Monday, April 8, 2013

Preview: New Music 101

New Music 101

April 8, April 15, April 22, May 6 (all Mondays), from 7:00-8:00pm at Elizabeth Beeton Auditorium, Toronto Reference Library

Now in its third year, the Toronto New Music Alliance is reaching out to the community to show that contemporary classical music (and all its offshoots) is accessible to all. Matching performance with discussion, these sessions serve to give context to the wide variety of sounds that get lumped together under "New Music", examining some of the theoretical and practical underpinnings.

Free to attend and centrally located, these are an excellent starting point for anyone who wants to broaden their musical experience a bit. Plus, you'll get to hear performances from some amazing musicians. The series is hosted by John Terauds, who is arguably the hardest-working music writer in the city right now, lifting the lid on the rich layers of the city's art-music culture at In the past, I've really enjoyed the informal, un-stuffy atmosphere and have found these to be really worth heading out for. This year's series has four instalments, each split between two presenters:

  • April 8 – Arraymusic and Eve Egoyan: The first half will focus on the interface between music and poetry — one of the poets on hand is Paul Dutton (of CCMC and much more) who has probably done more things with his voice than you've done with your imagination. The second half will be presented by Eve Egoyan, one of the city's most accomplished pianists, talking about her artistic practice and most likely previewing something from her forthcoming album release show (April 19 at Glenn Gould Studio) of new Ann Southam works.
  • April 15 – The Music Gallery and New Adventures in Sound Art: Proof that "new music" goes way deeper than new wine in old classical bottles. Perhaps of the most interest to rock-oriented readers here, the Music Gallery's half focuses on video games as a new venue for music composition with Alaska B of Yamantaka//Sonic Titan. NAISA, meanwhile, presents "an improvisation by the laptop trio extramuros that will translate data into sound art."
  • April 22 – The Canadian Electronic Ensemble and New Music Concerts: Another mixture of digital and analogue, NMC presents cellist David Hetherington, "who will perform and discuss solo works by Gilles Tremblay and Luciano Berio."
  • May 6 – Toy Piano Composers and junctQín Keyboard Collective: Two of the freshest and most energetic ensembles on the local new music scene wrap up the series, talking about how they're framing the music to appeal to folks like you and me. These are groups that should be on the radar of any open-minded music enthusiast that wants to get a taste of something new and exciting.

For more info, check out the Facebook event here.

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