5 at The First – “Romantic Expressions” Reply

Review by Judith CaldwellreviewerJudith

Word has gotten out about how good these concerts are and a capacity crowd came out on a cold January night to hear a very accomplished sextet play Brahms and Tchaikovsky. The evening began with a group of teenaged players called the Bel Canto Strings Academy Chamber Orchestra directed by Jennifer Spleit-Landry.  They played the theme from Schindler’s List by the brilliant John Williams, and Brahms Academic Festival Overture. More…


“MESSIAH”, performed by Oakville Ensemble Reply

Review by Judith Caldwell

Dec. 8th, ‘12

Oakville Ensemble’s fourth annual presentation of The Messiah took place on Saturday. The Ensemble is a small choir of 16 singers plus soloists and is led by Maestro Stephane Potvin.  Sometimes they sing a capella but this evening they were accompanied by a nine piece orchestra of strings, trumpets, continuo and timpani.

The Oakville Ensemble in  performance

The Oakville Ensemble in performance


The Kruger Brothers – in concert locally Reply

Review by Tony KilgannonreviewerTony2

Like a sun coming up over a morning horizon; the words “KRUGER BROTHERS” have lately been looming into view in my little world. The buzz around this music trio has become very loud, and the people for whom I have the most respect musically, are the people who have been most enthusiastic about these guys. Their recognition by the ‘Blue Ridge’ category is but one of the accolades this trio have received.

Kruger Brothers



H.P.O. – one “Wicked”-ly marvellous evening 3

Review by Danny GaisinreviewerDJG

               For someone committed to attend about 220 cultural events per year; anticipating finales becomes a dogma. However, there are the rare theatrical occasions where this scribe has even re-attended; or concerts so perfect that we dread the obligatory encore. Last evening’s Hamilton Philharmonic’s ‘Pops’ presentation – “Wicked Divas” was such an event!

The wicked divas

Parker, Kraemer & Rozek; the NOT-SO “Wicked divas and their leader


Renaissance Christmas performed by the Oakville Ensemble Reply

Review by Judith Caldwell

On Saturday evening at Grace Lutheran Church, the Oakville Ensemble gave us a Christmas Concert of Renaissance music sung à cappella.  The concert was taped for later airing by Cogeco™.  It will be aired several times before Christmas.
As in other disciplines, the Renaissance was a time of innovation and change for music.  There was a demand for serious music as entertainment, not just for liturgy, and musical education led to the growth of those educated amateurs who wished to play publicly.

Director Potvin & the Oakville Ensemble singers


“5 @ the First”; round two of the season Reply

Review by Judith Caldwell

For their second concert in the third series of 5 at the First, Rachel Mercer playing cello and Angela Parkon piano shared a concert of “Contrasts: Alone and Together”. The evening began with Mercer playing Johann Sebastian Bach’s very familiar series of six Suites for solo cello known as Suite No 1 in G major.  This is a very intimate piece of music which perfectly suited the venue.

Mercer & Park; post-concert