4 years ago

Volume 24 Issue 8 - May 2019

  • Text
  • Theatre
  • Symphony
  • Concerts
  • Singers
  • Arts
  • Jazz
  • Choral
  • Musical
  • Toronto
  • Choir
What a range of stuff! A profile of Liz Upchurch, the COC ensemble studio's vocal mentor extraordinaire; a backgrounder on win-win faith/arts centre partnerships and ways of exploring the possibilities; an interview with St. Petersburg-based Eifman Ballet's Boris Eifman; Ana Sokolovic's violin concert Evta finally coming to town; a Love Letter to YouTube, and much more. Plus our 17th annual Canary Pages Choral directory if all you want to do is sing! sing! sing!


CANARY PAGES theWholeNote 2019/20 CANARY PAGES DIRECTORY ●●Metropolitan United Church Choirs The auditioned 32-member Metropolitan United Church Choir has eight lead singers, rehearses Thursday evenings and sings on Sunday mornings and special occasions, September through June. Repertoire is Medieval through 21st-century. Singers must have sight-singing ability. A waiting list exists; contact our director in late spring or early fall to join. The Festival Choir adds 10 to 15 singers to the core choir and rehearses Sunday afternoons for six weeks prior to Good Friday. Past concerts have featured Bach, Mozart, Fauré, Duruflé, Gilles and others. The Metropolitan Sparklers (ages 4 to 6), Choristers (7 to 11), Great Heart Ensemble (vocal and instrumental, ages 12 and up) and Metropolitan Handbells are groups open to all. DR. PATRICIA WRIGHT 416-363-0331 x26 ●●Milton Choristers This dynamic four-part community choir has entertained audiences in Halton Region and beyond. The 50-member choir performs two major concerts annually, often including premier guest soloists and musicians. We also enjoy performing at numerous local events. Our director, Rachel Cleland, is expanding our already varied repertoire. From classical to contemporary, sacred to secular, we sing it all. Rehearsals are Tuesday nights from 7:30 to 9:30pm, from September to June. A love of singing, some sight reading and a sense of humour are all you need to become a Milton Chorister. BILL MCLEAN 905-875-1730 ●●Mississauga Festival Chamber Choir Mississauga Festival Chamber Choir (MFCC) was formed in 2008 as a smaller branch of the large ensemble, Mississauga Festival Choir (MFC). This 26-voice, auditioned choir delights audiences with intimate and challenging works of music, their most recent being The Wound in the Water by Kim Andre Arnesen with string orchestra. MFCC performs an annual concert, as well as various performances throughout the season, serving as an ambassador for MFC. They reach out to the community in a variety of venues from the Port Credit Library to Hammerson Hall. All experienced choral singers are now welcome to audition, as it is no longer a requirement to sing with MFC to be part of Mississauga Festival Chamber Choir. JENNY JOHNSTON 416-986-5537 ●●Mississauga Festival Choir With over 150 singers, Mississauga Festival Choir is the largest and most spirited community choir in our city. Our Mission is to enrich lives through music by way of performance, education and outreach, while valuing excellence in choral music. Under the leadership of David Ambrose, MFC also host three subsidiary choirs: Mississauga Festival Chamber Choir, an auditioned group which explores intimate and challenging works; Resonance, a non-auditioned choir for youth and young adults aged 15-28 directed by Bob Anderson (, and Raising Voices - an intergenerational choir of music lovers to provide the therapeutic value of music to people with Alzheimer’s and dementia and their caregivers. JENNY JOHNSTON 416-986-5537 ●●MNjcc Adult Daytime Choir Love to sing? Prefer rehearsing during the day? Join us and fill your life with the joy of singing in harmony! A fun-filled, relaxed environment. No experience or sight-reading necessary. Meets Tuesday afternoons, 1:00-2:30 pm. Learn vocal technique, sing a wide variety of musical styles, stretch yourself. Includes a spring concert. Conductor: Asher Farber. Accompanist: Clive Walton. Conveniently located near Spadina TTC station. DEANNA DI LELLO 416-924-6211 x250 ●●MNjcc Community Choir Tackle world, jazz, classical, Jewish, folk, Canadian, gospel and pop music. Our 75-member auditioned SATB choir meets Wednesday evenings, Sept - June. Rehearsals are well-structured and singers learn skills in different musical genres, expression, blend, vocal production, and reading. A wonderful community of dedicated singers. Annual Spring Concerts in the Al Green Theatre. Ensemble and Cabaret opportunities. Good supportive learning materials. Conductor: Mark Ramsay. Assistant Conductor: Briony Glassco. Accompanist: Asher Farber. Conveniently located near Spadina TTC station. DEANNA DI LELLO 416-924-6211 x250 ●●MNjcc Specialty Choirs 8 weeks devoted to different genres: Broadway (fall), pop (winter), and folk (spring). Enjoy diverse repertoire, vocal technique, and train your ear to harmony. Leave each rehearsal with a song in your heart. No experience or audition required. Join any or all. Meets Thursday evenings, 7:00-8:30pm. Conductor: Alex Fiddes. Conveniently located near Spadina TTC station. DEANNA DI LELLO 416-924-6211 x250 ●The ● Nathaniel Dett Chorale The Nathaniel Dett Chorale is a 21-voice SATB professional choir based in Toronto, dedicated to performing Afrocentric music of all genres, including classical, spiritual, gospel, jazz, folk and blues. Founded by artistic director D. Brainerd Blyden- Taylor in 1998, the NDC is Canada’s premier performer of Afrocentric composers and a touchstone for the education of audiences and communities regarding the full spectrum of Afrocentric choral music. The mission of the NDC is to build bridges of understanding, appreciation and acceptance between communities of people through the medium of music. The Chorale has a three-concert season in Toronto, tours extensively each season and has released several CDs and DVDs. The Nathaniel Dett Chorale is artist-in-residence at the Harriet Tubman Institute for Research. D. BRAINERD BLYDEN-TAYLOR 416-712-7740 ●●Oakham House Choir Society Founded in 1984, the 80-member Oakham House Choir specializes in the large-scale masterpieces of the choral repertoire. This is one of the few Toronto choirs where amateur singers perform regularly with a professional orchestra (the Toronto Sinfonietta). The choir has a diverse membership of Ryerson University students, alumni, faculty and staff, as well as singers from outside the university; it is led by its founding music director, Matthew Jaskiewicz. Rehearsals begin in early September and take place on Monday evenings on the Ryerson campus. We give our main concerts at the end of November and April, often at Calvin Presbyterian Church. For more details, please visit our website. Experienced choristers are invited to contact us by email for information about openings. MATTHEW JASKIEWICZ 416-578-2546 ●●Oakville Choir for Children & Youth For 25 years, Oakville Choir has provided exceptional music education and leadership training to young people. We believe that providing a fun, safe and educational space for youth to express themselves encourages them to find their voice and use it as a force for good in this world. Currently, we offer a collaborative and comprehensive choral music education program to nearly 300 young people, exploring a wide range of repertoire, diverse musical programming, and high standards of performance. We are proud of the choral collaborations that we have C10

created with other arts and community organizations, both locally and internationally through our touring program. We continue to focus on empowering all youth to use their voice to lead, connect, learn, and build confidence in our community. KATHERINE HAMILTON 905-337-7104 ●●Oasis Vocal Jazz Oasis Vocal Jazz, Toronto’s longest-running close harmony ensemble, has been making a unique contribution to the city’s artistic life since 1985. Influenced by pioneers Lambert, Hendricks and Ross and inspired by modern-day masters of the genre such as New York Voices, Take 6 and Toronto’s own Cadence, we enjoy sharing our love of vocal jazz with a wide range of audiences. Whether performing in community or corporate events and charitable fundraisers, or putting on our own concerts backed by some of the city’s top jazz instrumentalists, we have always valued both the pursuit of musical excellence and the joy of making music with each other. We are always looking for new voices to add to our blend. For more information, contact us. Why not become a fan of our Facebook page? ALAN GOTLIB 416-500-7040 ●●Oriana Women’s Choir Oriana Women’s Choir is an auditioned ensemble of 30 - 40 amateur female singers who perform at a high artistic standard. With artistic director Mitchell Pady, Oriana explores the possibilities in choral music for the female voice, collaborating with diverse artists to push the boundaries of typical expectations for women’s choirs. We foster the creation of Canadian choral music, regularly commissioning works from Canadian composers for women’s voices. In rehearsal we are focused but friendly, and maintain an inclusive, respectful and supportive environment. Oriana presents a three-concert series every year, and tours regularly. We welcome potential new singers to attend a rehearsal prior to scheduling an audition. Rehearsals are on Tuesdays, 7:30-10pm in the Sheppard-Yonge corridor. CHOIR MANAGER 416-346-7918 ●●Orpheus Choir of Toronto Orpheus’ vision is to celebrate the transformational power of choral music as an agent of social change and a passionate medium of artistic expression. The 65-voice choir, under artistic director Robert Cooper, champions the new and unusual in choral performance, commissioning and introducing new works and performing overlooked masterpieces. Working frequently with living composers and singing a wide range of repertoire styles in concerts with high production values, Orpheus has introduced audiences to many fascinating and accessible works from the current generation of leading composers. Orpheus supports young emerging vocal talent through its highly respected Sidgwick Scholars Program and Vocal Apprentice Program for high school singers. We welcome enthusiastic singers for an “expect something different” experience. LISA GRIFFITHS, MANAGING DIRECTOR 416-530-4428 ●●Pax Christi Chorale Hailed by critics and audiences alike as one of Canada’s finest oratorio choirs, Pax Christi Chorale delivers stirring performances with great polish and total conviction. Under the leadership of artistic director David Bowser, the award-winning choir aspires to build on its strengths and accomplishments to achieve new levels of performance and audience engagement. Collaborations with outstanding guest artists and partners give audiences and performers a deep appreciation for choral masterworks and new Canadian music. The Pax Christi Chamber Choir placed first in its category in Choral Canada’s 2017 national competition for amateur choirs. We champion great choral music among a diverse community. We have an inclusive philosophy and welcome audience members, choristers, from all backgrounds and walks of life. HELEN NESTOR 647-345-7743 ●●Penthelia Singers Founded in 1997, Penthelia Singers has earned a reputation for presenting high quality, innovative concerts of choral repertoire in a multitude of styles and languages. A vibrant ensemble of women, we are committed to excellence in performing culturally diverse and musically sophisticated repertoire spanning the Renaissance to the 21st-century. The choir seeks opportunities to collaborate with special guest artists such as Suba Sankaran (world music), Raigelee Alorut (Inuit throat singing) and Steve Mancuso (Brazilian capoeira) to workshop different styles of music, as well as work with many talented instrumentalists who support our performances. Penthelia Singers is a welcoming group of women committed to high standards of music-making, diversity, community outreach and enjoyment through the learning process. ALICE MALACH 416-579-7464 ●●Peterborough Singers The Peterborough Singers was founded in 1993 under the energetic and creative leadership of founder and music director Sydney Birrell. We are an auditioned 100-voice choir of adults and youth which attracts members and audience from Peterborough, the Kawarthas, Northumberland and locations along the lakeshore. We generally perform four concerts per year: a Yuletide concert, Handel’s Messiah, an oratorio, and one concert dedicated to music outside the box of regular classical programming. Rehearsals are held Wednesday evenings from September to the beginning of May at Murray Street Baptist Church in Peterborough. Auditions take place in May and September. PEG MCCRACKEN, BUSINESS MANAGER 705-745-1820 NATHANIEL DETT CHORALE theWholeNote 2019/20 CANARY PAGES DIRECTORY C11

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