4 years ago

Volume 25 Issue 2 - October 2019

  • Text
  • Performing
  • Orchestra
  • Symphony
  • Musical
  • Concerts
  • Arts
  • Jazz
  • Choir
  • October
  • Toronto
Long promised, Vivian Fellegi takes a look at Relaxed Performance practice and how it is bringing concert-going barriers down across the spectrum; Andrew Timar looks at curatorial changes afoot at the Music Gallery; David Jaeger investigates the trumpets of October; the 30th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution (and the 20th Anniversary of our October Blue Pages Presenter profiles) in our Editor's Opener; the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir at 125; Tapestry at 40 and Against the Grain at 10; ringing in the changing season across our features and columns; all this and more, now available in Flip Through format here, and on the stands commencing this coming Friday September 27, 2019. Enjoy.


BLUE PAGES 2019/20 SECTION I: PRESENTERS & PERFORMERS ●●Confluence Concerts Confluence – “an act or process of merging” – is a company of diverse creative artists dedicated to intimate, thought-provoking programs with a focus on: cabarets curated by a wide cross-section of Toronto’s leading musicians, the work of Indigenous artists and artists of colour, anniversary programs celebrating important figures in music, salons and lectures on a wide variety of musical topics, and commissions of new works by Canadian creative artists. Our 2019/20 season features “Celebrating Clara Schumann”; “An Evening with Marion Newman”; “Hugo and Willie: Songs of the Soul”; “Witch on Thin Ice (by Alice Ho)”; “Creativity and Aging”; “Baroque Music by Candlelight”; and “The Mandala.” Artistic producer Larry Beckwith has been ably assisted in planning this new mandate by a whole host of outstanding and diverse figures from Toronto’s amazing music scene, including Confluence associate artists Andrew Downing, Kathleen Kajioka, Marion Newman, Patricia O’Callaghan, Suba Sankaran and managing director Jennifer Collins. “...this series has established itself as one of the most important and consistently interesting in the city.” - John Gilks, Opera Ramblings. Larry Beckwith 647-678-4923 ●●Counterpoint Community Orchestra Counterpoint Community Orchestra has been operating as a community orchestra in downtown Toronto for 34 years. Formed in 1984, it was the first lesbian/gay/gay-positive orchestra in Canada and in the world. Counterpoint is a full symphony orchestra, and the programming is drawn from Baroque through contemporary orchestral repertoire. Rehearsals are at the 519 Community Centre on Church Street. The other pages in the ‘About Us’ section of our website give a more detailed history and description of Counterpoint Community Orchestra. Kevin Uchikata 647-970-8057 ●●DaCapo Chamber Choir The 24-voice DaCapo Chamber Choir was founded in 1998 in Kitchener-Waterloo under the direction of Leonard Enns. The mission of the choir is to identify, study, rehearse and present outstanding choral chamber works of the past 100 years and to champion music of Canadian and local composers. In 2019/20, DaCapo will complete its three-season exploration of themes related to the global refugee crisis with a focus on “Renewal”. The season will feature the premiere of the 2019 NewWorks winning composition by Kevin Pirker, and appearances by guest artists Angela Schwarzkopf, harpist; mezzo-soprano Jennifer Enns Modolo; and pianist Catherine Robertson. This past year, DaCapo released its 3rd CD, containing selections received through New- Works, its national choral composition competition. (Read the review of this CD in the April 2019 issue of The WholeNote.) Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @DaCapoChoir! Sara Martin, manager 519-725-7549 ●●Don Wright Faculty of Music at Western University The Don Wright Faculty of Music at Western University in London, Ontario is situated in a research-intensive university on a campus that is inviting and striking. It is an environment that enables students to grow artistically and academically, with a strong focus on community. Our students are among 650 of the brightest and most talented young artist scholars, who come to study in one of our many undergraduate and graduate programs. With the faculty and staff, they are committed to excellence in creative and scholarly work. In our 2019/20 season, we invite you to experience the incredible diversity of musical styles and genres our students, faculty and guest artists have to offer. Included within 350+ performances each year are student ensemble performances (from choirs and opera to orchestra, band, jazz, percussion, contemporary and early music), solo and chamber recitals, new works by student composers, faculty concerts, and our signature “Fridays @ 12:30” concert series. Rachel Condie 519-661-3767 ●The ● Edison Singers We are a newly formed, non-profit organization guided by internationally-acclaimed conductor Noel Edison to present choral music at its best. Our vision is to reach out to communities large and small with the world’s finest choral music. This inaugural season, The Edison Singers will present concerts in three communities: Toronto, Niagara-on-the-Lake, and Wellington County. We plan to make these three centres the hub of our annual choral calendar, and our aim is to become an integral part of the musical life of each community. A resident in each town has agreed to oversee volunteer activities, such as postering, ushering, advertising, marketing, hospitality, patron services, and fundraising. And we hope to create more musical hubs over the next few years. We also plan to give back to each community. This season we will be helping Knox Church in Elora raise funds for repairs to its landmark steeple. At St. David’s Presbyterian Church, our rehearsal venue in Campbellville, Ontario, we will assist them in fundraising. We welcome suggestions from all our friends and supporters regarding ways the choir can enhance the cultural environment in your community. Esther Farrell 226-384-3100 ●●Eglinton St. George’s United Church Our 45-voice choir meets Thursday evenings for two hours and Sunday mornings for worship, preparing music ranging from Renaissance to jazz and from chant to oratorio. Prior experience in choral singing is a requirement. Outreach and benefit concerts are regular fare with support from our wonderful and talented eight section leads. This year, we offer our 2019/20 concert series with: “ESG Remembers,” featuring our ESG Concert Choir and Chamber Orchestra paying tribute to the 100th anniversary of the Peace Treaty with oral masterworks to the fallen, including the Rutter Requiem and other works by Mark Sirett, Ruth Watson Henderson and Eleanor Daley; our annual ESG Christmas concert “Gloria!”, with ESG Concert Choir, Chamber Orchestra and organ; and special guests, the Elmer Iseler Singers and Elora Singers, with stunning choral classics from Canada and beyond. Bronwyn Best 416-481-1141 ●●Elmer Iseler Singers Elmer Iseler Singers (EIS) is a 20-voice professional chamber choir based in Toronto and founded by the late Dr. Elmer Iseler in 1979. Directed by the acclaimed Lydia Adams, the Singers are known for tonal beauty and interpretive range, and valued for their contributions to masterclasses and workshops with schools and community choirs. EIS present a five-concert series in Toronto each season, and are featured at concerts, workshops, and festivals throughout Canada, touring Ontario annually and Eastern and Western Canada bi-annually. Their unique “Get Music! Educational Outreach Initiative” mentors conductors, music educators and students. The Elmer Iseler Singers have 15 recorded CDs featuring Canadian music. EIS with Toronto Symphony Orchestra were 2019 Grammy-nominated and 2019 JUNO-awarded for the brilliant Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Chandos CD recording, with Peter Oundjian conducting. EIS are 2014 National Choral Award recipients and JUNO nominees for “Classical Album of the Year: Vocal or Choral Performance” for Dark Star Requiem with Tapestry Opera and Gryphon Trio in 2017, and for David Braid’s Corona Divinae Misericordiae with B8 | theWholeNote 2019/20 PRESENTER PROFILES

Patricia O’Callaghan in 2019. Jessie Iseler 416-217-0537 ●●Elora Festival and Singers The Elora Singers are a fully professional choir that has spent 40 years establishing a reputation for musical excellence that continues to set them apart. The choir is renowned for delivering inspiring live performances in their fall/winter season and during their summer festival, the Elora Festival. The Singers have been nominated for a JUNO and a Grammy award and have a dozen CDs recorded. Under artistic director, Mark Vuorinen, The Elora Singers have a busy performance schedule within Elora and on tours, but also offer vital community outreach and education programs. Chris Sharpe 519-846-0331 ●●Ensemble Vivant Ensemble Vivant is unique in the piano chamber music world. Having pioneered a genrediverse repertoire from classical to the syncopated rhythms of Ragtime, the Great American SongBook, Latin, and other jazz styles, EV’s unique instrumentation features world class artists who have been steeped in these genres for over three decades; passionate, virtuosic music-making, and warm and engaging rapport with audiences of all ages. “No matter the genre, there is magic in Ensemble Vivant’s music-making.” (Rick Wilkins, C.M.) EV has 14 recordings ( Core quintet: Catherine Wilson, piano/artistic director; Corey Gemmell, violin; Norman Hathaway, viola; Sybil Shanahan, cello; Jim Vivian, bass. Regular collaborators: Kevin Turcotte, trumpet; Mike Murley, sax; Nick Fraser, drums and others. “…Beautiful, poised performances...capture the passion and verve… Wilson’s piano gives this music unerring drive and plenty of sparkle.” - Toronto Star. Through Euterpe (, Ensemble Vivant is known for fostering a love of great music among our youth. Euterpe enhances your community outreach, engaging EV to perform for the students at local public schools, and more. Euterpe’s initiatives have been endorsed by the scientific community. Catherine Wilson 416-768-8856 DON WRIGHT FACULTY OF MUSIC AT WESTERN UNIVERSITY ●● Esprit Orchestra Founded in 1983 by music director and conductor Alex Pauk, Esprit’s commitment to commissioning and advancing contemporary music has set it apart as one of the few organizations of its kind on a global scale. Esprit consistently collaborates with outstanding composers, and performs with first-class soloists and ensembles from Canada and abroad. Each concert season, Esprit Orchestra commissions, promotes and performs the work of Canadian composers, and features Canadian premieres of music by leading international composers. With a dynamic annual subscription concert series, this skilled orchestra presents music that is otherwise unavailable in Canada, always performed to the highest standards in the acoustically acclaimed Koerner Hall at the TELUS Centre for Performance and Learning. Amber Melhado Box Office: 416-408-0208 ●●Etobicoke Centennial Choir In its 53rd season, Etobicoke Centennial Choir (ECC) enriches the cultural life of the community with high-calibre vocal music performances. ECC offers singers a rewarding choral music experience in a welcoming, inclusive community. We perform diverse repertoire, ranging from classical masterpieces to contemporary compositions, folk and popular music. Our season begins on December 7 with “Sweet Rejoicing”, featuring Antonio Vivaldi’s uplifting Gloria, Robert Pearsall’s lovely arrangement of the ancient carol In Dulci Jubilo and joyful seasonal music. “Offering” on April 4 presents a gift of gorgeous classical music, including Luigi Cherubini’s stunningly beautiful Requiem Mass in C Minor and an exquisite selection of art songs by Brahms, Vaughan Williams and others. “Musica Borealis” on June 6 features glowing music from northern lands, including Scandinavia, Estonia and Canada. The Canadian Croatian Choral Society will join ECC in performing a selection of authentic Croatian folk songs. Rehearsals are on Tuesday evenings from 7:30pm to 10pm at Humber Valley United Church in Etobicoke. Etobicoke Centennial Choir always welcomes new choristers. Interested singers are invited to attend a rehearsal. Lauren Mayer 416-433-5495 ●●Etobicoke Community Concert Band Usually a love affair is something you want to keep secret – but not this time. The Etobicoke Community Concert Band is celebrating a 25-year love affair with music. Their repertoire ranges from current hits and old favourites, to swing and jazz, and from military brass to Broadway hits – usually something that will be stuck in your head on your way home after a concert. The band is grateful for so much support over the years from so many volunteers, from so many people from the community, including other community groups that helped to make the first 25 years possible. They hope you’ll join them celebrating the 25th and for, hopefully, many years to come. “Radio Days” will be Friday Nov 1. The Christmas Show “It’s a Wonderful Life in Etobicoke” will be Friday December 20. The 25th Gala Anniversary Concert is Friday, March 27. The final season concert “Party for the Planet” is Friday, May 29. The shows are at Etobicoke Collegiate, 86 Montgomery Rd.. Tickets: .00 Rob Hunter, president Box Office: 416-410-1570 theWholeNote 2019/20 PRESENTER PROFILES | B9

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