LSM Newswire

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Study shows Project Niagara could generate millions of dollars in economic activity and create hundreds of jobs

Project spearheaded by the NAC and TSO has potential to become next great cultural tourism destination

(Niagara-on-the-Lake) A feasibility study presented last night to Niagara-on-the-Lake Town Council by representatives from the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) and National Arts Centre (NAC) shows that Project Niagara a proposed 17-week international music festival to take place on the shore of Lake Ontario could generate more than a hundred million dollars in economic activity and create hundreds of jobs over several years.

Project Niagara is an initiative of the TSO and NAC. The two organizations have been working together on Project Niagaras development and feasibility since 2004. They are hoping to launch the festival during the bicentennial celebrations marking the War of 1812.

Monday night, before a well-attended Niagara-on-the-Lake Town Council meeting, Project Niagara Project Manager Kari Cullen provided an outline of the feasibility study for the proposed music festival.

Prior to the meeting, Andrew Shaw, President and CEO of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and Peter Herrndorf, President and CEO of the National Arts Centre, issued the following statement: This feasibility study tells us beyond a shadow of a doubt that Project Niagara is a very strong concept, located in the right place, at the right time. With its proximity to the Shaw Festival, Niagara Falls and one of the worlds most diverse wine regions, Project Niagara has the potential to become Canadas next great cultural tourism destination.

Mr. Herrndorf was on hand for last nights meeting, along with Cathryn Gregor, Chief Operating Officer for the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and Alan Latourelle, CEO of the Parks Canada Agency, the responsible custodian of the land on Lakeshore Road, on the northwestern side of Niagara-on-the-Lake where Project Niagara would be located. The 268-acre site was overwhelmingly chosen over several sites in the Niagara Region based on criteria related to unique beauty, size, and ambient noise.

The Project Niagara Phase 2 Feasibility Study outlines the following points:

During its construction phase, Project Niagara would generate $106 million in various types of additional economic activity, including the creation of about 500 full time equivalent jobs.

In its fifth year of operation, Project Niagara would generate about $93 million in various types of additional economic activity, including the creation of 707 full time equivalent jobs.

Capital costs for Project Niagara are estimated at $76.5 million this breaks down as $37 million for all buildings on site, $18 million in site preparation, $11 million in landscaping, and $10 million for technical equipment.

The feasibility studys findings support that $25.5 million would be a reasonable amount of money to be raised through sponsorship and private donations. Project Niagara will request that the Federal and Provincial governments each match the private funds raised to achieve its capital cost target of $76.5 million.

Project Niagara will be run as an independent national cultural institution with its own Board of Directors. TSO and NAC representatives will sit on this board as ex-officio members.

Project Niagara has committed to working with the Region and the Town to help address any issues relating to transportation and sewage infrastructure.

Project Niagara is also working with the Parks Canada Agency on environmental assessment requirements with respect to the potential impact of the festival on flora and fauna in order to guide its activities on site.

Financial backing for the Project Niagara development work and analysis to date has come from the NAC and TSO, as well the Province of Ontario, Falls Management Corporation, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation and the Niagara Economic Development Corporation.

Last week, Janice Thomson, Executive Director of the Niagara-on-the-Lake Chamber of Commerce, made a presentation to the Niagara-on-the-Lake Town Council to table more than one hundred individual letters of support from local residents, visitors and businesses of Niagara-on-the-Lake voicing their support for the creation of Project Niagara.

Click here to read the Project Niagara Phase 2 Feasibility Study. For more information about Project Niagara, please visit www.projectniagara.ca.

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Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Messiah Makeover for the TSO


MESSIAH MAKEOVER
for the
Toronto Symphony Orchestra

This holiday season, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra invites audiences to experience Handel's MESSIAH in a whole new way with a production that will dazzle the eyes as well as the ears of everyone in the concert hall.

MESSIAH, a much-loved holiday tradition with the TSO, will this year incorporate a bold visual element courtesy of renowned designer and TV host Glen Peloso, who has created a spectacularly imaginative visual environment to complement Handel's dramatic music.

Peloso's design incorporates unique laser-cut stainless steel 3-D silhouettes of trees and stars that will interplay with Bonnie Beecher's innovative lighting design. Together, these visual elements will combine to create a spectacle that frames and enhances Handel's lush musical score.

Glen Peloso has been working in the world of design for the past ten years since completing a Masters degree in Fine Art. The principal of Glen Peloso Interiors, he is perhaps best known as the star of TV shows Restaurant Makeover, Renovate my Wardrobe, and Take this Home and Sell It. His transformative vision will give Toronto's longest-running Messiah a unique and bold framework for new appreciation and aural enjoyment.


THE TORONTO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA presents
TORONTO'S FAVOURITE MESSIAH
Noel Edison, Conductor
Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe Street, Toronto
Tuesday, December 16 @ 8pm; Wednesday, December 17 @ 8pm;
Friday, December 19 @ 8pm; Saturday, December 20 @ 8pm; Sunday, December 21 @ 3pm
Tickets range from $35 - $99
Call the Roy Thomson Hall box office 416.593.4828
or purchase online: http://www.tso.ca

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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The TSO Messiah Day

CELEBRATE MESSIAH DAY WITH
THE TORONTO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra gears up for the holiday season with TORONTO'S FAVOURITE MESSIAH, Tuesday, December 16 - Sunday, December 21. To add to the festive spirit, the TSO is offering a special incentive for everyone who buys a ticket to the TORONTO'S FAVOURITE MESSIAH on MESSIAH DAY - Thursday, November 20 - in the form of a limited edition TSO ornament!

"MESSIAH is a grand, majestic spectacle that should be seen and heard by every Torontonian."
Toronto Life

As always, the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir will participate in the MESSIAH, this year led by their very own Conductor and Artistic Director Noel Edison. The stellar cast of Canadian vocalists are all making their TSO debuts! They are: soprano Gillian Keith, mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy, tenor Frdric Antoun, and bass Robert Gleadow.

The TSO will also include their other Christmas concerts in this special offer; purchase a ticket on MESSIAH DAY to A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS (December 9 and 10) and receive a keepsake Christmas ornament. THE SNOWMANTM (December 14) is already sold out, so act fast to get your tickets for TORONTO'S FAVOURITE MESSIAH and A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS and receive this special gift.

On Thursday, November 20 celebrate MESSIAH DAY with the TSO!

CHRISTMAS AT THE TSO
A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS
Tuesday, December 9 @ 8pm, Wednesday, December 10 @ 2pm and 8pm
THE SNOWMAN SOLD OUT!
Sunday, December 14 @ 3pm
TORONTO'S FAVOURITE MESSIAH
Tuesday, December 16 @ 8pm; Wednesday, December 17 @ 8pm;
Friday, December 19 @ 8pm; Saturday, December 20 @ 8pm; Sunday, December 21 @ 3pm
Tickets range from $15 - $99
Buy your tickets at tso.ca, by phone 416.593.4828
and in person at the Roy Thomson Hall Box Office, 60 Simcoe St

Middlefield Group, a Toronto based investment management company, is a production sponsor for the TSO's Toronto's Favourite Messiah.

* free ornament while quantities last. Offer valid for Toronto's Favourite Messiah, A Very Merry Christmas and SnowmanTM ticket purchases on November 20, 2008 only and does not work in conjunction with any other offer.

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Thursday, November 13, 2008

TSO Messiah


The Toronto Symphony Orchestra presents
Toronto's Favourite MESSIAH
With an Exceptional all Canadian Cast of Young Soloists

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra presents G.F. Handel's best-loved and most famous masterpiece, MESSIAH, from December 16-21 for five performances only! As always, the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir will participate in the festivities, this year lead by their very own Conductor and Artistic Director Noel Edison. As a very special treat, the stellar cast of vocalists is entirely Canadian, and they are all making their TSO debuts! They are: soprano Gillian Keith, mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy, tenor Frdric Antoun, and bass Robert Gleadow.

In great demand for performances in recital, oratorio, and opera, soprano Gillian Keith has earned praise particularly for her interpretations of Baroque music. A frequent performer in the UK, she has appeared in principal roles with Royal Opera, Covent Garden, English National Opera, and Scottish Opera.

Mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy has often been praised for her imagination and versatility. This superb young singer has sung all over Canada and the US, and a number of venues in Europe. She is renowned for the roles of Olga (Eugene Onegin) and Rosina (The Barber of Seville), and is another exceptional baroque interpreter.

Tenor Frdric Antoun comes to the TSO hot off the heels of his critically acclaimed performances as Belmonte in Opera Atelier's The Abduction from the Seraglio. He's been called a "real find wielding a clear, keenly tuned voice with a velvety sheen" and "an ideal, earnest leading man".

Graduate of the Jette Parker Young Artists Program of the Royal Opera, Covent Garden, and the Canadian Opera Company's Ensemble Studio, young bass Robert Gleadow has sung numerous leading roles with both companies, as well as at L'Opera de la Bastille and in Santiago, Chile. In the studio, he recorded the role of Lorenzo in I Capuletti e Montecchi for Deutsche Grammophon with Anna Netrebko.

Noel Edison is currently in his 12th year as Toronto Mendelssohn Choir's Conductor and Artistic Director. He records regularly for the Naxos label and his extensive discography includes works by Arvo Prt; Berlioz's Requiem; the Juno nominated Mystery of Christmas; and Willan's In the Heavenly Kingdom. His latest recording with the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir is a collection of Christmas music entitled A Festival of Carols: Music for Choir, Brass & Organ.

Beethoven called Handel "the greatest composer that ever lived"; George Bernard Shaw called Handel a "sacred institution"; and King George II called him "the Shakespeare of music." He wrote MESSIAH in a mere 24 days (never once leaving his house) and it quickly became one of his most enduring and successful works. Since December 1949, MESSIAH has been a seasonal tradition at the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, spreading joy to more than 350,000 people, and having performed the piece 180 times!


THE TORONTO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA presents
TORONTO'S FAVOURITE MESSIAH
Noel Edison, Conductor
Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe Street, Toronto
Tuesday, December 16 @ 8pm; Wednesday, December 17 @ 8pm;
Friday, December 19 @ 8pm; Saturday, December 20 @ 8pm; Sunday, December 21 @ 3pm
Tickets range from $35 - $99
Call the Roy Thomson Hall box office 416.593.4828
or purchase online: http://www.tso.ca

Middlefield Group is a Toronto based management company that is a production sponsor for the TSO's Toronto's Favourite Messiah. Their sponsorship is adding new elements to the performance, including lighting and festive decor.

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Monday, July 28, 2008

TSO Now or Never Sale is back!

THE TORONTO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Announces the return of the Now or Never Sale
Tickets Only $39!
10 Days Only! Begins Friday, August 8

After the tremendous success of the first ever online seat sale last year, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) announced today their next seat sale designed to offer music fans flexible and affordably priced subscription packages. In 2007, 7995 tickets were sold in one week and about 67% of the patrons who bought through the sale were new customers!

And now the Now or Never Sale is back! For 10 days only, beginning Friday, August 8, at midnight, and ending on Friday, August 18, at noon, TSO concerts will be priced at only $39 each for patrons who purchase a series with a minimum of three-concerts of their choice. This represents a savings of up to 70% on regular priced tickets!

The $39 seat sale is available online. Patrons can mix and match available concerts in all categories including Masterworks, Light Classics, Pops, Kids, and Casual Concerts, and must purchase a minimum of three separate concert dates in one online transaction at tso.ca.

The initiative is based on a successful model used by leading North American orchestras to find a profitable solution to the lull between the end of the subscription campaign period and the beginning of single ticket sales.

Audience development studies have shown that the two major barriers to non-renewing or potential subscribers were time and cost, especially for younger demographics. The flexible three-concert package is designed to capture the attention of this generation who desire control over their busy schedules and are less inclined to commit to five concerts some 14 months in advance. The three-concert buyer makes less of an initial commitment, and has the flexibility to upgrade to full subscriber status at any time.

The TSO online seat sale is an excellent opportunity for music lovers to hear international superstars like pianists Lang Lang and Radu Lupu, violinists Pinchas Zukerman and Midori, and celebrated maestros like Charles Dutoit and Yannick Nzet-Sguin for only $39.

Seats will be allocated on a "best available" basis while quantities last. Patrons will receive TSO subscriber benefits including ticket exchanges and no service charges on additional tickets. As quantities are limited, the TSO advises to act early!


THE TORONTO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Announces the return of the Now or Never Sale
10 Days Only - Friday, August 8 - Monday, August 18, 2008
Purchase any 3 concerts for $39 each*
Tickets On Sale Friday, August 8 at 12midnight
Sale ends Monday, August 18 at 12noon
Tickets available online at http://www.tso.ca/
*Subject to availability. Not valid with any other offer.

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Thursday, June 26, 2008

TSO Announces Record Ticket Sales

Master Agreement Ratification with the Musicians of the Orchestra,
and the second release on the TSO Live Label.

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra announced today that the 2007/2008 season achieved record ticket revenues, with house capacity averaging over 88% - both single tickets and subscriptions showing significant increases over the course of the past ten months. Sales broke the $9 million mark, with the TSO completing the 2007/2008 season with just over $9.2 million in sales. The TSO performed for over 238,000 people during the year, an increase of over 10,000 tickets over the 2006/2007 season, and subscriptions to the orchestra increased by over 10% to 27,500 subscribers. The increases in subscriptions came largely from new patrons - over 80% of the subscription increase came from people who were not previously TSO customers. The 2007/2008 season will be the sixth consecutive season in which earned revenue has increased year-over-year, up from $5.5 million in ticket revenues in 2001/2002.

"Not only were our most popular shows sold out with over 40% of TSO performances playing to houses 95% or better, but also, our more demanding festivals showed strong results," said Mike Forrester, VP Marketing & Business Development. "The audience is responding to Peter's leadership of the Orchestra, and to his concept of thematic programming woven throughout the season. His connection to the public is remarkably strong, to the point where even shows comprised entirely of new or unfamiliar orchestral music, play to capacity. A sold-out New Creations Festival is the most obvious example, but many of our other shows have new and challenging work - and our patrons have come to trust the musical journey Peter prepares for them on any given night."

In addition to its public performances at Roy Thomson Hall, the George Weston Recital Hall, and critically acclaimed concerts in Ottawa and Detroit, the Orchestra also performed for over 70,000 students at Roy Thomson Hall over the course of the season, continuing its commitment to education with curriculum-based concerts. Additionally, the Orchestra also toured to Sarnia and North Bay, with both public concerts and education programs in those cities. A further 40,000 students benefited from education programs in the GTA and throughout Ontario.

The TSO also announced the release of its second disc on the TSO Live label, featuring Anton Bruckner's 4th Symphony, recorded live over two performances in November 2007. Music Director Peter Oundjian commented, "When we sat down and listened to the raw recording, we were absolutely thrilled with the quality of our Orchestra's performances. I am delighted that our audience will now have yet another piece of our musical efforts to enjoy time and time again, and Bruckner's 4th Symphony, to my mind, is his most accessible and engaging work."
The TSO plans several more releases over the course of the year, with music of Mahler and Shostakovich to be released over the next several months.
For further information, contact: TSO, Mike Forrester, Vice President, Marketing & Business Development, 416.593.7769 x 341 mforrester@tso.ca

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