Beverly Glenn-Copeland

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Beverly Glenn-Copeland
Bornc. 1944
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
GenresJazz, new age, folk
Occupation(s)Songwriter, musician, actor
InstrumentsGuitar, piano, synthesizer
Years active1970–present
LabelsGRT, Atlast
Associated acts

Beverly Glenn-Copeland is a singer and songwriter who was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to a musical family.[1] He has spent most of his life and career in Canada.[2] A trans man,[3][4] Glenn-Copeland began publicly identifying as trans in 2002.[5]

In 1961, Glenn-Copeland was one of the first black students to study at McGill University in Montreal.[6]

Glenn-Copeland started his career as a folk singer incorporating jazz, classical, and blues elements.[7] He also performed on albums by Ken Friesen, Bruce Cockburn, Gene Murtynec, Bob Disalle, and Kathryn Moses,[7] and was a writer on Sesame Street.[8] He spent twenty-five years entertaining children as a regular actor on Canadian children's television show Mr. Dressup.[9]

Glenn-Copeland's 1986 electronic album, Keyboard Fantasies, recorded using equipment including a Yamaha DX7 and a Roland TR-707, and other recordings were rediscovered and promoted by a Japanese collector [10] in the 2010s.[11] Before Glenn-Copeland's gender transition was made public, "Keyboard Fantasies" was selected as one of the 70 greatest recordings by women by The Stranger.[12]

Other albums by Glenn-Copeland include Beverly Glenn Copeland (1970), Beverly Copeland (early 1970s), At Last! (1980), Primal Prayer (released under the pseudonym Phynix in 2004), and Transmissions (released September 25, 2020).[13] [14]

Keyboard Fantasies: The Beverly Glenn-Copeland Story, a documentary directed by Posy Dixon, was released in 2019.[15][16]

Planned 2020 international tours to Australia, the United Kingdom, and other European destinations were re-scheduled to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A fundraising campaign was initiated to help Glenn-Copeland and his wife after the loss of their house that resulted from these changes; the campaign raised over $90,000.[17] In the same year, Glenn-Copeland created a prerecorded video performance of his song "Courage" for Buddies in Bad Times and CBC Gem's online Queer Pride Inside show.[18]

Keyboard Fantasies was named as a nominee for the Polaris Heritage Prize at the 2020 Polaris Music Prize.[19]


  1. ^ "About Beverly Glenn-Copeland".
  2. ^ "Exclusive: Watch Beverly-Glenn Copeland's Incredible Lecture at the Red Bull Music Academy Weekender in Montreal". Complex. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
  3. ^ "Voice soars above gender, says transgender man performing in Toronto this week". Retrieved December 1, 2017.
  4. ^ "The singer formerly seen as she". Retrieved December 4, 2017.
  5. ^ "Beverly Glenn-Copeland's Music for a Future That Never Came". Complex. Retrieved September 15, 2020.
  6. ^ Díaz, Devan (January 7, 2020). "Going Exploring With Beverly Glenn-Copeland". PAPER. Retrieved June 10, 2020.
  7. ^ a b "Beverley Glenn-Copeland - Biography & History - AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved December 1, 2017.
  8. ^ Advisor, Resident. "Review: Beverly Glenn-Copeland - Copeland Keyboard Fantasies". Resident Advisor. Retrieved January 7, 2018.
  9. ^ "Beverly Glenn-Copeland". SÉANCE CENTRE. Retrieved January 7, 2018.
  10. ^ "Play It Forward: Glenn Copeland".
  11. ^ "Invisible City Editions preps Beverly Glenn-Copeland reissue". October 20, 2016. Retrieved December 1, 2017.
  12. ^ "The Problem with NPR's '150 Greatest Albums Made by Women' List". Retrieved December 1, 2017.
  13. ^ "Beverley Glenn-Copeland Music".
  14. ^ "Listeners Found Beverly Glenn-Copeland. It Was Time".
  15. ^ "British Council Film: Keyboard Fantasies: The Beverly Glenn-Copeland Story".
  16. ^ Reynolds, Daniel (August 28, 2020). "The World Is Finally Ready for Trans Musical Genius Glenn Copeland". The Advocate. Retrieved September 25, 2020.
  17. ^ Sanders, Wren (June 3, 2020). "GoFundMe Launched for Composer and Black Trans Elder Beverly Glenn-Copeland". Retrieved June 7, 2020.
  18. ^ Peter Knegt, "This Pride, come inside for a digital queer cabaret unlike anything else". CBC Arts, June 22, 2020.
  19. ^ "Halifax’s Thrush Hermit included among 2020 Polaris Heritage Prize contenders". Halifax Chronicle-Herald, October 22, 2020.