8 years ago

Volume 12 - Issue 7 - April 2007

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  • Theatre
  • April
  • Toronto
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EARLY Musicby Frank

EARLY Musicby Frank NakashimaImagine two lutes, separated at birthand reunited centuries later to playduets in concert. This was the qualityevoked by Wen Zhao and LucasHarris's show MusicallySpeaking - A Tale of Two Lutes atthe Church of the Holy Trinity onMarch 11.Wen Zhao must be the Jimi Hendrixof the Chinese pipa. It's hardto believe there are only fourstrings on this instrument, playedby one person. In contrast with theChinese traditional music, her playingwas appropriately sombre forthe Grave movement of a sonataby Lauffensteiner.Lucas Harris was equally commandingin the German Baroquesolo works by Sylvius Weiss andDavid Kellner. In a duet, MoonlightOver Spring River, the mostpopular piece of the Chinese classicalrepertoire, Harris was able tocreate a credible zheng (a Chineseharp-like instrument) part on hisbaroque lute in this wonderful"East meets West" collaboration.Similarly engaging was Tafelmusik'sspritely performance, filledwith joy and lightness, of Handel'sWater Music a day earlier at Trinity-St.Paul's. The dynamic contrastswere quite remarkable, attimes so soft that one could actuallyhear the harpsichord and maybeeven the breathing of the personseated next to you!The other featured work, Les Etemensby Jean Pery Rebel is beautifullycrafted and economical, oftenonly in two parts. Earth, Wind,Fire and Water are represented bypercussive low bass instruments,high sustained flutes, fast-runningviolin "flames," and flowing windinstruments respectively - a cleverportrait in sound!This month, Tafelmusik brings usJohann Sebastian Bach's St. JohnPassion, using the forces that Bachhimself used: nine (count 'em!)outstanding solo singers. They arejoined by Les Voix Baroques ofMontreal (April 1, 3, 4). Soloistsinclude tenor Charles Daniels asthe Evangelist, and DorotheeMields and Catherine Webster (sopranos);Matthew White, MargaretBragle (altos); Colin Balzer,David Vanderwal (tenors); StephenMacLeod, Sumner Thompson (baritones).The Joan and Geofrey RiggsBach Cantata Series gives insightinto the many cantatas written byJ.S. Bach. In this continuing innovativeseries, David Fallis examinesparts of Cantata #78, Jesu,der du meine Seele. Then, theToronto Chamber Choirpresents a full performance withorchestra and soloists (May 6).Coffee, tea and famous homebakedrefreshments follow the concert.A rare Baroque masterpiece, theRequiem by 17th-century Italiancomposer Francesco Cavalli, scoredfor choir, soloists and continuo, ispresented by the Toronto ChamberChoir on Good Friday (April6), with guest soloist, sopranoMichele DeBoer.The Toronto Early Music Centrepresents harpsichordist BorysMedicky, in a program of 17thcentury German keyboard music(April 15). Music from the Frenchcourt, particularly the dance formsand "stile brise" (broken style) mayhave had greater influence on manyGerman composers (such as JanAdams Reincken, Dietrich Buxtehude,Georg Muffat, ChristianRitter and Georg Bohm) than onemight be willing to admit. Thisprogram compares German music- suites, fantasias, and toccatas -with the French models.Opera Atelier presents the Canadianpremiere of the 1774 Frenchversion of Gluck's Orpheus andEurydice (April 28, 29, May 2, 4,5) . Already causing a sensationthroughout Europe, the original,brought to Paris by Marie Antoinette,was translated into French,and re-worked for the Parisianpublic. This performance willshowcase one of Canada's mostthrilling young tenors, Colin Ainsworth,and guest conductor AndrewParrott returns to lead TafelmusikOrchestra and ChamberChoir.The Toronto Consort stagesOrazio Vecchi's madrigal comedy"Le Veglie di Siena" (The NightGames of Siena). Centred on musicalgames, this lavish eveningfeatures dancers, commedia characters,madrigals and instrumentalworks combining to create a spectacular"Renaissance Re vu e"(April 20, 21). Joining the Consortwill be Montreal colleaguesMarie-Nathalie Lacoursiere (stagedirector and actor), Jean Frani;:oisGagnon (commediaartist), and Anne­Marie Gardette andPierre Chartrand(dancers).Henry Purcell'sclassic, Dido andAeneas, paired witha commissionedwork (world premiere)by AndreAlexis (novelist)and James Rolfe(composer), Aeneasand Dido, is presentedby the TorontoMasqueTheatre (startingApril 25), with AlexanderDobson,baritone; TeriDunn, soprano;Marie-Nathalie Lacoursiere,dancer;Vicki St. Pierre,mezzo-soprano;Monica Whicher,soprano; ExultateChamber Singers;and period instrumentband, directedby Larry Beckwith.The Canterbury Tales, with itsfascinating cast of characters andextraordinary collection of stories,is the inspiration for a lively celebrationof 14th century Englishvocal and instrumental music (April27) in Sine Nomine Ensemble forMedieval Music's program TheRoad to Canterbury: Music forChaucer's Pilgrims.Michele DeBoer as Cupid in Venus and Adonis(Toronto Masque Theatre, Nov 2006) performs assoloist with Toronto Chamber Choir in RequiemFrank T. Nakashima( is thePresident of the Toronto EarlyMusic Centre, a non-profitcharitable organization whichpromotes the appreciation ofhistorically-informed performancesof early -temcMUSIC at TIMOTHY'SRutter's "Magnificat"featuring Timothy EatonConcert Choir and OrchestraFrida~ May11,20077:30 PMTickets available at the dooror by phone at 416-925-5977 adults students/ seniorsGroup rates available20 WWW.THEWHOLENOTE.COM

TheSachnildrefl's(horus, amembero!Choirs0n1ario,isgratefutforlundingre.~ i·' M5S 3.-'lb; -4l6 .. ;L3 .. 3123 Erna'.l: irJr_,cyr,r '. anil.r}.r : '. r"n~r. V\'"=i, VT\Y\T_ic:i ~ t e:. "b· '.::-.c:aj., I~·~£ej~ttWITY ~.c.:.::.: .. J.~.'.:~~ ... ~.'.~'. ! ... :.: :~'., .~ ... ,•, i:'.z,"::;,:·· ;~·,:;./;·'· • IThe BACH CHILDREN'S CHORUSand the BACH CHAMBER YOUTH CHOIRLinda Beaupre, Conductor · Eleanor Daley, PianistSaturday, May 12, 2007 at 7 :30pmKangaroos, kookaburras, crawdads and crawlers and many otherwonderful creatures are represented in this fun concert ...also featuring the premiere of a new work by Eleanor Daley.Toronto Centre for the ArtsGeorge Weston Recital Hall5040 Yonge Street(north of Sheppard Ave.)Tickets: and at theToronto Centre box office orTicketMaster at 416.870.8000BACH~~~~~Company in Residenceat the Toronto Centrefor the

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