Wednesday, April 16, 2014

CHORAL CONCERT, with host Nick Halley Sunday, April 20th, 2014: 9:05 - 10:00 am, (9:35 - 10:30 NT) on CBC Radio 2

Bach’s truly great B Minor Mass – a special 2 hour edition of Choral Concert

For over 2 decades, there has been an Easter tradition on Choral Concert, to play one of the greatest works of western music: J.S. Bach’s B Minor Mass.

This Easter Sunday Nick Halley will carry on that tradition with a special extended 2-hour broadcast of Choral Concert. You will hear a truly great Canadian performance of the piece with the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir, under the direction of Ivars Taurins. Recorded live in February of 2011.

About 200 years ago, a Swiss musician and publisher got a hold of what was then an unknown, unpublished musical score. It turned out to be what many consider to be Bach’s greatest work, his B minor mass.  This is kind of like stumbling upon the complete works of Shakespeare; unpublished; rotting away in your attic…or the Mona Lisa, dangling behind your fridge door…

Hans Georg Nägeli was the publisher's name and he went on to champion the work, calling it “the greatest musical work of art of all times and nations”. Whether he was just trying to sell more copies or really believed what he wrote—it doesn't matter—there are many people the world over who agree with him completely.

The B minor mass, this Sunday on Choral Concert, with the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir, under the direction of Ivars Taurins. From St Paul’s Church, Toronto.

Auditions: Vancouver Chamber Choir—May 3, 2014

The Vancouver Chamber Choir is holding auditions for professional-level singers. All voices (SATB) are invited.

The Vancouver Chamber Choir is a fully professional choir of 20 experienced, well-trained singers.
The key activities of the Choir include a subscription series that is unique in Vancouver, extensive touring in Canada and abroad, broadcasting live concerts, recording, commissioning and premiering new choral compositions, and presenting four to five educational programs throughout each season.
The Choir demands a major commitment of time and needs to be the singers' top priority.

The Vancouver Chamber Choir usually rehearses on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday mornings.
A list of substitute singers is maintained; these people may also be used to augment the Choir
if a larger group is needed.

An audition lasts approximately one half hour and singers will be required to sing three or four pieces in different styles and languages. There will also be an interview with Jon Washburn. A formal résumé is required. Singers are expected to provide their own accompanist for the audition. 

Contact Lucy for an appointment at

Monday, April 14, 2014

Join Toronto Mendelssohn Choir for the last Singsation of the season on April 26th

Join conductor David Ambrose for a lively Pops  Singsation. David will take us through some Offenbach and Gilbert and Sullivan operetta music, music theatre works by Porter, Rodgers and Hammerstein and Sondheim, plus choral arrangements of pop tunes. Our morning sing will take us from Tradition from Fiddler on the Roof, to Bernstein's Make Our Garden Grow and the King's Singers lovely arrangement of Billy Joel's And So It Goes.  Have a listen to a YouTube playlist I created of these works. 

David Ambrose is an accomplished musician and conductor. He is artistic director of the Mississauga Festival Choir and other Toronto ensembles.

Admission to Singsation is $10 which includes refreshments.  (Admission is Free for TMC alumni and TMC donors at the Friends level.)

Bring your voice; we provide the music.

Saturday, April 26 from 10:30 am to 1 pm
Yorkminster Park Baptist Church, Cameron Hall
1585 Yonge St., 1 block north of St. Clair

Music Monday 10th Anniversary May 5, 2014

Register with Music Monday’s 10th Anniversary program before April 15th for a chance to win a Skype chat with Col. Chris Hadfield, and an opportunity to be part of the live webcast. For more information about Music Monday and to register an event, please visit the website

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

World Youth Choir 2014 Session Canceled

We regret to inform you that the 2014 summer session of the World Youth Choir has been cancelled due to unforeseen, last moment financial difficulties that were unable to be resolved despite every effort by the organizing partners.  The patron organizations, including Jeunesses Musicales International (JMI), the European Choral Association - Europa Cantat (ECA- EC) and the International Federation for Choral Music (IFCM), wish to thank all recruitment partners, selected conductors, all 2014 applicants and current World Youth Choir singers, for their efforts and understanding and apologize for this inconvenience.

The World Youth Choir will continue its mission of “being a truly educational and social experience in different vocal traditions on the highest artistic level while building bridges between young singers from diverse cultures!“

In the coming months, the World Youth Choir Foundation will provide comprehensive updates about further steps that will safeguard the continuation of the World Youth Choir.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

CHORAL CONCERT, with host Nick Halley Sunday, April 6th, 2014: 9:05 - 10:00 am, (9:35 - 10:30 NT) on CBC Radio 2

Choral Concert celebrates spring with a month of Bach

On this Sunday's choral concert Nick Halley opens up the show with one of the greatest Bach hits of all time.

If you’re one of the many people that have entertained the fantasy of writing a hit song and getting famous, or making millions, or better yet getting both of those things together—you should take a page from Bach's book and know about the risks involved. Because even if you were hugely successful, your problems are not over. 

Bach's "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring"  is hugely popular now, but Bach really lost out on the payoff with this hit. First of all, it really wasn’t big until 200 years after his death so in his lifetime he had no idea how popular this piece would become, and secondly—this is likely the most “covered” tune of all time. From the Beach Boys to the Mormon Tabernacle choir, to the Brian Setzer orchestra, to a Japanese TV commercial for a cell phone it has been served up in almost every possible form and style over the past 50 years.

Who knows how Johann Sebastian Bach would have felt about this kind of success? In the end perhaps it doesn't really matter—he is still thought by many to be the greatest composer of all time in the western classical music tradition. So in honour of his incredible output, and because his music is used in many ring tones by every cell phone company across the world—the month of April is all Bach on Choral Concert

Yes, in honour of the great man himself you will hear nothing but the music of J.S. Bach from now to until April 27th on Choral Concert.

April has been Bach month on Choral Concert for a few years now, and for as long as any of us can remember we have celebrated Easter on the show with a performance of his B Minor Mass, and you can look forward to hearing that on Easter Sunday April 20th this year.

So get ready for a month of incredible music.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Distinguished Service Award 2014 Presented to John Barron

ACCC is pleased to announce that John Barron has been awarded the 2014 Distinguished Service Award. This national award is given in recognition of significant, transformative, long-term service to choral music in Canada. It is reserved for only the most highly respected choral leaders in our country who are considered exemplary by their colleagues, having made a profoundly positive impact on the Canadian choral landscape. John’s vision, influence, and leadership have ensured a rich and sustained musical future for thousands of young Canadian singers. His work with Amabile Choirs, Ontario Youth Choirs, London Pro Musica, Middlesex Country Board of Education, Western Ontario Kodály Society, and numerous other choirs and choral organizations over a 45-year career is truly outstanding. ACCC is delighted to thank and honour an extraordinary conductor, teacher, music consultant, composer, author, editor, arranger, and administrator. Congratulations, John!

The 2014 Distinguished Service Award was presented to John at his home in Toronto on March 27, 2014, by Marta McCarthy (President-Elect) and Elizabeth Shannon (Executive Director, Choirs Ontario). Other ACCC choral awards will be announced and presented at Podium on May 18, 2014.

Congratulations can be sent to John at: 7 Poplar Heights Drive, Toronto, ON M9A 5A1 or

Prix pour service distingué 2014 remis a John Barron

L'ACCC a le plaisir d'annoncer que le Prix pour service distingué 2014 a été remis à John Barron. Ce prix national est offert en reconnaissance d'un service de longue durée, exceptionnel et transformatif à la musique chorale au Canada. Il est réservé aux acteurs du monde choral les plus respectés de notre pays, estimés comme exemplaires par leurs collègues, dont l'impact sur le paysage choral canadien est profondément positif.  La vision, l'influence et l'engagement de John ont fait en sorte que des milliers de jeunes chanteurs canadiens jouissent d'un avenir soutenu et enrichi. Ses efforts auprès d'Amabile Choirs, l'Ontario Youth Choirs, Le London Pro Musica, le Middlesex County Board of Education, la Western Ontario Kodaly Society et de plusieurs autres chorales et organismes reliés à l'art choral au cours d'une carrière de 45 ans sont vraiment éminents.  L'ACCC est donc ravie de pouvoir remercier et honorer de cette manière un chef de chœur, enseignant, consultant, compositeur, auteur, rédacteur, arrangeur et administrateur extraordinaire. Nous tenons à féliciter John.

Le Prix pour service distingué 2014 a été remis à John chez lui le 27 mars 2014 par Marta McCarthy (présidente élue) et Elizabeth Shannon (directrice générale, Choirs Ontario).  D'autres prix seront discernés lors de Podium 2014 le 18 mai prochain.

Vous pouvez envoyer vos félicitations à John à l'adresse suivante:
7 Poplar Heights Drive, Toronto, ON M9A 5A1 ou à

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Tenor Charles Sy, soprano Cécile Muhire, and mezzo-soprano Caroline Gélinas take home top honours in the 2014 round of the Ottawa Choral Society's New Discoveries Auditions for Emerging Artists

The Ottawa Choral Society’s New Discoveries Auditions for Emerging Artists, held in early March in Toronto and Montreal, attracted a roster of 80 talented young artists from across Canada who are on the threshold of exciting careers. Competing for career development cash awards, professional engagements, and a spot on a gala showcase recital, the competition was intense for a position at the top.

The biennial auditions are an initiative developed in the early 1990’s by the Ottawa Choral Society to support emerging artists and introduce exciting new talents to Ottawa audiences. To be eligible, candidates must be 33 years of age or under, and Canadian citizens or permanent residents. The young artists typically hold advanced music degrees and are interns or graduates of opera training programs where they have received coaching from eminent voice teachers and directors.

We are proud to introduce the 2014 Grand Prize Winners of the Ottawa Choral Society New Discoveries Auditions for Emerging Artists

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Unisong Festival Welcomes Mark Sirett as Guest Conductor for 2015

Unisong, the intergenerational festival that celebrates Canada Day and choral singing by bringing together choirs from across the country to be part of the official festivities at the National Arts Centre and on Parliament Hill, is pleased to welcome Mark Sirett as guest conductor for Unisong 2015. Applications for Unisong 2015 are being accepted now. Apply early to reserve your space.

There may still be a few spaces left for Unisong 2014 with guest conductor Kellie Walsh so please visit Unisong or contact for more information on both.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Support National Youth Choir 2014

The 2014 National Youth Choir, consisting of singers from every province in Canada, will gather in Nova Scotia for a week-long residency this May with guest conductor Hilary Apfelstadt, Director of Choral Programs at the University of Toronto, before embarking on a tour of the Maritime Provinces culminating in a gala final performance at Podium 2014 in Halifax.

The budget for this major project runs in excess of $83,000 and covers professional fees for the conductor and accompanist, a new work by Canadian composer, Peter Togni, commissioned especially for NYC 2014 and music, travel and accommodation for 40+ singers and up to 5 staff every day for two weeks.

The NYC Committee and ACCC administration are continuing to work diligently to secure funding for this vital programme, and although there have been some positive results, cutbacks to the arts and non-profit sectors are increasing as government on all levels pare back funding in these areas. This is why we are reaching out to our national choral community, to those people who most recognize and appreciate the value of the National Youth Choir program.

For $85 you can send one singer to the Podium Gala Banquet. A gift of $100 will cover the cost of one night's accommodation and meals for one singer. Or, join our "Adopt a Singer" programme and sponsor one singer for $500! Each and every donation, in any amount, will be sincerely appreciated.

Click on Canada Helps to make a secure and immediate contribution. You will receive a charitable Income Tax receipt via e-mail directly from Canada Helps and your donation will be gratefully acknowledged in the NYC programme.

If you prefer you may make a cheque payable to the Canadian Choral Foundation, designate it for NYC and mail to:
A-1422 Bayview Avenue
Toronto, ON
M4G 3A7

Thank you in advance for your generous support for the 2014 NYC!

Soutenez le Chœur national des jeunes 2014

Le Chœur national des jeunes dont les membres proviennent de tous les provinces du Canada se réunira en Nouvelle-Ecosse pendant une semaine sous la direction de leur chef de chœur invité Hilary Apfelstadt, directrice des programmes de musique chorale de l'Université of Toronto, avant de faire une tournée dans les Provinces Maritimes, culminant avec le concert de gala à Podium 2014 à Halifax.

Le budget prévu pour ce projet, dépassant les 83,000$, comprend les frais professionnels pour le chef de chœur et l'accompagnateur, les coûts liés à la composition d'une nouvelle œuvre canadienne par Peter Togni, commandée exprès pour le CNJ 2014, ainsi que les frais réservés aux partitions, au voyage et à l'hébergement des quelques quarante choristes et jusqu'à cinq membres du personnel pendant deux semaines.

Le comité responsable du CNJ et le conseil d'administration de l'ACCC continuent à travailler avec diligence pour trouver du financement pour ce programme hautement important, cependant, malgré quelques résultats plutôt positifs, il faut avouer que les compressions faites par le gouvernement touchant les arts et le secteur bénévole et communautaire ne cessent d'augmenter. C'est la raison pour laquelle nous lançons cet appel d'aide auprès de la communauté chorale, auprès de ceux et celles qui reconnaissent et qui apprécient l'importance du programme du Chœur national des jeunes. 

Un don de 85$ permettrait à un choriste d'assister au banquet de clôture de Podium alors qu'un don de 100$ couvrirait les repas et une nuit d'hébergement pour un choriste. Une adhésion à notre programme 'Adopter un choriste' au coût de 500$ vous permettrait de parrainer un choriste. Tout don, de quelque quantité que ce soit, sera vivement apprécié.

Pour faire un don veuillez cliquez sur Canada Helps, un site sécurisé. Canada Helps vous enverra par courriel un reçu aux fins d'impôt et votre don sera reconnu dans le programme du CNJ.

Si vous préférez faire un chèque payable à l'ordre de la Fondation canadienne de musique chorale,  veuillez l'adresser à:
A-1422 Bayview Avenue
Toronto, ON
M4G 3A7

Nous vous remercions d'avance pour tout soutien financier au CNJ 2014!