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Ludwig Van
Toronto Montreal

Toronto classical concert picks for November 25 to December 1, 2013

By John Terauds on November 25, 2013

Alison Balsom joins the Toronto Symphony Orchestra on Wednesday and Thursday.
British tumpeter Alison Balsom joins the Toronto Symphony Orchestra on Wednesday and Thursday.

TUESDAY

  • Pianist Eve Egoyan for Music Toronto at the Jane Mallett Theatre, 8 p.m.

This serious, intellectually and musically curious artist doesn’t present solo recitals in her hometown unless she has something to say.

John Terauds

John Terauds

John Terauds, the founder of Musical Toronto, is currently a Divinity student at University of Toronto and a church music director. He joined the Toronto Star in 1988, was the classical music critic from 2005 to 2012, and continues as a freelance critic for the paper. He is the co-author of Roy Thomson Hall: A Portrait, a book written with Toronto Star Colleague, William Littler.
John Terauds

Egoyan’s focus these days is on contemporary composers James Tenney, Piers Hellawell, Linda C. Smith and Michael Finnissy. Concert details here.

WEDNESDAY & THURSDAY

  • Trumpeter Alison Balsom and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra at Roy Thomson Hall, 8 p.m. Wed., 2 p.m. Thu.

One of the finest classical trumpeters of our time plays the virtuoso 1803 Trumpet Concerto by Mozart student and onetime child prodigy Johann Nepomuk Hummel, while the Toronto Symphony tackles Gustav Mahler’s “Titanic” Symphony No. 1 in the company of one of Britain’s hottest younger conductors, Edward Gardner, who is making his Toronto début this week. Concert details here.

THURSDAY

  • Percussionist Beverley Johnson and violinist Marc Djokic at Walter Hall, 12:10 p.m. Free.

This promises to be a powerhouse musical pairing as well as a fascinating programme that includes Arvo Pärt’s moden classic, Spiegel im Spiegel, as well as Hammer and Bow, A Fantasy for Violin & Marimba, a made-to-measure piece (written for former Toronto Symphony concertmaster Jacques Israelievitch and his percussionist son Michael) by Toronto composer Michael Colgrass. Concert details here.

FRIDAY

Toronto’s fascinating indie band of art and folk instrumentalists launches its new CD, Definitely Not the Nutcracker, in the hip precincts of Queen St W. and Dovercourt Rd. Bring a smile, not a tutu.

SATURDAY

  • Scaramella at Victoria College Chapel, 91 Charles St W., 8 p.m.

Artistic director Joëlle Morton has come up with a cheeky programme of late-Renaissance/early-Baroque chamber treats in the first of three intimate concerts in their second-floor hideaway on the Victoria College campus at U of T. The bass viol player is joined by period instrumentalists Paul Zevenhuizen on violin, recorder player Avery MacLean and Christopher Dawes at a portatif organ. Concert details here.

SATURDAY & SUNDAY

  • Pax Christi Chorale at Grace Church-on-the-Hill, 300 Lonsdale Rd., 7:30 p.m. Sat., 3 p.m. Sun.

Christmas-themed concerts by every professional and community ensemble have started in earnest — but it’s a safe bet that no one else in or around Toronto is about to let us hear The Mystery of Bethlehem by Healey Willan. Also on the programme is the wonderful In Terra Pax by Gerald Finzi, as well as two pieces by Pax Christi artistic director and conductor Stephanie Martin. Having soprano Shannon Mercer as one of the soloists makes these concerts practically irresistible. Details here.

SUNDAY

  • Igor Stravinsky’s L’Historie du soldat at Kingston Rd United Church, 975 Kingston Rd, 1:30 p.m.

The concert series at this northern Beach neighbourhood church has a Toronto Symphony connection, which translates into a talented as well as accomplished gang to tackle Stravinsky’s fable in words and music. Details here.

  • Violinist Lara St John and guests with Amici Chamber Ensemble at Mazolleni Hall, 3 p.m.

There will be some high-powered musical talents on stage in this intimate space for a dynamic Amici programme that ranges from J.S. Bach to Toru Takemitsu, and Maurice Ravel to Serouj Kradjian. You’ll find all the details here.

John Terauds

 

John Terauds

John Terauds

John Terauds, the founder of Musical Toronto, is currently a Divinity student at University of Toronto and a church music director. He joined the Toronto Star in 1988, was the classical music critic from 2005 to 2012, and continues as a freelance critic for the paper. He is the co-author of Roy Thomson Hall: A Portrait, a book written with Toronto Star Colleague, William Littler.
John Terauds
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