Browsing: La Scena Online

La Scena Musicale attracted a total of 35 staff, partners, subscribers and artists to its first mixer event on Nov. 11 in Briskets restaurant. Montreal music people met with their peers to chat in a laid-back atmosphere. The evening resulted in positive feedback. We look forward to repeating the experience. Several artists featured in our November issue were at the event, including tenor Frédéric Antoun, who made the cover, baritone Gino Quilico, who was interviewed in this month’s pages, and Stéphane Marceau, a contemporary painter who was profiled in our Visual Arts special. The two featured opera singers, Antoun and…

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*/**/**** Something’s gone awry with Warner’s scheduling when they issue three violin-piano recitals at the same time (except one of them’s actually on cello). Something’s also skewed with the repertoire selection. Vilde Frang, the Norwegian violinist, returns after a hiatus with an album of Paganini and Schubert. Nobody should play Paganini’s opera transcriptions unless they can deliver shock and awe virtuosity. Frang is not that kind of artist. She chose wrong. Moving on, we try the Franck sonata, which was written for violin and piano, played by the cellist Gauthier Capucon. The pianist is the irrepressible Yuja Wang, who’s good…

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Mozart and Tchaikovsky were the advertised attractions at a concert on Nov. 8 by Sinfonia Toronto. Ichmouratov and Kuzmenko – of Montreal and Toronto, respectively – were the composers I went to the Glenn Gould Studio to hear. With pleasure, as it turned out. The world premiere was of Larysa Kuzmenko’s “Skartaris” Duo Concerto, a work for piano, violin and strings derived from a visit by the composer to a volcano in Iceland, the Jules Verne adventure novel A Journey to the Centre of the Earth, and the 1959 movie based on the book, which has a score by Bernard Herrmann,…

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It can be good for an artist to take a break from a big label. The German counter-tenor Andreas Scholl has been recording faithfully for Decca for about a decade without ever giving an impression of calling the shots in his career. Yes, he left lovely tracks of Dowland, Purcell, Bach and Handel, but no more than you’d expect of someone as good as he is in the heart of his Fach and not really breaking new ground. In the past couple of years Scholl has been working with his Israeli wife, the pianist and harpsichordist Tamar Halperin, along with…

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Montreal, QC, Canada, November 7, 2019 – The Azrieli Foundation proudly announces the three winners of their 2020 Azrieli Music Prizes (AMP) – the Azrieli Prize for Jewish Music goes to Yitzhak Yedid, the Azrieli Commission for Jewish Music to Yotam Haber, and the brand new Azrieli Commission for Canadian Music to Keiko Devaux. Established in 2014, the biennial Azrieli Music Prizes offer opportunities for the discovery, creation, performance, and celebration of excellence in music composition. Each of the winning composers receives a total prize package valued at over $200,000 CAD, including a cash award of $50,000 CAD; a world…

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Shostakovich plays Shostakovich Dmitri Shostakovich, Iosif Volovnik, Daniil Shafran, David Oistrakh, Maxim Shostakovich, Miloš Sádlo, Nina Dorliak, Zara Dolukhanova, Aleksei Maslennikov, Mieczysław Weinberg, Alexander Gauk, Samuil Samosud Melodiya MELCD1002596 Five CDs. Total time: 5:42:00 5/5 Most records are disposable. A few are memorable, a small handful are treasurable and every now and then now one comes along that is indelible. This box is something else. I think this is the first time I have ever described a record set as indispensable. The five CDs collect all the Russian state recordings of Dmitri Shostakovich playing his own music. The composer was…

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Sunday, November 24, 2019, at 3pm  New York, NY (November 6, 2019)—The life and career of Jessye Norman will be celebrated on Sunday, November 24, at the Metropolitan Opera House, in a special tribute to the opera star who died in September. Open to the public and invited guests, the 3pm event will feature performances by leading artists, remarks by artistic and civic leaders and Ms. Norman’s siblings, and video highlights of her career. Admission is free, with reserved seats obtainable by calling the Met on 212 362 6000 or visiting the Met box office from 10am on Saturday November…

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Toronto, November 6, 2019 – The National Youth Orchestra of Canada is the recipient of the 2019 Vida Peene Orchestra Award from the Ontario Arts Council (OAC). The $10,000 award will be presented during the first stop of The Frenergy Tour(a collaboration with the European Union Youth Orchestra) at Toronto’s Koerner Hallon Tuesday, November 12, 2019, at 7:30 p.m. About the National Youth Orchestra of Canada The National Youth Orchestra of Canada (NYO Canada) was founded in 1960 by Walter Susskind, a former music director of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Over the past 60 years, it has evolved to become…

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Oct 30, Toronto — Last night, seven incredibly talented young singers selected from a pool of 109 applicants from across the country competed in the Canadian Opera Company’s annual Ensemble Studio Competition. The event was hosted by Ben Heppner. In addition to cash prizes, the finalists were vying for a coveted invitation to join the 2020/21 Ensemble Studio, Canada’s premier training program for young opera professionals. They were accompanied by the COC Orchestra, led by COC Music Director Johannes Debus. Soprano Midori Marsh from Cleveland, Ohio, took home the $5000 First Prize and the Audience Choice Award worth $2000. She…

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Jewish composers write violin concertos first, piano second. All other instruments are also-rans. Credit, then to Raphael Wallfisch for dusting off cello concertos by three Jews – the German-born Israeli Paul Ben-Haim, the Austrian-born film composer Erich Wolfgang Korngold and the Swiss-born American Ernest Bloch. Ben-Haim, in his 1962 cello concerto, performs his usual fusion act of west and east sonorities – though, on this occasion, not with Yemenite and Palestinian roots so much as Ladino-Balkan, and all the more mellifluous for it. The adagio is especially compelling. Bloch’s Symphony for cello and orchestra (1954 and his earlier Baal Shem…

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