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6 years ago

Volume 3 Issue 2 - October 1997

  • Text
  • October
  • Toronto
  • Theatre
  • Arts
  • Symphony
  • Performing
  • Orchestra
  • Wholenote
  • Classical
  • Yonge

6 Musicians in our

6 Musicians in our Midst: Portrait #5 Noel Edison, conductor This summer the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir announced the two year interim appointment of conductor Noel Edison. Born in Toronto -his mother sang in the Mendelssohn Choir under Sir Ernest - as a boy he sang in the St. Simon's Church Choir, directed by Ned Hanson. After studies at Wilfred Laurier in theory, voice and organ he began his chosen career, becoming organist and choir master at St. John's Anglican Church in Elora. He also studied conducting privately with Wayne Riddell and Helmut Rilling and attended every choral workshop in sight, including ones by Robert Shaw and John Aldis. In the early eighties he started the Elora Festival Singers, a professional chamber choir. (He is now artistic director of the Elora Summer Festival.) He has also star~ed a choral conducting program at Wilfred Laurier University. His thoughts on the attributes of a choral conductor? Above all, people skills, balance, maturity and (most important) humour. He says singers need to think instrumentally about music, so that text tits the line rather than determining it. Accordingly he listens to more orchestral and piano music than choir music for inspiration. His primary agenda with the Mendelssohn Choir is artistic excellence, but he has three specific goals: to develop community awareness and support by having the choir perform new programs in unique locations; to perform and record the great oratorios; and to build on the unparalleled artistic contribution of Elmer Iseler, who brought choral music into the domain of the professional. Edison will be organizing a European tour for the choir within the next three years. He won't lose sleep about it in the meanwhile: the important thing to him is to bring to the task at hand the same gusto for perfection that has infused his choral activities since childhood. No mere caretaker, he should add to the vitality of this venerable but vital choral institution. Musicians in Our Midst is photographed by Michael Shaw, ASHLEY & CRIPPEN PHOTOGRAPHERS 200 DAVENPORT ROAD (416) 925-2222 • GUITARISTS EXTRAORDINAIRE Toronto has become a hotbed of guitar talent, thanks largely to the efforts of Eli Kassner who started the guitar program at U. of T.'s Faculty of Music in 1959. Some of the names who came out of that program or studied with Mr. Kassner -- Liona Boyd, Rachel Gauk, Norbert Kraft and Gordie O'Brien! New talent continues to arrive from "the faculty" as it is affectionately known. Robert Kubica you can read about in our cover story. And this month also provides opportunity to hear Michael Bracken and Willie Weihe, under ·the auspices of the Toronto Guitar Society October 17 at the Church of the Redeemer, in a concert combining duo and solo traditional and contemporary pieces. PUIRT A BAROQUE Puirt (pronounced "poorsht") a Baroque combines the strikingly different talents of violinist David Greenberg, lutenist and guitarist Terry McKenna, harpsichord player David Sanda ll and singer Stephanie Conn. Major art-music, lesser ­ known Scottish art- and traditional-style composers, and 20th century Cape Breton composers--all are grist for the group's innovative and affectionate mill. Hear them October 24. OPERA ON THE MOVE Opera, it appears, is thriving. A bit outside our listing area (so far!) Opera october '97 wholenote Hamilton will be presenting Mozart's Don Giovanni October 18, 23, & 25. Their ticket and information number is 1- 800-575-1381. And there's a new opera company just north of the city, Opera York, started by William Shook hoff with partners Philip Trow and Joan Sax. They open with · a double bill, Rossini's La Cambiale di Matrimonio and Puccini's Il Tabarro, October 17 & 18 at the Vaughan City Playhouse near Bathurst and 407. Call 469-0086 or 905-709- 4057. A week later Opera in Concert ope.ns its 24th season with Healey Willan's opera Deirdre at the Jane Mallett Theatre. The theme of the OIC season is legendary heroines - the other productions are Gluck's lphigenie en Tauride, Donizetti's Lucrezia Borgia and Verdi's Joan of Arc. Some of the most beautiful operatic music around (including the sublime "Dance of the Blessed Spirits" for solo flute) is to be found in C.W. Gluck's masterpiece, Orfeo ed Euridice which gives such equal prominence to dance and song that most companies avoid it: which of course made it a natural for Toronto's Opera Atelier with its proven expertise in dance. The key to producing the opera is the title role, scored by Gluck for castra to. Co-artistic director, Marshall Pynkoski, opted to audition for a woman "who is the perfect combination of the heroic and feminine for the title role." He found her, he says, in London, England in the person of Welsh contralto, Buddug (pronounced "bithigg") James in what he describes as "the most overwhelming audition he has ever attended". Forces assembled for the project also include CONTINUES

wholenote october '97 Buddug-Verona James Canadian sopranos Meredith Hall and Barbara Hannigan, Tafelmusik, guest conductor Stephen Barlow, the largest corps de ballet in Atelier's history and a set designed by Parisian, Alexandre Vassiliev. Orfeo runs at ·the Royal Alex October 29 & 30 and November 1 & 2. And the COC also opens this month with Stravinsky's Symphony of Psalms and Oedipus Rex and Puccini's Turandot. CHAMBER MUSIC Some of the best music around comes in small packages! A number of topnotch chamber series get started this month. The Toronto Consort opens October 3, featuring music composed by women in the late Middle Ages. The Academy Concert Series opener the next evening links Tafelmusik stars Jeanne Lamon and Christina Mahler with harpsichord player, Genevieve Soli. The Riverdale Concert Society's opener October 3 offers lesser-known chamber music by Willan and Moeran. Other series beginning in October: High Park Recital Series, October 4; Amici, October 19 and 24, Sine Nomine Ensemble, October 17 and 18, and the Amadeus Ensemble on October 26. OFF CENTRE, ON COURSE One of the most pleasant ways to spend a Sunday afternoon is an Off Centre !IIIIi iii III II! Iiiii! ljjjfljjjfljjjfljjjfljjjf :NAXOS IIIII IIIII IIIII IIIII IIIII DISC OF THE MONTH for October- ONLY .99· THE BEST OF MOZART more than 77 minutes of music available at record stores everywhere Series concert at the Arts and Letters Club (Elm, · west of Yonge). The theme of each concert is a 19th century European salon and, if the music is not enough to satisfy the soul, there invariably a mystery guest who adds a twist to the proceedings. Their opener, October 12, features Off Centre founders, the brilliant husband-wife duo piano team of Boris Zarankin and lnna Perkis with guests Kristine Bogyo and violinist, Adele Armin~ Another of the musical treasures of our city is the Toronto Early Music Centre. Their array ( early music gems is on display October 12 at the Royal Ontario Museum. Featured artists this month are are La Belle Danse (Daniel Gariepy and Jennifer Hempel). Zarankin & Purkis Consulate General of Argentina im,ites you to An Evening of Songs Music of Mozart, Schubert, Brahms & Argentine composers. Gladys Martino & Adriana Alba, sopranos; Jorge Parodi, piano. Tuesday October 7 6pm Church of the Redeemer, 162 Bloor St. W. 955-9075 We sell violins. And violas. And cellos. And bows. And cases. And strings. And all accessories. And Suzuki. TM And a whole lot of other cool stuff. Call for a free copy of our catalogue. ill llllllllli!lllllll lffifllilflffiflffiflffif lAX OS IIIII IIIII IIIII IIIII IIIII Classical music for Everyone 1,500 all digital classical CD's for under each Ask for a free catalogue: tel: 416 - 491 - 2600: fax: 416- 491 - 2621 · crhar4'" ' ~MUSIC COMPANY Ji: 26 Cumberland, 2nd Floor • Tel: 1-416·960-8494 • Free Parking! Oh, did I mention sheet music? We sell tons of sheet music, too. TORONTO'S ONLY COMPREHENSIVE MONTHLY CLASSICAL & CONTEMPORARY CONCERT LISTING SOURCE

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