Balance of April and into May

rurThere’s a fair number of shows appearing at fairly short notice as people scramble to adapt to relaxing regulations so this post will contain events for April not previously noted plus a look forward to May.

  • April 26th at 7.30 pm Likht Ensemble have a free Holocaust Remembrance Day concert at Mazzoleni Hall.
  • April 28th at 8pm at St. Andrews on King St. Soundstreams are reprising the Vivier Lovesongs concert that was done as a stream last fall.
  • April 29th at 7.30pm at 918 Bathurst The Happenstancers have a concert featuring music by Julia Wolfe, Nahre Sol, Kaija Saariaho, Gyorgy Kurtag, Oliver Knussen, and WA Mozart.

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The nightingale flies from its gilded cage

nightingale1Florence: The Lady with the Lamp, music by Timothy Sullivan, libretto by Anne Mcpherson, premiered at the Elora Festival in 1992 and n 1995 was the first Canadian work performed by VOICEBOX: Opera in Concert.  Yesterday afternoon they presented it again at the St. Lawrence Centre; staged and with orchestra.

It’s an interesting piece.  Some of it I liked a lot and some not so much.  The orchestral writing is excellent; colourful and atmospheric with some jazz influences.  I quite often found myself drifting off into listening to the orchestra when perhaps I should have paid more attention to the words, especially as there were no surtitles.  The vocal writing is less interesting but it had its moments especially in some of the ensembles.  It’s the old dilemma of whether or not to prioritise the comprehensibility of the words over strictly musical values. Continue reading

April shows

orevueHere’s what’s coming up that I know about in April with some adds for the end of March.

    • 26th March 5pm – 7pm.  Opera Revue at Castro’s PWYC.  Expect a completely Weill performance.
    • 27th March 2.30pm.  Voicebox are doing Timothy Sullivan’s Florence: The Lady with the Lamp in concert at the St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts.  Lauren Pearl sings the title role.

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Adriana Lecouvreur upcoming

225px-Adrienne_LecouvreurVOICEBOX:Opera in Concert have a streamed version of Cilea’s Adriana Lecouvreur premiering on Friday.  It’s a film made at the Edward Jackman Centre that reimagines the opera as a game of chess.  Natalya Gennadi sings the title role with Julie Nesrallah as the Princess de Bouillon.  The cast also includes Holly Chaplin and Evan Korbut.  Tickets are $20 from www.operainconcert.com and the stream will be available until July 2nd.

Streams and things

A quick reminder that tonight, tomorrow and Saturday see new streams from AtG (A Little Too Cozy prequel), The GGS Fall Opera (Seven Deadly Sins and Lucrezia) and Confluence (Purcell).  There’s also new content on the appropriate Youtube channels from Domoney Artists and Alex Hajek.

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December listings

December is not just Messiah though heaven knows there are plenty of those…

On Sunday 1st Voicebox is presenting Janáček’s Katya Kabanova.  It has a strong cast including Lynn Isnar, Emilia Boteva, Michael Barrett and Cian Horrobin.  We don’t see nearly enough Janáček in Toronto.  That’s at 2.30pm at the St. Lawrence Centre.

Against the Grain’s remount of Figaro’s Wedding runs December 3rd to the 20th at the Enoch Turner Schoolhouse at 8pm.  Music direction this time is by Rachael Kerr and the cast includes Bruno Roy, Miriam Khalil, Ally Smither, Phillip Addis, Lauren Eberwein, Jacques Arsenault, Maria Soulis and Greg Finney.  Review of the 2013 original.

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Voicebox: Opera in Concert 2019/20

vblogoThe line up for Voicebox: Opera in Concert has been announced for the 2019/20 season.  There are four shows:

  • The season opens on Sunday, October 20, 2019, with a double bill by Maurice Ravel, L’enfant et les sortileges and L’heure Espagnole.  It’s a common pairing and often a very funny one. It’s piano score with Suzy Smith playing., The cast includes Holly Chaplin, Anika-France Forget, Danlie Rae Acebuque and Joshua Clemenger.
  • Sunday, December 1st, 2019 sees some welcome Janáček.  We don’t see near enough of his work in Toronto.  This time its Katya Kabanova.  It’s not the jolliest of pieces but it’s musically and dramatically top drawer.  The cast includes Lynn Isnar, Emilia Boteva, Michael Barrett and Cian Horrobin with Jo Greenaway at the piano.
  • There’s a remount of Charles M. Wilson’s Kamouraska, premiered by OiC in 2009, on Sunday, February 16th, 2020.  It’s based on Anne Hebert’s novel about a tumultuous love triangle that plays out near a village in Quebec, with tragic consequences.  The cast includes Jennifer Taverner , Aaron Dimoff and Matt Chittick. Robert Cooper leads the orchestra, cast and chorus.
  • The season closes on Sunday, April 5, 2020, with snobbery with violets in the form of Cilea’s Adriana Lecouvreur.   The cast includes Sally Dibblee, Romulo Delgado aand Geneviève Lévesque  Narmina Afandiyeva at the piano.

All shows are at the Jane Mallett Theatre.

 

A couple more shows in March

Here are a couple more listings for March.  VOICEBOX are doing Kurt Weill’s Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny on March 30th at 8pm and March 31st at 2.30pm.  The cast includes Beste Kalender, Michael Barrett and Elizabeth DeGrazia.  It will be piano accompaniment with Narmina Afandiyeva at the keyboard.

Toronto City Opera are performing Verdi’s La Traviata at the Al Green Theatre on March 28th and 29th at 7.30pm and the 31st at 2,30pm.  Alaina Viau directs with a musical team of Ivan Jovanovic and Jennifer Tung.  The cast is headed up by Beth Hagerman, Kijong Wi and Handaya Rusli. Apparently it’s a “modern, Toronto setting”.  I’m curious to see how the ideas of “a fallen woman”, “family honour” and “arranged marriage” play out.

A couple of things

werther-nzkrkplp.v3wThe Art Song Foundation of Canada has launched a new free on-line magazine called, somewhat unsurprisingly, Art Song Canada.  The first issue has three articles including a very interesting one by Gerald Finley.  You can sign up for it and see the first issue here.

A listing I missed on the weekend… On November 25th at 2.30pm in the Jane Mallet Theatre, VOICEBOX:Opera in Concert are presenting Massenet’s Werther with Matt Chittick in the title role,  Isabel Bayrakdarian as Charlotte and Brett Polegato as Albert.  Narmina Afandiyeva directs from the piano.