So no Last Night of the Proms style extravaganza this year (Probably just as well, especially given the torrid weather). Instead it was a pot pourri of choral works, songs and excerpts from chamber works played mainly by members of the various academy programmes. I’m not really sure what the point was as pretty much everything had been heard before, often in context. Sometimes it seemed the main function was to keep the stagehands busy, as format succeeded format at short intervals. So there was no sense of closure or celebration. I wish I new what the answer is. Obviously LNotP isn’t, with or without a Canadian spin. Maybe the best thing would be to keep back one of the big name acts for the final show?
There’s no point in doing a piece by piece review as everything had already been seen. I enjoyed Asitha Tennekoon’s set (the only art song of the evening) even if it was the umpty millionth time I’ve heard him sing those songs.I also very much enjoyed Sarah Jeffrey and Phil Chiu in two of Schumann’s Romances for oboe and piano. The rest was fine too.
Even if the last night was a bit flat it’s been a really good festival. It’s a great idea to have music in Toronto in the summer and the TSMF always seems to manage to put on one of the best song recitals of the year. Christophe Prégardien was certainly that!