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Volume 18 Issue 7 - April 2013

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  • April
  • Toronto
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  • Theatre
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  • Singers

Tremblay in New Music

Tremblay in New Music Concerts’ tribute to Tremblay on April 27.Bessette has cultivated an international career performing contemporaryworks from leading composers throughout Europe, Asia andthe Americas, while releasing 20 recordings. She will perform two ofTremblay’s piano works from the 1950s among others.Taking a leap beyond the solo pianist in concert, Soundstreamswill be bringing together nine Canadian virtuoso pianists in “PianoEcstasy,” its April 26 concert. These artists will perform in a widerange of styles: from Cage’s The Beatles to minimalist Steve Reich’s SixPianos, as well as a newly commissioned work — Two Pieces for ThreePianos by Glenn Buhr. Cage and Reich come together again in TorQPercussion Quartet’s concert “New Manoeuvers” for percussion anddance on May 3. Reich’s Mallet Quartet and Cage’s Third Constructionwill be complemented by new works from composers James Rolfe andDaniel Morphy.April marks the end of the university school year and there is onenoteworthy event: composer Cecilia Livingston presents her doctoralcomposition recital at the University of Toronto on April 14. Giventhe focus that composers such as Southam and Cage place on awarenessas integral to the listening process, it is interesting that this youngcomposer has titled her topic of compositional research “A Still Point:Music for Voices.”And finally, the Canadian Opera Company will join with Queen ofPuddings Music Theatre in presenting a new vocal work by Chris PaulHarman on April 30. Earlier this year, Queen of Puddings announcedthe closure of their company as of August 31, 2013. Their inventiveway of staging chamber opera and music theatre works incorporatedelements from physical theatre as well as placing the instrumentalistson stage. In reflecting back on their legacy, founding co-artisticdirectors Dáirine Ní Mheadhra and John Hess had this to say: “WithQueen of Puddings, we’ve achieved what we set out to do, which wasto commission and produce original Canadian opera to a high artisticstandard, and to develop an international profile for this work.”Certainly one of their highlights was the launching of soprano MeashaBrueggergosman in the 1999 production of Beatrice Chancy. For theirswan song, Queen of Puddings will stage La selva de los relojes (TheForest of Clocks), Harman’s vocal work based on texts by FedericoGarcía Lorca. Lorca was a Spanish poet, dramatist and theatre directorwho died during the Spanish Civil War in 1936. It will be fascinatingto see how Queen of Puddings stages what will most likely be anintensely dramatic work.Additional concerts featuringcontemporary piano music!!April 13: Works by Hétu, Sherkin, Steven and Vivier. CanadianMusic Centre.!!April 23: “The Unruly Music of the Present.” Gallery 345.!!April 27: Works by Gougeon, Morlock, Jaeger and Schafer.Canadian Music Centre.!!May 3: Works by Mozetich, Kenins, Weinzweig, Behrens andBaker, performed by Mary Kenedi. Canadian Music Centre.!!May 4: “Signposts.” Poetry and improvised music. Music byGilliam and Ringas. Gallery 345.Wendalyn Bartley is a Toronto-based composer and electro-vocalsound artist. She can be contacted at by Beat | Early MusicCollaborationsand EncountersIt seems that the arrival of spring (however tenuous it may be asI write) is an invitation for wonderful things to happen — collaborationsand encounters, the influence of one element upon another,tranform what wasSIMONE DESiletSSine Nomine Ensemble.into something new.Here, in the domainof early music, are afew examples:The mission ofNota Bene Baroqueis to bring musicof the baroqueand early classicalperiods to theKitchener-Waterlooregion. But thischamber group ofstrings and keyboard,whosemembers performon period instrumentsin periodstyle, enjoys presentingconcerts “with a plus” as they say. This time it’s the addition ofstorytellers and a professional shadow puppet troupe — I think somethingmagical might transpire! “Once Upon A Time” is presented onApril 14 at Kitchener’s Registry Theatre, with guests including localstorytellers and Shadow Puppet Theatre.For Sine Nomine Ensemble, the collaboration with Peter Drobac,music director at Toronto’s Orthodox parish of Saint Silouanthe Athonite, is a great opportunity to expose little-heard musicfrom some of those “zones of encounter” of the Middle Ages — the“Christian West,” Byzantine civilization, the varied cultures of theIslamic world. Andrea Budgey describes the colourful variety of whatwill be presented: Eastern Orthodox chant from late-medieval manuscripts;Turkish late-medieval instrumental music; French-influencedpolyphony from 14th-century Cyprus; 14th-century Italian instrumentalmusic with probable Eastern influence. “Orientis partibus:A musical meeting of East and West” is presented at Saint Thomas’sChurch on April 26.The influence of Italian style was strong at the court of King LouisXIV of France. For French music this meant a general infusion ofItalian exuberance, as well as the fostering of purely instrumentalforms (sonata, symphony, concerto). You can hear some results18 | April 1 – May 7, 2013

of this melding of styles, the delicacy of the French mixed with thevivacity of the Italian, in the Musicians In Ordinary’s season finale“French Cantatas Mixed with Symphonies.” Cantatas by Clerambaultand Jacquet de la Guerre as well as instrumental music by Marais andothers are performed by soprano voice, theorbo, violin, harpsichordand viola da gamba, on April 27 at Toronto’s Heliconian Hall.The collaboration between composerStephanie Martin and theWindermere String Quartet onPeriod Instruments bore the fruitof a new quartet, which Martincomposed for the group in its2011/12 season. Titled From aDistant Island, this work closeswith a fugue and that particularfeature prompted the WSQ toquestion: Why do composerslike concluding with a fugue?Windermere String Quartet.“Does its contrapuntal natureappeal to a sense of instrumentaljustice, giving eachAradia Ensemble.instrument anequal voice? Or isit an opportunityto display compositionalvirtuosityby fusing intellectualand expressiveapproaches?” Allquestions to ponderas you listento their program“The Art of the Fugal Finale,” which presents three works, by Haydn,Beethoven and Martin, each of whose final movement is a fugue. Theconcert takes place on April 28 at St. Olave’s Church.Baroque encounters Baroque Idol at Aradia Ensemble’s next show, atakeoff on the popular American Idol concept — except this time, theaudience votes for their favourite new work for baroque ensembleand its composer receives not only the “Baroque Idol” award but alsothe commission of a new work specially for Aradia. And there’s a furthercatalyst in the mix: the submitting composers can bring alongtheir own bands too — you’ll get Aradia musicians sharing the stagewith “progressive pop/rock” band the Quiet Revolution, the experimentalmusical storytelling of Ronley Teper and her Lipliners, theeasy tuneful beat of Roman Tomé. Who knows what will come of this?“Baroque Idol 2!” happens on May 3 at the Music Gallery.Others!!April 11: Virtuoso musicians are showcased in “Music for ThreeViolins,” a presentation of the Oratory of St. Philip Neri. ViolinistsChristopher Verrette, Julia Wedman and Patricia Ahern, gambist FelixDeak and organist Philip Fournier perform music by Purcell, Marini,Schmelzer, Fontana and Gabrieli.!!April 12: Based in Montreal, the Quatuor Franz-Joseph has performedthe complete Haydn string quartets on period instrumentsalongside string quartet repertoire from both early and modern eras.In Waterloo, for the Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber Music Society, theyare heard in quartets by Haydn and Jadin.!!April 20, 21: “May no rash intruder disturb their soft hours” — thisis one of the most beloved choruses from Handel’s oratorio Solomon.The complete work is presented by two different choirs this month,on the same weekend: April 20 and 21 in Oakville by Masterworksof Oakville Chorus and Orchestra; and April 21 in Toronto by PaxChristi Chorale.!!April 27: Each year the Tallis Choir delights in bringing to the surfacean historic event, reimagining through music and research howit might have been experienced in actuality. On the 200th anniversaryof the British-American conflict at York, the choir presents “Upper40 ANNIVERSARYSEASON 2012-13thTrinity-St. Paul’s Centre, 427 Bloor St. Westpresentsª WOMAN’S LIFEMay 24 & 25 at 8 pmMay 26 at 3:30 pmA Woman’s Life explores the lives and talents ofwomen composers and singers from the MiddleAges, Renaissance and early Baroque, featuringmusic by Hildegard of Bingen, Barbara Strozziand Francesca Caccini. Alison Mackay, formermember of the Toronto Consort and creator ofTafelmusik’s The Galileo Project and House ofDreams, creates another stunning evening ofmusic, words and projected imagery. With Torontoactors Maggie Huculak and Karen Woolridge.Generously supported by Al and Jane ForestFor Tickets call 416-964-6337 or order April 1 – May 7, 2013 | 19

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