Back in April of 2014, the first of the H.P.O.’s candidates for music director conducted an awesome performance of Saint-Saëns violin concerto and Beethoven’s Pastorale 6th symphony. Her post-concert answers and rationales to queries by yours truly were succinct and coherent. To say that we were impressed would be an understatement and a subtle hint of our selection choice was hidden within the column. We’re pleased that she was selected and join the rest of the Hamilton community in welcoming her. Last evening’s concert highlighted contemporary (sort of) Russian composers.
Editorial by Terry Gaisin
Lately; the major media has been inconsistent in coverage of things cultural, thus demand for our efforts has increased exponentially. In order to fulfill additional reportage requests, we’ve asked Judith Robinson to assist as associate editor; and recruited the following additions to our contributor list. All possess knowledge and an affection for the arts. We’re fortunate to have them join our family.
David and Jan Richards are consummate music lovers who met at the opera 25 years ago. They both have undergraduate degrees in music—David trained as a pianist and choral director, and Jan as a double-bassist. More…
Review by Danny Gaisin
Michael Jacobs play ‘CHEATERS’ comes in two versions; seems critics; audiences and the playwright himself decided the original needed tweaking. Can’t say if W.E.S.T.’s presentation is ‘101’ or 2.0, but while the play may be dated, the rendering now at the Oakville Centre until Feb. 7th is a critic’s nightmare…so perfectly produced; directed; staged and acted as to leave no little kvetch for this scribe to prove I was paying attention throughout the performance. It’s that immaculate a piece of theatre and a thespian gem.
Way back when we had just entered a new millennium and while being a gainfully employed member of the fifth estate; the editor insisted that I do a promo (read puff) piece about a local folk group. I loved classical music & enjoyed jazz but the only folk knowledge I had was hating Lightfoot for being repetitious and even worse –BORING. Went to the Oakville Centre’s basement; listened; enjoyed and thereafter attended as many of the concerts as I we could. We were hooked into the White Oaks Folk Club. *
One of the more positive perks of doing what we do is the factual assurance that we’’ll attend an impeccably professional presentation by WEST; a Sheridan offering that’s of Broadway caliber; pure entertainment by the Meadowvale Communities’ trio; and a Top Tenner by Erindale. Wendy Wassersteins’s 1977 “UNCOMMON WOMERN & OTHERS” is just another example of the veracity stated above. It’s polished; immaculately directed; well-cast and presented; shocking; and hilarious but with very human moments of pathos. Photo courtesy of Jim Smagata
Review by Judith Caldwell
A capacity audience thoroughly enjoyed a 5 at the First concert themed around friendship. Three friends – Rachel Mercer, cello; clarinetist Guy Yehuda, and Peter Longworth, piano offered two pieces written by Brahms for his late-in -ife muse and friend Richard Muhlfeld, plus a contemporary Clarinet Trio titled ‘Among Friends’ by Canadian composer Ka Nin Chan. The concert opened with Yehuda and Longworth playing Brahms Sonata in E flat, Op. 120 No 2. Brahms had already retired when he heard Muhlfeld playing and became interested in writing music for this marvelous instrument, and this particular piece is his final chamber composition.