


As we witnessed in the documentary, some of Canada's finest composers and pianists, including Stuart Hamilton, Arthur Ozolins,. William Aide, John Beckwith and Glenn Gould, owe some of their enormous technical and interpretative skills to Alberto Guerrero's teaching. Guerrero's passionate love and commitment to the music he taught enriched the country's burgeoning arts culture, and his skill and reputation both greatly aided the reputation and viability of the fledgling Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto.

Though Canadians have come to see Gould, particularly, as a unique musical genius who brought his own brilliance to the keyboard (as opposed to one that was taught to him), it is known what a positive and inspirational influence Guerrero had on his students. It is also interesting to note the similar "eccentricities" shared by Guerrero and Gould, including the signature wrap-around-the-neck scarf they both wore to keep away drafts, and their particular over-concern about contracting colds.

Like Guerrero, the many Chilean immigrants and refugees to Canada in the 1970s came from the middle and upper class, and therefore had high levels of skills and education. Many Chileans in the field of the natural sciences, engineering, teaching, and health care have had their Chilean professional degrees and work experience accepted, or have returned to university to obtain new degrees and secure jobs in their areas of expertise. Many have made contributions in the engineering, manufacturing, construction and transportation sectors, as well as in health care, arts and sports. Others have successfully entered the clerical and service related sectors in Canada. They have successfully established their families and focused on rebuilding their lives as Canadians, leaving their past behind. 7

Emerging Chilean entrepreneurs have opened their own businesses and stores, created consulting firms, and published a number of Spanish language magazines and newspapers. Chileans also have made important contributions to the Canadian Hispanic community at large. Canadians of Chilean origin have created a variety of organizations for women, politics and culture as well as finance and social welfare. Like most refugees, Chileans began working towards the welfare of their homeland. In the seventies some sent money and food to help support their relatives. Later, many worked for the democratization of Chile until the end of the military regime in the late eighties. 8

The community also has an increasing involvement and commitment to life in Canada. Members of the group are active at different levels in the political process. Over the last few years there have been political candidates of Chilean origin in national, provincial and municipal elections. Most notably, Osvaldo Nunez of the Bloc Quebecois was elected to the House of Commons in 1993. 9

1,2,3,4,5 The Canadian Encyclopedia 2000 McClelland and Stewart
6,7,8,9,10 Encyclopedia of Canada's Peoples

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