The Royal Conservatory Announces Eighth Edition of the 21C Music Festival


The Royal Conservatory proudly announces the eighth edition of the 21C Music Festival, which will include four livestreams from Saturday, January 16 to Thursday, February 18, 2021. It will feature a plethora of Canadian women, as three of the four events will be performed exclusively by women: violinist Angèle Dubeau with her string ensemble La Pietà, whose mission has concentrated on an ongoing quest for virtuosity, aimed at making outstanding music accessible to all audiences while offering new repertoires drawn from a wide variety of musical influences; pianist Eve Egoyan, whose intense focus, command of the instrument, insightful interpretations, and unique programs welcome audiences into unknown territory; and pianist, award winner, and Royal Conservatory alumna Morgan-Paige Melbourne, who brings a her own no-holds-barred approach to contemporary music.

The 21C Music Festival will include 11 world premieres by five Canadian composers (Eve Egoyan, Kathryn  Knowles, Morgan-Paige Melbourne, Corie Rose Soumah, Nauroz Tanya), 1 North American premiere (Pierre Jodlowski), and 1 Ontario premiere (Nicole Lizée).

Mervon Mehta, Executive Director of Performing Arts at The Royal Conservatory, said: “Despite the  curveballs that COVID 19 has thrown us, we will persevere with the 21C Music Festival and its intrepid spirit.  Some of our planned concerts have been postponed to 2022 due to existing quarantines, but we are  energized by the Canadian talent that will comprise this edition of 21C. As ever, we are grateful to Michael  and Sonja Koerner for their steadfast support of newly minted music and to the Ontario Cultural Attractions  Fund for their generous grant that will assist us in getting the music across Canada and around the world.” 

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21C Cinq à Sept: Eve Egoyan 

Originally scheduled for Saturday, January 23, 2021 at 5pm in Temerty Theatre, this livestream will now take place a week earlier on Saturday, January 16, 2021 at 5pm, is moved to Koerner Hall, and will be available online for seven days. 

Eve Egoyan performs the world premieres of Seven Studies for Augmented Piano, which she created for a  newly imagined instrument that delves into the space between what a piano can do and what Eve has always  wished a piano could do. The core of these works is the live acoustic sound of the physical piano she is  playing, but through the delicate intervention of technology, she tests (teases) the edges of the piano’s natural  sound, ultimately pushing it beyond the familiar, through the impossible, and into the extraordinary. 

The livestream also includes the world premiere of a short video directed by Toronto filmmaker Su Rynard:  Études for Augmented Piano takes the audience inside Eve’s world as she creates new works for this  augmented piano. The video playfully reveals how the elusive sounds in her compositions are produced, while  affirming how the listener is essential to Eve’s creative process, even in a time when isolation prevails. 

Angèle Dubeau & La Pietà: Pulsations  

Livestream for ticket holders broadcast from Koerner Hall on Saturday, January 23, 2021 at 8pm, then available online for seven days. 

Angèle Dubeau, and her supergroup La Pietà, present a program titled Pulsations. As Dubeau describes it, “Pulsation marks time, it infuses its rhythm in it, and it also evokes the heart. Just like those composers whose  music calls out to me and who, with their unique signatures, mark time, our time; composers whose music  speaks to me deeply, in which I have found a refuge and a wellspring of goodness.” The program consists of works by Ludovico Einaudi, Steve Reich, Max Richter, Alex Baranowski, Craig Armstrong, Ólafur Arnalds,  Jean-Michel Blais, Armand Amar, and Uno Helmersson.  

Morgan-Paige Melbourne  

Free livestream on Sunday, January 24, 2021 at 1pm from Koerner Hall, then available online for seven days. 

Pianist and Royal Conservatory alumna Morgan-Paige Melbourne performs world premiers of The Mosaic  Portrait by Nauroz Tanya, Phases and Elements by Kathryn Knowles, and her own, still untitled work. The  program also includes Brian Current’s Sungods, Dawn Davi’s Spirit of A Playful Star and Young and Old, and  Nikolai Kapustin’s Prelude and Toccatina from 8 Concert Studies, op. 40. “This program is a reflection of the  impact of change, struggle, growth, and affection that thrives within our daily life. An homage to what it is like  to live in times of unease and uncertainty, this collection of works highlights various points of one’s being and  entity,” explains Melbourne

The Glenn Gould School New Music Ensemble: FLIPBOOK: Music and Images  Friday, January 15, 2021 performance in Temerty Theatre will be replaced by a free public online  presentation on Thursday, February 18, 2021 at 8pm

21C brings The Glenn Gould School New Music Ensemble to the movies. The chamber orchestra performs  outstanding works alongside projected moving images and classic silent films (some images not suitable for  children). Curated by Brian Current, this spectacular show features the North American premiere of Pierre  Jodlowski’s Respire, Martin Matalon’s Las siete vidas de un gato, and a still untitled world premiere by  Canadian composer Corie Rose Soumah. Also on the program is the Ontario premiere of 8-Bit Urbex by  Canadian composer/DJ sensation Nicole Lizée written for the Australian Art Orchestra. In this piece, half of  the musicians are pre-recorded videos synced to the live musicians, which enables the inclusion of players  not physically in Canada. 

Livestream tickets are available online at or by telephone at 416.408.0208. Livestreams will be available online for seven days after the initial broadcast. 



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