Stage Door News
Toronto: Confluence announces an online 2020/21 season of words and music
Friday, August 14, 2020
It gives us great pleasure to announce our 2020-21 season: seven online events curated by our artistic team.
In true Confluence style we anticipate this season with enthusiasm and curiosity, digging deeply into the lives and music of a broad range of composers, and examining important and intriguing issues. From jazz to traditional South Asian music, opera to pop, across centuries and cultures, sounds and ideas merge into a season of surprise, delight, and wonder.
Our first concert of the season is a tribute to Billy Strayhorn, the great American pianist, composer, and arranger. Plan to tune in to the Premiere on September 23rd.
All of our concerts this season will be presented online, with free, unrestricted access for everyone. We encourage you to support Confluence Concerts by becoming a member or making a donation today. Please help ensure a sustainable and secure future for the organization.
We look forward to you joining us on this journey!
PREMIERING SEPTEMBER 23, 2020
• SOMETHING TO LIVE FOR •
A BILLY STRAYHORN CELEBRATION
“My grandmother played the piano, and I used to toddle over there and pick out little things that sounded good to me.”
— BILLY STRAYHORN
A detailed look at the story of the great 20th century classical and jazz pianist and composer. Best known for his long-time collaboration with Duke Ellington, Strayhorn composed Take the A Train, Lush Life, Something to Live For, and A Flower is a Lovesome Thing.
CURATED AND ARRANGED BY ANDREW DOWNING
Featuring Larry Beckwith, Leighton Harrell, Drew Jurecka, Marion Newman, Patricia O’Callaghan, Suba Sankaran and more.
PREMIERING NOVEMBER 21, 2020
• A PURCELL REMEMBRANCE •
THE EXALTATION OF POETRY
“As poetry is the harmony of words, so music is that of notes; and as poetry is a rise above prose and oratory, so is music the exaltation of poetry.”
— HENRY PURCELL
On the 325th anniversary of his death, we remember and celebrate the beauty and truth of England’s greatest composer.
CURATED BY LARRY BECKWITH
PREMIERING DECEMBER 7, 2020
• AGING AND CREATIVITY •
THE ANNUAL WALTER UNGER SALON
“To keep our hearts open is probably the most urgent responsibility you have as you get older.”
— LEONARD COHEN
Celebrated authors and educators Linda and Michael Hutcheon curate a salon based on their recent book Four Last Songs: Aging and Creativity, focusing specifically on Olivier Messiaen and Leonard Cohen.
CURATED BY LINDA AND MICHAEL HUTCHEON
PREMIERING JANUARY 13, 2021
• THE MANDALA •
“The mandala principle expresses the experience of seeing the relatedness of all phenomena.”
— MADONNA GAUDING
Music and stories about an enduring and powerful image.
CURATED BY SUBA SANKARAN
PREMIERING FEBRUARY 24, 2021
• THE BUTTERFLY PROJECT •
THE BALLAD OF CHŌ-CHŌ SAN
“The Ballad of Chō-chō san reimagines and re-instills the original Japanese cultural inspiration appropriated for this work by elevating the Japanese folk songs quoted in the opera, fore-fronting the Japanese language, and various Japanese instruments, mostly created electronically.”
— TEIYA KASAHARA
A co-production with Amplified Opera and featuring soprano Teiya Kasahara in which Puccini’s Madama Butterfly is thoroughly re-examined: the role, the opera and the appropriated Japanese melodies.
CURATED BY MARION NEWMAN
PREMIERING MARCH 7, 2021
SPECIAL ONLINE PRESENTATION
• THE JOHN BECKWITH SONGBOOK •
OVER 70 YEARS OF ORIGINALITY
“In works with words…like many composers, going back at least as far as Lully, I think of how orators and actors deliver lines; their imagined inflections and dramatic emphases occupy the centre of musical thinking…”
— JOHN BECKWITH
On the occasion of the celebrated Canadian composer’s 94th birthday, a marathon event at which all of his song catalogue — spanning from 1947 to 2021 — will be sung by students, professionals, friends and colleagues. A co-production with the University of Toronto and the Canadian Art Song Project.
CURATED BY LARRY BECKWITH
PREMIERING APRIL 21, 2021
• GRACIAS A LA VIDA •
“To feel the love of people whom we love is a fire that feeds our life.”
— PABLO NERUDA
A program of the music and poetry of the Spanish diaspora, including a performance of Omar Daniel’s Neruda Canciones, based on the poetry of Pablo Neruda, and a celebration of the 100th anniversary of the birth of Astor Piazzolla.
CURATED BY PATRICIA O’CALLAGHAN
For more information, visit www.confluenceconcerts.ca.
Illustration: Confluence 2020/21 season graphic featuring Billy Strayhorn.