Hidden Collection Discovered


This is a story of the importance of an excellent inter-team collaboration, good relationship building, solid research practices and intellectual curiosity. Samuel Mercier is a Concordia-based researcher who joined the SpokenWeb project in August 2018. He has secured a “hidden” collection, which we are tentatively calling the Alan Lord Collection.

Sam met with Ian Ferrier in September 2018 who told him about the Ultimatum performance festival, which showcased new wave music and poetry in 1985-1987. Ian Ferrier was an organizer and also read his poetry at the festival. He shared an LP of the poetry readings with Samuel.

Through this initial discovery, Samuel came across the name of Alan Lord (one of the festival organizers/participants) and reached out to him immediately inquiring about the archive of the spoken word from the events. Luckily, Alan has been meticulous about keeping records from the festival editions.

Upon the preliminary evaluation, this collection includes performances by Kathy Acker, Josée Yvon, Denis Vanier, John Giorno, Herbert Huncke, William S. Burroughs, and Ian Stephens. The collection is especially interesting for its extensive French language component.

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