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Volume 10 Issue 10 - July/August 2005

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Toronto Musicians

Toronto Musicians Association News by Brian Blain New Radio Show: Jeff Healey returns to the radio airwaves with a weekly show on Jazz-FM every Monday nightfrom 9-11 pm (repeated Sunday mornings from 7-9 am). The show is still called "My Kinda Jazz" and features Jeffs first love, classic jazz (think early Louis Armstrong). In themidst of this, he 's a new dad and is just recovering from surgery that left him hobbling around in a cast for two weeks. He has now returned to his regular Saturday afternoon performances with his Jazz Wizards at his club, Healey 's, at Bathurst & Queen. There's no substituie for hearing it live (as we say at the TMA) but if you can't make it to Healey's, tune in on Jazz-FM. Blue Man Boycott: The Toronto Musicians ' Association, Canadian Actors' Equity and IATSE Locals 58 (stage hands) and 822 (wardrobe) continue their boycott Blue Man campaign in an attempt to get Blue Man Group to establish agreements with the professional associations and unions representing our musicians, performers and stage technicians. We have worked diligently in a cooperative manner with Blue Man Group's representatives to demonstrate that agreements with the Toronto Musicians' Association, Equity and lA TSE · will not impede their artistic product or business goals. Over the years our members have played a vital role along with volunteer boards, producers, administrators and other industry personnel in establishing Toronto as one of the world's leading cities for artistic culture and entertainment. Our members represented by their associations and unions through agreements with our engagers have ensured the security, safety and professional standards that have created our industry. At the media conference announcing that Toronto would be the home of the world premier of the multi-million dollar stage production of "The Lord Of The Rings", David Mirvish thanked the local unions and associations for our support and flexibility in enabling the producers to fulfill their artistic vision. The Boycott Blue Man Coalition has received support from the artist and labour movement in Canada .and internationally. Why won't Blue Man work with us? We don ' t know ; they have not brought forward any satisfactory explanation. Blue Man's representative stated, Jeff Healey "Blue Man has reached their chosen position. They have no interest in any agreement and let the chips fall where they may." We are asking artists and the public to support our boycott and not purchase tickets to Blue Man Group performances. For more info and to sign the on-line petition, visit www . Last Call to Tee Off: T.he Toronto Musicians' Association annual golf tournament for TMA members and guests is Monday, July 11/05 with 9:30-11 :00 am. tee-off times. Green fees and lunch cost .78 each golfer. To add a cart, the fee is .78 per person. Our tournament flogging takes place at the beautiful Shawneeki Golf & Country Club, 18543 Woodbine Ave . Gust east of Newmarket). All golfers are eligible for prizes, but only TMA members can win the trophy! Assistance with prizes and prize donations are always welcome. Contact Doriann Forrester before July 4th at: 416 693-8778 or to book tee-off times. R.I.P. Hart Wheeler: Canadian jazz lost a unique voice on June lOth with the passing of TMA member Hart Wheeler. Early in his career he played in the big bands of Ellis McLintock, Mart Kenney and Art Hallman and guested several times for TV /movie director Norman Jewison on his CBC TV series " The Denny Vaughn Show" . See Jim Galloway's Jazz Notes column on page 28. We 'd like to hear from you. The TMA invites WholeNote readers to give us your feedback on this column. If you have any suggestions for news items relating to members of the Toronto Musicians ' Association. please forward them to Please include the word "WholeNote" in the subject line. BooK Shelf Seriously entertaining by Pamela Margles Summer reading needn't be silly, and their uncle was the Russian op­ . but it does offer a fine opportunity era singer Vladimir Knipper. As a to seek out books that entertain. This composer, Lev Knipper carrjed out month 's books all fit the bill. Grisha (Otis Mountain Press, .95 US) ) tells the early life of Gregor Piatigorsky, one of the great cellists of the twentieth century. The first part is based closely on his own autobiography, Cellist. But author Margaret Bartley has done extensive research and numerous interviews to expand this remarkable tale up to 1942, when he became an American citizen. Unlike Piatigorsky himself, Bartley includes his marriage to Jacqueline de Rothchild, to whom both books are dedicated . Piatigorsky survived pogroms, revolutions, and wars. Escaping Russia, he made his mark as a cellist as he wandered across Europe. He even became the youngest-ever first chair of the Berlin Philharmonic under Furtwangler - until he had to flee the Nazis. Grisha reads like a novel. In fact, Bartley has added dialogue and descriptions of the characters' inner thoughts and feelings . But it is historically sound and well-documented with a bibliography, discography and photos. The Mystery of Olga Chekhova (Viking, 316 pages, .00) covers roughly the same tumultuous period as Grisha , though the experiences of Piatigorsky and Chekova couldn't be more dissimilar. The cover photograph shows the beautiful Russian actress Olga Chekova, a film star in Germany, sitting with Hitler at a Nazi reception in 1939. Antony Beevor's intensive research reveals that she was in fact a Soviet spy , recruited by her brother, the noted Soviet composer Lev Knipper. Their aunt, Olga Knipper-Chekhova, the leading actress in Stanislavsky's legendary Moscow Art Theatre, was the widow of the great Russian playwright Anton Chekhov, his spying while touring throughout the Soviet Union with the Red Army Chorus and travelling outside to international symposiums of composers. Beevor's expertly-told saga chronicles an extraordinary family. Terry Teachout's Allin The Dances: A Brief Life of George Balanchine (Harcourt, . 00) begins in pre­ Revolutionary Russia as well. Teachout's book, short as it is, pinpoints how Balanchine modernized the language of ballet by fusing the modem and romantic. As Teachout says, 'no other ballet choreographer has attracted so many followers '. Balanchine's importance to dance really can't be overrated. Describing some of Balanchine's ballets in elegant detail, Teachout shares his thought on them. He deftly places Balanchine in his artistic context, although he pays too much attention to critics, both hostile and appreciative. Teachout clarifies Balanchine's pivotal relationships, mainly with Lincoln Kirstein, who founded and ran the New York City Ballet with Balanchine, and with his many wives who, all dancers, served as vital muses. A revealing quotation is offered from Stravinsky, a close collaborator, saying that to see Balanchine's choreography 'is to hear the music with one's eyes'. Unfortunately , as for all quotations here, no source is given. There is no index. Both Larry Kart and Gary Giddins are openly passionate about jazz. They describe the music, and back up their observations with astute historical perspectives. Their infectious enthusiasm is hardly uncritical. But it is enjoyably effective. In Jazz in Search ofltself (Yale, .00) Kart pulls in references from art and literature. His provocative introduction raises social and aesthetic issues, but he doesn't look for simple answers. For him, jazz is about the work of 'innovative personalities' , not the 'wax-museum' ofWynton Marsalis ' and his 'neo-con' colleagues. His 32 WWW. THEWHOLENOTE.COM ) ULY 1 -SEPTEMBER 7 2005

est writing is Philosophers' Walk. about complex Shaffter's memorable characters subjects like includeapolicedetectivewho quotes Cecil Taylor, 'a Milton Acorn and a devious Vienby musician with a nese piano master-teacher. When Catherine Muir split personali- they talk about music-lieder-sing- On Sunday, :July 10, 2005, CBC Radio's OnStage program begins ty who con- ing, piano-playing, gender issues, or its series of broadcasts from the recently completed lith season of stantly sends music-world politics-they sound OnStage concerts. This puts them a year ahead of WholeNote. T his one of his thoroughly convincing. lOOth issue of WholeNote represents the end of our tenth season. selves into Canadian author The OnStage performances to be rebroadcast during this · combat against the other', Miles Bea Gonzalez summer publication period run the gamut : jazz, world, classical, Davis, who had the 'gaunt intensity sets up her nov- vocal, and early music. We covered them in our pages during their of a Giacometti sculpture' and Son- el like an opera. "from-print-to-live': stage . Here in this column we try to complete ny Rollins, who brings 'orchestral/ Hence the title the loop by giving you a " heads up" when concerts announced in dramatic resources into the range of The Mapmak- our pages come to air. the individual soloist' . er's Opera So listen in on summer Sundays to the following concerts These articles are arranged by sub- (HarperCollins, celebrating music in Toronto in much of its diversity . July 10 it's ject, which is good because there is, $ 2 4 . 9 5 ) . "The Scarlatti Dynasty"(recorded Oct 12 , '04): Les Voix Baroques especially inexcusably here, no index. Gonzalez lists with Matthew White and Nathalie Paulin; August 28: " Monsieur Giddens' de- the dramatis personae and assigns Lambert and the Airs de Cours" (recorded February 18, 2005): Les scriptions in voice types. Chapters are divided into Vo ix Humaines with Suzie LeBlanc . Weather Bird acts and scenes. There is even a cur- July 17 brings " Musical Portraits" (the Hugh Fraser Quintet, ( 0 x f o r d , tain call. This theatrical approach a!- recorded Oct. 22, 2004). Also in a jazz vein, August 7 is "Jazz, . 95), a re lows Gonzalez to present her char- Blues, Ragtime & Swing "with Jeff Healey joined by guitarist Mose vivid. On Son- acters from various viewpoints, ere- Scarlett, guitarist and vocalist M arty Grosz, and the jazz ensemble ny Rollins : ating the mood of a much-embroi- Continental Rhythm. September 4 : Bill Mays is joined by jazzers 'The fa~ade dered legend . P .J. Perry, Guido Basso, Terry Clarke and Neil Swainson, along may be neat- T here is a lot of symbolism in- with Gryphon Trio line-mates Annalee Patipatanakoon on violin and but the spine volving maps and birds. Familiar Roman Borys on cello. The concert was originally held on Saturday, trembles with the thrill of anarchy'. character types (a philandering hus- February 19, 2005. When he comes down on some- band, an unscrupulous priest, a no- Want World music? Brazilian-born Vancouver musician one he does it with grace and sincer- good son -- in this case an obses- Celso Machado, Duo Similia, and the Montreal Guitar Trio (Aug ity . 'Looking to Marsalis for deep sive opera fan , and a questing hero 14) , and fado singer Catarina Cardeal with Mike Siracuse and Jane feelings is as pointless as looking to -- a tenor of course) are featured . Bunnett (July 31) all reprise season appearances. Miles Davis for easy laughs.' For The servant, called Very Useful , is On the classical front, "A Jules Massenet Soiree", featuring Giddens, originality lies in a 'core decidedly unuseful, leading this Canadian-American Erin Wall , soprano, Canadian Brett Polegato, of singularity', where the instrument charming, magic-tinted story into baritone, and Richard Bradshaw as conductor, was the program fo r becomes a physical extension of the tragedy. Gonzalez's language is flow- the 11th annual CBC/OnStage opera gala .on Wednesday, Deq:mber musician's personality . He has his ery and poetic, with layers ofphras- 1, 2004, and will be rebroadcast on July 24. The rebroadcast is a preferences: The David S. Ware es creating rich contrapuntal textures. tribute to Maureen Forrester, who celebrates her 75th birthday on Quartet is 'the best small band in Bravo for the lovely cover. July 25, 2005. And February 8 's " Love's Joy, Love's Sorrow: jazz today' and Jason Moran 'em- In spite of the Music of Fritz Kreisler" airs August 21 , with violinists Mark Fewer, bodies the way of negotiating the annoying title Armalee Patipatanakoon, Erika Raum, and Scott St. John, and cellist margins without succumbing to tra- and the silly Roman Borys. ditionalism and nostalgia' . The com- cover art (why OnStage is heard Sundays, 2 :05 pm on Radio Two, and prehensive index makes Weather is the pianist 8 :05 pm on Radio One. Bird a good listening companion. naked?), Sleep- There' s lots more classical and baroque music recorded in The hero of ing With WholeNote's vicinity on CBC in July : In Performance's "Encores", Peter Shaffter's S c h u b e r ( heard Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays on CBC Radio Two murder mys- ( R andom from 8-lOpm. July 6 is Tafelmusik (The Enchanting Recorder with tery The Schu- H o u s e , Marion Verbruggen); July 19 is the TSO, starring violinist Sarah mann Proof .95) won me over with its good- Chang, with pieces by Janacek, Maratka, Smetana, and P vorak; July (RendezVous, natured humour. Bonnie Marson's 2 1 has the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Orchestra, with violin .95) is a likable narrator, a dreadful pianist, soloist Judy Kang playing music by Grieg, Sibelius, Luedeke, and colourful char- is suddenly possessed by the spirit Nielsen; and on July 27, the Women's Musical Club of Toronto acter- a tough, andgeniusofSchubertandstartstoss- r hosts pianist Sonia Chan with music by Haydn, Ravel, Chopin, sensitive, gay, ing off Schubert's piano works mag- Chan Ka Nin, and Dutilleux. and very gifted pianist. The plot fo l- nificently (only Schubert, a neighbour And "Two New Hours" (Sundays at !Opm) presents lows a fairly standard path leading complains) and composing new ones. " Milestones" featuring Robert Aitken and the New Music Concerts to the hero ultimately being rescued There are other terrific characters: Ensemble from Ridpath Hall in M ontreal in a concert that was also from the murderer by his new lov- the wacky therapist who begins and presented on February 28, 2005 at Glenn Gould Studio, and is going er. But there are some terrific twists. e nds her written reports with to be rebroadcast on August 14, 2005. These involve an unknown song 'Wow!'; the pretentious composer So other than CBC what is happening out there in terms of the cycle allegedly by Schumann and a who tells the narrator 'It 's astonishmissing bust of Delius. Schaffter, a ing your skills so vastly surpass your rebroadcasting of music that happened live in the ~ reate r Toronto Area? graduate of the University of To- musical depth'. Some of Marson's ronto Faculty of Music, skillfully descriptions of music are decidedly sets the scene in famil iar Toronto over the top_. But the characters are locations like the Faculty building, intelligent, credible and attractive, the the grandly Victorian Royal Conserv- plot is clever, and the writing is very, atory of Music, and the connecting very funny. ) ULY 1 -SEPTEMBER 7 2005 We're counting on you to help us out here . We're asking you , our readers, to keep your ears open to rebroadcasts heard around town . Let us know, and we will return the favour by passing the information on in this column. Help us bri ng F rom Live to Air fully to life by emailing us at editoria l@thewholenote .com. WWW, THEWHOLENOTE.COM 33

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