Noise 101: Giving hope back to Calgary
After the worst mass murder in Calgary’s history, students and community join to honour those lost
Hope: the grounds to believe that something good may happen.
High Hopes, a benefit concert for the victims of the Brentwood stabbing, took place on Sept. 4 at the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium. A large group of friends, family and supporters gathered. Music was performed, raffles were awarded and t-shirts were purchased. But just what was High Hopes?
The event celebrated the lives of five young people taken from us far too soon — Zackariah Rathwell, Joshua Hunter, Lawrence Hong, Kaiti Perras and Jordan Segura – who died in a devastating house party last spring, an event that rocked Calgary as a community and changed the city forever. Being defined as Calgary’s largest mass murder in history, the event has brought a significant cloud over our city, leaving citizens, students and friends wondering why.
But on Sept. 4, everyone stopped wondering why for just a short period of time, instead celebrating the lives of the five young people. They celebrated their lives with art, music, laughter and dancing, giving everyone in attendance the opportunity to heal, even if it was just for a little while.
Barry Mason and Kyle Tenove, the remaining members of Zackariah and the Prophets, worked together to remember their friends in a way that honored them best, choosing to host this benefit concert. The support they received was described by the duo as “overwhelming” and “outstanding” Local bands Fox Who Slept the Day Away, Jesse and the Dandelions, The Ashley Hundred and Windigo performed, as well as a much loved and highly anticipated performance and tribute by none other than Zackariah and the Prophets.
Although there were mentions of the five who were in celebration, there was little sadness at the event. The focus was on enjoying the moment, having fun and listening to some great music. Mason acknowledged the tragedy only once, stating that “we are all hurting, everyone in this room is hurting and that’s why we are all here it’s great to see everyone here.”
The tribute, a musical performance of Zackariah and the Prophets’ six-song EP was performed by Tenove, Mason and some friends. It was the highlight of the night, giving everyone in the room a chance to experience the liveliness of an incredible group of musicians.
The Ashley Hundred performed a stand-out piece with their song, “I Won’t Forget,” a fitting piece about the loss of their friends. The song brought the crowd back to reality for a minute, giving everyone the chance to appreciate why they had gathered there.
The event raised thousands of dollars for the various trust funds and scholarships set up in the names of the five victims, far exceeding the expectations of the remaining members of Zackariah and the Prophets. With over 2000 people in attendance, their fundraising goals for this great organization were definitely reached.
Zackariah and the Non-Profits, an organization started by Mason and Tenove in memory of their fallen friends, will be hosting more events in the future, to support the local art and music scene. For more information please go to www.zatnp.org.