4 years ago

Volume 21 Issue 6 - March 2016

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  • Toronto
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  • April
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From 30 camp profiles to spark thoughts of being your summer musical best, to testing LUDWIG as you while away the rest of so-called winter; from Scottish Opera and the Danish Midtvest, to a first Toronto recital appearance by violin superstar Maxim Vengerov; from musings on New Creations and new creation, to the boy who made a habit of crying Beowulf; it's a month of merry meetings and rousing recordings reviewed, all here to discover in The WholeNote.


FOR OPENERS | DAVID PERLMAN Two Intersections and a Watershed Intersection 1: Esprit and the Iselers. There’s a slight pause at the other end of the line and then, “Put it this way, I could not have written this earlier,” he says. The speaker is composer Alex Pauk, founding artistic director and conductor of the Esprit Orchestra. The “this” he is referring to is his Soul and Psyche, a 30-minute, five-movement “devotional” work for choir and orchestra that will be performed March 31 at Koerner Hall, by the combined forces of Esprit and the Elmer Iseler Singers, under Pauk’s baton. It will be the final work in the final concert of Esprit’s 33rd season. For the Iselers, in this, their 37th year, there are two concerts to go after this. But this is one that they are approaching with a particular gusto. “We do all kinds of music,” Iseler conductor Lydia Adams says. “But this choir absolutely relishes the opportunity to take on a new work. They are completely dedicated to their craft, absolutely open to whatever a new work brings.” And new this work certainly will be! With a month to go, the proverbial ink is not yet dry on the fifth movement, and Pauk confesses on the phone to tinkering with the text of the first movement, which is based on “Taoist writings on the life force of the universe,” sneaking in a topical reference to gravitational waves. Our Niki Goldschmidt cover, May 2002 Pauk agrees with Adams’ assessment of the Iselers’ readiness, referencing their “full virtuosic capabilities” and comparing their spirited open-mindedness to that of his own orchestra. “Ready to give it the full go” is how he describes it; “always singing the music not the notes.” As to what to call the work, genre-wise, Pauk is understandably reluctant to be too categorical. At one point in the literature about the piece, it’s referred to as “contemporary mass in five movements.” At another, it’s referred to as “spiritual and uplifting in nature without being strictly religious,” a description borne out by the inclusion of texts ranging from Inuit poetry to ancient Chinese poetry, a fragment from Goethe’s Faust, a Balinese prayer for departing souls, Biblical passages and the composer’s own words. Had Pauk written the piece when the idea was first presented to him, he tells me, it would have been a mass by name and nature. “It was Niki Goldschmidt who suggested I write a mass,” he says “right after the very first Toronto International Choral Festival in 1989” (a festival that included repertoire as diverse as The Death of a Buddha by R. Murray Schafer, commissioned by the BBC for the BBC Singers, Songs of Creation by Srul Irving Glick, commissioned for the Toronto The WholeNote VOLUME 21 NO 6| MARCH 1 - APRIL 7, 2016 Centre for Social Innovation 720 Bathurst St., Suite 503, Toronto ON M5S 2R4 PHONE 416-323-2232 | FAX 416-603-4791 Publisher/Editor In Chief | David Perlman Chairman of the Board | Allan Pulker EDITORIAL Managing Editor | Paul Ennis Recordings Editor | David Olds Social Media Editor | Sara Constant Listings Editor | John Sharpe Club Listings Editor | Bob Ben SALES, MARKETING & MEMBERSHIP Concerts & Events/Membership | Karen Ages Record Industry Sales/Marketing | Thom McKercher Directory Sales and Services | Adrienne Surtees Advertising/Production Support/Operations Jack Buell | Classified Ads | Website/Systems | Bryson Winchester Website/Systems Support | Kevin King Circulation/Subscriptions | Chris Malcolm SUBSCRIPTIONS per year + HST (9 issues) THANKS TO THIS MONTH’S CONTRIBUTORS Beat Columnists Paul Ennis, Wendalyn Bartley, Brian Chang, David Podgorski, Hans de Groot, Andrew Timar, Ori Dagan, Jack MacQuarrie, Bob Ben, mJ buell, David Olds, Features David Perlman, Lydia Perović, mj Buell, David Jaeger CD Reviewers Alex Baran, Allan Pulker, Andrew Timar, Bruce Surtees, Daniel Foley, Dianne Wells, Elliot Wright, Hans de Groot, Janos Gardonyi, Ken Waxman, Lesley Mitchell-Clarke, Raul da Gama, Richard Haskell, Robert Tomas, Roger Knox, Stuart Broomer, Ted Quinlan, Terry Robbins, Tiina Kiik, Wendalyn Bartley Proofreading Vanessa Wells, Jennifer Liu, Karen Ages, John Sharpe, Paul Ennis Listings John Sharpe, Bob Ben, Kevin King Tilly Kooyman, Ruth Atwood, Simone Desilets, Jennifer Liu, Katie Winchester Circulation Team Abram Bergen, Beth Bartley / Mark Clifford, Bob Jerome, Dagmar Sullivan, Dave Taylor, Garry Page, Gero Hajek, Jack Buell, James Harris, John Dodington, Jeff Hogben, Jonathan Spencer, Lorna Nevison, Manuel Couto, Micah Herzog, Patrick Slimmon, Paul Ennis, Robert Faulkner, Sharon Clark, Tiffany Johnson, Tom Sepp, Vanita Butrsingkorn, Wende Bartley Layout & Design Bryson Winchester an Ontario government agency un organisme du gouvernement de l’Ontario Upcoming Dates & Deadlines Free Event Listings Deadline 6pm Tuesday March 8 Display Ad Reservations Deadline 6pm Tuesday March 15 Classifieds Deadline 6pm Tuesday March 22 Advertising Materials Due 6pm Friday March 18 Publication Date Monday March 28 (Online) Thursday March 31 (Print) Volume 21 No 7 covers April 1 - May 7, 2016 WholeNote Media Inc. accepts no responsibility or liability for claims made for any product or service reported on or advertised in this issue. Printed in Canada Couto Printing & Publishing Services Circulation Statement February 2016: 30,000 printed & distributed Canadian Publication Product Sales Agreement 1263846 ISSN 14888-8785 WHOLENOTE Publications Mail Agreement #40026682 Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to: WholeNote Media Inc. Centre for Social Innovation 503–720 Bathurst Street Toronto ON M5S 2R4 COPYRIGHT © 2016 WHOLENOTE MEDIA INC 6 | March 1, 2016 - April 7, 2016

Mendelssohn Choir, and a performance of Verdi’s Requiem at Roy Thomson Hall.) But it didn’t happen at that time, or at any time since (although Pauk and Jessie Iseler talked about it often enough over the years, he says, at the level of “we really should do that mass we keep talking about.”) Simply put, it was something that Pauk had to be ready to do. “Ready technically, ... musically, ... spiritually?” I ask. And then comes that pause on the line. “Put it this way,” he says. “I could not have written this earlier.” I am looking forward to this particular concert, not just for the premiere of Pauk’s piece, but for the pleasure of watching these two pioneering musical organizations intersect and interact. Intersection 2: Winter’s Summer This is the time in the year when thoughts of summer are either a scourge or a solace: scourge, if all they bring are pangs of longing for the unattainable; solace, if used as an opportunity to put plans in place for what to do during that other season that seems, amid the slush, unattainably far away. You will find our annual summer music education resource guide tucked away on pages 54 to 59. It is, as usual, an extraordinarily suggestive compilation of 32 summer music educational opportunity, for all ages and levels and ability. It makes no grand claims to comprehensiveness (although, as in previous years, it will likely continue to grow online at, as the summer draws nearer.) So seize the day! Take action now to make 2016 a musical summer worth spending the winter looking forward to. It’s a Watershed Moment – Ask LUDWIG! LUDWIG, for the uninitiated, is an acronym for Listings Utility Database for WholeNote Information Gathering. It was Colin Eatock, during his time here as Managing Editor/Listings Coordinator who coined the phrase to describe our painstaking multi-year project to reinvent the way we gather and repurpose the live musical listings that are the backbone of what we are and what we do. Much of the work that has gone into LUDWIG to this point has been invisible to readers, Ask LUDWIG revolving around the way we process listings, rather than how we supply them to you. Simply put, we used to word-process everything; now our listings gathering is based on data entry. It’s been a challenge and a big change; but over time, LUDWIG has made the task of listings generation a lot easier. But you have still had no easy way of hunting down the particular listings you’re interested in, short of searching through the listings day by day; no way easily to search the listings by keyword, by artist or presenter, by genre, by date or date range, by geographic zone ... . BIG NEWS is that very soon you will! In fact, you already can, if you are willing to help us! You can participate in public testing of Ask LUDWIG by going to Find the listings tab, then scroll down to Ask LUDWIG and click. Watershed moment? You tell us what, for you, would make it so. INDEX OF ADVERTISERS Academy Concert Series 36 Adam Sherkin 31, 43 Aga Khan Museum 79 Amadeus Choir 42 Arcadia Academy of Music 52 Arraymusic 42 Art of Time Ensemble 25 ArtsMedia Projects 53 Associates of the TSO 14, 32 ATMA Classique 5 Aurora Cultural Centre 33, 40 Canadian Music Therapy Trust Fund 61 Canadian Opera Company 46, 47, 80 Cantemus Singers 36 Cathedral Bluffs Symphony Orchestra 34 Christ Church Deer Park Jazz Vespers 26 Claude Watson Secondary Arts Program 59 David Garrett/Terracotta Financial Group 33 entertainmentOne 27 Esprit Orchestra 16, 40 Exultate Chamber Singers 40 FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre 46 Galen Weston 25 Glionna Mansell Corporation 52 Grace Church on-the-Hill 19 High Notes Inc. 24 Horizon Tax (Norm Pulker) 53 Humbercrest United Church 38 Jubilate Singers 31 Kindred Spirits Orchestra 39 Li Delun Music Foundation 13 Listening Room/Decca 69 Listening Room/Alma Records 67 Listening Room/Analekta 63 Listening Room/Bridge 69 Listening Room/collectif9 63 Listening Room/Deutsche Grammophon 63, 65 Listening Room/ECM 67 Listening Room/InSound Records 67 Listening Room/Navona Records 69 Listening Room/Naxos 65, 67 Listening Room/Surkalen 69 Long & McQuade 28 MasterPerforming 53 Mike Herriott 49 Mississauga Festival Choir 41 Mississauga Symphony 41 Montreal Chamber Music Society 11, 33 Mooredale Concerts 35 Mozart Project, The 37 Music at Metropolitan 39 Music at Metropolitan / Noon at Met 31 Music Toronto 9, 30, 33, 35, 43 Musicians in Ordinary 36 Nagata Shachu 41 New Music Concerts 35, 42 Nine Sparrows Arts Foundation 38 North Toronto Players 31, 47 Opera Atelier 21, 43 Orpheus Choir 18 Pasquale Bros. 51 Remenyi House of Music 29 Royal Canadian College of Organists 20 Royal Conservatory 3, 10, 32, 35, 39 Saluki Music 53 Scarborough PhilharmonicOrchestra 40 Shen Yun 78 St. Philip's Jazz Vespers 27 St. Thomas' Church 19 Steinway Piano Gallery 13 Syrinx Concerts 11, 32, 42 Tafelmusik 2, 40 Tapestry Opera 22 Toronto Chamber Choir 34 Toronto Concert Orchestra 23 Toronto Consort 23, 34, 52 Toronto Early Music Centre 34 Toronto Mendelssohn Choir 38 Toronto Symphony 4, 34, 40 U of T Faculty of Music 10, 37 Univox Choirs 19 Voicebox: Opera in Concert 15, 47 Women's Musical Club 43 Yorkminster Park Baptist Church 17, 37 Zephyr Piano Trio 42 March 1, 2016 - April 7, 2016 | 7

Volume 26 (2020- )

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