7 years ago

Volume 11 Issue 4 - December 2005

  • Text
  • Toronto
  • December
  • Theatre
  • January
  • Jazz
  • Choir
  • Symphony
  • Musical
  • Orchestra
  • Ensemble

Geo. I I , D ~ & Co.

Geo. I I , D ~ & Co. Limited CONSERVATORS & PURVEYORS OF Fine & Rare Violins 20 1 Church St., Toronto, ON. MSB IY7 Tel: 416-363-0093 • Fax: 416-363-0053 Email: Canada's foremost violin experts. Proud of our heritage. Exciled about the future. 30th ANNIVERSARY JOHN FERTH Recorder Center sheet music - recorders 984 Dovercourt Rd. Toronto, ON M6H 2X5 416-534-7931 everything for the recorder player Quoolibet by Allan Pu Iker Toronto Music Expo I spent part of the November 19- 20 weekend at the Metro Convention Centre manning WholeNote's booth at the Toronto Music Expo, which was optimistically but not entirely accurately described in its promotional material as "everything music under one roof. " The fact that the show took place at all, however, was such a positive indication that there is recognition of the size and economic clout of the music community. While there were "glitches" like amplified bands belting out their wares at 140 decibels, making a good working knowledge of sign language indispensible, there were also interesting and valuable contacts to be made. Now that musicians are recognizing that they are, for the most part, self-employed entrepreneurs, there will be enormous value in WholeNote's community having a much stronger presence at next year's show. Musicians Taking Charge of their Destinies Speaking of entrepreneurial musicians, six local performers/ensembles have worked together to produce an innovative initiative, the "Great Holiday Mega-Launch" on December 4 at the Great Hall at Queen and Dovercourt. The six collaborators, The Caliban Quartet, Kevin Mallon, the Aradia Ensemble, I Furiosi, Deborah Quigley and Martin Gould, and Musica Franca, have put the event together to launch seven CDs. This kind of collaboration addresses not only the obvious financial one, that by sharing one sixth of the expenses an event of this sort becomes considerably more affordable than it would otherwise be, but also the reality that there are very few people with the time to attend six separate launches, so it will be able to attract a larger and more diverse audience than any one could have separately. The music at the event will be as varied as the participating musicians, who will be joined by guests, including soprano, Mary Lou Fallis, Canadian folk music legend Valdy, jazz chanteuses Bonnie Brett and Heather Bambrick, Georgian music expert Alan Gasser, jazz trumpet star Guido Basso, trombonist Alain Trudel, trumpeter Guy Few and jazz drummer Brian Barlow. Aradia 's Kevin Mallon Seasonal Brass There are probably literally hundreds of choral concerts listed in December. Voices blending in fourpart harmony are probably the sound most universally associated with the music of the Christmas season. The other musical sound closely associated with the season is the brass ensemble. A close look at the listings reveals quite a number of concerts offering brass, all but one in combination with a choir or choirs. If the sound of brass raises your sp irits, then check our pre-December 25 listings. There are plenty to choose from. Christmas with Bach As many before me have observed, Christmas is both a sacred and a secular celebration in our society. You would never guess from our current observances, for instance, that Advent, the month or so leading up to Christmas, was originally a time rather like Lent of fasting and prayer. The religious dimension of Christmas does live on, however, through music. Handel's oratorio, Messiah, which encapsulates the entire New Testament narrative, will be performed many times throughout December. The Christmas music written by J.S. Bach also lives on to remind us of the more serious side of the season. The Bach Consort has really started a new tradition in Toronto, that of performing Bach's Christmas Oratorio in its entirety a week or so before Christmas. The performers donate their services so that income generated by the event can be donated to charities such as Out of the Cold. This year's Christmas Oratorio, conducted by Yan- WWW, THEWHOLENOTE.COM D ECEM BER 1 2005 - F EBRUARY 7 2006

'----'----"'-"----"""'---"-'-"-=---'--'---==-=~..,__, Festival The Toronto International Chamber Music Festival in January 2006 features such distinguished guests as the renowned Eastman Brass ensemble. The intrepid and apparently inexhaustible team of TrypTych Productions have repositioned their Toronto Internanick Nezet-Seguin, will take place at Eglinton St. George's United Church on December 16. The same evening, alas, Les Violons du Roy, La Chapelle de Quebec [choir] and soloists under the direction of Bernard Labadie perform four Christmas Cantatas by J.S. Bach at Roy Thomson Hall. The conflict, ironically, is completely understandable; this will be one of the few evenings available for the TSO players who are the core of the Bach Consort Orchestra. Mozart's 250th Birthday January 27 will be the 250th anniversary of the birth of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. There are more concert-tributes to Mozart than can be mentioned here. (We have included a "Mozart at 250" Quick­ Picks in our listings section, page 63, to make them easier to find . Something that really stands out, however, is the Toronto Symphony Orchestra's "Mozart@250" three-concert series, which will feature among many other fine soloists the stellar voices of soprano, Isabel Bayrakdarian, tenor, Michael Schade and baritone, Russell Braun. The TSO also has a fourth concert, not part of the series but nevertheless devoted to the music of Mozart, designed for children and called "The Mozart Experience." In these concerts, collaborations with the Magic Circle Mime Company, an impetuous street musician and her conductor companion guide the audience through Mozart's incredible life. What better way to introduce children to or deepen their interest in Mozart and art music than by taking them to these concerts on January 28 at 1:30 and 3:30. (Ms. Bayrakdarian, whose performances with the Toronto Symphony are on January 18 & 19, is the subject of a documentary film that will premiere on CBC Television's "Opening Night," January 19 at 8pm. There will be two other opportunities to hear her and D ECEMBE R 1 2005 - F EBRUARY 7 2006 Russell Braun, on January 15 at the Centre in the Square in Kitchener and January 22 at Hamil ton Place, in Opera Ontario's Great Singers Recital Series). Toronto International Chamber Music tional Chamber Music Festival , which was for the past few years on the Canada Day weekend, to late January. Having observed from experience that the out of town festivals make the summer festival circuit very competitive, they came up with January, when there is a lull in concertizing after the December surge, and when tourism to Toronto is low. The fact that the Delta Chelsea Hotel has come on board as a sponsor sends a strong message from the hospitality industry. The Toronto International Chamber Music Festival' s mandate is to present musical performances, preperformance talks and master classes, entertaining, educating, and providing a context for artists, students and audiences to interact, and share the experience of beautiful vocal and instrumental chamber music. The Festival's emphasis on the art of singing makes it different from other comparable festivals, which all too frequently have a very minor vocal component. With 5 of the 6 concerts featuring voice, they are doing something about this situation. The programming is varied and diverse, including everything from Italian Renaissance madrigals to Hindemith's quirky 12 minute opera Hin und Zuruck and just about everything in between! This inaugural January festival will also be a 250th birthday celebration for one of the greatest composers of music for the human voice, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. In fact, the opening concert falls on his birthday on January 27, 2006. It will feature several distinguished guest artists, including pianist Felicitas Keil from Vienna, the Vienna Symphony Virtuosi and the celebrated Eastman Brass. All six concerts take place in the comfortable and convenient Isabel Bader Theatre at the University of Toronto. I hope that many WholeNote readers will get out to support and be part of this splendid undertaking. WWW. THEWHOLENOTE.COM m~infqnia 1oronLo NURHAN ARMAN MUSIC DIRECTOR Toronto'-5_ Premier Chamber Orchestra Strauss e:l Swing JI_ Viennese :Mask.§cf (}3afi Saturaay, March 25, 2006 7 pm to 1 am }lrcaaian Court

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