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Volume 6 Issue 5 - February 2001

  • Text
  • February
  • Toronto
  • Theatre
  • Wholenote
  • Symphony
  • Arts
  • Bloor
  • Jazz
  • Faculty
  • Musical

CONCERT NOTES: BANDSTAND

CONCERT NOTES: BANDSTAND continued as an amateur musical outlet. Not so long ago (like my adolescence!), community bands were thought of highly enough tb be funded either in whole or in part by municipal governments. Now groups have to rely on lottery funds, charity bingos, member dues and admission fees for their funding. Consequently, bands these days often have less money for proper rehearsal facilities, percussion equipment, or music libraries. Add to this the increased expense many bands have d1,1e to school boards raising the rent for their facilities, and yoy The CANADIAN CHIL­ DREN'S OPERA CHORUS begins 2001 with a new General Manager. James F. Lee is looking forward to an exciting time with the chorus in the upcoming months: performances both in Toronto and on tour to Germany and the Netherlands, May 17-26. The ETOBICOKE YOUTH BAND is busy with-preparations for the Kiwanis Festival in February, hoping to reprise their first place finishes of the last eight years. A new CD, Millennium, is in post-production for a March release, featuring both traditional and contemporary band repertoire. would wonder why anyone would want to start a band at all. It's because of this that I marvel at the nineteen community bands listed in the September 2000 WholeNote. (You can reference that article via the WholeNote website at www.thewholenote.com.). While the number of bands on the scene in Toronto would suggest that the concert bands are stronger than ever, I have some concerns. None of the bands I've visited this year have a full instrumentation. None. There is a chronic shortage of clarinettists - this is akin to having a symphony orchestra with too few violins. Not enough horn players. Almost no mallet OUR MEMBERS WRITE ORCHESTRAS CANADA announces the retirement of Betty Webster from her position as Executive Director, effective March 31, 2001. During an extensive career with many remarkable achievements and contributions to orchestral development in Canada, she was recognized with several awards, and was named a Member of the Order of Canada in 1992. SOUNDSTREAMS CANADA, one of the country's leading presenters of contemporary music and music theatre, was honoured with a Lieutenant Governor's A ward for the Arts in recognition of its exceptional increases in support from the community and the private sector and in box office revenues. percussionists. There are even bands that don't have enough saxophonists! Playing in an understaffed band is quite often an unsatisfying experience - many of the interesting solo colours in the ~· band are missing, and playing cues just isn't the same. It's my belief that we will actually see fewer bands in the GT A over the next few years. I don't see this as a bad thing, if it comes about by bands joining forces to become well rounded groups. Of course, I could be wrong, and by this time next year, there will be even more bands. I just don't know where all those musicians are going to come from. Clarinetist/educator Phil Nimmons and third year saxophone student Tara Davidson, of the UNI­ VERSITY OF TO­ RONTO FACULTY OF MUSIC Jazz Studies programme, have received awards from the International Association of Jazz Educators. The mission of the IAJE is to assure the worldwide growth and development of jazz and jazz education. Hit the web. Join the future with Linda Maguire @ www.lindamaguire.com Merlin Williams is a woodwind performer, arranger, teacher and music copyist based in Toronto. If you would like an upcoming band event to be featured in the Bandstand column, feel free to contact him at (416) 489- 0275; by e-mail, merlinw@attcanada.ca; on the web, http:// members. attcanada. cal -merlinw/.

Bv SARAH B. Hooo If you didn't see much music theatre in· January, you only have a few days in February to catch up with some of your best choices. First of all, The Canadian Opera Company is presenting its usual winter double bill. This year it's Venus and Adonis, running until February 3, and The Girl of the Golden West, until · February 4. Venus and Adonis is a brand-new production that was performed last year· at the Santa Fe opera. Composed by Hans Werner Henze, the opera features dancers from Serge Bennathan's Dancemakers company. The Girl of the Golden West, on the other hand, premiered almost 100 years ago at the Met. Ontarioborn baritone John Fanning, who plays the leading role of Jack Rance, praises Puccini's fantasy of the Old West: "The orchestration is spectacular," he says. "The colours in the orchestra, the colours in the music, are very evocative of the Old West, and yet the love moments are very, very beautiful." From the Girl .of the Golden West. to the one with the glass slipper, Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella, runs from January 30 to February 4 at the Pantages Theatre. Once you've heard that Eartha Kitt . Music Theatre Last Chances Be quick to catch Febrl!ary music theatre Edward Franko, director Nina Scott-Stoddard, performer in Tryptych's Rigoletto plays the Fairy Godmother, what more do you need to know? It has Deborah Gibson as Cinderella herself. The Prince is Paolo Montalban, reprising his role from the ABC/Disney television special that won him the dubious honour of being named one of People Magazine's "50 Most Beautiful People" . Meanwhile, the Canadian Stage Company's Larry's Party continues until February 3. The new musical by Richard Ouzounian and Marek Norman is based on the novel by Pulitzer Prize winner Carol Shields. Directed by Robin Phillips, the production is about a man's search for self-knowledge. It stars Brent Carver, who created the lead role in Kiss of the Spider Woman and most recently wowed as Tevye in the Stratford Festival production of Fiddler on the Roof. The extremely strong supporting cast includes Barbara Barsky, Michele Fisk, Susan Gilmour and Jack Wetherall. If you miss the Canadian Opera Company, don't despair. You still have plenty of time for Toronto Opera Repertoire. This unique institution is actually an arm of the Toronto District School Board's Con: tinuing Education Program. Now in its 33rd season, Toronto Opera Repertoire serves as a musical finishing school for young opera performers and a performance outlet for dedicated amateurs. Michael Burgess and Paul Frey are among TOR's many graduates. This year founder Giuseppe Macina directs two deeply loved favourites: Bizet's fiery Carmen (February 14 to March 3) and Verdi's tragic La Traviata (February 16 to March 4), both at the Bickford Centre Theatre at Bloor and Christie. Adult tickets are only , so TOR is a guaranteed operatic bargain. Another consolation for - slow starters is\the re~rise of Charly Chiarelli's one-man show Cu'Fu? from February 8 right through to to March. 4 at the comfy little Artword Theatre at King and Portlancl. Accompanying his tales with extended riffs on the harmonica, Chiarelli tells about growing up Italian in Hamilton. Loosely translated, the show's title means "So who did it?" In the context of the play it is both the bittersweet punchline to an extended anecdote and a kind of universal question that perhaps lacks an answer. Since its debut at Artword in 1995, Cu'Fu? has become a durable hit in'many other venu

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