Who: Featuring musicians of the Toronto Symphony, the Canadian Opera Company orchestras and the Mississauga Festival Chamber Choir
What: J.S. Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, Weihnachtsoratorium BWV 248
Where: Runnymede United Church, 432 Runnymede Road, Toronto / (416) 767-6729
When: Friday November 28, 2014, 7:00 pm
Tickets: $50 adv. / $60 door / students $25 available at the door and online www.torontobachconsort.com
Toronto’s Bach Consort proudly presents J.S. Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, Weihnachtsoratorium BWV 248, as part of their “Giving Bach to the Community” initiative. Conductor Johannes Debus and chorus master David Ambrose join the consort on Friday, November 28, 7:00 pm, at the Runnymede United Church, 432 Runnymede Road in Toronto. Featured is a roster of some of Canada’s most accomplished classical instrumentalists and highly admired vocal soloists such as Monica Whicher, Allyson McHardy, Lawrence Wiliford, Colin Ainsworth and Russell Braun. All performers are volunteering their time and talents and concert proceeds will be shared between the Toronto Symphony Volunteer Committee Education Program and Open Table Community Meal at Runnymede United Church. For more info please visit www.torontobachconsort.com
Founded in 1992 by bassist Timothy Dawson, soprano Monica Whicher and baritone Gordon McLeod, the Bach Consort performs the music of Johann Sebastian Bach. For the past twenty years the group has performed music from Bach’s 200-plus cantatas as well as the larger works like the St. John Passion, the St. Matthew Passion and the B Minor Mass. The group is comprised of some of Canada’s finest instrumentalists and singers who gather in Toronto with the central philosophy of making a charitable contribution with their music, hence the title “Giving Bach to the Community.” Noted conductors such as Bernard Labadie, Ivars Taurins, Nicholas McGegan, Dame Jane Glover, Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Harry Bicket have worked with the group. Musicians and conductors alike have all donated their time and talent.
This upcoming performance marks what the consort hopes will be an annual performance of the Christmas Oratorio, and brings together fine freelance musicians, members of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra, and internationally renowned soloists. Maestro Johannes Debus, (music director of the Canadian Opera Company), will lead the consort. Growing up in Germany, he sang this work as a chorister many times, and now applies his experience and inspiration to conducting this massive work.
“Unlike the moody Messiah (whose final third is based on the Anglican burial service), the Christmas Oratorio is completely about Christmas. It is also a sprawling work, comprised of six cantatas meant to be performed from Christmas to Epiphany. The whole runs some two-and-a-half hours, significantly longer than Messiah, and yet it spotlights the German composer at his best, with intimate arias, colorful instrumental pieces and uplifting choruses.” ~ WQXR New York.