Browsing: Interviews

It’s been a busy autumn for Montreal-based author Madeleine Thien, whose fourth book, Do Not Say We Have Nothing, has been ­garnering unambiguous praise since its summer release. After collecting a bevy of smaller prizes, her latest has finally brought her Canada’s biggest literary awards: in addition to being shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, Do Not Say We Have Nothing has won both the Governor General’s Award and the Giller Prize this year. Thien is no stranger to success. After being named “most promising Canadian writer under age 30” by the Canadian Authors Association in 2001, her first book,…

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If you peel back the layers of any opera company in Canada, you are likely to find Opera McGill graduates at every level: on the stage, beneath the stage, and behind the stage. Take Opéra de Montréal’s recent production of Don Giovanni, for example. While bass-baritone Gordon Bintner, who played his first Don Giovanni at McGill four years ago, reprised the title role, rising star Jordan De Souza led from the pit. Soprano Emily Dorn (Donna Anna) is an alumna, and the show’s stage director, American David Lefkowich also has connections to the program, having directed The Rake’s Progress at…

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The Museum of Fine Arts commemorates the Hornsteins. Emotions were running high at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA). On November 4, 2016, the solemn inauguration of the Pavilion for Peace took place. The pavilion bears the names of two of the most prominent patrons in MMFA history: Michal and Renata Hornstein. The two passed away just a few months before the event and the beginning of Montreal’s 375th anniversary celebration. They had both prepared speeches for the occasion. “As Holocaust survivors, we want the Michal and Renata Hornstein Pavilion for Peace to be a safe and pleasant space…

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“What is time? … Everything we think, feel, or do reminds us of its existence.” – Lee Smolin, Time Reborn Are love and time comforting illusions or expressions of reality? Infinity, opening at the National Arts Center in Ottawa this February, delves into the depths of love, sex, and mathematics to try and answer the question … or maybe leave us with new ones to ponder. Hannah Moscovitch has quickly established herself as one of Canada’s most celebrated young playwrights. In 2014, she became the first playwright to win a Trillium Book Award for her play This is War, which…

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Jean-Michel Dubé is the youngest in a family of five children, four of whom are pianists. At the age of three, he started studying piano at home with his mother who was herself a pianist. At age seven, he entered the Conservatoire de musique de Québec. In 2015, he was awarded the grand prize at the Concours Hélène-Roberge, which allowed him to record, with the help of Espace XXI and Aramusique, the works of André Mathieu. Mathieu’s complete piano works have never been recorded before, making this disc a world premiere. How did you arrive to André Mathieu’s work? The idea…

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Valérie Milot defines herself as a musician first and a harpist second. At age 31, she is nothing less than the most visible and active ambassador of the harp that Quebec has seen in recent history. She is the soloist-in-residence for Montreal’s Orchestre Métropolitain for the 2016–17 season. Music is important in the Milot family. They even play it together. “My father was a great lover of classical music,” she says. “He played several instruments, including classical guitar. We, his three children, took introductory music classes before we even went to school. It was part of our family life: we…

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Keri-Lynn Wilson: Congratulations to the marvellous La Scena Musicale for the last twenty years of your extraordinary publication. The musical world is extremely enriched by your passionate reporting on arts in Quebec. Thank you for being an indispensable resource for sharing the musical experience outside of the symphony hall, the opera stage, or the jazz club and for inspiring a new public to participate in current events. With La Scena Musicale, the arts have a future! Bravo! Stéphane Tétreault: It is with great pleasure and pride that I support La Scena Musicale. For two decades, La Scena Musicale provides invaluable…

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In honour of our 20th anniversary, we are proud to introduce the seven artists who will perform at our gala on Thursday, November 24. Each artist talked with La Scena Musicale about his or her favourite works, the pieces they will be performing at the gala, the challenges of performing them, the high points of each piece, and which artist they dream of meeting. For more information about the gala click here. David Dias Da Silva – Clarinettist Joly Braga Santos : Aria I Bella Kovacs : Hommage a Manuel de Falla Debussy: First Rhapsody I chose Debussy’s First Rhapsody…

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It’s a chilly fall Friday in Ottawa, but at one particular party, things are heating up. About 600 people are working up a sweat, jumping up and down and throwing their hands in the air, while international A-list DJ Skratch Bastid spins beats. In the background, street artists are covering the walls with huge, technicolour panels, variations on an image of two men kissing. DJ Noah, a popular local radio host known for his orange jumpsuits and zany antics, tosses t-shirts and beanies into the crowd. Guests are scarfing poutine and sliders. The lineup at the bar is a mile…

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COMPANY REVIEW: On Site Opera (New York City); PERFORMANCE REVIEW:  An Evening of Monodramas – La Morte de Cléopâtre by Hector Berlioz; and Miss Havisham’s Wedding by Dominick Argento; The Harmonie Club, 4 East 60th Street, New York, New York (September 29 and 30, 2016; viewed September 30). “Waiter! There’s a diva in my soup!” Actually, there wasn’t any soup – but a double helping of diva was definitely on the menu at Manhattan’s Upper East Side Harmonie Club on the evenings of September 29th and 30th. That’s when On Site Opera, a spry and peripatetic company that has been…

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