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Volume 25 Issue 8 - May / June 2020

  • Text
  • Choir
  • Performing
  • Performances
  • Orchestra
  • Musicians
  • Jazz
  • Recording
  • Toronto
  • Musical
  • Concerts
"COVID's Metamorphoses"? "There's Always Time (Until Suddenly There Isn't)"? "The Writing on the Wall"? It's hard to know WHAT to call this latest chapter in the extraordinary story we are all of a sudden characters in. By whatever name we call it, the MAY/JUNE combined issue of The WholeNote is now available, HERE in flip through format, in print commencing Wednesday May 6, and, in fully interactive form, online at thewholenote.com. Our 18th Annual Choral Canary Pages, scheduled for publication in print and flip through in September is already well underway with the first 50 choirs home to roost and more being added every week online. Community Voices, our cover story, brings to you the thoughts of 30 musical community members, all going through what we are going through (and with many more to come as the feature gets amplified online over the course of the coming months). And our regular writers bring their personal thoughts to the mix. Finally, a full-fledged DISCoveries review section offers cues and clues to recorded music for your solitary solace!

MICHAEL PEPA, artistic

MICHAEL PEPA, artistic director, Les AMIS Concerts KEN PRUE, proprietor of The LOFT Michael: I had three concerts left in this 2019-20 season. Please see www.lesamisconcerts.org. These had to be cancelled. I am doing my best to reschedule them for the 2020-21 season. Of course, rescheduling requires a lot of communication with the artists, venue, and a million other things. A lot of time is wasted but we’ll do it. Les AMIS Concerts are staged at The Loft, in Cobourg, Ontario, and here are additional comments from Ken Prue, the proprietor of The LOFT. Ken: At The LOFT Cinema and Concert Hall we do live music, classical & jazz, paired with documentary and foreign film. For the month of May we have had to cancel all films, a documentary Film Festival and the following live music events: Robert Sherwood/Dave Young/Reg Schwager – Music of Oscar Peterson; Al Lerman Solo Blues; Jerzy Kaplanek Quartet with Nancy Walker, Roberto Occhipinti, Ethan Ardelli playing the music of Grappelli, Ponty, Lockwood; and Les AMIS (Laurence Kayaleh, violin and Bernadine Blaha, piano). All live music events will be rescheduled when Health Authorities give the ALL CLEAR. Meanwhile The LOFT is closed. During the closure we are improving stage lighting, and tuning pianos. People reading this can stay in touch via our website, www. cobourgloft,ca. From there they can also subscribe to the The LOFT Newsletter. ORI DAGAN In the meantime I have taken to a weekly live streaming show from my Facebook page. I started in late March and have been keeping it going every Thursday at 7pm EST. I started on Sarah Vaughan’s birthday, March 27. Jazz singer-songwriter. I had a tour planned in Quebec for April, with my “Talent & Soul: 100 Years of Nat King Cole” concert booked in Pointe-Claire, Montreal and Quebec City, as well as my first European showcase planned for June. Everything is in the process of being rescheduled for 2021. In the meantime I have taken to a weekly live streaming show from my Facebook page. I started in late March and have been keeping it going every Thursday at 7pm EST. While I miss the Toronto clubs and the inspiring musicians that I have been so blessed to work with, this series has been a very positive experience. Each week is a tribute to a different artist – I started on Sarah Vaughan’s birthday, March 27, taking some requests along the way. For Jazz Appreciation month I continued with Billie Holiday, Carmen McRae, Sinatra, Ella, Nat King Cole and April 30 being International Jazz Day will be all by request. This series has given me an opportunity to connect with jazz lovers from far and wide; it has also been a kick in my behind to get my piano chops up to snuff. It’s free to view from any device, though tips are greatly appreciated. I’m really looking forward to being on a real stage again but I’m beyond grateful to be able to still connect with an audience. I’ve been staying in touch with folks via social media: my Instagram, facebook, twitter and YouTube handles are all @oridaganjazz. Folks can also sign up for my monthly newsletter at my website: www.oridagan.com Map pin? These days, my living room! JOHN ABBERGER I think all arts organizations that have seen their performance activities cancelled are concerned about maintaining a connection with their audiences. For the Bach Festival, we will launch a monthly email newsletter, and will maintain and perhaps even boost our presence on social media to nurture these important connections. I am the artistic director of the Toronto Bach Festival, and am also a 30+ year veteran member of Tafelmusik. I perform with both organizations as an oboist. I can speak for the Bach festival, as well as for myself as a musician and member of Tafelmusik. Regarding what I had to let go of when COVID-19 hit, for the Toronto Bach Festival this is quite straightforward: we cancelled the 2020 festival that had been scheduled to run May 29-31, 2020. This is not only our primary activity, it is essentially our only activity at this point in our relatively short existence. Tafelmusik cancelled the remainder of the season somewhere around the middle of March. With the cancellation of Opera Atelier’s spring production of Handel’s La Resurrezione, my performing activities effectively ended for the foreseeable future. In terms of follow-through, once circumstances allow, for the Bach Festival, our current assumption is that we will be able to offer a festival in May 2021. Once we complete the process of refunding ticket sales, processing any conversions of ticket sales to donations, and reassuring our donors, we will begin work on the groundwork of the 2021 festival. For Tafelmusik, there is a great deal of uncertainty at this writing as to what will be possible in September with the start of the new season. As a musician, I am hoping the events of the next weeks and months will provide some clarity about that situation. I think all arts organizations that have seen their performance activities cancelled are concerned about maintaining a connection with their audiences. For the Bach Festival, we will launch a monthly email newsletter, and will maintain and perhaps even boost our presence on social media to nurture these important connections. It is the hope, of course, that this will even increase our audience at the next festival (presumably in May 2021). We had an outstanding fifth anniversary festival planned for May 2020, and we will soon begin to work on rescheduling as many of those events as possible for the next festival. If circumstances permit, we are also considering the possibility of producing a single concert, perhaps in the fall of 2020, as a means of staying connected to our audience, and we will be working on tentatively scheduling that event next month. At this point, however, there are so many unknowns it feels impossible to make any concrete plans. For Tafelmusik, the core orchestra has been busy working with the marketing managers to produce some content that can be made available online, including a video produced by combining recorded performances from our homes. For people reading this who want to stay in touch, the Toronto Bach Festival website (torontobachfestival.org)is a good place to start as details of our plans fall into place. Contact me at director@torontobachfestival.org to put yourself on a list to receive our newsletter. 14 | May and June 2020 thewholenote.com

identify what our members need and communicate that effectively to decision-makers, and we’re also part of a roundtable convened by Imagine Canada to convey the impact on charities and not-forprofits of all sizes and kinds. For people who want to get in touch with us and our member orchestras, our website is a good starting place: oc.ca. As are our social media, where we’re featuring plenty of content from Canadian orchestras, too: Facebook: .facebook.com/orchestrascanada and Twitter: @OrchCanada. On the map, Peterborough is where we are. MARSHALL PYNKOSKI KATHERINE CARLETON I am executive director, Orchestras Canada, as well as an avocational clarinet player, and I’m speaking for OC’s members (and for myself, I guess …) Of all the things we had planned when COVID-19 hit, most significantly OC has had to to cancel its national conference in Hamilton, May 20-23. Also, any face-to-face meetings, whether internal (a planned board meeting in Hamilton in May) or external (participation in a Charities on Parliament Hill event organized by Imagine Canada, and originally scheduled for today, April 21) are cancelled. Every ensemble rehearsal and concert that I had scheduled to play in – cancelled. (This includes performances with the Peterborough Symphony, the B45 Clarinet Collective, the Clarington Concert Band, the Peterborough Theatre Guild’s production of Annie, and the spring world tour of a New Orleans-style jazz band called Otis and his Honey Lambs that I play with. Well, “world” is a bit strong: we had dates in Peterborough, Millbrook and Bridgenorth! Maybe we’ll make it out of Peterborough County some day.) As to following through, once circumstances allow, most of the rehearsing and performing will happen, one way or the other, though specific productions or concerts are likely gone forever. Pretty much, as for everyone else in the world who can, we’ve moved everything on-line. I’ve been tremendously impressed with the rate at which even the skeptics have upped their Zoom game: people I thought would never turn on their web cams have finally done so. From an Orchestras Canada perspective, we’ve observed that people are keen to stay in touch, find out how everyone else is coping, and acquire new skills and knowledge. So we’ve taken the opportunity to tear up the conference schedule and re-focus on hosting the discussions and information that feel most urgent right now. Rather than trying to stuff everything into three or four days, we’re spreading what would have been our conference offerings between now and December 2020, buying ourselves the time to curate the content that is most needed, when it’s needed. And we’re organizing peer group meetings across the country, and have had excellent participation. We’ll be guided by what we’re learning in these discussions to curate better content, too. Our advocacy work continues unabated, at both the federal and provincial levels. We don’t work alone, either: we’re working in conjunction with a group of arts leaders across the country to I’ve been tremendously impressed with the rate at which even the skeptics have upped their Zoom game: people I thought would never turn on their web cams have finally done so. I am founding co-artistic director of Opera Atelier. We produce twice a year in Toronto – employing singers, a full corps de ballet and Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra. I am happy to say that Opera Atelier has not had to ‘let go of’ anything completely. That being said, we have had to cancel – but only for the time being, our production of Handel’s The Resurrection, Our one obvious change to our programming is that of replacing our Versailles Gala with an online Virtual Celebration which will take place on May 20th, the same date that the Gala had been planned. our Versailles Gala and our Dance Through Time performances for students from our school. We will, however, follow through with all three of the productions mentioned above, once circumstances allow. Sets and costumes are well underway for The Resurrection, and we were already two weeks into rehearsal when the Ontario Premier declared a state of emergency – so we have a very good idea of what the production is. OA’s Versailles Gala is an annual event, and in the meantime we are planning a Virtual Celebration for our Gala patrons. Dance Through Time is a very popular program and although our students will be unable to perform for Doors Open – we anticipate there will be plenty of other opportunities. Our one obvious change to our programming is that of replacing our Versailles Gala with an online Virtual Celebration which will take place on May 20th, the same date that the Gala had been planned. We already have a spectacular line up of Canada’s finest artists from around the globe who will participate. Opera Atelier is posting on a daily basis on our Instagram, Twitter (@operaatelier) and Facebook (facebook.com/operaatelier). There’s plenty of fascinating content from all of our artists, plus regular blogs written by me and OA Designers, plus some fascinating book blogs visitors are certain to enjoy under the hashtag #OATutti. thewholenote.com May and June 2020 | 15

Volumes 21-25 (2015-2020)

Volume 25 Issue 8 - May / June 2020
Volume 25 Issue 7 - April 2020
Volume 25 Issue 6 - March 2020
Volume 25 Issue 5 - February 2020
Volume 25 Issue 4 - December 2019 / January 2020
Volume 25 Issue 3 - November 2019
Volume 25 Issue 2 - October 2019
Volume 25 Issue 1 - September 2019
Volume 24 Issue 8 - May 2019
Volume 24 Issue 7 - April 2019
Volume 24 Issue 6 - March 2019
Volume 24 Issue 5 - February 2019
Volume 24 Issue 4 - December 2018 / January 2019
Volume 24 Issue 3 - November 2018
Volume 24 Issue 2 - October 2018
Volume 24 Issue 1 - September 2018
Volume 23 Issue 9 - June / July / August 2018
Volume 23 Issue 8 - May 2018
Volume 23 Issue 7 - April 2018
Volume 23 Issue 6 - March 2018
Volume 23 Issue 4 - December 2017 / January 2018
Volume 23 Issue 3 - November 2017
Volume 23 Issue 2 - October 2017
Volume 23 Issue 1 - September 2017
Volume 22 Issue 9 - Summer 2017
Volume 22 Issue 8 - May 2017
Volume 22 Issue 7 - April 2017
Volume 22 Issue 6 - March 2017
Volume 22 Issue 5 - February 2017
Volume 22 Issue 4 - December 2016/January 2017
Volume 22 Issue 2 - October 2016
Volume 22 Issue 1 - September 2016
Volume 21 Issue 9 - Summer 2016
Volume 21 Issue 8 - May 2016
Volume 21 Issue 6 - March 2016
Volume 21 Issue 5 - February 2016
Volume 21 Issue 4 - December 2015/January 2016
Volume 21 Issue 3 - November 2015
Volume 21 Issue 2 - October 2015
Volume 21 Issue 1 - September 2015

Volumes 16-20 (2010-2015)

Volumes 11-15 (2004-2010)

Volumes 6 - 10 (2000 - 2006)

Volumes 1-5 (1994-2000)