In a recording career spanning more than two decades, Loreena McKennitt’s ‘eclectic Celtic’ music has received critical acclaim world-wide, and gold, platinum and multi-platinum sales awards in 15 countries. But while her achievements as a recording artist are impressive, they’re not the only thing that this multitalented Canadian brings to the table – she’s a savvy businesswoman, a human rights advocate, and a philanthropist to boot. And, with two Junos under her belt, and an imprint that has met with wide international success, she has plenty of insight into a notoriously fickle business – plusa musical talent with the power to transport audiences.
Loreena McKennitt is well known as a composer and singer. In a recording career spanning more than two decades, Ms. McKennitt’s ‘eclectic Celtic’ music has received critical acclaim world-wide, and gold,mplatinum and multi-platinum sales awards in 15 countries across four continents. To date, she has soldmover 14 million albums with a catalogue that includes seven studio recordings, three seasonal recordings, a live in-concert DVD and two DVD documentaries. She’s won two Junos, and has performed for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
Less well known is the fact that Ms. McKennitt is a highly successful businesswoman who has created an independent record label with celebrated international success. In 1985 she established her own record label, Quinlan Road, a move which has made her a rarity in the music industry. In the early years, Ms. McKennitt ran the operation from her kitchen table, selling her recordings by mail order and producing her own concert tours. Today, she leads her own company with responsibilities that include everything from creating strategic business plans to overseeing marketing and promotion.
Ms. McKennitt’s business acumen is also applied to the three charitable foundations she established. Her Three Oaks Foundation provides financial support to cultural, environmental, historical and social groups. The Cook-Rees Memorial Fund for Water Search and Safety, founded in 1998, has raised more than $4 million in support of water safety education, as well as search, rescue and recovery operations.
In 2000, Ms. McKennitt purchased a recently-closed public school in Stratford and transformed it into the Falstaff Family Centre. Responding to concerns identified by the local community, the Centre focuses on the needs of families and children in Perth County, Ontario, which is where she resides.