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Volume 27 Issue 3 - December 2021 / January 2022

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Many Happy Returns: the rebirth of Massey Hall -- from venue to hub; music theatre's re-emergence from postponement limbo; pianist Vikingur Ólafsson's return visit to to "Glenn Gould's hometown"; guest writer music librarian Gary Corrin is back from his post behind the scenes in the TSO library; Music for Change returns to 21C; and here we all are again! Welcome back. Fingers crossed, here we go.

Vol 25 No 8 Vol 25 No 9

Vol 25 No 8 Vol 25 No 9 PRICELESS Vol 26 No 1 d 1 d 1 2021-05-04 12:32 PM BACK IN FOCUS Previously covered in The WholeNote, and topical again Aline Homzy, in 2018 2P4H In this issue: “The Mirvish season also includes the return in the spring of 2 Pianos 4 Hands starring its creators and original stars, Ted Dykstra and Richard Greenblatt.” Jennifer Parr, p 13. Aline Homzy Then was April 2018 (Vol 23 No 7) – Sara Constant’s story titled Bitches Brew Anew - A Conversation with Aline Homzy. Flash back ten years, Vol 17 No 3, and you’ll find Dykstra and Greenblatt in a very nice Robert Wallace story, “bringing home arguably the most successful play in the history of Canadian theatre … opening on November 2 [2011] for a limited run at Toronto’s Panasonic Theatre, before it moves to Ottawa’s National Arts Centre in January”. The show was already in its 15th season by 2011, featuring several different duos. “This is their first reunion since 2003” Wallace writes, “and, according to Greenblatt, probably their last.” The hastily arranged photo shoot for the cover reflected the mood. One of them had a cold, they wanted to get on with rehearsing; nobody had told them. Five minutes. No time to plug anything in. They sat down at the piano and mugged. Bravely but having done this before. “O.k. I’m done.” The wannabe famous photographer concedes defeat, and the two look up from the keys with a look of [click!] release, relief …. gratitude. Note: the 700-seat Panasonic Theatre of 2011 (now dubbed the CAA Theatre) is still part of the Mirvish suite of theatres. But it is to the 2000-seat Princess of Wales Theatre on King St. W. that Greenblatt and Dykstra will return, March 19 2022, for a tenyears-since-their-last reunion, further final farewell appearance together in these roles. “When violinist Aline Homzy submitted an application to [2018’s] TD Toronto Jazz Festival Discovery Series for a project called “The Smith Sessions presents: Bitches Brew,” she had a lot of musical and linguistic history to reckon with. And when her application was selected, with a concert of the same name slotted for April 28 at the Canadian Music Centre’s Chalmers House in Toronto, she knew it would be a starting point for something new … a quadruple-bill show, featuring four different women-led ensembles fronted by Homzy, flutist Anh Phung, bassist Emma Smith and drummer/percussionist Magdelys Savigne.” Flash forward three and a half years to November 17 2021 and Homzy’s focus has shifted again. In Reigniting a musical neighbourhood: Aline Homzy’s “Sounds of Davenport”, written for The WholeNote blog, Samantha Fink writes about Homzy’s recent project, which again digs deep, this time into the music life of her own neighbourhood. Sounds of Davenport, Fink writes, “[is] a virtual concert, featuring 17 performances by 28 musicians from the Toronto Davenport riding, many of whom belong to the LGBTQ+ and BIPOC communities. From September 20-22, 2021, the musicians performed original music at the Paradise Theatre, where they were recorded by Homzy’s team; on October 23, these performances debuted together in an hourand-a-half-long virtual compilation available on YouTube.” Luanda Jones (R) and Chaveco (L), performing in Sounds of Davenport. CLAIRE HARVIE "Glad to see you back," someone said. But we don't subscribe to that because ... APRIL 2020 CONCERT LISTINGS FEATURES | REVIEWS MAY AND JUNE 2020 Cancelled/Postponed/TBA APRIL 2020 Vol 25 No 7 THE MONTH THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN 25 th SEASON! Next season wi l see the first of our regional runout concerts attached to our main Sudbury season. We would love for any Northern Ontarians interested in bringing top-level classical music and musicians to their communities to contact us. Even the skeptics have upped their Zoom game: people I thought would never turn on their web cams have fina ly done so. So in the meanwhile, I have been playing Beethoven and Debussy on the piano daily. … Witnessing how opera companies across Canada are dealing with the crisis and planning for the future. Advocating for inclusion of more artist voices so that our new reality on the other side of this works for administrators, as we l as for creators and performers. I miss the magic when the lights go down and the curtain rises. I miss the symbiotical flow of energy between us performers and our audiences, and yes I even miss the stress of preparation before. d 1 2020-03-20 12:52 PM 25 No longer bound by geography, we have engaged Canadian solo artists who live abroad and wouldn’t norma ly be able to perform with us. We have also set up a Patreon page so that people can support us with sma l monthly contributions. th SEASON! COMMUNITY VOICES How May is & what may be COVID-19 has brought forward the tipping point, hastening the creation of new structures to support the creation and production of the arts in a different way than has been the case through the latter half of the 20th century to now. Strong developments and innovation arise in hard times as we focus on what matters. We’re optimistic that things wi l eventua ly return, but it’s going to take a long while … Right now, this a l kind o feels like jazz: we’re improvising … 2508_MayCover.indd 3 2020-04-28 1:36 PM 25 th SEASON! JULY | AUGUST 2020 THE BEAT GOES ON 9 TH Annual TIFF Tips MUSIC THEATRE Loose Tea on the boil Once COVID’s in the rearview mirror … Jazz Studies: the struggle for equity SUMMER 2020 Concerts, live & livestreamed Listening Room & record reviews Columns, stories & interviews ON THE FLY 18th annual choral Canary Pages BLUE 21st Annual PAGES 2409_JulyCover.indd 1 2020-06-28 6:32 PM SEPTEMBER 2020 Concerts, live & livestreamed Listening Room & record reviews Stories & interviews PRESENTER PROFILES 2020/21 d 1 2020-08-25 1:07 PM PIVOTAL TIMES Discoveries along the Goldberg trail The intimacy challenge: falling for dance In with the new: adventures in sound art Choral scene: lessons from Skagit Valley OCTOBER 2020 Concerts, live & livestreamed Record reviews & Listening Room Stories and interviews 2602_OctCover.indd 1 2020-09-23 7:26 PM PRICELESS Vol 26 No 2 December & January 2020 / 21 Concerts, live and livestreamed Record reviews & Listening Room Stories and interviews Alanis Obomsawin 2020 Glenn Gould Prize Laureate Beautiful Exceptions Sing-Alone Messiahs Livingston’s Vocal Pleasures Chamber Beethoven Online Opera (Plexiglass & A l) Playlist for the Winter of our Discontent The Oud & the Fuzz Who is Alex Trebek? and more NOVEMBER 2020 Concerts, live & livestreamed Record reviews & Listening Room Stories and interviews d 1 2020-10-27 8:10 PM PRICELESS Vol 26 No 3 Volume 26 No 5 FEBRUARY 5 TO MARCH 19 2021 Music by date, live and livestreamed Recordings - 81 recent DISCoveries Stories & Interviews SO, how much ground would a groundhog hog? Judith Yan, conductor d 1 2020-12-01 1:42 PM Vol 26 No 4 SPRINGING FORWARD AND OTHER FALLBACKS Women From Space Musical Playgrounds The Virtues of Necessity Teaching Up Close & Impersonal When SHHH!! means “Listen!” … and more d 1 2021-02-03 6:14 PM Volume 26 No 7 MAY AND JUNE 2021 Volume 26 No 6 MARCH 20 TO MAY 7 2021 Music by date, live and livestreamed Recordings reviewed - 96 recent DISCoveries Stories, interviews, listening room. Meet The Makers Edana Higham and Zac Pulak d 1 2021-03-13 8: 2 AM Volume 26 No 8 SUMMER 2021 Music by date, live and livestreamed Recordings reviewed - 101 recent DISCoveries Stories, interviews, listening room. Events by date, live and livestreamed Stories & interviews 100 recordings reviewed Listening Room Volume 27 No 1 SEPTEMBER AND OCTOBER 2021 d 1 2021-05-04 12:32 PM IT’S QUESTION TIME Blue pages, orange shirts? R. Murray Schafer’s complex legacy? What makes theatre necessary? Live music: ready or not? Events by date, live and livestrea Stories & interviews 100 recordings reviewed Listening Room d 1 FEST 62 | December 2021 and January 2022

2021-06-24 6:54 PM rts? not? d livestreamed wed FESTIVALS Volume 27 No 2 NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2021 “ MUSIC MAKES US” Zorana Sadiq The Midnight Court 2021-09-16 3:45 PM Music by date, live, and livestreamed Record reviews Stories, interviews listening room d 1 2021-10-27 10:16 PM In this issue: A COC commission titled The Old Fools, by Ana Sokolović to a libretto by Paul Bentley is near completion, Lydia Perović informs us at the end of a conversation with Montrealbased Sokolović about her opera Svadba. “Sokolović collaborated on the shaping of the opera, across the Atlantic, with the original Svadba music director [Queen of Puddings Music Theatre founder/director] Dáirine Ní Mheadhra,” we are informed. Flashback to April 2005: right when Ní Mheadhra and Queen of Puddings Music Theatre were in the process of putting librettist Bently and Sokolović together for their first collaboration, The Midnight Court. “The Midnight Court, a new Canadian opera by the brilliant Montreal composer Ana Sokolović, with a libretto by Paul Bently of The Handmaid’s tale fame and based on a wild and famous 17th century Irish epic poem by Brian Merriman, a rambunctious and earthy tale ... will premiere at Toronto’s Harbourfront centre June 11 [2005],” we wrote back then. Looking back now, Sokolović reflects: “What also made Svadba so easy to follow is, paradoxically, that it’s in the original language. When I composed The Midnight Court for Queen of Puddings, I needed to make the story legible. The pace is decided by the text: the opera must unfold at the speed of the text, and must follow our understanding of the text.” Which direction will Old Fools have taken, we wonder, when eventually (sooner rather than later, we hope), it comes back into focus. POSTSCRIPT Then: David Perlman in Vol 20 No4 (Dec 2014), page 12, in a short piece titled “Survival Guide to the Season’s Messiahs”, writes “I remember hobnobbing with one of the region’s greatest boosters (and presenters) of the Messiah, Grand Philharmonic Choir’s former longtime conductor Howard Dyck in the lobby of the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. I think I said something about wondering what the secret was to the enduring popularity of Handel’s Messiah. As best as I can remember, his reply in a stage whisper was “It’s the music, stupid!” And of course he’s right. It’s the music. And more than that, it’s the music’s ability to shift its shape and the size of its grandeur to accommodate almost any combination of musical forces – the bigger, the better. This time last year: we were all variously riffing on the anomaly of “Sing-alone-Messiahs” … Now: Will this be remembered as the year of the “Masked Messiahs” for those of us who dare to sing Hallelujah? ...we never went away. Back issues (Cheaper by the dozen!) December 2021 and January 2022 | 63

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