8 years ago

Volume 3 Issue 7 - April 1998

  • Text
  • April
  • Toronto
  • Theatre
  • Symphony
  • Arts
  • Choir
  • Performing
  • Classical
  • Orchestra
  • Recital


- B:EmNn THE SCENES: IIEATHER CLARK continued from page 17 · for the Polish dance ensemble "Mazowsze" through a local Polish travel agency. We eo-produced Portuguese singing sensation Dulce Pontes with CIRV, a local Portuguese radio station. That was VERY cost-effective advertising .... And there are other revenue streams. You should have a look at our financial statements." I did, and they were were fascinating -- if you're interested, they are public and available on request. They showed a debt-free balance sheet and capital of million -- that's basically the value of the two halls plus an accumulated operating surplus of .5 million, of which .9 million is prudently earmarked for building and equipment replacement. (By the way, Roy Thomson is the ONLY non-profit performance hall in Canada which receives no government funding for operations.) How do they do it? Like any other musician -- day jobs: what Heather called "other revenue streams". Rentals of the two halls; charges for services to other people presenting ev_ents in the halls; bar, catering, music store & parking; fundraising. I do. Heather opens a door into the auditorium. A crew is assembling a turn-of the-century parlour. "'Unique Lives and Experiences'", Heather explains. "They always use a set." Another door, a room with plush carpeting and a big refrigerator unit. "The Boardroom." Next door is a stainless steel room the size of a two-car garage. One wall is all refrigerator doors, another is a bank of ovens and a third is stacked trays of cups. "The Kitchen. Hard to believe we do dinners for 300 out of this. We cater food in, heat and assemble here. We do a LOT of flambes ... " And then there's fundraising. Heather: "We can't just go knocking on doors for corporate funds, there needs to be some kind of connection. ·FQr instance, Magna Corporation has held the annual gala presentation for their scholarship awards here for many years. This March we presented the Vienna Choir Boys. Frank Stronach, the CEO of Magna is also honorary consul of Austria. It seemed natural to ask Magna if they would sponsor the Vienna Choir Boys; and they said yes. Similarly we asked the Dutch-owned ABN-AMRO Bank Canada to sponsor The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and they agreed." But it's not just corporations. Heather: 'The Friends of Roy Thomson Hall' have existed since 1981, people who donate a specified amount in return for their priority ticketing privileges, perks like that. When I came here 18 months ago, there were 400 members. I needed a bigger base in order to realize the economies of scale in servicing members. We did informal market research to make the perks of Friends' membership better reward active cultural consumers, so they · would come to more concerts and donate more money. As a Heather: "We rent out every bit of this Hall. We have our two major tenants, The Toronto Symphony Orchestra and The Toronto Mendelssohn Choir; other regulars are the "Unique Lives & Experiences" lecture series and the Toronto International Film Festival. Corporate clients hold annual meetings here. Our lobby has been rented for wine-tastings, auctions, book sales, fashion shows and car launches. Our board result, the perks now include reserved "Best in House" seats, room is used for the annual actuarial examination. Mirvish ticket ordering from real people who remember who you are, a Theatres and Livent rent our rehearsal hall for auditions for membership card (we're big on cards around here), their shows. The Upper Canada Law Society of Osgoode Hall complimentary coatcheck, discounts in the music store and other does their annual "Call to the Bar" here. The list goes on and things to make our Friends feel special. It's working; now there on. Want to take a tour?" are 1,000 Friends. We're also launching the Marquee Club, like the Friends, only more high-end. More fundraising means we can take more risks, present more Canadian artists, more young artists, do more educational programs." AunioFILE: Recording orchestras--look at how far we've come Continued from page 15 (approx. 3 feet) with wooden baffles to help direct the sound; and Chrysler Theatre, an 1100-seat venue with a larger stage (approx. 6 feet), also with wooden sound baffles. Assumption Chapel houses the symphony's Best of Baroque series, most recently featuring Moshe Hammer as leader/ soloist. The intimate setup and low stage made microphone placement quite easy, about 5 feet from the musicians and raised 12 feet-­ to average off the individual distances between the various musicians and capture a good blend of music and reverberation. The Mark V can be set up as any type of mono or stereo microphone. Here it was set up as a "loose cardiod" microphone pair (cardiod picks up sound in front only, so this was set slightly toward omni which picks up sound all around), set at 110 degrees, p_roviding a good stereo image with a portion of the reverberation from the hall as well. 1 At The Chrysler Theatre, microphone placement was much more challenging. There were over 40 musicians on the stage with the concert featuring the Robert Hohner Percussion Ensemble. The microphone had to be suspended from the ceiling, approximately 15 feet up and back from the stage. This predetermined position also made it difficult to face the microphone in the correct direction. But the Mark V's capabilities shone. Its electronics allowed complete aiming of the microphone, from electronically turning it to zooming it forward. The Chrysler Theatre has a very dry non-reverberant sound, so we aimed the Mark V electronically slightly toward the wooden baffles above the orchestra, where a nice blend was found. And we used what is called a stereo cardiod pair at 90 degrees, allowing for a well defined stereo placement of each section. A very small amount of digital reverb was added, during post processing, to account for the lack of natural reverb in the hall. The role of an orchestra's music director or conductor is TORONTO'S ONLY COMPREHENSIVE MONTHLY CLASSitAL & CONTEMPORARY CONCERT LISTING SOURCE to create a musical blend, by making decisions on the individual dynamics of various instruments, throughout the piece. An engineer's job is to faithfully recreate the work the conductor has done, and not to provide a different sound. The Mark V allows an engineer to do this, while also providing the versatility necessary for the challenges of different halls and orchestra sizes, by taking full advantage of today's technologies. Next: symphonic bands. Robert Hanson, the owner and operator of 1he Audio Group, specialises in classical/acoustic location recording and digital editing services. Please send comments or questions by etniJil to audiogrp@, or fax 905) 420-8421.

Me: And your background? Heather: I am a classically trained musician, which was of some interest here when I was hired. I did a BMus in performance (organ) at McGill, then an MBA in Arts Administration at State University of New York (Binghamton). There are se':eral classically-trained musicians on staff at The Corporation an~ I. think that we have feelings about this place that no non-mus1c1an can have. International Resource Centre For P~rforming ~rtists Where that "something extra turns potential into accomplishment --------CAREERS IN FOCUS-------­ Spring "Encounters· postponed to Fall due to Jack of Funds --------COlLABORATIONs------­ IIVA International Institute of Vocal Arts, 5th summer season, Chiari, Italy June 14-July I 0, 3 levels: study, professional, special project For application/audition, fax Wm. Woodruff, {212) 874-8112 -INTERNATIONAL JOY OF SINGING fESTIVALin the City of Ferino, Italy and Orchestra Internazionale d'Italia. "International Encounters" , First session, mid-November to mid-December, 1998. Second session, mid-March to mid-April, 1999. 3 levels: study, professional, special project, selected artists will be beard in concerts with orchestra in the Christmas/ Easter seasons in Italy. North America touring to begin 1999-2000. Tour of I 0 Italian Theatres Spring 1999 Fully staged production of Puccini's Trittico "11 Tabarro", "Suor Angelica" and "Gianni Schicchi" --------FUNDRAISER-------­ /nteractive Media Gala/lntl. Cuisine/Silent Auction/Live and DJ performances/Film/Video screenings, June 4, 1998, beginning at lpm. Bar opens at 6: t 5. The Wellington, 424 Wellington Street, Toronto -A Surge Production­ Proceeds for "Careers in Focus" program and scholarships. INTERNATIONAL RESOURCE CENTRE foR PERFORMING ARTISTS Box 188, Station A, Toronto, tel. (4 t 6) 362- t 422; fax (4 t 6) 359-0043 Memberships , Friends , Investors t, Sponsors Welcome A charitable non-profit organization dedicated to helping young artists bridge the gap between formal training and steady employment. It all started ~n Markham Street in 1897. Of the founding members one, Elizabeth McGillivray Knowles, was a pianist, hostess and well-known Canadian painter, while another was Anna Butland (later Mrs. Thomas Bedford Richardson), 22-yearold concert pianist and winner of the gold medal for her Licentiate exam taken from the 2-year-old Toronto Conservatory of Music. She had just returned from 2 years' piano study in Germany. · Originally the Club met weekly in the afternoon, for members (22 in 1897) to play to each other and discuss their work. The fee for membership - ladies exclusively - was 25 cents. By 1900 the Club became biweekly and changed from an afternoon to an evening one, and gentlemen were admitted. By 1905 the membership was up to 50 and has continued to grow very slowly (80 members to this day). Well-known musicians have been members through the years: Frank Welsman, conductor of the first Toronto Symphony Orchestra, as well as Lois Marshal! and Glenn Gould. . To quote Robin Elliott, author of Counterpoint to a City - a history of the Women's Musical Club in Toronto: "... the Home Music Club has flourished in its own quiet way, out of the scrutiny of the public eye, and it may legitimately claim to be the second oldest existing musical organization in Toronto, after the Mendelssohn Choir." Why has it survived when so many other clubs have fallen by the wayside? Perhaps because the intimacy of a home setting fosters the activity that its members have always thrived on: . sharing their love of music by performing with and for each other. Perhaps, too, because its existence has depended upon musical friends linked to musical friends, through a century-long lineage. Therefore we offer no public ~rformance, no phone number to bate the eager musician searching for a milieu ... But if the charm of the idea attracts you, that' is good enough reason to start your own music club - all that is needed are a few friendly homes with acoustically amenable spaces and a group of like-minded people eager to share their interest in investigating ~__.. ____________....:.,__________. and performing music in an organized fl\Shion. TORONTO'S ONLY COMPREHENSIVE MONTHLY CLASSICAL & CONTEMPORARY CONCERT LISTING SOURCE

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