NAC Presents The Once
with Special Guest Sarah Mac Dougall - March 13 NAC Theatre

NAC Presents
The Once
with special guest Sarah MacDougall
March 13, NAC Theatre

February 26, 2015 – OTTAWA (Canada) – “Just as the sea refuses no river, The Once turns back no listeners. These three Newfoundlanders gracefully and evocatively offer gem-like maritime music – foot-stomping shanties, heart-rendering ballads, salt-aired interpretations (of Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen tunes) and a cappella three-part harmonies thicker than Mama Cass’s midriff..” - Brad Wheeler, Globe and Mail

The Once is rooted in its essential musical elements – lead vocalist Geraldine Hollett’s incandescent voice, the trio’s gorgeous harmonies and the spirited acoustic instrumentation supplied by Andrew Dale and Phil Churchill. Hollett, who the Globe and Mail hailed as a “pure-voiced starlet,” is a captivating, compassionate singer who has brought comparisons to such iconic Americana stylists as Alison Krauss, Gillian Welch and Emmylou Harris. Dale and Churchill, both talented and versatile players, utilize guitars, mandolins, banjos and even a bouzouki to build a rich musical tapestry.

The Once’s story began a little over five years ago, when the band released their 2009 self-titled, award-winning debut, which was funded by a stranger at a show who was so impressed that he offered them $5,000 to make the album. It was released by the Canadian label Borealis Records, as was its follow-up Row Upon Row Of The People They Know, for which they received the JUNO nomination. The band self-released a Christmas CD in 2012 and still had that independent spirit when they started production on their latest album. They caught the attention of Nettwerk CEO Terry McBride at the Vancouver CelticFest, who offered them a label deal shortly after.

Their latest work Departures has recently earned them a JUNO Award nomination for Group Roots and Traditional Album of the Year. The Once arrive at the NAC as part of their 2014/15 tour, which has taken through Europe, United Kingdom, United States and Australia before coming home to Canada.

This marks The Once’s third appearance for NAC Presents, having sold out their two previous concerts in 2012 and 2013.

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Western Canadian Music Award-winning artist Sarah MacDougall is an upcoming artist who is getting known for her honest and poetic songs, passionate performances, and unique voice. Described by the magazine Rootstime in Belgium as ‘One of the greatest talents of our era”, and listed as the “Second best gig” by the major UK newspaper The Independent, becoming the #1 most played artist on Canadian Galaxie Folk/Roots radio, Sarah will be performing songs from a newly released album Grand Canyon.

Tickets start at $29 and available for purchase at, visit the NAC Box Office, or call Ticketmaster at 1‑888-991‑2787 (ARTS).

NAC Presents thanks title partner BMO Financial Group for their long-standing leadership support of this series. NAC Presents is grateful to The Slaight Family Foundation, whose Slaight Family Fund for Emerging Artists supports performances by emerging artists featured in the NAC Presents 2014–15 season. They include Klô Pelgag, Thus Owls, David Marin, Les Chercheurs d’or, Salomé Leclerc, Alejandra Ribera, Philippe B, Pierre Kwenders, MASTIK, Sarah MacDougall, Karim Diouf, Willows, the Emie R. Roussel Trio, Boogat, Andy Shauf and Laura Crema.

Ottawa Citizen is proud to be Media Partner for this performance.

NAC Presents would also like to acknowledge Official Hotel Partner, Hotel Indigo Ottawa and Official Car of NAC Presents, Mark Motors of Ottawa – Audi.


Sean Fitzpatrick
Communications Officer
National Arts Centre English Theatre
613 947 7000, x389




Showcasing the country’s established artists and those at the forefront of the next generation, NAC Presents, in partnership with BMO Financial Group, promises a dynamic range of incredible performers who represent the best in Canadian contemporary music. NAC Presents is the place to be if you want to experience a concert by a Canadian icon, or be right up close with the icons of the future.

Coordinating the series is producer Simone Deneau, whose musical taste and keen sense of what’s hot on the Canadian music scene have shaped the NAC’s fifth programming stream into one of the most important music series in the country.

>> Watch the season trailer