Featuring three new orchestrations by Christopher Mayo
Roy Thomson Hall presents
Orchestrated: A night of music featuring Canada’s best contemporary artists backed by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra.
It started with just Melissa and Luke, somehow making music greater than the sum of their individual virtuosic parts as sampled guitars, low-fi telephone vocals, and looped rhythms were layered and assembled piece by piece before the eyes and ears of their fans to create a fresh sound with deep roots. Then came the band as Whitehorse expanded to a five piece and blew the roof off Massey Hall as documented in their recently released Live At Massey Hall concert film.
Now, Whitehorse make their Roy Thomson Hall debut performing epic arrangements of their music backed by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. With a special solo acoustic opening set by JUNO Award winning songwriter William Prince, whose unforgettable baritone and evocative storytelling produces a special kind of alchemy – special enough to attract the attention of Neil Young who invited William to open for him on tour.
There are concerts, and there are special concerts. This is going to be a very special concert.
The Array Ensemble performs four new works commissioned by Arraymusic written by four of the most exciting composers working in Canada today: Marielle Groven (Montréal), Christopher Mayo (Toronto), Francis Ubertelli (Toronto) and Christina Volpini (Hamilton).
From the playful to the profound, Deep Groove showcases the Standing Wave Ensemble in cutting edge music by six of today’s most forward-thinking composers: Indigenous Instruments by Steven Mackey (lauded by Gramophone for his “explosive and ethereal imagination”); Jared Miller’s Leviathan, evoking the oceanic depths inhabited by humpback whales; Stone’s Throw by VSO Composer-In-Residence Jocelyn Morlock, inspired by Ann Southam’s Glass Houses; Christopher Mayo’s Oh Come Now! There is a Beautiful Place!, an arrangement of Reinhold Glière’s Symphony 3 in B minor; Icelandic composer and electric guitarist Hafdís Bjarnadóttir’s Woodstock Revisited; and the world première of Marcus Goddard’s Pool of Lost Grooves.
Heart and Breath
Richard Reed Parry Music for Heart and Breath
Nicole Lizée Black Midi
Christopher Mayo Beast (for Hugo Ball)
The Riot Ensemble are at the forefront of the contemporary music scene, touring across Europe and regularly featured on BBC broadcasts. They return to Spitalfields Music Festival this year with a programme of work by some of Canada’s most exciting contemporary composers at Trinity Buoy Wharf, London’s only lighthouse.
Richard Reed Parry keys into the most basic of all rhythms, the human heartbeat, for his Music for Heart and Breath. Instrumentalists will be connected to stethoscopes, their heartbeats act as a metronome and their breath the downbeat of a conductor’s baton. As each individual’s body-rhythms are different, so is each performance of Music for Heart and Breath, providing a unique experience for both audience and performers. The programme will also feature Christopher Mayo’s Beast and a UK premiere of Nicole Lizée’s Black Midi.
The Riot Ensemble
Conductor Aaron Holloway-Nahum
Guest performer Richard Reed Parry
New orchestrations for DVSN and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra conducted by Lucas Waldin.
Over the course of two studio albums, including last year’s critically-acclaimed Morning After, and collaborations with other OVO artists, Toronto duo DVSN (singer Daniel Daley and producer Nineteen85) have established themselves as the new torchbearers of Canadian R&B. Inspired by the former’s upbringing singing in gospel choirs, as well as the instrumental elements which inform their most recent material, they’ll debut a cinematic, immersive set at Red Bull Music Festival Toronto featuring an orchestra performed by members of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and a choir. The iconic Roy Thomson Hall will be transformed into something never before realized and set the perfect backdrop for the duo’s sensual soundscapes.
Lament is a sound and video installation that takes its inspiration from a 1969 poem of the same name by renowned Toronto artist bpNichol. Incorporating music, spoken word and video projections, the project illuminates and animates a style of writing known as concrete poetry, which celebrates visual images created by a written text, drawing attention to the shape words create on the page as much as to the meaning of words themselves.
Created collaboratively by video artist Tal Rosner and composer Christopher Mayo, the work is an homage to Nichol that will incorporate the techniques of repetition and abstraction that are at the heart of the poet's intent, both in style of writing and in performance.
Consisting of a basic repeated text that begins with "you are city hall, my people," the video and sound compositions will investigate the inherent themes of the poem: civic politics and the responsibility of each citizen for the actions of their government. The project also realizes Nichol's original ambition for the work, which was to deliver this poem over the loudspeaker system at Toronto City Hall.