Browsing: Violin

As a child, Benjamin Seah cut out pictures of violins and bows and played a paper violin while listening to Vivaldi. Ten years later, he made music his life and swapped the paper instrument for a real one made in 1913 by French luthier Gustave Villaume, which possessed a full and rich sonority. At just 14, he was astonishing audiences by his musicality and love for the violin. Recently he earned the title “Virtuose” in the Radio-Canada’s television show hosted by Grégory Charles. Seah is now studying at the Pensionnat du Saint-Nom-de-Marie in partnership with the Vincent-d’Indy school of music.…

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Every year Brandon University in Manitoba hosts the Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition. Named in honour of composer, pianist and violinist S.C. (Sonia) Eckhardt-Gramatté, the competition founded in 1976 focuses on contemporary music and up-and-coming musicians. The winner receives a $8,000 cash prize, a performance tour across Canada and a three-week residency at the Casalmaggiore International Music Festival. This year’s winner is Saskatchewan’s Amy Hillis. “I first heard about the Eckhardt-Gramatté Competition as an undergraduate when many of the older, more accomplished students from McGill were finalists in the competition,” Hillis recalls. “Carissa Klopoushak – an inspiration to this day for…

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Aged just 21, violinist Lynette Israilian won first prize in the Canimex Canadian Music Competition in June, giving her the privilege of playing with the Orchestre Métropolitain and guest conductor Nicolas Ellis. The young musician with the infectious smile and determined look plays a 2015 Jacques Martel instrument and is just starting the last year of a degree course at the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal with her teacher for the last seven years, Johanne Arel. “My aim is to become a soloist, so I can decide what I want to play,” she says. Nonetheless, she likes chamber music, with…

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Cremona 18 July 2018 – The names of the winners of the 2018 Cremona Musica Awards represent the true excellence in music: the conductor Valery Gergiev, the violinist Maxim Vengerov, the writer Alessandro Baricco, the guitar luthier Hermann Hauser III and the Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival will be awarded this September. The awards, that are conferred by the management of CremonaFiere on the recommendation of the artistic advisors of Cremona Musica, will be given during the upcoming edition of the historical exhibition of musical instruments, the main one in the world for high-quality instruments. Between 28 and 30 September, Cremona…

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INTERVIEW: with renowned composer John Rutter. Mark it a red-letter day in the Canadian classical music calendar: on Friday the 13th of July, John Rutter – among the world’s most beloved and widely performed living composers – arrives in Ottawa. “I feel very much at home in Canada,” Rutter says from his home in Great Britain. “I was quite a regular visitor in past years, when I was patron of the Toronto Mendelsohn Youth Choir. But this will be my first trip to Ottawa, and I’m very much looking forward to it.” It’s a journey occasioned by the two back-to-back…

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June 21, 2018, Montreal, QC – The McGill Chamber Orchestra (MCO) and Artistic Director Boris Brott are pleased to welcome Marc Djokic as the orchestra’s new concertmaster. Praised by La Presse for his “rhythmic sense and natural phrasing,” Marc Djokic is winner of the prestigious 2017-2018 Mécénat Musica Prix Goyer. A native of Halifax, Djokic is known for his powerful and virtuosic performances, as well as an engaging and down-to-earth approach that has made him an audience favourite across the country and beyond. “I’ve long been an admirer of Marc Djokic’s solo career and his expertise in chamber music,” comments…

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Averse as I am to teenage prodigies, I heard Daniel Lozakovich in a Berlin nightclub this week and had no doubt from the first touch of bow on string that he is the genuine article. Sixteen years old, raised in Stockholm by Kazak-Russian parents, he gives the impression of belonging nowhere but some deep place inside himself. Fresh from a sleepless night on a bench in Tokyo airport where his flight had been cancelled, he draws energy – as the great ones do – from an audience. No-one breathed on the dance-floor during his Bach Partita. His DG debut recording…

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Deux (Alpha-Classics) I can’t remember when I last heard a violin-piano recital that was as ingenious and exhilarating as this. On the sleeve, the Franco-Hungarian programme looks a bit odd – the Poulenc sonata written for Ginette Neveu in 1943, a Dohnanyi setting of a waltz from Delibes’ Coppélia, the full-on Bartok sonata of 1922 and Ravel’s Tzigane to close. What do these pieces have in common? Check this: On April 8, 1922, Bela Bartok gave a recital in Paris with his compatriot Jelly d’Aranyi. Ravel was the page turner for Bartok and Poulenc for d’Aranyi. In the audience were…

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Haydn: Symphonies No. 26 & 86 Mozart: Violin Concerto No. 3 Coro Harry Christophers, conductor Handel and Haydn Society Aisslinn Nosky, violin The British conductor Harry Christophers has his own record label, Coro, which turns out a stream of fine performances, mostly with his own group The Sixteen, and mostly unnoticed outside the shrinking pages of record magazines. Which is a pity, since some of them are very fine performances indeed. The latest release is with Christophers’ other group, the venerable Handel and Haydn Society of Boston, America’s oldest performing arts organization. It presents two Haydn works written 20 years…

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Canadian violinist Alexandre Da Costa is a man on a mission. Soloist, educator and artistic director, Da Costa is shouldering his new Strad to reach the general public with his “Stradivarius at the Opera” project, the first of several new initiatives. He’s already added to his résumé a prestigious TED Talk in Australia, where he teaches six months of the year. LSM: What do you value the most? My family is now the absolute centre of my life. Of course, becoming a father changes life and my three-and-a-half-year old makes me realize the essence of it. I also believe that…

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