8 years ago

Volume 14 - Issue 4 - December 2008


MUSICAL LIFE:WE ARE All Music's CHILDRENDECEMBER'sChild .. .Photo: a very musicalfamily home inHalifax, 1983. Aself-described "latebeginner", her goodposture habits beganearly:feet apart,nice straight back, a 'relaxed hand. Hermother, Lyn, isholding the mJ BuellMom .... where's theendpin on this thing?!Think you know whoDECEMBER's child is?Send your best guess sure to send us your mailing address, justin case your name is drawn!) Winners will beselected by random draw among correct repliesreceived by January 15 2009.!!Tickets & Recordings!!CONGRATIJLATIONS TO OUR WINNERSLouie Madrid Calleja, Caroline Bonner,Frances Giles and Cockeye MacDonaldeach win a copy of Maryem and Ernie Tollar'sthird and newest CD Cairo to Toronto.Maryem is the voice of this world music journey,and Ernie plays sax & flutes. He alsocomposed some of the songs. Rooted in Arabicmusic with infusions of jazz and folk, this is arich, eclectic musical collaboration of displacement,alienation, fear and longing,dreaming and desiring, "Cairo to Torontomaps an intricate inner journey and offers adream of peace." With: Levon lchkanian, guitar;Andrew Stewart and Rich Brown, bass;Debashis Sinha, percussion; Alan Hetherington,drums and percussion ; and Daniel Barnesdrums . Special guests: Dr. Alfred Gamil, violinand Mohamed Aly, oud, violin and vocals.Music's Children gratefully acknowledgesNadia Hassan, Maryem Hassan Tollar, and LuisaTrisi.Didn't win a CD?http: //'S MUSIC FESTIVAL 2009"Ce[ebrating Today's Ta[entNurturing Tomorrow's Stars"offers over ,000 in scholarship & cash prizesCompetition Dates: April 18-19, 2009April 25-26, 2009May 2-3, 2009Deadline for application: February 23. 2009Venue: 28 Crown Steel Drive, Unit 19, MarkhamHttp:// (905) 513-0955NOVEMBER's Child was ...singer Maryem Tollar, born in Egypt andraised in Canada with frequent sojourns in theMiddle East. Maryem has acquired a reputationas a musician who thrives in a wide variety ofmusical milieus. She was a founding member ofMaza Meze and Doula before starting her ownensemble with her husband, Ernie To liar. Recentcollaborations include tours of the multi-mediaproject onstantinople(with The Gryphon Trioand Patricia O'Callaghan), and epulcher ofife(both composed by Christos Hatzis), and thepremiere of a new Hatzis work ram the ongof ongs, commissioned by Tafelmusik. She hassung on several film and television scores includingthe theme music for CBC Television's "LittleMosque on the Prairie" and A.R. Rahman 's hit"Mayya Mayya" in the Bollywood movie"Guru". Maryem lives in Toronto with Ernie Tollarand their two children.Earliest musical memory?Ever since I can remember, I've always lovedsinging. My earliest musical memory is singing inchoirs in elementary school; recorder in grade 4and duets with my brother, Ashraf; piano lessonsand improvising songs I knew on the piano; andguitar lessons after I found out my brother Aymanwas taking them.Other musicians in your family?My oldest brother, Ahmed ( 13 years older) was apercussionist and composer for modem dancersand was in the world music ensemble, MotherTongue. My brother Ashraf(5 years older) wasalways musical but ended up an engineer. Mybrother Ayman, who is extremely musical, haspursued theatre and acting instead of music. Butwe always sang together for fun.At the time the photograph was taken?I was living in Ottawa - had started guitar lessons,was still playing around on the piano on myown. In high school I was very involved in choirand drama. Ayman and I were both in odspellat Cairo American College in Egypt (he was ingrade 12 and I was in grade 11) and we didHest ide toryin grade 12. I performed withthe "swing choir" (a choir that sang and danced)and in straight theatre - Titania in "A Mid SummerNight's Dream".The time when you began to think ofyourself as a musician?I always wished I could be a professional musician.I was afraid to tell my parents - kept it tomyself until after university, where I studiedFrench and Spanish. I finally had the guts to joina folk/pop group called Hot D.A.M. (David andMaryem). During that time, around 1993, mybrother Ahmed was looking for a singer whocould sing in Arabic for a piece he was composingfor Dancemakers. He told me he 'd hireme ifl took Arabic singing lessons, so I startedwith Dr. George Sawa, here in Toronto. That'swhere I met Roula Said and Ron Allen who introducedme to many musicians in Toronto alsointerested in world music, a huge turning point inmy life.Did you ever think of doing anythingelse?I considered becoming a translator - but myheart wasn't in it. I also thought about becominga speech pathologist. I volunteered for oneat Mt. Sinai Hospital to see how it would be -but it turns out I have a faint heart and it wasn 'ta good environment for me to be in.If you could travel back in time and meetface to face with the young person i11 thatchildhood photo, what would you tell herDefinitely - I would tell her to just follow herheart passionately and go straight into musicfrom the beginning. I wish I would have followedthe music path more seriously when Iwas younger because I always knew deepdown that was what I was meant to be doing.Upcoming:Jan. 31 , 2009 (8pm, Fleck Dance Theatre, Harbourfront)-a multidisciplinary music and dancepiece called "Shunya" with Lata Pada's dancecompany Sampradaya Dance Creations, at theContemporary Choreography in Indian DanceInternational Festival and Conference. Maryemsings, plays qanun, oud and some percussion.Ernie plays bansuri (north Indian flute).June 2009 (Heritage Court. CNE Grounds).Maryem performs in R.Murray Schafer'snewest opera "The Children's Crusade", aworld premiere Soundstreams/Luminato commissionedopera for over 150 performers includingthe Canadian Children 's Opera Companyand the Toronto Consort.Joel Katz Voice StudioInternationally renowned teacherspecializing in Opera trainingfor the serious student. Auditionpreparation, resolution of fachissues, technical problems.Present this ad for a free consult!416-467 7289 For more information, joelkatz@sympatico.ca54 WWW. THEWHOLENOTE.COM D ECEMBER 1 2008 - F EB RUARY 7 2009

Your first ever choralexperience?My morn conductedthe choir in the CutKnife Catholic Church(Saskatchewan), so allof us children sang onSundays.MUSICAL L1FE:A Choral Life Q&Acompiled and edited by ml buellFEATURING Trevor MclainWhat choirs have yousung with?In Saskatoon, I sang with Quance Chorus and Greystone Singers. InToronto, I sang with Eastminster United, Rhapsody in Bluejeans(which sang Gershwin I had arranged during my University days),Boys of Joy,foRTE -The Toronto Men's Chorus, and Timothy EatonMemorial.Currently?I sing with Vancouver Men's Chorus. I love to sing. I like the camaraderie,and the artistic life is very gratifying. VMC rehearses on theside of the Burrard Bridge opposite to where I live, so getting there iseasy.Are you a musician in some other capacity?I am a pianist for dance, a profession into which I fell accidentally. Iwas pursuing someone and discovered he took adult ballet, so I madean appointment to audition to play at his studio when I knew he wouldbe there. I got the job - not the man, and have enjoyed this careersince 1970! I improvise for dance, and I write choral arrangementsbased on my awareness of harmony, honed over nearly forty years ofharmonic exploration for dance accompaniment.What qualities make you admire a choral conductor?The ability to know the material and how to get the best work fromthe singers means having both high expectations and patience. Everychorus is different and every chorister requires special awareness. Acombination of confidence and humility gets the best results.What makes a choral conductor difficult to work with?A conductor who literally does not know the score, or who lacks a reliableconducting manner invites distrust and frustration. A conductorwhose message is more ego than music disappoints singers and audiencesalike.For me, changing the key is disastrous. If the music is in F, andthe conductor decides to try it in E , my pianistic brain has a battlebetween what it sounds like and what it looks like. I hear a scorebecause I know what it will sound like on the piano: a great advantageas long as the music is performed in the written key!Choir tales?In 2002, withfoRTE at the Canadian GALA in Toronto, we did a co-concertwith Vancouver's Rainy City Men's Chorus. I had written an arrangementof There 's No Business Like Show Business, giving everysinger a solo line which bonded the two groups of men. After this wonderfulevent, I partied with them and ended up with laryngitis. I couldnot utter a sound for three days and lip-synched my way throughfoRTE's concert and the festival's men's choir. I was one of the fewwho had managed to memorize the music, and it was all for naught!People said I had never sounded better!A concert coming up that is of special interest to you?I'm coming back to Toronto to attend the joRTE' s November 29 concertMidnight Clear. They are presenting some of the music Iwrote for them in my nine years as a member.One piece, In Flanders Fields, is special because it involved thejunior grades of Canada's National Ballet School singing descantwhen it debuted at the School in 2002. I played piano there for 32years.KIWANIS MUSIC FESTIVALWe invite you to join usas we launch this year's festivalwith a party!Date: Thursday, February 12, 2009Location: Casa Loma (12 Austin Terrace)Time:Events:Tickets:6:30 - 9:30 pmLive Music(including performances from Festivalparticipants and Dr. Giles Bryant onthe castle organ!)Food Stations/ BarSilent & Live AuctionAll-inclusive .00 per personCo-hosted by:Kiwanis Club of Casa LomaKiwanis Music Festival of Greater TorontoCheck our webiste for event updates:www.kiwanismusictoronto.orgCall 416-487-5885 for tickets!The Claude WatsonMusic Program(Earl Haig Secondary School)invites experienced musicstudents to audition for2009-2010.Voice, piano, and allorchestral instruments.Deadline isFriday, December 12, 2008.For information, call (416) 395-3210 or go towww. ea rlh ai g. ea/ de part me nts/ c laud e/ audit ions. him lD ECEMB ER 1 2008 - FEBRUARY 7 2009 WWW. TH EWHO LEN O TE.COM 55

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