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Volume 5 Issue 2 - October 1999

  • Text
  • Toronto
  • October
  • Theatre
  • Choir
  • Symphony
  • Orchestra
  • Arts
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  • Musical
  • November

11!1 month's cover:

11!1 month's cover: Nmhan Annan Interviewed by Allan Pulker On October 30 Toronto's new professional chamber orchestra, Sinfonia Toronto, will make its long-anticipated debut at the Glenn Gould Studio. The man behind this exciting project is the orchestra's music director Nurhan Arman. Although he has conducted such orchestras here as the Royal Conse..Vatory Symphony Orchestra and the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra, he ·has done most of his conducting in other centres and so is for many people a new name on the Toronto music scene. DISNEY? Armenian by birth, he grew up in Istanbul, where he studied at the Istanbul Conservatory, giving his first violin recital at the age of 13. In 1971 he went to the United States, on a Disney Foundation Scholarship, to the California Institute of the Arts and then the University of Louisville. After completing his studies he was the (:()ncertmaster of several orches­ .tras, including the Florida Symphony, the Florida Chamber Orchestra and the Savannah Symphony as well as performing as a soloist in many major U.S. centres and the prestigious music festivals of Tanglewood, Spoleto, New York and Florida. After several seasons he began a conducting career which has taken him all over North America, Europe and Asia and given him a portfolio of reviews that have praised his conducting for its musicality and vitality. NoRTH BAY TO YEREVAN His connection with Canada began in 1982 when he became the conductor of the North Bay Symphony. In this post, starting with very little, he created a highly successful organization. In 1987 he became the music director of Symphony New Brunswick, in which position he has built the orchestra into a major regional resource with subscription series in three cities and a well-attended summer series as well. In addition, since 1993 he has been the principal guest conductor of the Yerevan Symphony Orchestra in Armenia, which means he spends from three to six weeks a year there, and he teaches conducting at the Orford Arts Centre in Quebec. CHAMBER SHADES Conducting his own chamber orchestra is something that Maestro Arman has wanted to do for a very long time. His love of the sound of small string orchestras started when he was a child: ''I grew up in Istanbul. This is a very cOsmopolitan city. All the best of Europe came during the season." Among them were the Versailles Chamber Orchestra and the Andree Colson Chamber Orchestra, whose performances he will never forget. Later, as a violinist early in his career he played in several small string orchestras, and as a conductor has conducted Paris' Jean-Louis Petit Chamber Orchestra and also started chamber orchestras as adjuncts of the North Bay Symphony Orchestra and Symphony New Brunswick. " I like the repertoire very much. It is pure music," he says. "like a string quartet except bigger and with a double bass." Sinfonia Toronto will have 14 players: 4 first violins, 4 second violins, 3 violas, two cellos and one bass. With a group this size, he says, ''we will have an amazing amount of shading. The dynamic range will be incredible!" fROM THE FRONT Will he lead the orchestra from the first desk or will he conduct it? His answer is definite: "I will conduct. When I was a violinist I wanted to play and conduct, but after so much experience as a conductor, I know it will save a tremendous amount of time to have a musical authority on the podium." When musicians play together, he explains, there are always disagreements about everything from tempo and A COMPLETE MULTIMEDIA HOME COMPUTER + Years ... Unlimited Internet Access ... WITH COLOUR MONITOR/ STEREO SPEAKERS/ CD ROM/ MODEM/ WINDOWS 98 AND COREL WORD PERFECT SUITE .95 PER MONTH 1·800·828·5389 HNET. WINDOW

dynamics to phrasing and expression. "It's never the musician with best idea that wins in these disagreements but rather the one with the strongest convictions." As a conductor he spends a great deal of time studying the scores for the music he is going to conduct so that he can develop the strong convictions needed to convince his musicians and the audience of his interpretation. Nevertheless, what will distinguish Sinfonia Toronto will be its soloistic approach to orchestral playing. The violin and viola sections will play standing up, which, he explains, is a completely different physical approach to the instrument from sitting down to play. SETTING THE TONE The first piece on the first program will set the tone. It is the Grosse Fugue, (erstwhile final movement of Beethoven's String Quartet Op. 130) arranged for string orchestra by Felix Weingartner - soloistic not only because it is string quartet music but also because it is a fugue. So WHY HERE? His own chamber orchestra is evidently the fulfilment of a dream, and it is obvious that at this stage of his career Arman has the knowledge and the experience, both artistic and practical, to pull it together. But why, I asked, did he decide that Toronto was the place to do it and why now? His reply made a lot of sense. "First, there isn't a chamber orchestra of this calibre in Toronto. Montreal, on the other. hand, has so many chamber orchestras - more than practically anywhere else. There is a great symphony orchestra here, there is Tafelmusik, whose work I respect immensely, also the Esprit Orchestra, but this type of orchestra is lacking. Then there is the fact that there are so many good string players here now. When we announced auditions we had 120 applicants for only 14 positions. Also, I have friends here, musicians, who have been urging me to do this, so finally, last year I had the opportunity to move to Toronto, and right away we began planning, setting up a board of directors, incorporating and COUPON TO DINE AT PATRIS RESTAURANT ® " One Meal Free. Maximum discount vakle up to .00 with this coupon. Qlupon from 4:00pm Pasta · Seafood · Steaks · Salads Greek Cuisine · Summer Patio 888 DANFORTH AVE. 3 blocks East of Pape at Jones 466-1967 applying for grants fro(ll arts councils and foundations." "But also" he went on , : " some of it has to do with the state Arman continues ... WORLD CLASS DIGITAL RECORDING CD MASTERING & MANUFACTURING . ... the very essence of fidelity." Alan Lofft, Sound and Vision iS;xq ... isite Bows t-la"dmade i" the F Makers of fine historical keyboard ins1rumenls (416) 538-3062 www.intorloscoml-bpschdl 14 Fifth St~eet To~o"to 1sla"d O"ta~io Ca"ada M s:J 2B9 Tel: 4 '16 203 0789 I>Olf'T 1>0 IT YO"U1l8ELF! Let CADMUS Communications handle media publicity for your next concert ... so you can concentrate on making music. Previous clients include Caribana, First Night, Mayworks, John Alcorn, Lillian Allen, the Nathaniel Dett Chorale and Song Cycles (Toronto's choir on bikes). We are proud to announce the opening of our newly expanded and renovated string music department Grand Opening Sale 14th September- 15th October .,_Discounts of up to 50% ~- Vast range of titles in all string categories * Fast mail order service * Low price guarantee 9.l Ctem ille Su eet, Totomo l\l.'iS 1B4 Tel: (416) 971 b99J r.1x: (4 lb) 597 992.\

Volumes 21-25 (2015-2019)

Volume 25 Issue 4 - December 2019 / January 2020
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Volume 24 Issue 6 - March 2019
Volume 24 Issue 5 - February 2019
Volume 24 Issue 4 - December 2018 / January 2019
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Volume 21 Issue 4 - December 2015/January 2016
Volume 21 Issue 3 - November 2015
Volume 21 Issue 2 - October 2015
Volume 21 Issue 1 - September 2015

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