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December Concerts Announced At The Royal Conservatory Of Music

21C Music Festival commences with a Kronos Quartet residency and with very special guest Tanya Tagaq.

December Concerts Announced At The Royal Conservatory Of Music

21C Music Festival commences with A Thousand Thoughts, a live documentary with the Kronos Quartet, written and directed by Sam Green and Joe Bini on December 6 in Koerner Hall.

This multimedia performance piece blends live music by Kronos and narration as well as archival footage and filmed interviews with artists like Philip Glass, Tanya Tagaq (who joins as a special guest on Kronos' Music for Change concert on December 9), Steve Reich, Wu Man, and Terry Riley. As the Los Angles Times stated, "It's as magical an amalgamation as you can imagine."

Kronos Quartet with students from The Glenn Gould School present Fifty Forward on December 8. Built around Kronos's Fifty for the Future initiative (a free library of 50 contemporary works designed to guide string quartets in developing and honing the skills required for the performance of 21st-century repertoire) students from The Glenn Gould School will participate in a two-day mentorship with Kronos, culminating in a joint concert called Fifty Forward.

In a concert titled Music for Change on December 9, Kronos Quartet is joined by very special guest Tanya Tagaq performing the world premiere of her "Colonizer" (Remix). Polaris and Juno Award winner Tagaq, who performed with Kronos during the 21C Music Festival in 2016 in Koerner Hall, is an Inuk throat singer, songwriter, novelist, and visual artist known internationally for her collaborations with Björk. The concert program explores the ways in which music can increase our understanding of our times and our connection to people around the world. "Everything we do as citizens, as human beings, is a statement about how we want the world to be," says David Harrington, Kronos' artistic director, founder, and violinist. "Increasingly, I feel my role as musician is to point in constructive musical and cultural directions as we attempt to help repair the torn fabric of our society."

This Music for Change concert features a new work composed and performed by special guest Aruna Narayan (sarangi), and also highlights the social, political, and cultural upheavals of civil rights movements through works such as Peace Be Till, Zachary J. Watkins's exploration of the moment just before Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech, Abe Meeropol's Strange Fruit inspired by Billie Holiday, and Glorious Mahalia, Stacy Garrop's work honoring the life and times of gospel singer Mahalia Jackson. Other works included are by Steve Reich, Armenia's Komitas, and an adaptation of Jimi Hendrix's arrangement of Star-Spangled Banner

Lisa Fischer "in concert is addictive. Every performance is so enriching, so exciting, so transcendent," states the Minneapolis Star Tribune. After four decades of featured background singing with icons like Luther Vandross, The Rolling Stones, Chaka Khan, Tina Turner, and Nine Inch Nails, as well as having been featured in the Oscar Award winning film Twenty Feet from Stardom, Lisa Fischer returns to center stage at Koerner Hall on December 1. This time, she brings South Carolina's funky Grammy Award-winning quintet Ranky Tanky, whom NPR called "lively, soulful honey to the ears."

Multi award-winning Canadian singer-songwriter, pianist, and CBC Music national radio host Laila Biali debuts her Wintersongs project on December 3 accompanied by an all-star ensemble and special guests Jane Bunnett, Emilie-Claire Barlow, The Venuti String Quartet, George Koller, Larnell Lewis, and Ben Wittman. The evening features original material alongside arrangements of beloved secular and sacred classics, inviting the audience into the magic of winter and the holiday season. Biali has been honoured by SOCAN Music with the 2020 Hagood Hardy Award for Excellence in Songwriting, won the 2019 Juno Award for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year, and was the youngest ever double winner at Canada's National Jazz Awards. Her Signature Sound "masterfully mixes jazz and pop, bringing virtuosity and unpredictability to songs that are concise and catchy" (Washington Post).

Legendary French-Canadian roots band, La Bottine Souriante, first appeared on the Quebec music scene in 1976 and has released 13 albums, four of which are certified Gold and three Platinum. The group has won dozens of awards and headlined festivals around the world. La Bottine has developed an exceptionally tight, cohesive sound, with their unique flavour of celebratory music that combines its homage to tradition with a dash of jazz, salsa, and pure folk, while at the same time perfectly representing the vitality and pride of its Québécois culture. These two elements, music and celebration, are inseparable with La Bottine Souriante, and come together at what is sure to be one of the most fun and memorable concerts this holiday season on December 10.

Grammy Award-winning pianist Daniil Trifonov - who won the Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Solo Album in 2018 and was named Musical America's Artist of the Year in 2019 - returns to Koerner Hall on December 2 with works by Tchaikovsky, Schumann, Mozart, Ravel, and Scriabin. Combining consummate technique with rare sensitivity and depth, his performances are a perpetual source of awe. As The Times of London notes, he is "without question the most astounding pianist of our age."

Royal Conservatory Orchestra Resident Conductor, Joaquin Valdepe√Īas, conducts Glenn Gould School students in a program consisting of Mozart's Serenade No. 12 for Winds in C Minor, K. 388/384a, and DvoŇô√°k's Serenade for Winds in D Minor, op. 44, B. 77, on December 1.

Academy for Young Artists presents the Academy Chamber Orchestra on December 17, featuring leading young classical musicians in Canada aged 8-18.

Mandolin player Chris Thile, who made his Koerner Hall debut in a solo concert in 2013, returns on December 18, this time with the Punch Brothers - Gabe Witcher (fiddle/violin), Noam Pikelny (banjo), Chris Eldridge (guitar), and Paul Kowert (bass).

Their latest release, Hell on Church Street, is a re-imagining of Tony Rice's 1983 album Church Street Blues, a solo folk reinterpretation of classic songs. The Punch Brothers say that "no record (or musician) has had a greater impact on us, and we felt compelled to cover it in its entirety, with the objective of interacting with it in the same spirit of respect-fueled adventure that Tony brought to each of its pre-existing songs."

Top Canadian songwriters come together with host Blair Packham to perform their music and tell us about the inspiration, the songwriting process, and the stories behind the songs in the popular SongBird North series. The artists for the December 17 evening include and incredible line-up: Jane Siberry, David Quinton Steinberg, and Lily Frost. Siberry is best known for such hits as "Mimi on the Beach," "I Muse Aloud," "One More Colour," and "Calling All Angels." She was awarded the 2005 Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award in music by the Canada Council for the Arts. Multi-instrumentalist Quinton began his public musical career as a drummer in the Who and Jam tribute band, the Mods. After the Mods, went on to play with highly influential punk rocker Stiv Bators which, to scholars of that era, is highly noteworthy. Today, although he practices entertainment law at a very high level (clients include Rush and Randy Bachman), David is releasing a brand-new album of his original songs, featuring some notable guests. Frost has explored topics ranging from introspection and our connection to nature, spirituality, and psychology, all draped in poetic metaphor in genres including indie folk, pop, swing, and western. Her songs were featured in shows such as Gray's Anatomy and Workin' Moms, as well as the Disney movie Crazy/Beautiful. In 2009, she earned a Gemini Award nomination as co-writer of the theme for CBC's Being Erica.

The Royal Conservatory will livestream a selection of concerts from the 2022-23 Season via The Royal Conservatory's digital channel, www.RoyalConservatory.Live. Audiences are encouraged to go to www.RoyalConservatory.Live for a list of upcoming broadcasts, as well as to peruse previously broadcast concerts, livestreams, and interviews.

Esther Gelber Fund administered by the Canadian Music Centre, Michael Foulkes & Linda Brennan, David Goldbloom & Nancy Epstein, Ihnatowycz Family Foundation, Claudia Krawchuk, Bill & Janet L'Heureux, Eileen Mercier, a gift in memory of Gary Miles, Sue Mortimer, C.M. & Marcia Lewis Brown, Hakan Turan, b espresso, and eight anonymous donors

Wine & Beverage Sponsors: Cave Spring Vineyard, McManis Family Vineyards

Government Supporters: Government of Canada, Ontario Arts Council, Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund, Toronto Arts Council, Toronto Arts Foundation

Koerner Hall has been awarded a #SafeTravels Stamp by World Travel & Tourism Council for adopting health and hygiene global standardized protocols. Click here to learn more about our safety protocols.



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