December 23, 2020

Concert Report: Soundstreams’ Electric Messiah continues to reimagine a classic

by Marie Trotter

I still remember my first Messiah: seated in the rather uncomfortable pews at St. Paul’s Basilica in Toronto, gazing up at the church’s ceiling instead of following along with the text in the program, and only drifting back into attentiveness…
December 07, 2020

Music and the Movies: ZAPPA

by Paul Ennis

Alex Winter’s new documentary – ZAPPA – about the iconoclastic musician and biting social satirist, Frank Zappa, has much in common with Thorsten Schütte’s absorbing, revelatory 2016 documentary, Eat That Question: Frank Zappa in His Own Words. Zappa’s widow Gail…
December 06, 2020

A Messiah for our Complex Times

by Brian Chang

No performing arts organizations can pretend they don’t exist in a specific time and place – responding to cultural and political moments of the right now, even when the music they perform comes from very different times. Choirs are grappling…
December 06, 2020

Beautiful Exceptions: In conversation with Judith Yan

by Lydia Perovic

One of Canada’s busiest conductors is just back from Hong Kong, where she conducted Don Quixote from a COVID-proof orchestra pit. She spoke with Lydia Perović via Zoom from her home in Guelph. LP: Hi Judith Yan! Oh, what’s that…
December 06, 2020

New Bottles for Old Wine? EarlyMusic.tv and Sing-Alone Messiahs

by Matthew Whitfield

Over the last few issues of The WholeNote, this column has explored some of the ways that presenters, festivals, orchestras and other performing groups have pivoted and adapted to 2020’s unexpected and unforeseen challenges. With the arrival of a second…
December 06, 2020

Cecilia Livingston’s Vocal Pleasures

by Wendalyn Bartley

I’m always curious to see what the Royal Conservatory of Music’s 21C Festival will be offering each season; this year being unlike every other performance season, I was even more curious as to what we could expect from this annual…
December 06, 2020

Chamber Beethoven As His Birthday Beckons

by Paul Ennis

As Beethoven’s 250th birthday approaches – thought to have been born on December 15 or 16 he was baptized on December 17, 1770 – there are several notable chamber music concerts being livestreamed from December 5 to December 13, the…
December 06, 2020

Shelter from the storm: The IMAGINE project offers a safe space for artists to develop bold new works

by Cathy Riches

When it became apparent that the pandemic was not going to be a two-month event and was in fact going to be with us for many months, Tricia Baldwin asked herself, “What can we do to amplify the voices and…
December 05, 2020

Who Is Alex Trebek?

by Robert Harris

It was surprising to me, in all the genuine affection that blossomed in America for the person of Alex Trebek, following his death in early November, that no one seems to have put their finger on what I think is…
December 03, 2020

Sergei Kvitko's Blue Griffin

by Adam Sherkin

In 2009 Blue Griffin Recording was brought to our attention by Canadian mezzo-soprano Patricia Green who had released two discs on this small, independent Lansing, Michigan-based label. In April of that year Pamela Margles reviewed both in these pages, The…
November 26, 2020

Azrieli Commission winner, composer Keiko Devaux reflects on the debut of Arras

by Camille Kiku Belair

The gala concert for the Azrieli Foundation Azrieli Music Prizes (AMP) took place on Thursday, October 22, 2020 at 8pm, live-streamed on Facebook and MediciTV. The concert featured the works of this year’s winners: Keiko Devaux (Azrieli Commission for Canadian…
November 19, 2020

This fall, the GGS adapts opera for online – plexiglass and all

by Jennifer Parr

How do you teach opera during a global pandemic? This was the question facing the team at the Glenn Gould School (GGS) in Toronto, tasked with planning its annual fall opera production. It was April 2020, and no one knew…
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Bandstand
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