Of White Nights and Shapeshifting Giants
Founded in 2009, Culture Days is dedicated to the cause of getting Canadians to “make culture a daily habit.” Thousands of arts organizations now take part, providing ways for individuals to “participate free in interactive and behind-the-scenes activities to discover their cultural spirit and passion.”
The Toronto Mendelssohn Choir September 27 “Singsations” choral workshop featured elsewhere in this issue (page 39) is one good example. Another great example is “Conduct Us” which takes place from 12 noon to 1:45pm on September 26 at Roy Thomson Hall. It will give three “conductors” chosen from the audience by a draw, to conduct the full Toronto Symphony Orchestra alongside music director Peter Oundjian. (Doors open at 10am and wannabe conductors intending to register for the draw are advised to arrive early.) Entering fully into the spirit of the event, the TSO has announced that “to help set the stage for your big debut, Peter Oundjian and actor Colm Feore have recorded three fun Learn How to Conduct videos set to the three different scores that will be on offer on September 26th.”
Best of all, “Conduct Us” is a province-wide initiative with over a dozen local musical ensembles confirmed, each with their own unique twist: The Orillia Wind Ensemble, Vocal Ensemble, Silver Band and Jubilee Chorale; The Guelph puppet troupe Pandora’s Sox; Timmins Symphony Orchestra, the Georgian Bay Symphony, the Oakville Symphony Orchestra, the Kingston Symphony, the Stratford Symphony Orchestra, the Sudbury Symphony Orchestra and the Kawartha Youth Orchestra ... The list of participant ensembles for this one initiative keeps growing; and “Conduct Us” is just one strand among thousands!
So you can see why, as stated at the beginning of this story, this shape-shifting giant of an event is impossible for us to chronicle. Blessedly, the Culture Days website offers you, the reader, a friendly set of tools to find your own way to something close to your heart, and on home turf. Visit culturedays.ca
Once you’ve revelled in the three-day wonder of it all, we’ll still be around, faithfully chronicling the other 362 culture days in the year that are “yours to discover” here, every day.
Nuit Blanche 2014 Announced
No less of a citizen’s joy and listings editor’s nightmare, is the ninth edition of Scotiabank Nuit Blanche, which will take place, in Toronto, Saturday, October 4 from 6:53 p.m. until sunrise on Sunday October 5. This year’s lineup features more than 120 art projects created by nearly 400 local, national and international artists who will transform the streets of Toronto for one magical night. Details for the full program are available at scotiabanknuitblanche.ca.
David Perlman, listings editor
GALAS & FUNDRAISERS
Sep 9, 1:30: Oakville Opera Guild. Tea With Opera: “Toronto – An Opera Town? From Assembly Rooms to the Four Seasons.” Presented by Ann Reynolds. Proceeds from Tea With Opera programs provide the main funding for the Oakville Opera Guild’s annual scholarship awarded to a young singer studying at U of T’s Opera Program. Auditorium, Oakville Central Library, 120 Navy St., Oakville. 905-337-0477. $10.
Sep 22, 7:30: Toronto Masque Theatre. The Fine Art of the Masque. Gala to mark the group’s eighth commission. Featuring an informal chat with some of the creators, drinks, food, and performances by mezzo Marion Newman and soprano Teri Dunn. 21 Shaftesbury Ave. 416-410-4561. $20; $15(under 30); $5 reduction for subscribers. www.torontomasquetheatre.com.
Sep 25, 8:00pm Small World Music Festival. Festival Opening Launch Party Featuring Os Tropies. Gypsy jazz and Brazilian funk. Small World Music Centre, 180 Shaw St. Free. www.smallworldmusic.com.
Sep 28, 5:30–9:00 pm: Sinfonia Toronto. Sinfonia Toronto’ Sweet Sixteen Birthday. Director Nurhan Arman chats with Classical 96.3 personality Alexa Petrenko; performance by Sinfonia Toronto‘s concertmaster Mary-Elizabeth Brown; dinner buffet; desserts; Great Musical Limerick Line-up; silent auction. Heliconian Hall, 35 Hazelton Avenue, 416-499-0403. $55 ($30 tax receipt).
Oct 16, 9:00pm: Canadian Opera Company. Operanation: Light Up the Night. Gala fundraiser featuring music, dancing, fashion, culinary arts and visual arts with a Spanish theme. Performance by the COC Ensemble Studio and a guest contemporary musician. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen St. W. 416-363-8231. $150.
Nov 1 (deadline to apply): Etobicoke Philharmonic Orchestra. Young Composers Competition 2014. Canadian composers ages 32 and under. Winning composition will be performed by the ETO; cash prizes presented. 416-239-5665. For details: firstname.lastname@example.org; www.eporchestra.ca.
Nov 28 (deadline to apply): Toronto Sinfonietta. Ninth Annual Concerto Competition for the best performance of a solo work with an orchestra. Gala concert of competition winners is Saturday Feb 21, 2015. Age categories: under 16, 16-19. Rules and application forms at www.torontosinfonietta.com
DEMONSTRATIONS & TOURS
Sep 20, 10:30am: SweetWater Music Festival SweetWater Luthier Exhibit. The art of crafting stringed instruments. Featured Ontario luthiers: Itzel Avila, Johan Lotter, John Newton, David Prentice, Sibylle Ruppert, Mark Schnurr and Greg Walke. St. Andrew’s Church (Owen Sound) 519-371-2833 Free.
Sep 20, 1:00: SweetWater Music Festival SweetWater Luthier Live Demonstration. Special guest artists from this year’s festival will play instruments crafted by local luthiers. St. Andrew’s Church (Owen Sound) 519-371-2833. Free.
Oct 5, 12, 19 and 26, 10:30am: Canadian Opera Company. Tour the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. 90-minute tours including backstage access to wig rooms, dressing rooms, orchestra pit and more! Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen St. W. 416-306-2329. $20; $15(sr/st).
FESTIVALS, FAIRS & FESTIVITIES
Thursdays, 6:30–9:00: Native Canadian Centre of Toronto/Culture Days. Big Drum Social. Drumming, food and friendship. Every Thursday evening. 16 Spadina Rd. 416-964-9087. Free.
Sep 4–14, various times: Cabbagetown BIA. 38th Annual Cabbagetown Festival of the Arts. Live music Sep 6 and 7, with over 30 bands and artists, food vendors, theatre, busking and more. Events free. For full programming see www.oldcabbagetown.com.
Sep 6, all day: Contact Contemporary Music. New Music Intersection. Array Ensemble members perform at the New Music Intersection day long event at Dundas Square. Yonge and Dundas. 416-532-3019. Free. www.contactcontemporarymusic.com.
Sep 7, 9:00–11:30am: Etobicoke Community Concert Band. “Taste of the Kingsway” Pancake Breakfast. Free concert on the main stage. Bloor St. at Montgomery Rd., Etobicoke. www.kingswaybia.ca.
Sep 8, 15, 22 and 29, 12;30: Virgin Mobile/Yonge-Dundas Square. Lunchtime Live! Eat lunch outside while enjoying live music at Yonge-Dundas Square. Sep 8: Heavyweights Brass Band; Sep 15: Melanie Brulée; Sep 22: Patrick Brealey; Sep 29: The Sinners Choir. 1-888-999-2321. Free. www.virginmobile.ca.
Sep 11–14, various times: Supercrawl. Festival along James St. in Hamilton promoting arts and culture in the city. Events include Hamilton Children’s Choir performing selections from its recent Korean tour; Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra with Thought Beneath Film (September 13 at 6:15). For complete events schedule, see
Sep 25 to Oct 5, various: Small World Music Festival. Various concerts and events around the city highlighting music from Serbia, Trinidad, Iran, Germany, Pakistan and more. For individual concert listings, see listings Section A. www.smallworldmusic.com.
Sep 26–28, various times: Culture Days. Culture Days Festival Toronto. Weekend festival featuring thousands of artists, musicians and performers in cities nation-wide, to raise awareness, accessibility, participation and engagement of Canadians in the arts and cultural life of their communities. Selected listings mentioned here, with full information at culturedays.ca.
Sep 27, 28, 12:00-4:30 City of Toronto Historic Museums Early Music at Montgomery’s Inn. Mini-concerts by Toronto-based artists, including Bud Roach and Harmonie. Historic instruments being played; recordings, early music books and publications on sale. Montgomery’s Inn, 4709 Dundas St. W. (at Islington) 416-394-8113. Admission is FREE as part of Culture Days.
LECTURES, SALONS, SYMPOSIA
Sep 8, 7:00: Toronto New Music Alliance. New Music 101: Toy Piano Composers and the Bicycle Opera Project. Explore contemporary opera and the everyday as these two groups combine to share DIY opera in Toronto. Hosted by The WholeNote’s David Perlman. Hinton Learning Theatre, Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge St. 416-961-6601 x207. Free.
Sep 9 to Oct 14, 1:00–3:00pm: Royal Conservatory. Opera in the City. A 6-week course. University of Toronto Professor Emeritus Eric Domville previews the operas that will be staged this fall by the Canadian Opera Company and Opera Atelier. Royal Conservatory, 273 Bloor St. W. 416-408-2825. $295. rcmusic.ca/MusicAppreciation.
Sep 11 12:10: University of Toronto Faculty of Music. Thursdays at Noon: Dean’s Welcome. Walter Hall, Edward Johnson Building, 80 Queen’s Park. 416-408-0208. Free.
Sep 14, 2:00: Toronto Opera Club. My Career in Opera. Guest speaker tenor Richard Margison. Room 330, Edward Johnson Building, 80 Queen’s Park. 416-924-3940. $10.
Sep 18 to Oct 16, 1:00–3:00pm: Royal Conservatory. Beethoven’s Piano Concertos. A 5-week course. Rick Phillips illuminates five works that forever changed the future of the piano concerto. Royal Conservatory, 273 Bloor St. W. 416-408-2825. $250. rcmusic.ca/MusicAppreciation.
Sep 19, 7:00: Soundstreams Salon 21. The Four Seasons. Special guests explore four interpretations of Four Seasons including jazz, string quartet and complete remixes. Gardiner Museum, 111 Queen’s Park. 416-504-1282. Free, PWYC reserved seating .
Sep 20, 11:00am: SweetWater Music Festival. The SweetWater Lecture. Cellist Christopher Costanza, a founding members of the internationally acclaimed St. Lawrence String Quartet, will give a lecture on J.S. Bach’s Cello Suites. St. Andrew’s Church, Owen Sound. 519-371-2833. Free.
Sep 27, 6:00: Canada Culture Days/Collegium Musicum. The Life and Works by Villas Lobos and Sonata Op.110 in A-flat by Beethoven. Chris Malone, guitar, Borjana Hrelja, piano. Chopin Room, Collegium Musicum Conservatory of Music, 12 Peter St. S., Mississauga. 905-274-6100. Free.
Sep 30, 8:00: Small World Music Festival. Salon: Zakir Hussein in Conversation. Stories, discussion and Q&A with renowned tabla master. Ticket price includes a seat at the concert on Oct 1 at Markham Theatre. Small World Music Centre, 180 Shaw St. $100. www.smallworldmusic.com.
Oct 6, 7:00: Toronto New Music Alliance. New Music 101: Arraymusic with Martha Baillie, and Music in the Barns. Arraymusic and author Martha Baillie demonstrate complementary musical and literary narratives, performing compositions by Nic Gotham written for Baillie’s The Search For Heinrich Schlögel. Music in the Barns demonstrates performances mixing acoustic instruments and live electronic processing. Hosted by The WholeNote’s David Perlman. Hinton Learning Theatre, Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge St. 416-961-6601 x207. Free. Also Oct 7 at Palmerston Library.
Oct 7, 7:00: Toronto New Music Alliance. New Music 101: Arraymusic with Martha Baillie, and Music in the Barns. Palmerston Public Library, 560 Palmerston Ave. See Oct 6 at Toronto Reference Library.
Sep 24 2:00: University of Toronto Faculty of Music. Riki Turofsky Master Class in Voice: Ben Heppner. Geiger-Torel Room, Edward Johnson Building, 80 Queen’s Park. 416-408-0208. Free.
Sep 28, 10:00am–4:00pm: Flute Street/Long and McQuade. Piccolo Masterclass with Jean-Louis Beaumadier. Church of the Holy Trinity. 416-588-7886. $50(performing participants); $10(auditors).
Sep 27, 6:30–9:00: Canadian Opera Company/Culture Days. Attend a Rehearsal of Verdi’s Falstaff. Gerald Finley, baritone (Falstaff); Robert Carsen, director. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen St. W. 416-363-8231. Seating limited to 500 people; first come, first served. Free.
SINGALONGS, JAMS, CIRCLES
Sep 20, 12:00 SweetWater Music Festival. MOZART JAM SESSION WITH GUEST ARTISTS.Jam with the St. Lawrence String Quartet and other guest artists. Parts are available for Mozart’s Divertimento in D and Haydn, Symphony No. 94, “The Surprise” (Solomon Edition) online at imslp. For details e-mail: email@example.com indicating the part you wish to play. Free.
Sep 21, 1:00: Arraymusic/Evergreen Club Contemporary Gamelan. Array/Evergreen Community Gamelan Meetup #1. Come together to play on Indonesian instruments as well as various other percussion instruments. All levels welcome. Array Space, 2nd Floor, 155 Walnut Ave. 416-532-3019. $10.
Sep 27, 10:30am–12:00 noon: Toronto Mendelssohn Choir/Culture Days. Singsation Saturday Workshop. Free choral singing workshop lea by Shawn Grenke. Sheet music will be provided. Centre for Social Innovation, Annex, 720 Bathurst St. 416-598-0422 x223. www.tmchoir.org. Free
Sep 27, 12:00–8:00: Royal Conservatory/Culture Days. Koerner Hall Free for All. Performers of all ages and backgrounds will have 5 minutes to showcase their talent. 273 Bloor St. W. 416-408-2825. Free.
SPOKEN WORD, PERFORMANCE ART
Sep 13 to Oct 5, Tue–Sat 8:00; Sun 2:30: Buddies in Bad Times Theatre. Freda and Jem’ s Best of the Week. Narrative about queer family life by Lois Fine. Diane Flacks, Kathryn Haggis, Sadie Epstein-Fine and Stephen Joffe; Judith Thompson, director; Lorraine Segato, live music. 12 Alexander St. 416-975-8555. $37; $20–$25(before Sep 12).
Sep 7 1:30: Toronto Early Music Players Organization. Early Music Workshop for Woodwinds and Strings. Coach: Valerie Sylvester. Armour Heights Community Centre, 2140 Avenue Rd. 416-537-3733. $20.
Sep 8, 5:00: Collective of Black Artists. Summer Series Dance Class at Daniels Spectrum. Family friendly free outdoors Cuban dance class in the MDC Partners Courtyard. Daniels Spectrum, 585 Dundas St. E. For info, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sep 12, 7:30: CAMMAC Recorder Players’ Society. Renaissance and Baroque Workshop for recorders and other early instruments. Refreshments included. Mount Pleasant Road Baptist Church, 527 Mount Pleasant Rd. 416-480-1853. $15; free(members).
Sep 27, 2:00: Arraymusic/Culture Days. Culture Days Free Percussion Workshop at Array. Improvisations and percussion exercises on a variety of instruments, led by Array’s director Rick Sacks. The session will be recorded; bring storage devices or receive a free CD. Array Space, 2nd Floor, 155 Walnut Ave. 416-532-3019. Free.
Oct 3, 7:30: CAMMAC Recorder Players’ Society. Renaissance and Baroque Workshop for recorders and other early instruments. Scott Paterson, coach. Refreshments included. Mount Pleasant Road Baptist Church, 527 Mount Pleasant Rd. 416-480-1853. $20; $5(members).