Browsing: Choral

Les Petits Chanteurs du Mont-Royal are one of Quebec’s most treasured cultural institutions. Having represented Quebec worldwide for over six decades, this boys’ choir was dealt a hard blow last March, when the Commission scolaire de Montréal announced the termination of a long-standing agreement enabling 200 youths aged 8 to 17 to pursue their education at Collège Notre-Dame. In Europe, boy choirs are an established tradition. In Quebec, Father Léandre Brault created Les Petits Chanteurs in 1956 on the belief that the teaching of music to the young would be for their greater benefit. The choir’s makeup now is more…

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Toronto, ON June 15, 2019​ – A treasured Canadian choral tradition, the celebrated ​National Competition for Canadian Amateur Choirs ​inspires choirs to strive for excellence, provides visibility for amateur choirs of all types and traditions, and encourages the creation and performance of Canadian works. The Competition, presented by Choral Canada in collaboration with the ​Canada Council for the Arts​, and with support from ​CBC Music​, ​Centre d’excellence artistique de l’Ontario​ and ​UNISONG​ is open to all Canadian amateur choirs and attracts diverse participants from coast to coast. Please note that finalists are listed in alphabetical order. The ​2019 Finalists​ are​:…

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Montreal, May 16, 2019 – On June 7, Voies culturelles des faubourgs will present the very first edition of a great citizen concert, Le Grand Choeur du Centre-Sud. This unifying event will begin outside at Espace Pierre-Bourgault (corner of Plessis and Ontario) and will end with a grand concert at Sacré-Coeur Church. This great collective work, directed by André Pappathomas, composer, musician and winner of the 2017 artist award in the community, will bring together a hundred choristers from the Centre-Sud community. The choir will be accompanied by soloists, musicians and the great organ of the Sacré-Coeur Church. An inclusive…

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The Société philharmonique du nouveau monde performed Gioacchino Rossini’s Petite messe solennelle on April 27. While the Société chose the original version scored for two pianos and harmonium, the vocal parts in this production were sung entirely by the 150 choristers (instead of four soloists and eight choristers). The pianos were played by Danielle Maisonneuve and Jenna Richards, and the harmonium by Mélanie Barney. Michel Brousseau conducted from memory, which is not surprising given his leadership of the choristers’ rigorous rehearsal series. The chorus was evidently very well-prepared and well-responsive to Brousseau’s direction. In the heart of the Plateau-Mont-Royal borough…

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Hard to fault the Mahler Third Symphony heard Saturday night (April 13, 2019) in Salle Claude-Champagne. Very hard, if the criteria are performing standards and the grasp of the score shown by Jean-François Rivest, founding artistic director and principal conductor of the Orchestre de l’Université de Montréal. It should be noted, however, that the 100-plus players on stage included a high proportion of professors and alumni, including veterans we see often enough in professional situations. Only three of the eight double bassists, to judge by the printed program, were students. The first timpani part was undertaken by none other than…

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Last February, the Opus Tribute Award from the Conseil québécois de la musique (CQM) went to Gilbert Patenaude in recognition of a long career. He is known for his commitment to choral singing, particularly as the director, for 38 years, of Les Petits Chanteurs du Mont-Royal. It is with dedication and rigour that he has taken on a demanding pedagogical and musical load that includes, in addition to teaching, more than 80 annual performances, religious services and other events. His achievements with young singers include no fewer than 23 international tours and a dozen recordings. He has trained more than…

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On Saturday November 17, the St. Lawrence Choir performed its Slava! programme at the St Sophie Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral. The programme featured the premiere of two works. Alelouya 2 by Armenian-born Petros Shoujouian, currently of Montreal, and Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal by Larysa Kuzmenko, a Toronto-based composer, pianist and Juno nominee. What you missed The St Lawrence Choir’s mixed voice ensemble under the direction of Phillipe Bourque could not have chosen a more fitting venue for their performance of their programme Slava!, which means “glory” in Ukrainian. The space itself did honour to the multitude of tonalities of…

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This past weekend (Friday, Nov. 9 to Sunday, Nov. 11), I attended four vocal music performances (three operas and one oratorio) which shows that Montreal is a vibrant city for voice lovers. Friday: Opera McGill presented a hilarious Albert Herring by Benjamin Britten. Sadly, this comic opera is not produced enough nowadays. This score is worth discovering. The highlight was the simple yet very effective stage directing by Patrick Hansen. The second cast was generally good. Unlike some previous Opera McGill productions, there were no surtitles and many of the jokes were lost as many of the words were not…

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Last Saturday, November 10, Mundia Productions presented Mozart’s Requiem and the Piano Concerto #20 in d minor k.466 performed by the Orchestre philharmonique du Nouveau Monde conducted by Michel Brousseau, along with the participation of the Société philharmonique du Nouveau Monde choir and guest pianist Vasyl Kotys. What you missed If we were able to travel 1000 years forward, my guess is that Mozart’s Requiem would still be performed somewhere in a distant galaxy. This work is a masterpiece that is worth attending anytime we have the chance. The highlight was the performance from Société philarmonique du Nouveau Monde choir.…

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REVIEW: of works by composers David Lang and Gregg Kallor – The Mile-Long Opera by Lang, performed on the High Line; and sketches from The Frankenstein Suite, plus the monodrama “The Telltale Heart,” by Kallor, performed in the Catacombs of Brooklyn’s Green-Wood Cemetery. Some uncanny musical surprises graced unusual locations both above and below New York City street-level during the early part of Halloween month. Here’s a diary retrospective. Going the Extra Mile Beginning at twilight on six consecutive evenings (October 3 through 8; viewed October 7), Pulitzer-Prize-winning composer David Lang and a host of collaborators presented a unique choral…

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