Posted on 28 May 2014.
On April 4th, the Canadian Music Centre hosted a celebration for the legendary Canadian conductor, Victor Feldbrill, on the occasion of his 90th birthday. It was fitting that the party should be held in a place that holds so much of the music Maestro Feldbrill either commissioned or championed in his various Music Director positions, across Canada and around the world.
Composer and long-time friend John Beckwith was on hand to pay tribute, as was Daniel Weinzweig, son of the late John Weinzweig, and Walter Pitman, Feldbrill’s biographer. David Jaeger, former host of CBC’s “Two New Hours,” and a composer himself, spoke, and introduced the Cecilia String Quartet, who played a new piece of music by Katarina Curcin.
Orchestras Canada was on hand to carry the community’s well wishes to the Maestro, who capped the evening’s events with a heartfelt speech of his own.
The Arts and Letter Club honoured him the days before his birthday, and this past weekend, the American Federation of Musicians presented Maestro Feldbrill with their highest honour – the Lifetime Achievement Award. You can find the media release here and an article here.
Congratulations, Maestro, and thank you!
Posted in Orchestra News, Weekly Newsletter
Posted on 06 March 2013.
Late last week, the Orchestre symphonique de Trois‐Rivières announced the departure of Thérèse Boutin from the position of Directrice générale of the orchestra, after almost seven years in the role. Speaking about Mme Boutin’s decision, board chair Jean-Marc Vanasse said “under her leadership, the OSTR gained a reputation for sound management, transparency, and governance, with a code of ethics, strategic plan, human resources policy and governance manual. And thanks to her involvement with Orchestras Canada (of which she is chair), the reputation of the OSTR is sustained at the national level.”
The Windsor Symphony has named its next music director, successor to John Morris Russell. The new WSO maestro is Robert Franz, and he begins a three-year renewable contract on July 1, 2013. In addition to his new duties in Windsor, Franz is also Music Director of the Boise Philharmonic, Associate Conductor of the Houston Symphony (a position he will soon be relinquishing) and Music Director of the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival Opera and Orchestra. Speaking about his appointment in Windsor, Franz says, “I am honoured and moved to be named the next Music Director of the WSO. I felt an immediate connection to the musicians during my visit, and I was captivated by the people and the city. I am committed to fostering the relationships with the community, and to forging new ones. I am very much looking forward to many years of music making with the incredible musicians of the WSO, and to continually deepening our artistic experience together.”
Orchestra News was saddened to learn of the recent passing of violist and musician leader Evelyne Robitaille. A member of the Orchestre symphonique de Québec from 1962 until her retirement in 2005, she was also for many years the president of the Organization of Canadian Symphony Musicians. She was an indelible presence. As her friend, Eline Brock Sanheim, wrote: “a passionate activist for musicians’, writers’ and artists’ rights, Evelyne was a proud member of the American Federation of Musicians, and was the President of the Québec City Local (119) for many years. She was also past-president of OCSM, a role which she took very seriously but executed with much humour and many viola jokes.” Mme Robitaille won Orchestras Canada’s Betty Webster Award for outstanding contribution to Canadian orchestras in 2005.
The Calgary Philharmonic has announced the winners of this year’s Golden Baton Award, the CPO’s way of recognizing “exceptional generosity, civic responsibility and philanthropic leadership”. The deserving winners are Calgary philanthropists John and Ethelene Gareau, supporters of the CPO for more than 50 years. John has served on the Board of the Calgary Philharmonic Society and served as President of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra Foundation for many years. He continues to serve as an active member of the Foundation. As CPO President and CEO notes, “Their caring for the Orchestra goes beyond 50 years of concert attendance, to personal donations and leadership of The Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra Foundation, helping build the fund to today’s all-time high of $24 million.”
Posted in Orchestra News, People, Weekly Newsletter
Posted on 29 February 2012.
The Ottawa Symphony Orchestra has announced the appointment of Peter Feldman as its new General Manager, succeeding Bryan Croft. Peter was the founding executive director of CAPACOA, the Canadian arts presenting association.
The Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra has announced the appointment of Kelly Rooney as its new Development Manager. A Thunder Bay native, Kelly is a graduate of Confederation College’s Arts Administration program. Since graduating, she has spent the last 20 year’s travelling the world, working and volunteering with a variety of arts, health promotion and social service organizations. “I’m happy to be back in my hometown, surrounded by family, and working in the arts again”, says Ms. Rooney.
Bill Skolnik, CEO of the Canadian Federation of Musicians and the Vice President from Canada for the American Federation of Musicians, has announced that he’ll be leaving his position with the CFM/AFM to serve as CEO of the Directors Guild of Canada.
The Centre in the Square, long-time performance home of the Kitchener Waterloo Symphony, has hired Sandra Bender to be its next CEO. She succeeds Jamie Grant, who is now running the Long Center for the Arts in Austin TX.
It was a sad week for Canadian music, as we recognize and mourn the passing of two pivotal figures in the development of a cosmopolitan Canadian musical culture: Helmut Kallmann and Istvan Anhalt. Both came to Canada as a result of World War II, and both made an indelible impact on our country.
Dr. Kallman was widely recognized as Canadian music’s foremost historian, and is perhaps best-known for his pivotal role in editing both editions of the Encyclopedia of Music in Canada. From 1950-1970, he worked at (and ultimately supervised) the CBC’s music library; from 1970 to 1987 he headed the Music Division of the National Library of Canada.
Dr. Anhalt was a long-time resident of Kingston ON, where he moved in 1971 to take up the position of Head of the Music Department at Queen’s University. As his obituary noted, “many of his major compositions – four operas, seven symphonies and numerous other works were written during the Kingston years, notably the four symphonic works inspired by commissions from Glen Fast, the conductor of the KSO, whose confidence in him brought about the creation of some of his most beautiful works.”
Posted in Orchestra News, People, Weekly Newsletter