LSM Newswire

Monday, January 19, 2009

University of Toronto symphony concert spotlights student talents

TORONTO ’Äì On Saturday, January 31, 2009, the University of Toronto Symphony Orchestra (UTSO) presents a concert showcasing two young student artists. Led by guest conductor Alain Trudel, the UTSO will perform James MacMillan’Äôs percussion concerto Veni, Veni, Emmanuel featuring student soloist Jamie Drake, and the premiere performance of Fountain of Dreams by student composer Kevin Lau. The program also includes Richard Wagner’Äôs Prelude to Tristan and Isolde, and Debussy’Äôs Nocturnes. The concert takes place at 7:30 pm in MacMillan Theatre in the Edward Johnson Building, 80 Queen’Äôs Park. Tickets ($18 adults and $10 seniors/students) can be purchased at the box office in person or by calling 416-978-3744.

Fountain of Dreams is the winning entry of the inaugural UTSO Student Composer Competition by graduate student composer Kevin Lau. It is a musical depiction of a voyage through the world of fantasy, seen through the eyes of a child. Kevin Lau is pursuing his doctoral degree in music composition at the University of Toronto under the supervision of Christos Hatzis. His works have been performed by the Hamilton Philharmonic, Mississauga Symphony, University of Calgary Brass Choir, Esprit Orchestra, Georgian Bay Symphony, Cecilia String Quartet, and the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra. His music has been read and recorded by such renowned artists as Scott St. John and Lara Downes, as well as eminent ensembles such as eighth blackbird, the Ensemble Contemporain de Montrˆ©al, and the St. Lawrence String Quartet.

Featuring in James MacMillan’Äôs Veni, Veni, Emmanuel is Doctor of Musical Arts candidate Jamie Drake, who performs the percussion concerto as a winner of the student concerto competition. Jamie completed his Bachelor of Music degree at University of Toronto, and his Master of Music at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, with Jack Van Geem and David Herbert; he is now pursuing doctoral studies at the University of Toronto. He is a double winner of the U of T Concerto Competition, has performed Steve Reich's Drumming with Nexus (twice), been percussionist for the Scotia Festival of Music and has performed live-to-air on CBC Radio 2, including a prize-winning performance with the Hamilton Children's Choir. While in San Francisco he was active in the BluePrint New Music project, and commissioned and premiered works by noted Bay Area composers Elinor Armer and Darren Jones. Jamie is in demand as both a percussionist and drummer, and regularly performs professionally with symphony orchestras, world music ensembles, music theatre productions, big bands, and the experimental/jazz group Muskox.

Principal Conductor of the CBC Radio Orchestra, Principal Guest Conductor of the Victoria Sympho¬¨ny Orchestra, Alain Trudel is also Music director and conductor of l’ÄôOrchestre Symphonique de Laval, in one of Canada’Äôs most dynamic and fastest growing cities. In addition, Alain Trudel serves as Artistic Advisor to the Manitoba Chamber Orches¬¨tra through the 2008-09 season. Alain Trudel was unanimously named Conductor of the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra in 2004, a position that brings him great pride and joy. On top of his projects with those orchestras, Tru¬¨del also participates in a number of exciting artis¬¨tic projects around his native Canada and abroad, including leading the Toronto Symphony in its Ontario tour in 2008. A frequent guest of the National Arts Centre Orchestra, Trudel conducted in their 2008 sum¬¨mer festival, their Young Audience series and will appear in the eXpressions series in the Spring of 2009. In the summer of 2009, Alain Trudel will be the conductor of the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, conducting Stravinsky’Äôs Rite of Spring and Mahler’Äôs 6th symphony. Website:

Part of Canada’Äôs top university, the University of Toronto Faculty of Music has an illustrious history as one of North America’Äôs leading centres for the scholarly and professional study of music, offering a rich array of degree and diploma programs from the undergraduate to post-graduate levels. Many of this country’Äôs greatest musicians such as John Weinzweig, Lois Marshall, Elmer Iseler, Adrienne Pieczonka, Russell Braun, and the St. Lawrence String Quartet have studied or taught at the Faculty. With over 100 events featuring students, faculty and distinguished guests, the Faculty’Äôs performance season embodies its commitment to an education that champions diversity, depth and explorations. Highlights of the 2008-09 season include cellists Steven Isserlis and Shauna Rolston, baritone Sherrill Milnes, composer Maria Schneider, conductors David Briskin and Miah Im, jazz great Phil Nimmons, the Mirˆ„, and St. Lawrence String Quartets, the Gryphon Trio and Nexus.

For more information on this or other Faculty of Music concert series, please visit our website at or contact the Box Office at 416-978-3744.

Ticket sales and general inquiries:
Faculty of Music Box Office
Hours: 1 ’Äì 7 pm, Monday to Friday, with extended hours on performance nights.
Phone: 416-978-3744
Address: Lobby level, Edward Johnson Building, 80 Queen’Äôs Park, Toronto ON M5S 2C5

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