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Volume 20 Issue 7 - April 2015

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Beat by Beat | Art of

Beat by Beat | Art of SongChristianneStotijn at theWMCTIam an admirer of the Dutch mezzo Christianne Stotijn but I onlyknow her singing from recordings. I look forward to her Torontodebut, organized by the Women’s Musical Club of Toronto, onApril 16 at Walter Hall, in which she will be accompanied by the finepianist Julius Drake. She will sing Shostakovich’s settings of six poemsby Tsvetayeva, four Shakespeare songs by Korngold, and songs byTchaikovsky and Strauss.The name Stotijn is wellknown in the Dutch musicalworld. The story begins withJohannes Louis Stotijn (1852-1915), who began adult life asa baker but who also playedthe harmonica as a hobby.Three of his four childrenbecame professional musicians.The most distinguishedwas Jacob, usually known asJaap. He was the first oboistof the Residentie Orkest inThe Hague from 1919 to 1956.We can still hear his playingin a recording of Mozart’soboe quartet (K370) on theGlobe label. In the 1930s heplayed with the Palestine Symphony Orchestra, anorchestra that consisted largely of Jewish musicianswho had fled Nazi Germany. The orchestra’s concertswere conducted by Arturo Toscanini, who was a greatadmirer of Stotijn’s playing. Stotijn was also a pioneerof period performance: he joined the CollegiumMusicum Antiqua, which was founded in 1952. Hedied in 1970.Another fine oboist was Jaap’s son Haakon. Hebecame the first oboist of the Concertgebouw in1940. In the early 1950s he was banned from theradio by two of the Dutch radio organizationsbecause of his alleged Communist sympathies.In 1954 he, along with three other members of the Concertgebouw,was not allowed entry to the United States. He died at 49 in 1964.And there are other musical Stotijns: a violist, a bassoonist and adouble bass player. The son and pupil of that bass player, Christianne’syounger brother Rick, is also a bassist. Christianne herself began hermusical career as a violinist. After she became a singer, she studiedwith Jard van Nes and Janet Baker. I can hear some of Baker’s qualitiesin her singing, although her sound is always individual. I am thrilledthat half of her recital will consist of Russian music. My only regret isthat she will not sing any Mahler, of whose music she is such a fineinterpreter.Other Events:Bradshaw Amphitheatre: There are several free vocal events atthe Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre in the Four Seasons Centre:a preview of Errol Gay’s Alice in Operaland will be given by theCanadian Children’s Opera Company April 1; Andrew Haji, tenor, willsing Schumann’s Dichterliebe, and Gordon Bintner, bass-baritone,will perform Schubert’s Schwanengesang April 4. Parts of Rossini’sHANS DE GROOTThe Barber of Seville will be sung by members of the COC EnsembleStudio April 28.Walter Hall: On April 2 there will be a recital by the winners ofthe Jim and Charlotte Norcop Prize in Song and Gwendolyn WilliamsKoldofsky Prize in Accompanying in Walter Hall.New Music Concerts: Ilana Zarankin, soprano, is the soloist ina program of contemporary Ukrainian music April 4 at the BettyOliphant Theatre.Two at the Royal Conservatory: Max Raabe and the Palast Orchestrawill recreate the cabaret music and the popular songs of the Weimaryears April 11 and 12 at Koerner Hall. Mireille Asselin, soprano, willsing with the Amici Ensemble in a concert that will include Schubert’sThe Shepherd on the Rock as well as the Akhmatova Songs by TavenerApril 12 at Mazzoleni Concert Hall.Schubert: There will be another performance of The Shepherd onthe Rock, part of an all Schubert concert April 17 at Heliconian Hall, inwhich the singer will be the soprano Barbara Fris. Another all-Schubertconcert will be given at the Canadian Music Centre April 28 andwill include Schwanengesang. The singers are Ryan Downey, tenor,and Bradley Christensen, baritone.ChristianneStotijnTwo at Met at Noon: Cathy Daniel,mezzo, sings at noon in a free concertin Metropolitan United Church April 16.Also at noon at Metropolitan and alsofree: Olga Tylman, mezzo, and MichaelFitzgerald, baritone April 23.Rozario: The soprano PatriciaRozario will be the soloist in aconcert of music by John Tavener,presented by Soundstreams April 16at Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre. Rozariowas central figure in Tavener’s career;he wrote more than 30 works for her.The concert will also include works byChristos Hatzis, Jonathan Harvey andVanraj Bhatia.Mirelle AsselinBayrakdarian: The sopranoIsabel Bayrakdarian will singwith the Toronto SymphonyOrchestra in a concert ofArmenian music April 22 atRoy Thomson Hall.Oakham House: WendyDobson, soprano, andMichael Robert-Broder, baritone,will be the soloists ina concert April 25 at CalvinPresbyterian Church givenby the Oakham House Choirof Ryerson University. Themain works will be Handel’sCoronation Anthem My Heart is Inditing, the first movement ofElgar’s Coronation Ode and the Polovetsian Dances from Borodin’sPrince Igor.The soprano Meredith Hall and the pianist Brahm Goldhamerwill perform works by Mozart, Haydn and Rauzzini, April 26 at8pm in Heliconian Hall. The program will include Haydn’s cantataArianna a Naxos.Also: The soprano Tessa Laengert will sing Handel, Dvorak andPuccini in a cocnert with the Oakville Chamber Orchestra May 2 and3 at St. John’s United Church, Oakville. Andrew Haji, tenor, will bethe soloist in a celebration of songs from opera, operetta and musicaltheatre with the VOCA Chorus of Toronto May 2 at Eastminster UnitedChurch. The Vesnivka Choir and the Toronto Ukrainian Male ChamberChoir will present a concert of folk songs celebrating rebirth, romanceand love May 3 at Humber Valley United Church in Etobicoke. The solosingers are Natalya Matyusheva, soprano, and Justin Stolz, tenor.The last concert in this year’s series for Recitals at Rosedale willbe held on May 3 at Rosedale Presbyterian Church. The themeMARCO BORGGREVE28 | April 1 - May 7, 2015

will be journeys, travels and returning home; the music will be bySchumann, Ravel and others. The singers are Lucia Cesaroni, soprano,Emily D’Angelo, mezzo, and Anthony Cleverton, baritone. And thefamed singer-songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie will perform at KoernerHall May 7.Beyond the GTA: the soloists in Bach’s St. Matthew Passion areRufus Müller (tenor, as the Evangelist), Tyler Duncan (baritone, asChristus), Agnes Zsigovics (soprano), Laura Pudwell (mezzo), IsaiahBell (tenor) and Justin Welsh (bass). The conductor is Mark VuorinenApril 3 at the Centre in the Square, Kitchener.Looking back: in February I wrote that I was looking forward tothe recital in which Christian Gerhaher and Gerold Huber were toperform Schubert’s Winterreise. I was not disappointed. Koerner Hallwas full; the audience listened with rapt attention and saved theirenthusiasm for the end. Who says that the song recital is dead?On a couple of occasions I have written about the emerging tenorCharles Sy. I did not realize until I got to the Macmillan Theatre thathe was singing in the Opera Division of the University of Toronto’sproduction of Postcard from Morocco by Dominick Argento. I wasvery impressed with his singing, particularly with the evenness oftone and the solidity of his lower register.And looking ahead: Against the Grain Theatre has announcedthat Colin Ainsworth, tenor, and Krisztina Szabó, mezzo, will singSchubert’s Die Schöne Müllerin and Messiaen’s Harawi in May. TheWomen’s Musical Club of Toronto has announced its 2015-16 season.It includes a recital by the fabulous American mezzo Isabel Leonard(we heard her in the COC production of Mozart’s La Clemenza di Titoa few years ago). That will be on November 19. Stay tuned!Hans de Groot is a concertgoer and active listenerwho also sings and plays the recorder. He can becontacted at by Beat | Jazz StoriesCLUBS ANDHEARTSORI DAGANJaymz BeeJAZZ.FM91 producer, host and Jazz Safari bwana, these days JaymzBee is one of the Toronto jazz scene’s most fervent supporters.His popular Jazz Safaris involve guiding groups of the not-forprofitradio station’s donors through five venues across town with thehelp of a magic bus. I asked Bee why he believes the clubs continueto struggle and his response illustrates what sets him apart: an infectiousfunness, a loyalty to the live music scene and above all a positiveattitude:“Actually my feeling is that we are on a bit of an upswing rightnow. The Jazz Bistro took about a year to get up to speed but now it’struly a hot spot. The Rex and Gate 403 book so many bands a weekit’s crazy, and places like Hugh’s Room and Lula Lounge are bookingmore jazz than they used to. I’m a big fan of the wee clubs in town aswell – La Revolucion, Habits Gastropub, The Emmet Ray and Blackbirdare places I like to talk up lately, but there are so many on Dundas,Ossington...I think Torontonians need to go out more and hit morelive venues! It’s too cold out, it’s too hot out – doesn’t cut it with me.”Of the Safaris, says Bee:“There are few things I like more than hitting several jazz clubs inone night with a mini coach (and designated driver) to take a group ofJAZZ.FM91 donors on the town. I do about 30 nights a year in Toronto(hitting four or five clubs) and spend about the same amount of timewith donors in various jazz-friendly places like Havana, Panama City,New York, New Orleans, Chicago and other places.There are not many challenges in Toronto. On any given night Ihave 12 to 20 venues to pick from and after eight years of Jazz SafarisI know the streets and we are almost never late; not even five minuteslate! I’m so prompt, I’m almost Swiss! In other cities it can be trickier.I have to allow for extra time for traffic so we might hit a venue a bittoo early, but that’s better than missing the music…My parents taughtme to be fun and polite and to get wallflowers on the dance floor. I’minnately inclusive...nobody is too cool or square for taking alarge group of people (18 to 30 per safari) is sometimes challengingbut always fun.”I will return to Jaymz Bee later in this article, specifically to discusshis birthday celebrations mid-month. First though, I have some veryexciting news: there’s a new jazz room in town, and I urge you to allsupport it, even if it means going to have a single drink there or betteryet, enjoy some music while drinking and eating.Stori Aperitivo (95 King Street East) located at King and Church, isembarking on a regular Tuesday, Wednesdsay, Thursday series overdinner. The priceless musicians come to you with no cover chargeattached – a rare opportunity for all to enjoy some of this city’s jazztalents! The lineup at Stori is stellar:Tuesday nights with Terra Hazelton and Her Easy Answers starringthe two-time Canadian Screen Award nominee and blues singerextraordinaire; sidemen to be confirmed but Hazelton’s band tendsto include Nathan Hiltz on guitar, Shawn Nykwist on tenor, Sly Juhason drums and Jordan O’Connor on bass. Wednesdays will be madewild by longtime Reservoir Lounge staple Bradley and the Bouncersfeaturing Bradley Harder on vocals, Terry Wilkins on bass, JeffHalischuk on drums, Adam Beer-Colacino on guitar and Pat Careyon the tenor. On Thursdays Stori welcomes The Vipers which featuressuperlative vocalist Sophia Perlman in swinging company alongsideHoward Moore on trumpet and vocals, Ross MacIntyre on bass, JeffHalischuk on drums and Mitch Lewis on guitar and the occasionalstellar vocal. This band kills everything from Dinah Washington toTom Waits, and I’m willing to bet that The Vipers’ take on “Diamondson the Soles of Her Shoes” is one Paul Simon himself would treasure.And More Good News: by the time this magazine goes to print, aFeaturing some of Toronto’s best jazz musicianswith a brief reflection by Jazz Vespers ClergySunday, April 19 at 4:30 pmALISON YOUNG TRIOAlison Young (saxophone), Bernie Senensky (piano)Paul Novotny (bass)Sunday, April 26 at 4:30 pmTRIBUTE TO STEPHANE GRAPPELLI Lenny Solomon (violin),Bill Bridges (guitar), Lew Mele (bass) Tribute talk by Brian BarlowChrist Church Deer Park, 1570 Yonge St. 416-920-5211(north of St. Clair at Heath St.) Admission is free; donations are April 1 - May 7, 2015 | 29

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