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Volume 25 Issue 3 - November 2019

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  • November
On the slim chance you might not have already heard the news, Estonian Canadian composing giant Udo Kasemets was born the same year that Leo Thermin invented the theremin --1919. Which means this is the centenary year for both of them, and both are being celebrated in style, as Andrew Timar and MJ Buell respectively explain. And that's just a taste of a bustling November, with enough coverage of music of both the delectably substantial and delightfully silly on hand to satisfy one and all.


CLAIRE DAMBIO Rebekah Cummings Gemma New ANTHONY CHANG “relevant to the current time we are in; celebrating and supporting the power and liberated expression of women. In this case we also hope our recording encourages others to play these older works that have been rarely performed.” It’s a fascinating mix of contrasting styles and approaches, all performed with verve and brilliance by this outstanding sibling duo. It’s a production I’m particularly pleased with. Rachel Mercer has been commissioning new works since 2010, when she asked Dundas, Ontario-composer Abigail Richardson- Schulte to compose a piece for the Mercer-Park duo (with pianist Angela Park.) The resulting work, Crossings, remains in their repertoire and is regularly programmed on recitals. Her most ambitious project to date was the creation of 14 new works (by seven women and seven men from every region of Canada), commissioned through her quartet, Ensemble Made in Canada. Titled the Mosaïque Project, it was inspired by a desire to reflect the diverse regions of Canada in music and media, and consists of three components: the 14 commissioned piano quartets; a national concert tour extending through the 2018/2020 seasons; and a specially designed website that showcases audience-generated artwork inspired by the musical commissions. There is now an impressive web presence to explore at, involving “artists from across Canada including performers, composers, visual artists and web designers, in order to create an evolving artistic work that can be experienced by audiences, partici-pants and online visitors throughout our country and internationally. Our aim is to celebrate the diversity and richness of Canada through the eyes and ears of its people.” Mercer’s most recent commission is a cello concerto by pianist/ composer Stewart Goodyear. She tells the story like this: “In 2015, I received an email from Stewart Goodyear, saying that he wanted to write me a cello concerto! We’ve known each other since we were 13 and playing in a trio together at the RCM Toronto (with Susanne Hou) and had played together a couple of times since, but this was completely out of the blue to me. I couldn’t believe it, but he said he was already sketching ... forward to 2016 ... I didn’t hear more about the concerto, but ended up playing the Canadian THURSDAY, NOV. 14 Ensemble U: (EST) @ WE: Global Learning Centre Opening Dinner @ Archeo w/Augie Riik Jazz Duo (CAN) and DJ Vaiko (EST) SATURDAY, NOV. 16 NOËP (EST) Part of Indie Week Canada @ The Hideout EMW Culture Club Presents: Puuluup (EST) @ Cotton Factory Hamilton FRIDAY, NOV. 15 Puuluup (EST) Kaili Kinnon (CAN) Mari Sild Muusika ja Mõtted (CAN) @ Artscape Sandbox SUNDAY, NOV. 17 Wrap It Up! Closing Party Vaiko Eplik (EST) Tiina Kiik (CAN) and more... @ Tartu College for tickets and more info: 18 | November 2019

Abigail Richardson-Schulte Alice Ho BO HUANG premiere of his piano quartet with Ensemble Made In Canada at Ottawa Chamberfest ... finally in 2017 NACO [National Arts Centre Orchestra] was interested in programming the cello concerto and we received funding from the Ontario Arts Council and a research project at UOttawa. It will be a co-commission between me and NACO. I’m looking forward to seeing the score very soon and the premiere will happen on February 14, 2020 with my orchestra [National Arts Centre Orchestra].” For Mercer, as she told me, her desire to commission new repertoire is because “It feels like the closest I can come to being part of a creation, besides the interpretive creation that happens on stage.” The composer, Louie, and the interpreter, Mercer, are just two examples of women who have been steadily changing the direction of the creative tide in the creative branch of the Canadian classical music community. Others come easily to mind, such as the prolific collaborations I witnessed over the years between the late composer Ann Southam (1937-2010) and pianists Eve Egoyan and Christina Petrowska Quilico. Over the span of more than 20 years, I have been involved in the production of 14 CDs of Southam’s various and varied piano compositions. And the current collaboration between Hamilton Philharmonic (HPO) music director, Gemma New, and HPO Composer-in-Residence, Abigail Richardson-Schulte, seems to have exciting potential through their new initiative called the Composer Fellowship Program. In this program, emerging composers can apply to work with the orchestra. Richardson-Schulte says “Gemma is a great supporter of contemporary Canadian music at the HPO and I’m so pleased that we are able to commission, present, and mentor. We have a practically all-Canadian series (Intimate and Immersive), which is a larger instrumentation version of our previous What Next Festival (which was also Canadian new music). In addition to the Composer Fellowship, we have three main stage premieres by women this season – me, Alice Ho and Juliet Palmer. Gemma is conducting all of our new music at the HPO which shows her dedication to it.” David Jaeger is a composer, producer and broadcaster based in Toronto. ONE SMALL STEP Saturday, November 9, 2019 @ 7:30 pm St. Anne’s Anglican Church 270 Gladstone Ave., Toronto, ON M6J 3L6 Explore Earth’s place in the cosmos in a program celebrating the 50th anniversary of the moon landing … works by Tawnie Olson, Leonard Enns, Ola Gjeilo and more. Robert Cooper, Artistic Director Tickets -. For information call 416-530-4428 or visit VERN & ELFRIEDA HEINRICHS SANDRA PARSONS ROBERT SHERRIN PETER SIDGWICK November 2019| 19

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Volumes 6 - 10 (2000 - 2006)

Volumes 1-5 (1994-2000)