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Volume 18 Issue 6 - March 2013

  • Text
  • Toronto
  • Jazz
  • April
  • Arts
  • Theatre
  • Quartet
  • Musical
  • Ensemble
  • Symphony
  • Concerts

Craft Brewery tap room

Craft Brewery tap room and retail store for“Junction the Dry,” to hear music by Derek Alex Pauk.Johnson, Emilie LeBel, James Rolfe, CaitlinSmith and Healey Willan.As these events demonstrate, New Musicin New Places has made the experience partof our evolving consciousness.The emerging collectives: There’s muchtalk these days about “emerging artists.” It’sbecome a buzz phrase and even the artscouncils have categories for such creatures.But beyond the labels, one characteristicI’m noticing amongst younger composersand musicians is the movement towards thecreation of collectives. Not that this is necessarilya new strategy, but it’s a healthy signof creating space not only for new voicesand artistic visions, but also for new waysof collaborating. This form of partnershipis another reflection of changes in the creative process that I spoke ofin February’s column in the context of the upcoming New CreationsFestival running March 2 to 9. More about that festival below, but first,here’s a look at opportunities to see what’s happening in three ofthese local collectives.The Thin Edge New Music Collective is inspired by how new musiccan impact contemporary life. Their March 13 concert at the CanadianMusic Centre will feature works using innovative instrumentation:melodica, thumb piano, toy piano, autoharp and auxiliary instrumentsalongside violin, piano and cello.The second collective is Vox Novus that gathers together composers,musicians and music enthusiasts. In their March 10 event at the AlGreen Theatre, they will be presenting electroacoustic compositionsfrom 60 Canadian composers with 60 one-minute dance works.The Spectrum Music collective is a group of jazz-trained musiciansand young contemporary classical composers. Their upcoming concert“What Is Toronto?” on April 5 will focus on intimate snapshots ofthe history, languages, people and places of the city. The concert willinclude a panel discussion on the subject of Toronto’s identity and historyfeaturing local writers, politicians and thinkers.Words and music: In their concert entitled “Time & Tide” onMarch 5 and 6, the Talisker Players will perform compositions byCanadians Walter Buczynski and Scott Good alongside readings oftexts from various English authors. At Gallery 345 on March 14, thewords of poets Roger Greenwald, Sheniz Janmohamed and JacobScheier will provide inspiration for the musical improvisations ofKousha Nakhaei on violin and Casey Sokol on piano.Music in story is as old as humanity itself. At the TorontoStorytelling Festival, which runs from March 16 to 24, a compositionI wrote eight years ago, The Handless Maiden, for soprano, storyteller,vocalizations and electroacoustics will be performed March 24.Another storytelling-focused concert will be happening at KingstonRoad United Church on March 24. “The Storied Harp” will featureworks by Marjan Mozetich (Songs of the Nymph) and Murray Schafer(The Crown of Ariadne).Celebrating anniversaries: Since anniversaries are a way of markingtime, there are a few important ones to note this month. EspritOrchestra is presenting their 30th anniversary season finale concertMarch 28 with two newly commissioned works by Torontonian ErikRoss and Montrealer Denis Gougeon. These new works will serve tobring attention to Esprit’s ongoing tradition of presenting and commissioningCanadian music. As a special audience treat, the orchestrawill also be presenting repeat performances of two audience favourites:Purple Haze and the theme from The Twilight Zone.Two unique events complete the anniversary motif. Six differentcomposers, all born in 1912/13, will be toasted in a fundraiserfor New Music Concerts at Gallery 345 on April 6 to honour their100th birthdays. Included are small works by Weinzweig, Pentland,Cage, Nancarrow, Brant and Lutoslawski. And to further celebratethe legendary Weinzweig, Soundstreams will be presenting a concertof his works March 11 at Walter Hall, followed by the unveilingof a plaque to be placed at Weinzweig’sfamily home.The New Creations Festival: As mentionedabove, I wrote at length about theToronto Symphony’s New Creations Festivalin February’s issue of The WholeNote, soI won’t repeat myself here, other than tosay don’t miss out on this, and in particularthe premiere on March 9 of A TorontoSymphony: Concerto for Composer andCity. The two other concerts in the festivalare on March 2 and 7. Given thatthe Spectrum collective is also featuringToronto’s sounds and places in theirApril 5 concert, our ears should be primedfor engaging in new ways with the place inwhich we live. Who knows where this mightlead as a follow-up to the ending of the NewMusic in New Places series?Additional qUICK PICKS!!Music Toronto. Discovery Series: Trio Fibonacci. Works by Radford,Onslow and Sokolović. Jane Mallett Theatre, St. Lawrence Centre forthe Arts, March 14.!!Toy Piano Composers. Threshold/Le Seuil. Works by Pearce,Thornborrow, Denburg, Tam, Correia and Ryan. Artword Artbar,Hamilton, March 21. Repeat performance March 23 in Toronto at theHeliconian Hall.!!Canadian Sinfonietta. A Visit from Lviv. Works by Vasks,Paderewski, Royer, Pepa and Laniuk. Glenn Gould Studio, March 23.!!Diana McIntosh. In Concert. Featuring a retrospective of workscomposed and performed by McIntosh. Heliconian Hall, April 4.Wendalyn Bartley is a Toronto-based composer and electro-vocalsound artist. She can be contacted at sounddreaming@gmail.com.Conductor of the UTSO (1942-43,1969-83) returns to celebrate the50th anniversary of the opening ofthe Edward Johnson Building.VictorFeldbrillWilma & Clifford Smith Visitor in MusicConduCtS the uniVerSity oftoronto SyMphony orCheStraSaturday, April 6, 2013 - 7:30 pmJohn Weinzweig: Symphonic OdeTchaikovsky: Serenade for StringsDvořák: Symphony No. 8MacMillan Theatre, U of T, 80 Queen’s ParkTickets: ( seniors/ students).Weston Family Box Office at the TELUS Centre: 416.408.0208Bo huang22 thewholenote.com March 1 – April 7, 2013

Beat by Beat | Classical & BeyondMighty RussiansSHARNA SEARLEWhat a difference a month makes! It seems that afterweeks of intimate, romantic, light-hearted, sweet and sexyValentine offerings, mighty, majestic and weighty Russianfare is to be the antidote to all that sweetness,judging by the proliferation ofprograms focusing on Russian music thismonth. (Not that Russian music can’t beromantic — think Rachmaninoff’s Secondpiano concerto.) With titles like “RussianMasters” and “Kiev to St. Petersburg,”works by Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky andRachmaninoff abound, with Prokofiev,Mussorgsky, Shostakovich, Rimsky-Korsakov and Rubinstein also represented.It all promises to be rather thrilling!(And for those of you still hankering forPivot ChamberSoloists.the sexy stuff, at the end of the column there’s a QuickPicks of Piazzolla, whose tempting tangos turn up theheat all over the place this month.)Community bookends: Interestingly, two communityorchestras are offering programs comprisedof symphonies and concerti by Rachmaninoff andTchaikovsky, at each end of this issue’s date range.Perhaps one reason for the focus on these two Russiangiants is the significant birth and death anniversaries occurring thismonth and further down in 2013. This year marks the 120th anniversaryof Tchaikovsky’s death. Rachmaninoff was born 140 years ago onApril 1 and died 70 years ago on March 28.Whatever the reason, we’ve got two evenings of great orchestralfare to consider. Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2, Tchaikovsky’sSymphony No. 5 and his Violin Concerto in D Major are featuredin Counterpoint Community Orchestra’s “Kiev to St. Petersburg,”March 2, 8pm, at Saint Luke’s United Church. Erica Williamson is theviolin soloist and the CCO’s Terry Kowalczuk conducts.About a month later, on April 5 at 8pm, it’s the EtobicokePhilharmonic Orchestra’s turn at Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony, whenthey present “Russian Masters” at Martingrove Collegiate. The programalso includes Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3. Reputed tobe one of the most technically challenging in the repertoire, it will bein the most capable hands of Canada’s Arthur Ozolins, who recordedthe Rachmaninoff Third, as well as the First, Second and Fourth, forCBC Records, with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, under MarioBernardi, between 1985 and 1993.Speaking of pianists and Russian repertoire, in between the CCOand the EPO, the TSO presents “From Mozart to Sibelius” on March 23at 7:30. In between Wagner’s “Prelude to Act III” of Lohengrin andMozart’s “Overture” to Don Giovanni, pianist Charles Richard-Hamelin will perform a personal favourite of mine, Rachmaninoff’sbeautiful (and remember, romantic) Piano Concerto No.2, the piecehe played when he won the 2011 TSO National Piano Competition.The guest conductor is Mélanie Léonard who is in her first seasonas associate conductor of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra. Andthe Sibelius? The program, which repeats on the 24th, ends with hisFinlandia.Stravinsky on Sorauren: Sorauren Avenue, that is, number345 — home of Gallery 345. Created in 2005 by Edward Epstein,the gallery has evolved into a wonderfully welcoming — and verybusy — acoustically superb space for the performance of jazz and contemporaryclassical music, as well as standard, classical repertoire.Typically, you’ll find 12 to 15 Gallery 345 listings in any given issue andthis one is no different. This round, there’s a kind of “mini Stravinskyfestival” and, interestingly, a “mini Piazzolla festival” happeningbetween March 1 and 26 — three concerts in each mini-fest.There’s even one concert offering a work by both Stravinsky andPiazzolla: March 1, in a concert of music exploring dance, rhythmand movement, aptly titled “Pas de Deux,” cellist Kathleen Long andpianist H.W. Cecilia Lee perform Stravinsky’s Suite italienne, a verypopular work based on several movements from his 1920 neoclassicalballet Pulcinella. For this arrangement, Stravinsky collaborated in1932/33 with legendary cellist Gregor Piatigorsky, who later teamed upwith fellow living legend Jascha Heifetz on an arrangement for violinand cello. (The most-often-performed arrangement, though, is the onefor violin and piano, a 1933 collaboration between Stravinsky and violinistSamuel Dushkin.)The other works on the program include Bartok’s Romanian FolkDances, two pieces by Kapustin, Poulenc’s Sonate pour violoncelleet piano, Op. 143 and, as promised, Le Grand Tango by Piazzolla, allensuring an exciting musical study of dance, rhythm and movement.The other two concerts in Gallery 345’s unofficial Stravinsky festoccur at 8pm on March 11and 20. The first, with thePivot Chamber Soloists(Minghuan Xu, violin;Soo Bae, cello; RomideGuist-Langlois, clarinet;Winston Choi, piano),features two Brahmstrios (A Minor, Op. 114and B Major, Op.8) inaddition to Stravinsky’sL’Histoire du Soldat forJon Kimura Parker.clarinet, violin and piano.Originally scored forseptet, Stravinsky laterarranged his work for the condensed trio version being performedhere. Incidentally, the PCS plays the same program the next day inMarch 1 – April 7, 2013 thewholenote.com 23

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