6 years ago

Volume 11 Issue 10 - July 2006

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8;1ck to Ad Index Willan

8;1ck to Ad Index Willan - In the Heavenly Kingdom Elora Festival Singers; Noel Edison Naxos 8.557734 DISCS OF THE MONTH: Elora's Willan; Tandava's World lf,·~ 1·• WILL\N In tht Ih:~n·cnly KinJ,!Llo m 11, am ... \ 11t ll ,·111>,u11l :\10M, Elorn Fc:11l1 a l Slu.:crs • :'\od Edhon Up until about... now, the high ground of choral recordings of hymns and sacred music has been held by the great English choirs whose very names resound with their stature: Kings College, St. George's Chapel, Westminster, etc. However, as Canadian choirs continue to raise the standard of the artform, we find in them some impressive ensembles documented in outstanding recordings. This is the latest and may be the finest ever. Immaculate engineering. Technically perfect. Singing of the very highest standard and music making that achieves every intention of spiritual motivation its composer intended. Healey Willan wrote many simple hymn arrangements along with wonderful literature in other forms sampled on this disc. The Missa Sancti Johannis Baptistae is one of fourteen settings of the Missa Brevis he wrote while at Toronto's St. Mary Magdalene. The disc also offers numerous motets, each a gem. No Willan recording could be complete withoutRise up, my fair one and it too is, thankfully, included. But the greatest satisfaction of this November 2004 recording by the Elora Festival Singers is the sheer perfection of their performance . This is no euphoric overstatement. This is choral singing that respects every tenet of the sacred practice and demonstrates the finest ensemble technique you'll hear anywhere. Noel Edison's leadership of this particular project will be a milestone. Organist Matthew Larkin too, brings remarkable musicianship to this disc. If you're reading this review - you should own this recording . Alex Baran Concert note: The Elora Festival Singers are featured throughout the Elora Festival: July 14 - August 6. Tandava Tandava Independent TAN2006 Yet another musical testament to the multicultural nature of Canada, this debut CD ofVancouverbased Tandava is a sheer delight. Drawing on the traditional music of India, Bangladesh, Taiwan, Africa, the Middle East and elsewhere, four highly accomplished musicians (along with guest artists on 2006-20073~3eas,o,n; 905-526-6556or 800-575-1381 M-F 10-4 HAMILTONPLACE Thursday0ctober19,2006at8pm Saturday0ctober21,2006at8pm OPERA O KITCHENER ~ ~ WATERLOO HAMILTON~ 'I OPERA ~O,fl/c{Juwanni,, WA.Mozart DanielOkulitch,L yneFortin,SallyDibbleeandScottScully Conductor:Robert Tweten some tracks) weave together a sound and musical language that is both familiar on some levels and startlingly original on others. Lan Tung's exquisite erhu playing, not an instrument usually associated with Indian music for example, often carries the melody alongside Prashant John's bamboo flute; both also lend their vocal talents here. And while we might expect tabla on a recording of this sort (played expertly by Stefan Cihelka), the use of the western marimba (compliments of symphony musician Jonathan Bernard) as a rhythmic partner to the tabla as well as a melodic support is somewhat unusual. Each of the ten tracks takes the listener on an unexpected journey. I was hooked from the moment I hit play. The opening track Dooarey, described as "a new interpretation of an old Bengali folk song about the journey after death" is a lively triple-metered piece in which erhu, flute and then voice trade off the melody over the foundation of tabla and marimba. Another favourite, Dance of the Amis, based on a Taiwanese melody, begins as a slow meditation in quadruple meter, with gong-like punctuation at the end of each measure, then breaks into a fast duple meter featuring vocal harmonies. In Thai Sunrise, erhu and guitar play off each other, culminating in an energetic 5/4. Goyama is a sensitive song in Bengali, apparently inspired by the Canadian rainforest. Beautifully engineered by Jay O'Keeffe, this CD will please fusion fans and traditionalists alike. Karen Ages 519-578-1570or 800-265-8977M-F10-8 CENTREINTHESQUARE Friday0ctober27,2006at8pm Sunday0ctober29,2006at2pm ThursdayJanuary25,2007at8pm SaturdayJanuary27,2007 at8pm $~~~ (lnConcert) C.SaintSaens RichardMargison, AllysonMcHardy ,GordonHawkins Conductor:Daniellipton WednesdayJanuary31,2007 at8pm ThursdayMay03,2007at8pm SaturdayMay05,2007at8pm ~Q&a; G.Puccini FrancesGinzer, TonioDiPaolo,Gaetanlaperriere Conductor:Daniellipton FridayMay1 1,2007at8pm SundayMay13,2007at2pm ~ Canada Council Conseil des Arts for the Arts du Canada BoxOf fice:905-526-6556M-F10-4V RAMADA'. PLAZA HOTEL Preferred Hotel Hamilton Season Sponsor I ...t..l Ca~adian Patrim_o ine T Heritage canad1en isitwww .operahamilton.comforfurtherdetailsProgramandPerformersSubject Sun Life Financial SeasonSupertitlesSponsor i!!] Commercial Banking ~ OrchestraSeasonSponsor WWW. THEWHOLENOTE.COM MacGillivray Season Auditors EFFORTI "' RUST SeasonleaseUnderwriter °"''""'0 AAT$ CO'lf>C'll

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