After my daughter passed away in 2018, I was sure that I was never going to sing again. I felt like I had lost my spirit for music and I just didn’t have the heart for it anymore.
Kait Shannon @2011 Picton, ON
Well, I guess there is a reason why they say “Never say never”.
I received a call in late March from an Acadian producer in Prince Edward Island known throughout the French region for his Acadian supper theatre shows.
He told me he wanted to produce a tribute show to my aunt Angèle Arsenault who was a superstar throughout the French-speaking world in the Maritimes, Quebec, across Canada and in France.
I told him that I was not singing anymore but the more we talked about it, the more it became clear to me that I absolutely HAD to do this show.
You see, Angèle is one of the main reasons I got into music so I realized that this could be my way of honouring her by interpreting her songs in my own way as a personal love song of thanks.
So for the past month I have been slowly cleaning out the musical cobwebs in my brain as I started to learn her songs. Oh. Did I mention I have 17 songs to memorize … all in FRENCH?
Oui, oui mes amis!
The good thing is that at least I know all of the melodies plus I know a lot of the lyrics to some of her songs.
But boy did I learn how deceptively “simple” her songs are – a lot of them are like tongue-twisters. Someone said “just have the lyrics in front of you” but the lyrics go by so quickly that you don’t have time to think, never mind read them off a page!
After 5 years mostly in a deep dark grieving place, I have emerged back into the light and am starting to move forward. People often talk about “moving on” but there is NO moving on. I could never leave Kait behind! So I see it as we are moving forward together and in a new way.
Many have said to me at various times, “Kait wants you to be happy and she wants you to get up/get going again” . But I wasn’t ready to hear that back then. I just was not able to process it.
Funny how when you finally decide to pick up the pieces and start to move forward, life goes “She’s back!” and then proceeds to explode with new opportunities and lots of things to entice you to jump back in with both feet.
No wonder the expression is “hit the ground running” and not hit the road crawling.
So here I go. Jeanette Arsenault 2.0.
The show will be in Mont Carmel, PEI for 5 nights – August 8-12, 2023.
Tickets can be purchased here: