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CRITIC'S PICKS | 10 Concerts You Should Absolutely See This Week (Nov. 27 – Dec. 3)

By Joseph So on November 27, 2017

St. Michael’s Choir School (Photo: Brian Stothers)

Ludwig van Toronto’s weekly Critic’s Picks are a fully curated list of some of the best concerts happening now through the end of the week. This is not to say we are the provocateurs of taste, but simply seek to provide a good weekly summary. For a look at the full breadth of what’s available in and around Toronto, check out our curated concert listings here.

Tuesday 28

Voices Relyea | We’re Still Singing. Bloor Street 7:30 p.m. Bloor St. United Church, 3000 Bloor St. W. $30/$20(st/sr) At door and advance purchase at www.VoicesRelyea.com

One of the most prominent of Canadian singing families is lending its collective voice to raise money for cancer research in support of Sick Kids Hospital. Gary, Anne and Deanna Relyea are joined by Quartetto Gelato, Virginia Hatfield, Anne-Marie Ramos, Maria Soulis, Michael York, and many others, in a program of Monteverdi, Mozart, Puccini, plus “Hot Tangos” and “songs old and new.” Howard Dyck conducts, Michael Rose is the pianist. | Details

Music Toronto | Philip Chiu, piano. 8 p.m. St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts, 27 Front St. E. $50/$55/$10(st)

Montreal pianist Philip Chiu makes his Toronto recital debut in a program of Ravel, Rachmaninoff, Schubert and Liszt. Mr. Chiu is the creator and director of the Collaborative Piano Program at the Domaine Forget International Festival and Academy. | Details

Tarragon Theatre | Mr. Shi and His Lover. Tarragon Theatre, 30 Bridgman Avenue.  $55/$49(sr)/$29(st)

Mr. Shi and His Lover is about the delusion of love, based on the story of an affair of a French diplomat in China who falls in love with an opera singer, which had been made into a movie and a Broadway play. Told through music inspired by Chinese opera and vintage pop, it’s performed in Mandarin with English surtitles. It opened on Nov. 15 to good reviews, including one by John Terauds on Ludwig Van.  | Details

Wednesday 29

Tafelmusik | Four Weddings, a Funeral, and a Coronation. Trinity St.Paul’s Centre. 7 p.m. Repeats Nov. 30, Dec. 1, 2, 3. Check website for start time. $19-$102

Elisa Citterio and Ivars Taurins lead the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir in a program of Handel, Purcell, Lully, Pachelbel, and Charpentier. | Details

Thursday 30

Canadian Opera Company | Vocal Series: Long, Long Ago. 12 p.m. Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre, Four Seasons Centre. Free.

Schulich Singers, McGill University’s 24-singer choral ensemble under the direction of Jean-Sébastien Vallée, perform a program of works by Dan Forrest, John Corigliano, Maria Atallah, Blake Henson and others. Be sure to show up early to ensure a seat. | Details

Toronto Symphony Orchestra | Home Alone in Concert. 7:30 p.m. Roy Thomson Hall. $50-$126. Repeats Dec. 1 & 2. Times vary.

Watching movies with a live orchestra, in this case the TSO, has become popular entertainment for the whole family. This time around, its Home Alone, conducted by Constantine Kitsopoulos, joined by the Etobicoke School of the Arts Concert Choir. | Details

Friday 1

Canadian Opera Company | The Magic Victrola. 10:30 – 11:30 a.m.; 1:30 – 2:30 p.m. Imperial Oil Opera Theatre at the Joey and Toby Tanenbaum Opera Theatre. $30/$10 (youth)/Free (under 12) [Repeats Dec. 2–3; start times vary]

Designed for young audiences, The Magic Victrola tells the story of Gracie and Sam discovering an old record player, a Victrola. As they begin to play it, scenes from great operas magically come to life. The show features singers and pianists from the COC Ensemble Studio. Directed by Ashlie Corcoran.  Featuring music by Bizet, Mozart, and Puccini. | Details

Amadeus Choir/Elmer Iseler Singers | Bach: Christmas Oratorio 8 p.m. Metropolitan United Church, 56 Queen St. E. $55/$50/$20

December is Christmas Seasonal Programming month, starting today! Amadeus Choir and Elmer Isler Singers under conductor Lydia Adams present Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, with soprano Monica Whicher, mezzo Marjorie Maltais, tenor Christopher Mayell, and baritone Dion Mazerolle. | Details

Upper Canada Choristers | Christmas Joy. 8 p.m. Grace Church on-the-Hill, 300 Lonsdale Road. $25

The Upper Canada Choristers under the direction of Laurie Evan Fraser presents a seasonal concert featuring Messe de Minuit pour Noel by Marc-Antoine Charpentier, plus works by Kodaly and Forrest.  Please bring an item for the food bank. | Details

Saturday 2

St. Michael’s Choir School | Christmas Concert/Handel’s Messiah (Part 1).  3 p.m. Massey Hall.  Repeats Dec. 3. $20-$80

The annual St. Michael’s Choir School is particularly festive this year as the School celebrates its 80th anniversary. On the program is Messiah Part 1, plus secular and sacred carols to usher in the Christmas season. This is the Choir School’s 52nd consecutive year performing at Massey Hall. | Details

[UPDATE: Nov. 27, 2:45 p.m. We regret that a previous version incorrectly stated the COC’s The Magic Victrola was at The Four Season’s Centre.]

#LUDWIGVAN

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Joseph So

Joseph So

Joseph So is Professor Emeritus at Trent University and Associate Editor of Opera Canada.He is also a long-time contributor to La Scena Musicale and Opera (London, UK). His interest in music journalism focuses on voice, opera as well as symphonic and piano repertoires. He appears regularly as a panel member of the Big COC Podcast.He has co-edited a book, Opera in a Multicultural World: Coloniality, Culture, Performance, published by Routledge (Taylor & Francis Group).
Joseph So
Joseph So

Joseph So

Joseph So is Professor Emeritus at Trent University and Associate Editor of Opera Canada.He is also a long-time contributor to La Scena Musicale and Opera (London, UK). His interest in music journalism focuses on voice, opera as well as symphonic and piano repertoires. He appears regularly as a panel member of the Big COC Podcast.He has co-edited a book, Opera in a Multicultural World: Coloniality, Culture, Performance, published by Routledge (Taylor & Francis Group).
Joseph So
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