23rd Opus Awards Heavenly Heights

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This page is also available in / Cette page est également disponible en: Francais (French)

On Sunday Jan. 19, 2020, Bourgie Hall of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts finds itself between heaven and earth. The Conseil québécois de la musique is ready. Make way for celebrations of a year rich in creation, imagination, emotion, collaboration, for music in vibrant colours.

The preliminary gala

For a third year running, near the entrance, Marc Hervieux conducts live interviews on the CQM Facebook page. The excitement of those involved in local arts is palpable. It doesn’t take long to know a bit of what they are preparing for in 2020. The passion will always outweigh the potential disappointments.

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Opening, intermissions and closing

Impressive opening, a mass in three voices, Les Litanies à la Vierge noire, Notre-Dame de Roc-Amadour by Francis Poulenc, for children’s or women’s choir. Twenty-eight girls from the École Jean-François Perrault, three dancers, the Quatuor Molinari and I Musici de Montréal. The group reassembles for the closing in works by William Byrd. For this final tableau, the host Florence Blain Mbaye joins an orchestra of recorders.

First intermission, at the higher realms where oxygen is vital, nine dancers and the Quatuor Molinari offer a performance of high distinction. The second is a traditional number by Mimeault/Morris, arranged and interpreted by Alexis Chartrand and Nicolas Babineau. The staging is by Alexis Raynault and Hubert Tanguay-Labrosse, co-directors of BOP Ballet-Opéra-Pantomime.

The juries

Ninety-two judges. “All the members of our group, there were eight of us, are composers active in the profession, and we must reach a consensus,” said a juror who participated in the choice of Opus winner accompanied by a $10,000 scholarship offered by the Quebec Council for the Arts and Letters, awarded to the Composer of the Year. “A little over six minutes per concert for our composers here would be great,” suggests Éric Champagne.

Overview of the 2019 Laureates

The Orchestre Métropolitain garnered four Opus awards, two for Bluebeard’s Castle, the Concert of the Year (Montreal), accompanied by a grant of $3,000 from the Conseil des Arts de Montréal; and a second for the Concert of the Year (Classical, romantic, post-romantic, impressionist). A third for the Production of the Year (Young audience), with $5,000 in scholarship funding by Culture and Communications Minister Nathalie Roy, for Airs de jeunesse – Music in the cinema. Finally, Album of the Year (Classical, romantic, postromantic, impressionist) went to Sibelius 1 on the ATMA Classique label. The Opus for Outreach was awarded by CINARS to the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal for its 2019 European tour with an amount of $1,000 and an invitation to the CINARS 2020 biennial.

In conjunction with the Conseil des Arts de Montréal, $3,000 goes to OktoÉcho for Inclusion and Diversity Montreal. The Concert of the Year (Traditional Quebec music) goes to Déversement d’huiles, Les Chauffeurs à pieds, La Grande Rencontre, 14 septembre 2018 with an amount of $1,000 from the Conseil québécois du patrimoine vivant. The Concert of the Year (Musique actuelle and electroacoustic music) goes to Cathédrale-Métal by the Quasar saxophone quartet, June 6, 2019; the same performance won for New Work of the Year with Ode au métal Sonia Paço-Rocchia, Cathédrale-Métal. The Concert of the Year (contemporary music) went to Grand concert 30e anniversaire, Nouvel Ensemble Moderne and the percussion ensemble Sixtrum, Lorraine Vaillancourt, conductor; and the Concert of the Year (multimedia) went to Opéras!, Galileo (formerly Orchestre symphonique de la Vallée-du-Haut-Saint-Laurent), Daniel Constantineau, conductor.

The Orchestre symphonique de Drummondville got the nod for Concert of the Year (Regions) for Prince et Tsar. The Festival d’Opéra de Québec won Concert of the Year (Quebec City) for The Flying Dutchman.

Tributes to women of multiple talents

Monique Dubé, retired general manager of Pro Musica, received the tribute award for her 39 years of service since the founding of the society. Le Vivier’s managing director Pierrette Gingras, serving since August 2010 and a founding member, won for the Diffuseur spécialisé award attributed to Groupe Le Vivier. Claire Guimond of Arion Baroque Orchestra won the Opus for Artistic Director of the Year. The Discovery of the Year is Gentiane MG. Performer of the Year, Ensemble Paramirabo, receives $5000 from the Canada Council for the Arts. The Musical Event of the Year: Rythmopolis, Sixtrum Percussion Ensemble, a flagship event of the Le Vivier’s 10th anniversary celebrations.

The 30 winners can be found on the website of the
Conseil québécois de la musique:
www.cqm.qc.ca

And several capsules on the Facebook page:
www.facebook.com/hashtag/prixopus23

This page is also available in / Cette page est également disponible en: Francais (French)

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