O.C.O.; a concert regretfully missed Reply

by Danny & Terry Gaisin
Mar. 4, ’18
Last evening the Oakville Chamber Orchestra presented an evening of vocal and instrumental classics. Works by Tchaikovsky and Schumann were to be highlighted. No doubt, conductor Charles Demuynck would have prefaced the former’s ‘Serenade for Strings’ by explaining the sonatina format, and undoubtedly would have advised the audience to watch for the reiterations within the work. Hopefully, he would have spoken about the unusual term larghetto elegiaco. Assuredly, the guest soloist’s violin played by Tiffany Leung was faultless.

Bernie Altschuller

        Fifty-five years ago, I was introduced to a close friend of my fiancee’s -Elaine Langer, who was going to be one of Terry’s bridesmaids.  Unlike some of my future wife’s family; Elaine took me as an immediate friend. When she and Bernie Altschuller married four years later; a gracious (and hospitable) foursome developed that has lasted for almost six decades. More…


Bach Elgar Choir does Gilbert & Sullivan Reply

Review by Judith Caldwell
The Bach Elgar Choir, plus soloists Julie Ludwig, soprano, mezzo Jennifer Enns-Modolo, Thomas Macleay, tenor and baritone Jesse Clark presented a wonderful, fun evening of Gilbert & Sullivan at the Cotton Factory on Sherman. The evening began with accompanist Krista Rhodes and conductor Alexander Cann playing the Overture from the Mikado as a piano duet. This established the bare bones approach, high lighting accomplished musicianship, which characterized the evening. Rhodes is often overlooked when it comes to accolades because she is frequently not noticed, so it was a real treat to hear her in the duet.

The Bach Elgar choir doing some “G & S” excerpts


“Haydn; an HPO week & a culminating concert, Reply

Review by Danny Gaisin

It occasionally surprises me as to the way things connect. My original interest in Joseph Haydn wasn’t his compositional talent…it was his connection to the Esterhazy family and especially Ferdinand Esterhazy who was the actual traitor for whose crimes Alfred Dreyfus was sent to Devil’s Island. Zola’s “J’Accuse”was collegiate compulsory reading. That the man had written 14 masses; 5 operas; 22 arias; 125 symphonies; 30 concerti & 77 string quartets; 40 piano trios ; 66 wind & string pieces etc. obviously tweaked my curiosity. Quite an output for six decades! Socially, the man married the sister of his lover and lived unhappily ever after.

The bassoon soloist Eric Hall performing with the HPO



Windermere String Quartet –part of the Hammer Series 1

Review by Judith Caldwell

As part of the Hammer Baroque series of concerts the Windermere String Quartet played three string quartets by teenaged composers. The concert was called ‘Young Blood’ and featured Mozart, Arriaga and Schubert. The players of the Windermere String Quartet, Elizabeth Loewen Andrews & Michelle Odorico, violins, Anthony Rapoport, viola and cellist Laura Jones, were seated in the centre of the room with the near capacity audience circled around them. This gave the concert an air of being in a large living room, which is how these works would have been originally heard.
Mozart was 17 when he wrote a String Quartet in B flat (K172).

The members of Windermere Quartet, performing


The Romance of Josef Suk; an E.M.I.C. tribute Reply

Review by Judith Caldwell

Ensemble Made In Canada presented a program entitled The Romance of Josef Suk at their February 10th concert. An appropriate title so close to Valentine’s Day. The four musicians of EMIC are Angela Park, piano, violinist Eliza Lee, , Sharon Wei, viola and cellist Rachel Mercer. They are rapidly gaining recognition as Canada’s premier piano quartet providing master classes, chamber music coaching and lectures at Universities across Canada and the United States. Their musicianship is always outstanding and on Saturday they presented a varied program mostly from the Romantic Era with a more modern Canadian composition as well.

Pinto; West; Park; Roughley; Lee & Mercer


Seager-Scott, with the Hammer Baroque 1

Review by Judith Caldwell
Hammer Baroque’s first concert of 2018 featured harper (not harpist, she said) Julia Seager-Scott playing both the Italian baroque triple harp and clarsach (Gaelic harp). It was a very damp day and Seagar-Scott spent an hour before the concert tuning both harps and had to re tune the clarsach during the concert. This, plus the fact that the concert was held in Melrose United’s church hall, gave the whole concert a casual and intimate feel as though the audience were in someone’s living room even though the room was packed to capacity. This mood suited the music, much of which came from the Irish bardic tradition and was written by Turlough Carolan (1670-1738).

Seager-Scott and her harp; post-Hammer concert