5 years ago

Volume 17 Issue 1 - September 2011

  • Text
  • September
  • Jazz
  • Toronto
  • October
  • Concerts
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  • Gould
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  • Musical

“Song of the Earth,”

“Song of the Earth,” it was presentedAugust 10, 2010, at Walter Hall — oneas artistic director of Toronto SummerMusic. It paired a new commission,Song of the Earth, by Buhr himself, withMahler’s master work. “Yes. I vowedto repeat that program if I was giventhe opportunity,” says Buhr, “because Ifelt that it could be curated a bit differently— by ending with the contemporarywork and beginning with the Mahler.Also, we’ve hired popular songstressSarah Slean to sing, and also record mywork. I’m more interested in contemporary singing styles than I amin European classical singing, and I’ve worked with Sarah before.She was soloist in my third symphony (a choral symphony). Herpresence on stage, and also the Margaret Sweatman libretto — whichalludes to the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster in 2010 — puts the Mahlermasterpiece into a more contemporary context. The new work is stilla ‘Song of the Earth,’ but it poetically underlines our more currentconcerns.” You can read more about NUMUS at TIFF TAMERSThough it’s fun to think of NUMUS as the only new music mousebrave enough to bell the TIFF cat, I don’t want to overstate thecase. There is new music throughout the middle of the month, ifyou pick your spots. Sunday September 11, the Music Gallery’sPop Avant series presents Esmerine with guest Muh-he-con. MusicToronto’s Thursday September 15 season opener (the Tokyo StringQuartet with Markus Groh, piano) features a world premiere of anew work by Music Toronto’s composer advisor Jeff Ryan. Andon September 18, Contact Contemporary Music presents “Walk onWater,” at Gallery 345, with WallaceHalladay, saxophone, Mary-KatherineFinch, cello, Ryan Scott, percussion andAllison Wiebe, piano.Once the curtain falls on TIFF, thepace picks up: Friday September 23Tapestry New Opera’s “Opera Briefs”gets under way at the Theatre PasseMuraille Main Space, with new worksHeliconian Club presents Emily, TheWay You Are, a one-woman opera celebratingthe life and work of Emily Carr,with music by Jana Skarecky and libretto by Di Brandt.The following day, Sunday September 25, will see many of usback at the Glenn Gould for the opening gala concert of New MusicConcerts’ 41st season — a concert titled “Secret of the Seven Stars”that will showcase not only NMC’s stellar players, but a numinousconstellation of Canadian composers and works.Friday September 30 and Saturday October 1 bring two concertsby AIM Toronto in their “Interface Series” at Gallery 345, featuringSylvie Courvoisier, piano and composer.To close, it would be remiss of me not to mention several out oftown festivals that not only extend the summer well into September,but pay more attention to new music than one might expect. TheAna Sokolovic as composer-in-residence; and Barrie’s Colours ofMusic, September 23 to October 2, has the forward looking AmesQuartet on board, and several other notably adventurous programson display.Sarah Slean.David Perlman can be reached at OTISBACK TO LESSONS AND STUDIOSPECIALS FOR TEACHERS AND STUDENTS!PIANISTS - WE’VE GOT THE REPERTOIRE YOU NEED!Teachers - register for our private studio discounts andstay tuned for exciting changes in ourPrint Music Department.Korg 88-key electricpianos starting at only9.00TMFull selection of “newer used”woodwinds & brass starting atonly 9.00Student level Stentor SolidTop 4/4 Violins withdeluxe case/bow startingat 9!415 Queen St, West, Torontostore: (416) 593-8888www.stevesmusic.comeducational@stevesmusic.comFEATURINGMICHAEL GORDON & TIM BRADY (COMPOSERS IN RESIDENCE) | OVAL | TIM HECKERLEE RANALDO & LEAH SINGER | BUKE & GASS | LORI FREEDMANMANTRA PERCUSSION | CONTACT | GLOBAL CITIES ENSEMBLEwww.musicgallery.org20 thewholenote.comSeptember 1–October 7, 2011

Schola LaunchSIMONE DESILETSAnd so a new season begins. From late summer’s vantagepoint, I can already see a huge range of early music activitiesshaping up in the coming year, from Scaramella’s “Hit andRun” in November, featuring triple harp and clown among otherthings, to the Royal Conservatory’s presentation of French sopranistcountertenorPhilippe Jaroussky with Cleveland’s baroque orchestraApollo’s Fire, also in November; to Tafelmusik’s period performanceof Beethoven’s Eroica Symphony in May; to Nadina Mackieevents of the present month.SCHOLA MAGDALENAA small ensembleof six women’svoices, expressiveand pure in intonation,produces anethereal sound nottoo often heard inconcert. ScholaMagdalena is justsuch an ensemble,founded in 2007and based inToronto. You canhear them twice inMagdalena. Not pictured: Gillian Howard.the coming month, as they’ll be launching a new CD at their homevenue of the Church of St. Mary Magdalene and then performing atBarrie’s Colours of Music.The group’s director, Stephanie Martin, is organist and directorof three choirs at St. Mary Magdalene, director of Pax ChristiChorale and a professor at York University. Interested in knowingwhat prompted her to add yet another ensemble to her very busylife, I asked her to talk a bit about Schola Magdalena’s formationand its projects.Schola Magdalena gives her great satisfaction, she told me, “becauseit is a democratic group. My other ensembles require a leader/be an undue burden on the leader. I enjoy solving musical problemswith Schola Magdalena since we work as peers. Everyone is a leader;everyone is a follower … Six voices allow us to sing early polyphonywhich is often three parts; that gives us a nice balance of two voiceson each part … Coming up with our interpretation takes a while,but we arrive at an interpretation we all like. It’s a great model forproblem solving.”Regarding plans for the future: “We’d like to tour back to Quebecwhere many of our French-speaking supporters are. We’ve includednotes and translations in French in the CD booklet because weoften sing to French-Canadian audiences — often Roman Catholicchurch choirs, who have a deep connection to Gregorian chant. Wesix children!”And as for that above-mentioned CD, titled Virgo Splendens, itincludes “quite a bit of Hildegard, some wonderful early Englishchants which we still use in our liturgy at St. Mary Magdalene.There are also fragments from a mass by Dufay. One importantelement is the recording of the four “Marian anthems” that are sungthroughout the liturgical year.”Both the CD launch on September 24 and the Barrie concerton October 1 feature a selection of the above repertoire. AndEarly MusicInnMontgomery’s InnSeptember 1–October 7, 2011 21

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