February is going to be really busy so I think I’ll take the previews in chunks. First up though one event in January I haven’t yet had opportunity to mention. This coming Sunday 21st Fawn Chamber Creative have a PWYC fundraiser for their in process opera-ballet project. It’s from 2-6pm at The Smiling Buddha. It will be party, silent auction and some performance. Previous ones have been fun but I’m booked Sunday. Details at: http://www.fawnchambercreative.com/events/upcoming/. Also in January and missed off the radar, on the 28th at 3pm at Mazzoleni Hall,the Amici Ensemble have a Strauss inspired concert featuring the lovely but tiny Sasha Djihanian who is current holder of the loudness to weight record for a soprano.
So, into February. The 1st is the first Thursday of the month so it’s AtG’s Opera Pub Night at the Amsterdam Bicycle Club at 9pm. This time it’s the un-Valentine’s Day edition. It’s free but gets full pretty early. There’s also a free concert at the Four Seasons Centre that lunchtime. GGS students are presenting John Corigliano’s Mr. Tambourine Man: Seven Poems by Bob Dylan.
February 2nd is Groundhog Day when traditionally opera goers check to see if James Levine casts a shadow. Unfortunately this year it’s a different kind of shadow.
On Saturday 3rd at 7.30pm in Mazzoleni Hall, the GGS singers are presenting their Vocal Showcase. Tickets are $15. Sunday 4th at 2.30pm sees VOICEBOX presenting Mercadante’s I due Figaro at the Jane Mallett Theatre. The cast includes Beste Kalendar, Tonatiuh Abrego, Nicholas Borg and Marjorie Maltais with Narmina Afandiyeva at the piano.
Wednesday 7th is the opening night of the COC’s run of Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail which runs to the 24th. Tickets at all prices still fairly plentiful. Of course, Rigoletto also runs during this period.
On Thursday 8th the lunchtime free concert in the RBA is members of the Ensemble Studio in a program of Liszt, Zemlinsky and Duparc. That evening is the opening of Tapestry’s TapEx:Forbidden at the Ernest Balmer Studio. That runs until the 11th and my interview with composer Afaran Mansouri is here. Toronto Masque Theatre also open that night with a double bill entitled The Peasant Cantata & All the Diamonds. That’s at the Enoch Turner Schoolhouse at 8pm. It’s also on the 9th and 10th at the same time with a 2pm matinée on Sunday.
Continuing a busy week is a Holocaust themed Jake Heggie double bill. The works are Another Sunrise and Farewell, Auschwitz and they are being performed by new outfit; the Electric Bond Opera Ensemble. Singers are Sara Schabas, Georgia Burashko and Sean Watson with Michael Snhannon leading a five piece ensemble. It’s being hosted by the Beth Tzedec Congregation (1700 Bathurst St., Toronto). There are two shows; Saturday 10th at 8pm and Sunday 11th at 2pm. Details and tickets at www.anothersunrise.ca.
Finally on Sunday 11th at Koerner Hall at 8pm Esprit Orchestra have a show. The program includes two Canadian premiers and the world premier of Mattherw Ricketts’ Lilt which will be accompanied by a new dance piece choreographed and performed by Jenn Nichols. Details at https://www.espritorchestra.com/concert-tickets/concert/plug-in/.