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CRITIC'S PICKS | Classical Events You Absolutely Need To See This Week: Aug. 16–22

By Michael Vincent on August 16, 2021

Classical music and opera events for the week of August 16–22, 2021.
Classical music and opera events for the week of August 16–22, 2021.

This is a list of amazing concerts we are attending, wishing we could attend, or thinking about attending between August 16–22, 2021. For more details on what’s happening from our trusted partners, visit our calendar here.

Festival of the Sound | Passing the Baton: The Piano Quintets of Johannes Brahms and Antonín Dvořák

📅 Monday — August 16, 2021, 7:30 p.m.
💸 $22.60

Festival of the Sound continues this week with one of their strongest concerts of the summer, the Penderecki String Quartet and the Rolston String Quartet paired with Alexander Tselyakov on piano. You’ll hear Brahms Piano Quintet in F Op.34 (arguably his best) and Dvořák’s Piano Quintet No.2 in A Op.81 (a true masterpiece). | Details

Stratford Summer Music | Vocal Academy Finale — Opera And Oratorio

📅 Tuesday — August 17, 2021, 4:30 p.m.
💸 $25

If you’re in Stratford this week, we recommend you check out the finale to the Stratford Summer Music’s Vocal Academy tonight with eight voice hopefuls. Emily Hamper is accompanying on piano. Note, this event is NOT online, so you’ll need to be local. | Details

Toronto Concert Orchestra | TCO: Heal

📅 Tuesday — August 17, 2021, 7 p.m.
💸 Free!

English Country Dance instructor Catherine Campbell joins the Toronto Concert Orchestra to perform music from the Jane Austin era, including some of Austen’s favourite music. TCO clarinetist Anthony Thompson also tackles the last piece Mozart ever wrote, his Clarinet Concerto. | Details

Australian Chamber Orchestra | ACO Studiocasts: Tabula Rasa

📅 Wednesday — August 18, 2021, 5 a.m. ET (8 p.m. AEDT)
💸 $35 AUD

This one is a little more reflective than usual, but the program caught our eye. Arvo Pärt’s Tabula Rasa (Latin for a clean slate) remains one of the most haunting and spiritual works ever written. Pair that with Shostakovich’s Chamber Symphony in C minor, and you have the makings of a magical concert by the Australian Chamber Orchestra. LV will be there in the virtual front row. Details

NYO Canada | Michael Measures Prizes Award Ceremony

📅 Wednesday — August 18, 2021, 7 p.m. ET
💸 Free!

The National Youth Orchestra of Canada, in partnership with the Canada Council for the Arts, will present the Michael Measures Prizes award ceremony. The presentation will be hosted by Tom Allen, and include the award announcement by Canada Council for the Arts, interviews, and performances from our 2021 prize winners. Ludwig Van will be on hand for an interview with the winners, so stay tuned! The ceremony will be premiere here: NYO Canada Facebook and YouTube page. | Details

Festival of the Sound | Vivaldi: the Four Seasons

📅 Monday — August 16, 2021, 7:30 p.m.
💸 $22.60

In what has the makings of a great concert, Mark Fewer leads Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons with all-stars Julie Baumgartel (violin), Joel Quarrington (double bass), Borys Medicky (harpsichord), the Penderecki String Quartet, and the Rolston String Quartet, with narration by Alison and Larry Beckwith. Highly recommended. | Details

Elora Festival | Estonian Calendar Songs: Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir

📅 Thursday — August 19, 2021, 7:30 p.m.
💸 $25+

Thursday at the Elora Festival brings one of Baltic’s premiere professional choirs, the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, right here in Canada. They will be performing songs by one of Estonia’s great contemporary choral composers, Veljo Tormis. This looks like a good bet, especially for fans of choral music (who isn’t?) | Details

Soundstreams | Quiet Time

📅 Thursday — August 19, 2021, 9 p.m.
💸 Free!

Toronto-based songwriter and singer Robin Dann’s collaboration with Soundstreams opens online tonight with Quiet Time — an immersive audio-visual experience that includes works by Dann, Allison Cameron and Matthew Pencer. Curious? We were too, so we asked her a few questions about it; read on here. | Details

Stratford Summer Music | Friday Night Live at Revival House — Hilario Duran Trio

📅 Friday — August 20, 2021, 9 p.m. (Online or In-person)
💸 $20

Did you catch The Cuban on Netflix last year with Academy Award-winning actor Louis Gossett Jr.? (If not, do yourself a favour and watch it). Cuban-Canadian pianist Hilario Duran was responsible for the soundtrack. Luckily for you, he is in Stratford, Ontario, tonight to perform some of the best Cuban music on the planet with bassist Roberto Occhipinti and drummer Mark Kelso. This event is both online and in-person, so if you’re around Stratford, run and grab a ticket before it sells out! | Details


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Michael Vincent
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