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CRITIC'S PICKS | Classical Events You Absolutely Need To See This Week: Aug 2–8

By Michael Vincent on August 2, 2021

Classical music and opera events for the week of August 2–8.
Classical music and opera events for the week of August 2–8.

This is a list of amazing concerts we are attending, wishing we could attend, or thinking about attending between August 2–8, 2021. For more details on what’s happening from our trusted partners, visit our calendar here.

Academy of St Martin in the Fields | Mozart and Ravel with Ryan Wigglesworth & Sophie Bevan

📅 Monday — August 2
📍 LINK
💸 £10

Watch the Academy of St Martin in the Fields from the comfort of your own home. The Chamber Ensemble performs Mendelssohn’s ever-popular Octet (composed when he was just 16!) Sally Beamish’s Partita for string octet, recorded live at St Martin-in-the-Fields. From Friday, July 9 through Saturday, August 7, the internet streaming will be accessible to view at any time — and as many times as you want. | Details

Music Mondays | The Charm of Four Hands

📅 Monday — August 2, 12:05 PM
📍 LINK
💸 PWYC ($10 suggested)

La Fiammata Piano Duo (Linda Ruan and Charissa Vandikas) will be returning to the A440 music streaming platform this afternoon to play Schubert, Reger, and Rachmaninoff. If you are not familiar with La Fiammata, they formed in 2015 in Toronto and are well-worth checking out. This concert is filmed at Holy Trinity Church, from the Eaton Centre, in downtown Toronto. | Details

Toronto Concert Orchestra | Shatter

📅 Tuesday — August 3, 7:00 PM
📍 LINK
💸 Free!

The Toronto Concert Orchestra has been putting on free virtual concerts every other Tuesday. Tonight, you’ll hear works by composers Ian Cusson (with Mezzo-Soprano Rebecca Cuddy) and Alice Ping Yee Ho. As many remember, TCO’s long-time champion Kerry Stratton died in 2019. Tonight, we remember Stratton with a piece written by Samuel Bisson’s in response to Kerry’s fight with ALS, and an exploration of time as precious, as a currency. This is not-to-be-missed for fans of both TCO and Kerry Stratton. | Details

Ottawa Chamberfest | Jens Lindemann and Stewart Goodyear: Rhapsody in Blue

📅 Tuesday — July 27, 2 PM (in-person) and 7 PM (online)
📍Carlton Dominion-Chalmers Centre, Ottawa, Ontario
💸 $22-41

Things are about to get jazzy at Ottawa Chamberfest today. Jens Lindemann and Stewart Goodyear join Brassfire Big Band. Come for the new arrangements of the music of Duke Ellington, Oscar Peterson, Tommy Dorsey, and more, stay for the Canadian premiere of George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue for piano and jazz band. | Details

Humbercrest United Church | Summer Concert Series: J. S. Bach and Three Romantic Friends

📅 Wednesday — August 4, 7:00 PM
📍 LINK
💸 Free!

We’ve been enjoying the streams at Humbercrest United Church north of High Park. Last week was Cello Duo: Marie Gélinas & Edward Hayes, with Mel Hurst, piano and a recital by pianist Anna Perrone. We don’t know much about this concert, to be honest, beyond the promise of Bach and three romantic composers. But if it’s anything like last week, it should be a safe bet. The stream is available on the Humbercrest website following the concert. | Details

Stratford Summer Music | Opening Night: Isabel Bayrakdarian with Gryphon Trio

📅 Thursday — August 5, 7:00 PM
📍 LINK
💸 $60 (in-person) / $20 (online)

Stratford Summer Music opens this week with a hybrid season this year. The festival begins with a bang with thee Isabel Bayrakdarian alongside Canadian music icons Gryphon Trio. Violist Sharon Wei and SSM Artistic Director Mark Fewer will also make an appearance. Music by Johannes Brahms, arrangements by Peter Teifenbach and more. Highly recommended! | Details

The Elora Festival Online | Reflection: Music for Choir and Solo Cello

📅 Thursday — August 5, 7:30 PM
📍 LINK
💸 $15+

It’s time for the Elora Festival to blow music lovers away with their singular charm for the 2021 summer season. Tonight the festival kicks off with The sublime Elora Singers featuring cellist Katie Schlaikjer. The program features a nice mix of a cappella repertoire and pieces for choir and cello. All concerts available until 11:59 p.m. on September 6. | Details

Stratford Summer Music | BEING LOST with Actors and Musicians from the Stratford Festival

📅 Saturday — August 7, 10:00 AM
📍 LINK
💸 $20

From the minds of CBC radio host Tom Allen and CBC music producer Jeff Reilly, Being Lost is a walking tour inspired by John Cage’s 1965 visit to Emma Lake, Saskatchewan. Features Stratford actors Marion Adler and Scott Wentworth. There will be pastries and coffee on site. All proceeds from their sales are being donated back to Stratford Summer Music. | Details

Stratford Summer Music | Music For String Quartet with Tai Chi

📅 Sunday — August 8, 7:00 AM
📍 LINK
💸 $20

There’s something magical about watching the sunrise. In 2019, SSM did an early morning performance of Joseph Haydn’s “Sunrise” Quartet with several dozen yoga practitioners. This year they are another early morning quartet with an extraordinary work written by Canadian composer Murray Schafer explicitly written for strings and Tai Chi practitioners. Musicians include Mark Fewer, Sarah Pratt and Sharon Wei (violins), violin, Cameron Crozman (cello). We head there will be tea, coffee, and fresh croissants and scones on site. | Details

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Michael Vincent
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