H.P.O. a “Top Ten” contender evening 2

Review by Danny GaisinreviewerDJG

After two consecutive years of inclusion in the O.A.R.’s Top Ten listings (2011 –Sommerville, & 2012 under guest Matthew Kraemer of BPO); a two-year absence. Last evening’s concert under podium-candidate Stilian Kirov and guest soloist Blake Pouliot is a sure-fire contender for inclusion in our upcoming list! The concert was a technical, emotional, and performance gem. Only superlatives will do to describe any of these production aspects. Each of the three selected works demonstrated a specific facet of an orchestral concert.

Blake Pouliot, Yrs.truly & Stilian Kirov; post concert

Blake Pouliot; Yrs.truly & Stilian Kirov; post concert

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“In Remembrance”; the concert and personal. Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin

Attending about 200 cultural events a year, a critic can become jaded; but not last evening. The Hamilton Philharmonic’s “In Remembrance” concert was something unique and singular. Given the recent incidences involving our military and local terrorists, especially here in Hamilton; a tribute was not only meaningful but subjective as we lost one of our own.
The occasion was also round three of auditions for a new conductor. Gregory Vajda has an impressive resumé reflecting analytical acclaim and background. This critic was not impressed.

cellist Vegor Dyachkov & guest conductor Gregory Vajda

cellist Vegor Dyachkov & guest conductor Gregory Vajda

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Cello Extravaganza #III Reply

Review by Judith CaldwellreviewerJudith
A benefit concert was held to support ‘Blooms for Africa’ and ‘An Instrument for Every Child’ where a lot; and I mean a lot, of local cello enthusiasts got together to celebrate the instrument and raise money for the causes. This year over 100 cellists performed.
It started small & classical with a Sonata for two cellos by Handel which was lovely and let us know that the auditorium at Compass Point Bible Church has excellent acoustics. Then we heard two very young talented brothers, Maximilian & Theodor Aoki, play a much newer piece.

Kellylee Evans & the myriad cellos

Kellylee Evans & the myriad cellos

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Oakville Chamber Orchestra begins 3rd decade Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin
               To paraphrase a real estate credo, ‘selection, selection, selection’ can be a paramount vitality for a concert’s success. Artistic director Charles Demuynck chose two famous Serenades for the opening of the OCO’s 31st season. To perform Dvořák’s opus 44 for wind, the maestro augmented ‘Winds’ with bass; cello and French horn. We’re aware that the saxophone is considered a “wind” instrument; but 2 strings & a brass??? Luckily he’s at the podium so he’s in charge!

Demuynck; his musicians, and an enthralled audience

Demuynck; his musicians, and an enthralled audience

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H.P.O.’s 2nd auditioning concert; + a charming quote 1

Review by Danny Gaisin

Willis & Gaisin, post-concert

Willis & Gaisin, post-concert


               Selecting a new artistic director for a symphony orchestra is akin to finding a mate rather than just a ‘one-night stand’. Surprisingly, the Great Hall was not filled to see & hear Alastair Willis conduct with pianist Andre Laplante as guest soloist. Hopefully, members of the designation committee were in attendance. One regular subscriber told me how much this person really enjoyed the ‘Deevorac’ piece! Yikes. Bet this same individual was the one who started the tacky between-movements applauding.*Alastair Willis & HPO                              Alastair Willis conducting the HPO’s rendering of Dvorak’s 7th

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“RITE OF SPRING”, et.al. Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin

The Brott Festival ended the season with Stravinsky’s Весна священная» (Vesna svyashchennaya) or – “RITE OF SPRING”. Four years ago, the same organization scored a top of the year’s “TOP TEN” list with a creative & innovative rendering of the composer’s “Firebird”. Legend has it that while composing same, Stravinsky’s mind evoked images of an ancient Russian fable about the season; dancing maidens & sacrifice…the rite of spring. This year’s entry differed, it was a composite evening.

Lavoie & Vanstone acknowledging their WEBER interpretation

Lavoie & Vanstone acknowledging their WEBER interpretation

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