Georgia Hathaway shows us the power of place in trauma healing
Toronto singer-songwriter and fiddler releasing “Between the Green” EP this spring.
Toronto-born Georgia Hathaway was looking for a way out of the big smoke. They had always felt a deep connection to nature, but after going through several brain injuries, they felt that connection was becoming essential.
“After my fourth concussion, it was pretty clear to me that I needed to do some big healing - not just physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well. I needed a retreat. When I found out about an artist residency on Manitoulin Island, I immediately went for it.” The organization behind the residency, 4elements Living Arts, is a hub for land-based and community arts throughout the island.
In the summer of 2022, Hathaway packed their bags and set out to live off-grid in a mobile studio that was parked in a forest on a local farmer’s property. It was a big change from the hustle and bustle of city life, and a chance to rediscover and rejuvenate themselves.
“The songs on the album are inspired by the people and places I encountered while on the island, but each of them also speak to an aspect of my healing journey,” says Hathaway. “One of the songs is about the ‘Alvar,’ a rare ecosystem on the island that thrives in a harsh climate - but it's also about resilience and learning to live through challenges.”
Writing and producing the album has been its own healing work, according to Hathaway, who returns to the island every year to perform, run fiddle workshops, and collaborate with local artists.
“Making this EP has shown me the power of community in the recovery process. Trauma isolates you - so it follows that healing trauma requires love and support from the people around you. I’ve come out of it a lot stronger and more whole than I was before.”
Between the Green drops this Spring, with a cross-Canada release tour.
"Not to be missed..."
-Lou Hayden, Sudbury Folk Trad
About Georgia (they / them)
I am a musician, songwriter, teacher, and multidisciplinary artist living in a schoolbus. I am deeply inspired by nature, and much of my songwriting stems from my connection to the wild places of Canada. My artistic practice is influenced by my personal journey of healing from trauma and my decade-long meditation practice.
My interest in the inner workings of the mind led me to initially pursue a degree in neurobiology and a Master's in Psychology. From there my path turned to music, and I began studying and playing with many global roots communities here and abroad. Recently I have come out as queer, trans, disabled, and neurodiverse, which has also inspired my creative practice and the way I engage with the world. I teach violin and fiddle and facilitate meditation sessions both online, and wherever I am able to travel to in my bus!
The Land I Live On
Here and now, I recognize that the land under my two feet is the unceded territory of Turtle Island, known today as Canada. For thousands of years and still today, it is home to many First Nations, Inuit, and Metis people.
I acknowledge that I am a descendent of settlers who colonized this land and attempted to wipe out or assimilate all indigenous peoples here. I support the efforts of indigenous land defence, sovereignty, and self-determination, as well as indigenous leadership on reversing climate change. I hope to contribute to relearning indigenous history and decolonizing our way of life here and around the world.