LSM Newswire

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Sneak Peek at Koerner Hall Inaugural Season

Mervon Mehta, Executive Director, RCM Performing Arts, is thrilled to reveal selections from the inaugural season of the country's most anticipated new concert venue, Koerner Hall, at the TELUS Centre for Performance and Learning.

Certain to become one of the world's great concert spaces, Koerner Hall will be an acoustically superb, 1135-seat venue, providing a unique audience experience for all genres of music. It will become a welcome home for internationally acclaimed artists, students from The Royal Conservatory, and many of Toronto's finest performing artists. Every seat in the new Koerner Hall has a completely unobstructed view of the stage creating an intimate atmosphere at every performance. TELUS is the official season sponsor of the inaugural Koerner Hall season.

"This first selection of Koerner Hall concerts crosses many musical genres," notes Mehta. "What they all have in common is their high quality. These artists will reveal Koerner Hall's amazing acoustics while also reflecting The Royal Conservatory's commitment to the world's finest performing artists. I look forward to welcoming Toronto audiences to hear some of their favorite musicians but, perhaps more importantly, to introduce them to new and exciting talent and repertoire. In the coming months we will also be announcing several pre and post concert events featuring our students and faculty and the best musicians on the local scene."

The Canadian and international superstars who will headline the inaugural season at Koerner Hall include Jane Bunnett, Gerald Finley, Jon Kimura Parker, Max Raabe, Midori, Yuja Wang, and Pinchas Zukerman. More concerts announcements, including the Opening Festival, bonus events such as prelude and postlude concerts, master classes, and onstage chats with the artists, are still to come!

Musician and composer of jazz and traditional Cuban music, Paquito D'Rivera will open the Latin infused Jazz Series which also includes fellow Cubans Tiempo Libre, Panamanian pianist Danilo Perez and Canada's own Jane Bunnett and The Cuban Piano Masters.

Portuguese-Cape Verdean singer-guitarist Sara Tavares will launch the World Music Series. Also included are Toronto's globetrotting Quartetto Gelato, whose new CD, Musica Latina, explores the music of Argentina, Mexico, Peru and Cuba, on a double bill with amplified alt-classical string quartet Ethel. Rounding out the series are German cabaret singer and bandleader Max Raabe and the Palast Orchester and new first family of Bluegrass, Cherryholmes.

The first two artists of the Vocal Concert Series to be revealed are the Tallis Scholars, an a capella chamber choir from England that specialize in sacred music, and Canadian bass-baritone Gerald Finley who will make a rare Toronto appearance on Mother's Day.

Internationally acclaimed concert pianist Jon Kimura Parker, an Officer of The Order of Canada, will debut the Koerner Hall Piano Recital Series, followed by Hungarian-born British pianist Andrˆ°s Schiff, virtuoso Yefim Bronfman (who made his international debut in 1975 with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra conducted by the legendary Zubin Mehta), French Canadian pianist Louis Lortie in an all-Chopin program to commemorate the composer's 200th Birthday, and Chinese piano sensation Yuja Wang.

Five diverse violinists shape the Strings Concert Series, beginning with the Japanese sensation, Midori (who made her debut with the New York Philharmonic when she was only 11 years old), multiple Juno and Grammy Award-winner James Ehnes (who appears in recital at Koerner Hall and with the Toronto Symphony at Roy Thomson Hall in the same week), American multi-genre violinist Mark O'Connor, Hungarian gypsy violinist Roby Lakatos, who has been called "the devil's fiddler" for his astonishing stylistic versatility, and German violinist Christian Tetzlaff, who will return to Toronto for his first solo recital in ten years.

Simˆ„n Bolˆ‚var Youth Orchestra Brass Ensemble's performance will be one of the highlights of the Chamber Music Series which also include Zukerman Chamber Players with special guest mezzo-soprano Michelle DeYoung, and violinist extraordinaire Pinchas Zukerman who will play the viola on this occasion. American pianist Simone Dinnerstein will be joined by New York's contemporary-classical Absolute Ensemble conducted by Kristjan Jˆ§rvi in an all Bach programme, and the incomparable Emerson String Quartet will present an all-Dvorˆ°k evening.

"Along with The Royal Conservatory's many supporters we look forward to the upcoming season with great anticipation," remarks RCM President Dr. Peter Simon. "The quality of this superb performance space ensures for the first time that the students who graduate from The Conservatory's Glenn Gould School - and who'll go on to dazzle audiences around the world - will first train and perform and one of the world's great stages‰Ýright here at home."

Founded in 1886, The Royal Conservatory is the largest and oldest independent arts educator in Canada. It is an internationally-renowned centre for performance and learning providing opportunities for personal development through music and arts education in over 300 communities across and Canada and a dozen countries around the world. Each year more than 500,000 Canadians take part in RCM programs, exams and public school initiatives.

Simˆ„n Bolˆ‚var Youth Orchestra Brass Ensemble (Chamber Music): Wednesday, October 28, 2009, 8pm
Midori (String Concerts): Friday, October 30, 2009, 8pm
Jon Kimura Parker (Piano Recitals): Sunday, November 8, 2009, 3pm
Zukerman Chamber Players (Chamber Music): Saturday, November 14, 2009, 8pm
Sara Tavares (World Music): Thursday, November 19, 2009, 8pm
James Ehnes (String Concerts): Friday, November 27, 2009, 8pm
The Paquito D'Rivera Quintet (Jazz): Saturday, December 5, 2009, 8pm
Tallis Scholars (Vocal Concerts): Friday, December 11, 2009, 8pm
Quartetto Gelato & Ethel (World Music): Saturday, January 16, 2010, 8pm
Mark O'Connor (String Concerts): Saturday, February 13, 2010, 8pm
Absolute Ensemble with Simone Dinnerstein (Chamber Music): Thursday, February 18, 2010, 8pm
Tiempo Libre (Jazz): Saturday, February 20, 2010, 8pm
Andrˆ°s Schiff (Piano Recitals): Tuesday, February 23, 2010, 8pm
Max Raabe and the Palast Orchester (World Music): Tuesday, March 9, 2010, 8pm
Roby Lakatos (String Concerts): Wednesday, March 10, 2010, 8pm
Danilo Perez: 21st Century Dizzy (Jazz): Saturday, March 27, 2010, 8pm
Yefim Bronfman (Piano Recitals): Thursday, April 1, 2010, 8pm
Louis Lortie (Piano Recitals): Sunday, April 11, 2010, 3pm
Jane Bunnett and The Cuban Piano Masters (Jazz): Saturday, April 17, 2010, 8pm
Cherryholmes (World Music): Wednesday, April 21, 2010, 8pm
Christian Tetzlaff (String Concerts): Sunday, April 25, 2010, 8pm
Yuja Wang (Piano Recitals): Saturday, May 1, 2010, 8pm
Emerson String Quartet (Chamber Music): Wednesday, May 5, 2010, 8pm
Gerald Finley (Vocal Concerts): Sunday, May 9, 2010, 3pm

Tickets $20-$75
Select any 4 concerts from $72
Select 7 or more concerts from $119
Tickets are available online at , by calling 416.408.0208,
or in person at The RCM Box Office, 273 Bloor Street West, Toronto

All events take place at The Royal Conservatory's home, the TELUS Centre for Performance and Learning, 273 Bloor Street West. More information about the 2009-2010 Concert Season is available on The Royal Conservatory website at

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