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CRITIC'S PICKS | 11 Concerts You Absolutely Need To See In Toronto This Week (Feb. 11 – 17)

By Joseph So on February 11, 2019

Critic's Picks- Feb 11 –17, Toronto
Classical music and opera events happening in and around Toronto for the week of February 11 – 17.

Critic’s Picks (Feb. 11- 17)

Ludwig van Toronto’s weekly Critic’s Picks are a curated list of some of the best concerts happening now through the end of the week. For a look at the full breadth of what’s available in and around Toronto, check out our curated concert listings here.

Monday 11

Canadian Opera Company | Vocal Series: The Christina and Louis Quilico Awards. 5:30 p.m. Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre, Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen St. W. Free. Limited Seating.

Artists of the COC Ensemble Studio (Simone McIntosh, Lauren Margison, Samuel Chan, Simona Genga, Joel Allison, Lauren Eberwein, Anna-Sophie Neher) compete in the biennial Christina and Louis Quilico Awards. Each artist will perform an aria of his or her own choosing and a second aria will be selected by the panel of judges (Alexander Neef, Tracy Dahl, Russell Braun). Pianists are Rachael Kerr and Stephane Mayer. | Details (program/PDF)

Tuesday 12

Roy Thomson Hall | Joshua Bell. 8 p.m. Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe St. $39.50-$129.50

Violinist Joshua Bell returns to Toronto to perform a program of Beethoven, Prokofiev, and Grieg, plus additional works to be announced from the stage. Pianist is Sam Haywood. | Details

Canadian Opera Company | Elektra. 7:30 p.m. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen St. W. $35-$350.

This run of Elektra continues to Feb. 22. Directed by James Robinson and conducted by Johannes Debus. Great cast in American soprano Christine Goerke, British soprano Susan Bullock, Canadian soprano Erin Wall, Canadian tenor Michael Schade, and German baritone Wilhelm Schwinghammer. | Details

Wednesday 13

Canadian Opera Company | Cosi fan tutte. 7:30 p.m. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen St. W. $35-$350. Repeats Feb. 15, 17 (2 p.m.)

The COC’s Cosi fan tutte continues this week. The colourful and whimsical Atom Egoyan production is entertaining and has excellent singing.  Kirsten MacKinnon (Fiordiligi), Emily D’Angelo (Dorabella), Ben Bliss (Ferrando), Johannes Kammler (Guglielmo), Tracy Dahl (Despina), and Russell Braun (Alfonso).  Mozart specialist Bernard Labadie at the helm. | Details

Toronto Symphony Orchestra | Barbara Hannigan Sings and Conducts. 8 p.m. Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe St. $40.75-$96.75. (Repeats Feb. 14 with a special pre-show performance of The TSO Chamber Soloists at 6:45 p.m.)

The astonishingly versatile Barbara Hannigan returns to the TSO to conduct music ranging from Haydn to Gershwin, as well as singing a Gershwin medley and Berg’s Lulu Suite and Sibelius Luonnotar.  | Details

Nathaniel Dett Chorale | Voices of Diaspora: Hosea & Friends. 8 p.m. Koerner Hall, 273 Bloor St. W. $50/$46(sr)/$20(st)

The Nathaniel Dett Chorale’s 20th Anniversary Gala Concert and Alumni Reunion features the world premiere of ‘Hosea’ – a unique fusion of jazz, gospel and classical music by Dr. Stephen Newby, 2018-19 Composer-in-Residence. | Details

Thursday 14

Music Toronto | Julliard Quartet with Marc-Andre Hamelin. 8 p.m. Jane Mallett Theatre, St. Lawrence Centre, 27 Front St. E. $53.50-$58.

Few presenters would want to compete head to head with Valentine’s Day, but Music Toronto has a very strong draw in the Julliard Quartet and the great Quebec pianist Marc-Andre Hamelin, in a program of Beethoven, Dvořák, and a newly commissioned work by Lembit Beecher. | Details

Friday 15

Toronto Symphony Orchestra | Casablanca: Film with Live Orchestra 7:30 p.m. Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe St. $42-$112. Repeats Feb. 16.

The TSO’s contribution to Valentine’s Day is playing the music to Casablanca, composed by Max Steiner. A legendary Hollywood movie and enduring love story, a must-see for fans of Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. Evan Mitchell conducts. | Details

Toronto Consort | Love, Remixed. 8 p.m. Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre. $15-$69. Repeats Feb. 16.

The Toronto Consort’s Valentine concert is a program of 20th and 21st-century music written for early instruments and voice — James Rolfe’s Breathe with text by Hildegard of Bingen, and David Fallis’ Eurydice Variations, the story Monteverdi’s Orfeo told from the point of view of Eurydice. Artistic Direction by David Fallis and Katherine Hill. | Details

Saturday 16

Mississauga Living Arts Centre | Toronto Mass Choir with Ben Heppner. 8 p.m. Hammerson Hall, Living Arts Centre, 4141 Living Arts Dr., Mississauga. $40-$95.95 (dinner and show package).

Canadian tenor Ben Heppner joins the Toronto Mass Choir, Canada’s premier gospel choir, in a celebration of traditional and contemporary gospel music. | Details

Sunday 17

Toronto Symphony Orchestra | TSYO Winter Concert 3 p.m. George Weston Recital Hall, 5040 Yonge St. $31.25

RBC Resident Conductor and TSYO Conductor Simon Rivard leads the young musicians in a program of Morawetz’s Carnival Overture, Sibelus Violin Concerto (First Movement, Hannah Corbett violin), and Rachmaninoff Symphony No. 2. | Details

LUDWIG VAN TORONTO

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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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