The True North Project

The True North Project – Synopsis

The True North Project, commissioned by the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, is a celebration of Canada’s multi-ethnic society and its ongoing process of reconciliation with the indigenous community. In this celebration of diversity, artists from vastly different backgrounds are brought together to create a collaborative work for orchestra.

The documentary focuses on national identity and the idea of “home,” in a country where 20 percent of the population is foreign-born. The film offers insights into the creative processes of artists from different cultural backgrounds and from different regions of Canada, as they work together towards a common goal. The documentary is about hope for the future, and brings attention to the enrichments brought by the coexistence of different peoples and cultures within the framework of a nation.

Emil Agopian

About the director, Emil Agopian

Young filmmaker Emil Agopian has an astonishing number of film credits to his name. A cellist, Agopian has a particular feeling for film work involving classical music. In addition to his work for the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra – one of Canada’s top professional orchestras – traveling across Canada to film his feature documentary “The True North Project”, he has created a documentary series and other media for the Morningside Music Bridge International Music Festival in Beijing (2016), and Boston (2017), shooting in China (Guangzhou and Shanghai) and Poland (Warsaw). He has filmed short documentaries, commercials and other film projects for one of Canada’s top choral ensembles, Luminous Voices, La Caravan Dance Theatre, The Calgary Folk Music Festival, SAIT Polytechnic and for several theatre companies. He has created successful videos for a variety of musicians, including the Three Sisters Trio “Journey of Remembrance” whose music video received national TV and newspaper coverage as well as going viral on YouTube. A music video for Calgary band Cowpuncher, was screened at The Plaza Theatre and as part of their 2016 album launch. Agopian has been director of photography on set for multiple other videos.

Agopian’s 2015 short film, “Cloud Runner,” was screened internationally, including at the YoFiFest (New York) and the Calgary International Film Festival. Of a 2015 short work, critic Yair Raveh wrote: ” … bursting with clever ideas… the music choices are brilliant.

The existential themes are surprisingly deep. Kudos.” Paul Dornian, President and CEO of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra wrote: “His work looks and feels ‘different’ without being quirky or contrived. His films speak eloquently and clearly in a sophisticated but natural manner. They make me pay attention.”

Director’s Statement

It is amazing that every form of art humanity has come up with has converged in one universally accepted medium: film. For me, film is the ultimate expression of what it is to be human. This is why I make movies about anything and everything.

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