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Volume 27 Issue 7 | May 20 - July 12, 2022

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  • Thewholenotecom
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Schafer at Soundstreams; "Dixon Road" at High Park, Skydancers at Harbourfront; Music and art at the Wychwood Barns; PODIUM in town; festival season at hand; Listening Room at your fingertips; and listings galore.

CHORAL SCENE The Joy of

CHORAL SCENE The Joy of Singing in the Noise of the World DAVID PERLMAN I recently bumped into violinist Larry Beckwith, Artistic Producer of Confluence Concerts, who told me he had an idea for a choral story. We were at New Music Concerts’ tribute evening, at Longboat Hall, honouring NMC’s founding artistic director, flutist Robert Aitken Vol 7 No 8, May 2022 who has just stepped aside after 50 extraordinary years. Beckwith’s story idea was, however, for someone else who put in 50 years service to our musical scene, transforming it as he went! This May, Beckwith reminded me, is the 20th anniversary of Nicholas (Niki) Goldschmidt’s third, and most triumphant, Toronto International Choral Festival, titled “The Joy of Singing (in the Noise of the World).” As Dawn Lyons described it in our May 2002 cover story, the festival was designed, with typical Goldschmidtian understatement, “to fill May 31 to June 22 with choral music from across Canada and around the world.” (“Fill” is no exaggeration: audiences aside, there would end up being over 1,000 active participants in the event! By 2002, the 94-yearold Goldschmidt (born in Austro-Hungary in 1908) was without equal in the art of organizing a really festive festival! He had arrived in Toronto in 1946, invited to head up the University of Toronto’s new opera school, the first in the country. He was astounded by the talent he found waiting for him on the first day he walked into the Conservatory. “Soon he needed a marketplace to display his fine crop of young Canadian singers,” Dawn Lyons wrote, “a place for them to see, hear, work with and take their measure against singers from around the world.” The Goldschmidt solution? Found the Canadian Opera Company! “It was the beginning of 50 years of creating what we would now call cultural infrastructure…” Lyons wrote: “If the word festival is in the title, and the program bulges with acknowledgment of partnerships, look for Niki in the credits.” ANNOUNCING OUR... 2022-23 Season CARMINA BURANA/ TUBULAR BELLS LET US ALL BE MERRY VESPERS SONGWALKS: NÎPÎY www.amadeuschoir.com 24 | May 20 - July 12, 2022 thewholenote.com

Here’s the interesting twist: as I flipped my way further into that May 2002 issue (they are all available for perusing at kiosk.thewholenote.com) I found that issue’s Choral Scene column, written by none other than the aforementioned Larry Beckwith! “May is the month when choral music-making is usually beginning to wind down for the season,” he wrote. “But 2002 is a special year. If anything, the action’s just beginning. The first two weekends in May are packed with exciting choral concerts, which will serve as hearty appetizers to the PODIUM conference on the May long weekend.” The more things change, it seems, the more they stay the same! Because it is also 20 years, almost to the day, since PODIUM, Canada’s pre-eminent community-driven choral conference and festival, was held in Toronto! So to PODIUM’s organizers and attendees, a hearty welcome back to Toronto in an equally “special year,” albeit for a whole set of different reasons! And to members of the local choral community and their audiences, as Larry Beckwith said 20 years ago, once again “the action is just beginning” – as we wrap our brains around idea of being able to rediscover, after two years of enforced silence, the joy of singing (in the noise of the world). thewholenote.com May 20 - July 12, 2022 | 25

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Volumes 16-20 (2010-2015)

Volumes 11-15 (2004-2010)

Volumes 6 - 10 (2000 - 2006)

Volumes 1-5 (1994-2000)