3 years ago

Volume 23 Issue 2 - October 2017

  • Text
  • October
  • Toronto
  • Choir
  • Arts
  • Concerts
  • Orchestra
  • Jazz
  • Musical
  • Performing
  • Symphony
  • Volume
In this issue: several local artists reflect on the memory of composer Claude Vivier, as they prepare to perform his music; Vancouver gets ready to host international festival ISCM World New Music Days, which is coming to Canada for the second time since its inception in 1923; one of the founders of Artword Artbar, one of Hamilton’s staple music venues, on the eve of the 5th annual Steel City Jazz Festival, muses on keeping urban music venues alive; and a conversation with pianist Benjamin Grosvenor, as he prepares for an ambitious recital in Toronto. These and other stories, in our October 2017 issue of the magazine.


BLUE PAGES 2017/18 performing arts facility. In 1997, VPAN was able to take advantage of a new state-of-the-art theatre in Newmarket and created Three For The Show, a three-concert series of classical music on Sunday afternoons during the winter months. Most recent artists to appear include Janina Fialkowska, the Gryphon Trio, Andre Laplante, Quartetto Gelato, Toronto Welsh Male Voice Choir, Mary Lou Fallis, Penderecki String Quartet, Grand Philharmonic Choir and TorQ Percussion Quartet, Adi Braun and Martin Beaver. Eighteen years ago, VPAN added a popular fourth concert, “Young Artists Showcase,” where young up-and-coming artists are invited to perform. We are entering our 21st season by presenting Cecilia String Quartet on November 5, 2017, Broadsway (vocal and piano) on March 4, 2018 and Vandikas Family of 6 (instrumental ensemble) on May 6, 2018. All Three For the Show concerts take place Sundays at 2pm at the fully-accessible Newmarket Theatre, 505 Pickering Cres. with ample free parking. The Young Artists’ Showcase takes place at the newly refurbished Old Town Hall, 460 Botsford St. Subscription tickets are (adults), (seniors) and (students). Single tickets can be purchased by calling the 24-hour theatre box office at 905-953-5122 or online at www.newtix. ca or Judy Craig 905-895-8714 ●VIVA! ● Youth Singers of Toronto A vibrant choral organization for singers from age 4 to adults. VIVA! offers members the opportunity to achieve artistic excellence in a singer-centred, collaborative choral community, featuring youth mentoring programs and the TD Bank Group Inclusion Program which provides support for all singers with disabilities.VIVA!’s choirs include: Preparatory Chorus (ages 4-6); Junior Choir (ages 6-10); Main Chorus (ages 9-16); SATB Chamber Choir (senior high school, university students and adults); and the non-auditioned VIVA! Community Choir (SATB) which incorporates Everyone Can Sing (ECS), an auditioned group for those aged 13 and up with disabilities. Recent highlights include a tour to Spain in July 2017 and the VIVA!- commissioned premiere of Dean Burry’s opera The Sword in the Schoolyard (June 2016). This season, VIVA! will explore music/arts that are inspired by the northern Canadian landscape, First Nations and Indigenous peoples, and by their respect for nature and the environment. Monday rehearsals for all choirs except Chamber (Sundays). Annual appearances in The Nutcracker with The National Ballet of Canada Orchestra and two Series Concerts in Jeanne Lamon Hall, Trinity-St. Paul’s. Auditions: January, April, June, August and September. Susan Suchard 416-788-8482 ●VOCA ● Chorus of Toronto The VOCA Chorus of Toronto is a dynamic, auditioned ensemble that performs a wide range of repertoire, including premieres of arrangements by our artistic director, Jenny Crober, in collaboration with guest artists from a variety of disciplines. Our season consists of two concerts, a cabaret, community performances, workshops and retreats. Our talented, versatile accompanist is Elizabeth Acker. Several remarkable artists have joined VOCA as guest clinicians, including composer Ola Gjeilo, conductor Ivars Taurins and jazz musician Dylan Bell, and as guest performers, including tenor Andrew Haji, TorQ Percussion Quartet and actor Deborah Drakeford. Our December 9 all-Canadian program will feature works (including world premieres) by some of this country’s finest composers, arrangers and songwriters (Elise Letourneau, Mark Sirett, Joni Mitchell, Bruce Cockburn and others), with guests Michael Occhipinti, guitar, Rob Clutton, bass and Jamie Drake, percussion. Our spring 2018 concert will feature several works by Ola Gjeilo and others for choir, piano, strings and guitar. In April 2018, several of our choristers will perform in a massed choir concert with Mr. Gjeilo at NYC’s Carnegie Hall Rehearsals: Mondays at Eastminster United (Chester subway). Jenny Crober 416-947-8487 ●VOICEBOX: ● Opera in Concert VOICEBOX: Opera in Concert is Canada’s only company dedicated exclusively to the presentation of rare opera programming. Our performances rely on the power and beauty of the human voice, the dramatic inflection of text and poetry accompanied by orchestra or piano. The 2017/18 season opens with a 40th Anniversary celebration of the OIC Chorus under chorus director Robert Cooper, “Chorus Fire,” featuring artists Isabel Bayrakdarian and Russell Braun on Sunday, October 29, 2017. Rodelinda by George Frideric Handel is next on November 26, 2017, with orchestra conducted by Larry Beckwith, featuring Christina Raphaëlle Haldane and Charles Sy. I Due Figaro by Saverio Mercadante follows on February 4, 2018, featuring Beste Kalender and Ilana Zarankin with music director Narmina Afandiyeva. The finale of the season is the world premiere of Canadian work The Ecstasy of Rita Joe by Victor Davies on March 24 and 25, 2018, featuring Marion Newman, Everett Morrison and Evan Korbut. Performances are held at the St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts, a part of Civic Theatres Toronto. Guillermo Silva-Marin 416-366-7723 ●Windermere ● String Quartet Drawn together by a shared enthusiasm for early string quartets, the members of the Windermere String Quartet came together in 2005 to perform the music of Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and their contemporaries on period instruments, as well as new works inspired by the WSQ’s historicallyinformed style. The quartet has drawn notice for “sparkling, straightforward interpretations” and “an attractive earthy honesty.” Their Concert Series has been presenting exciting and innovative programming for over a decade. Over the years, the WSQ has premiered ten new quartets, nine by Canadian composers. Over the same period, they have performed all 16 of Beethoven’s quartets, and have introduced their loyal audiences to the works of underrepresented composers of the late 18th and early 19th centuries, including Georges Onslow, Carl Loewe, Juan Chrisóstomo Arriaga, Fanny Mendelssohn-Hensel and many others. Their recordings, The Golden Age of String Quartets and Inner Landscapes, have been praised in The WholeNote for “period performances that blend life, spirit and soul with a perfectly-judged sensitivity for contemporary style and practice,” and for “depth, conviction, emotional range and intensity.” Anthony Rapoport 416-769-0952 ●Women’s ● Musical Club of Toronto Through its Music in the Afternoon concert series, the 120-year-old Women’s Musical Club of Toronto presents chamber music concerts featuring musicians on the threshold of international recognition, as well as established artists and ensembles. Concerts are held Thursday afternoons at 1:30pm at Walter Hall, Edward Johnson Building, 80 Queen’s Park, Toronto. Concerts in the 120th (2017/18) season include Lara St. John, violin (Thursday, October 5); Zodiac Trio (Thursday, November 9); Elias String Quartet (Thursday, March 8); soprano Sylvia Schwartz (Thursday, April 12); and Cellodrama! featuring WMCT Artistic Director Simon Fryer and special guest Sarah Slean (Thursday May 3). Member/subscriber benefits include Tuning Your Mind, a free preconcert lecture series presented in partnership with the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto, on a topic related to the day’s concert. Masterclasses this season are to be announced. Shannon Perreault, administrator 416-923-7052 B26 | theWholeNote 2017/18 PRESENTER PROFILES

●Wychwood ● Clarinet Choir Established in 2009, the Wychwood Clarinet Choir is directed by clarinetist and conductor Michele Jacot. Members of the choir include skilled clarinetists who share a love of musicmaking, friendship and fun. The group rehearses weekly and performs on a regular basis in Toronto’s St. Clair and Wychwood area. The instrumentation of the WCC extends from the contrabass clarinet to the E-flat sopranino. The choir’s repertoire includes many compositions and arrangements written by the group’s own Composers’ Collective, and by the choir’s late Composer and Conductor Laureate, Howard Cable. The Wychwood Clarinet Choir embraces the ideal of “music for life” and is committed to sharing the musical experience in educational settings and in the wider community. Choir members are admitted by audition and pay a modest annual membership fee. Roy Greaves 647-292-4204 ●York ● Chamber Ensemble The York Chamber Ensemble (YCE) has been presenting concerts to Aurora audiences since 2001. This season we invite three guest conductors: Michael Berec, Trevor Dearham and Sasha Weinstangl. Join us for our 2017/18 season Masterpiece Series. Saturday, October 14, 2017 at 7:30pm: Michael Berec, conductor, “Classical Masterpieces,” featuring Mozart’s Overture to the Marriage of Figaro and Sinfonia Concertante in E-flat Major (Michael Adamson, Ian Clarke soloists), and Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No.4 (Charissa Vandikas, soloist). Saturday December 9, 2017 at 7:30pm: Trevor Dearham, conductor, “Christmas Masterpieces: Sing-along,” featuring Boyce’s Symphony #1, choral selections from Handel’s Messiah and carols with York Festival Chorus. Saturday, March 3, 2018 at 7:30pm: Sasha Weinstangl, conductor, “J.S.Bach: The Master,” featuring Brandenburg Concertos 3 and 6, a keyboard concerto (Hilary McLaughlin, soloist), and selections from Cantata BWV 209 and St. Matthew’s Passion with Irene Ilic voice, Susan Barak, violin. Saturday, May 26, 2018 at 7:30pm: Sasha Weinstangl, conductor, “European Masterpieces,” featuring Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No.2 with soloists from YCE, Mendelssohn’s String Symphony No.8 and Fauré’s Requiem with York Festival Chorus. Tickets available at the door: adults, seniors/students. Concert location: Trinity Anglican Church, 79 Victoria St., Aurora. Diana Hood 905-727-6101 VIVA YOUTH SINGERS OF TORONTO ●York ● University York University’s Department of Music presents more than 100 public events each season. This year our Faculty Concert Series spotlights jazz bassist Al Henderson, as well as mezzo-soprano Catherine Robbin. Classical chamber concerts and performances by the York U Concert and Chamber Choirs are offered alongside electroacoustic explorations and original student compositions. Our annual world music festival celebrates a wide variety of musical practices including Caribbean, Middle Eastern, West African and Chinese traditions. The Music at Midday series offers free lunchtime performances featuring guest artists, faculty, and student talent. Masterclasses by leading Canadian and international artists are frequently open to observers. Each term concludes with showcase performances by the York U Symphony Orchestra, Gospel Choir and Wind Symphony, as well as a four-day jazz festival. Performances take place in the Tribute Communities Recital Hall or the informal setting of the Martin Family Lounge in the Accolade East Building at York’s Keele campus. William Thomas, chair Matt Vander Woude, associate chair Mark Chambers, graduate program director Judy Karacs, events and promotions coordinator Box office: 416-736-5888 ●● Yorkminster Park Baptist Church The senior choir, under organist and music director William Maddox, enjoys a reputation as one of the best congregational choirs in the city of Toronto. Yorkminster Park presents a series of free organ recitals at 12:30pm, every Wednesday from September through June, with performers from around the world. We have a wide variety of unique musical events throughout the year but Yorkminster Park is renowned for its special seasonal concerts. The quality and dedication of the music ministry at YPBC is never more evident than during Advent and Holy Week and these services have become community traditions: City Carol Sing, Carols by Candlelight, the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols, Passiontide Devotion during Holy Week and traditional Evensong services three times a year. Our sanctuary is frequently made available to other choral and concert groups, which draw appreciative audiences from all over Southern Ontario. William Maddox 416-922-1550 Updated online at theWholeNote 2017/18 PRESENTER PROFILES | B27

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