When the Capital Chamber Choir formed in January 2009 with only 16 voices, our desire was to explore the vast array of Canadian choral music available to us, and to present it to our community. Almost one year later, our purpose remains the same. We are thrilled to present tonight two very significant works by Canadian composer Imant Raminsh, along with several arrangements of traditional Advent and Christmas carols.
A particularly unique aspect of our programme tonight, is the musical setting of the Ave Maria and Magnificat texts, both of which have prominent use within the season of Advent, as opposed to Christmas or Epiphany. I can only hope that you will take as much pleasure in hearing Raminsh’s choral settings, as we have had in preparing them for you.
Joining us tonight is Sandra Graham, renowned mezzo-soprano and professor of vocal performance at the University of Ottawa. Words cannot express our gratitude to Sandra for her work and support of this event. What a priviledge it has been to work with a soloist whose career has included collaborations on these particular works with both the CBC Vancouver Orchestra and the Vancouver Chamber Choir.
A big thank you goes out once again to the parish of All Saints’ Anglican Church, and our Rector, Rhondda MacKay. For your unending encouragement, we are truly grateful.
Thank you so much for supporting our ensemble and for being a part of this evening. We wish you all a safe and happy holiday season.
Sara Brooks, Director
Fecit potentiam in brachio suo He has used the power of his arm
dispersit superbos mente cordis sui he has routed the arrogant of heart.
Deposuit potentes de sede, He has pulled down princes from
et exaltavit humiles. their thrones, and raised high the
Esurientes implevit bonis. lowly. He has filled the starving with
Dimisit divites inanes. good things,sent the rich away empty.
Il s’est servi de son bras,
Un Flambeau, Jeannette Isabelle arr. Stephen Hatfield
Il est ne, le divin enfant arr. Donald Patriquin
Huron Carol arr. Eleanor Daley
*Soloist: Cait Hurcomb
Celtic Carol Mark Sirett
Balulalow Mark Sirett
The Virgin Mary Had a Baby Boy arr. Stephen Hatfield
Mezzo-soprano Sandra Graham has established a worldwide reputation with her sumptuous vocalism, which has led to top prizes in the International Vocal Competitions of s'Hertogenbosch in Holland, the Montreal International Competition, and the Toulouse, France International Vocal Competition. Miss Graham has appeared in concert and on the operatic stages of Germany, Canada, United States, Holland and China, and performed and recorded with Helmut Rilling, Christoff Penderecki, Charles Dutoit, and Vladimir Ashkenazy, appearing with the Cleveland Symphony, the Toronto Symphony, the Montreal Symphony, the National Arts Centre Symphony Orchestra, the Oregon Bach Festival, Wigmore Hall, the Canadian Opera company, the Welsh National Opera, the Arizona Opera, and the Deutsche Oper am Rhein.
At Staatstheater Stuttgart, Sandra Graham was a guest artist from 1992 until 2006 where she has performed lead mezzo roles in Humperdink’s Hansel und Gretel, Rossini’s La Cenerentola, Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde, Ariadne auf Naxos by Richard Strauss, and Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana. The distinguished mezzo's recordings include Raminsh's Songs of the Lights with the CBC Vancouver Orchestra, Mozart's Requiem and Haydn's Lord Nelson Mass with the Slovak Philharmonic, and Prevost's Ahimsa with the Toronto Symphony, The Sound of Music with the Cincinnati Pops, and a CBC recording of Harry Somer's "The Fool”. Her recent performances of Respighi's "Il Tramonto" and Vivaldi's "Nissi Dominus" at the Incontro Chamber Music Festival in Italy have been featured in a documentary by Bravo!
Sandra Graham and her husband Ingemar Korjus have toured China where they were invited to give concerts and master classes. Miss Graham teaches voice and directs the Opera Productions ensemble in the School of Music at the University of Ottawa.
Raised in Chatham, Ontario, Sara Brooks received her ARCT in piano performance in 2002 and continued on to complete her BMus at Acadia University in Wolfvlle, NS. During her undergraduate studies, Sara was a member of the Manning Memorial Chapel Choir and took part in their tour of the UK in 2006.
She went on to complete her MMus in Piano Performance in 2008 from the University of Ottawa studying with Prof. Andrew Tunis. In her years here, Sara had the opportunity to study with choral conductor Laurence Ewashko and hopes to pursue further studies in choral conducting.
As well as being founder and director of the Capital Chamber Choir, she currently serves as the Director of Music at All Saints Anglican Church, Sandy Hill, and was also recently appointed Assistant Chorusmaster for Opera Lyra Ottawa.
Eleanor Daley, originaire de Parry Sound en Ontario, est l’une des compositrices pour choeurs les plus connues au Canada. Son œuvre est vaste et ses pièces ont été interprétées partout au Canada, aux États-Unis, en Asie, en Europe et en Afrique du Sud. La musique de Daley a été commandée et interprétée par plusieurs ensembles canadiens de renom dont The Elmer Iseler Singers, The Toronto Children’s Chorus, et The Amadeus Choir. Œuvrant aussi en tant qu’organiste et accompagnatrice, Daley est directrice musicale au Fairlawn Avenue United Church à Toronto et accompagne plusieurs chœurs. Huron Carol tire ses origines d’une mélodie traditionnelle française adapté à un texte écrit par le missionnaire jésuite Jean de Brébeuf en 1643 à Ste Marie parmi les Hurons. La chanson, originalement écrite en dialecte Huron, portait le titre ‘Jesous Ahatonhi’, raconte l’histoire traditionnelle des mages en utilisant une métaphore plus familière au peuple; celle des chefs qui offre en cadeau au nouveau né des peaux de renard et de castor plutôt que de l’or, de la myrrhe et de l’encens
Originaire de Kingston en Ontario, l’expertise musicale de Mark Sirett inclus l’interprétation de l’orgue, la direction chorale et la composition. Il détient un baccalauréat de l’université Queens et un diplôme d’études supérieures du University of Iowa en direction chorale et pédagogie. Ses œuvres ont été interprétées par plusieurs ensembles canadiens de renom incluant le Chœur national des jeunes du Canada, et le Toronto Mendelssohn choir. Sirett a enseigné aux universités Queen’s et Western et à l’université de l’Alberta, et est désormais directeur musical et fondateur du Cantabile Choirs à Kingston, en Ontario. Sa pièce Celtic Carol est basée sur un texte traditionnel irlandais qui date du 16e siècle et Balulalow, l’ancien terme écossais pour berceuse, est accompagné d’un texte anonyme daté 1567 Wedderburn. Sirett complémente les textes à l’aide d’harmonies expressive rappelant les sonorités traditionnelles du 16e siècle.
Le compositeur canadien-français Donald Patiquin est reconnu à travers le Canada et au-delà de l’océan pour ses arrangements chorals et instrumentaux de chansons folkloriques. Sa carrière musicale comprend la composition, l’interprétation et la direction. Patriquin a commencé à composer dès un jeune âge avant de poursuivre des études à l’université Bishop et puis des études supérieures à l’université McGill et à l’université de Toronto sous la tutelle de Jean Papineau-Couture, Istvan Anhalt et John Weinzweig. Patriquin a composé une grande variété d’œuvres, entre autres, des œuvres multi média, des ballets, et des comédies musicales. Parmi ses œuvres chorales les plus connues, on compte Canadian Mosaic, Caribbean Mass, et World Music Suite One.
Au cours des dernières années, Andrew Ager s’est forgé une place importante au sein de la scène musicale canadienne. Ses œuvres chorales, orchestrales, sa musique de chambre et ses pièces pour orgue lui ont permis de se faire connaître au niveau national et international et ont été interprétées par des musiciens de renom tels le quatuor à corde Penderecki et The Elmer Iseler Singers. La musique d’Ager, originaire d’Ottawa, tire des influences de la culture francophone et des caractéristiques qui rappellent les Maritimes. Il a été compositeur en résidence de la Georgian Bay Symphony, du Timothy Eaton Memorial Church et à la cathédrale St-James de Toronto. Plusieurs œuvres d’Andrew Ager seront créés au cours de 2009-2010, entre autres ‘Winter – as Evocation’ (Décember 2009), son opéra ‘Frankenstein’ (Janvier 2010) et Symphonie no. 1 (november 2010).
Stephen Hatfield est connu autant comme éducateur musical que compositeur et sa musique incorpore une multitude de styles et d’influences culturelles. Il a enseigné la musique sous diverses formes en dirigeant des ensembles à vent, des chœurs, des groupes jazz et en enseignant le clavier. Hatfield a composé des œuvres pour des chœurs de tout genre et de toute grosseur qui lui ont valu beaucoup de succès autant au niveau national qu’international. Il a aussi écrit et créé l’opérette inspiré des maritimes, Ann and Seamus. Le texte d’Un Flambeau, Jeannette, Isabelle, basé sur le chant provençal Vénès leou Vieira la Pieoucelle, décrit la scène de la nativité et les traditions des fêtes en Provence.
Program Notes Imant Raminsh was born in Ventspils, Latvia in 1943 and immigrated to Canada in 1948. His musical education took place at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto where achieved an ARCT in violin performance after which he studied at the University of Toronto and the Akademie Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria. Raminsh is renowned as both a conductor and composer and his works have been performed, in addition to many international ensembles, by the Vancouver, Edmonton, and Toronto Symphonies as well as The Vancouver Chamber Choir and the Tafelmusik Baroque Chamber Choir.
Raminsh’s Magnificat has been performed and recorded by the Vancouver Chamber Choir with soloist Sandra Graham. The Magnificat is known in its vernacular translation as the Song of Mary based on Luke 1:46-55, “Magnificat anima mea, Dominum” – “My soul doth magnify the Lord.” In the biblical narrative the Virgin Mary sings the Magnificat in response to her cousin Elisabeth’s proclamation: “Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb,” the prayer offered to Mary earlier in the first chapter of Luke which also serves as the text on which Raminsh based his Ave Maria.
The French-Canadian composer, Donald Patriquin is known throughout Canada and abroad for his choral and instrumental arrangements of traditional folk melodies. His musical career encompasses composition, performance, and conducting. Patriquin’s compositional explorations began at an early age and were expanded during his studies at Bishop’s University, as well as during his graduate education at McGill University and the University of Toronto under the tutelage of Jean Papineau-Couture, Istvan Anhalt, and John
Weinzweig. Patriquin’s compositional output includes works written in multiple styles and genres, including multi media, ballet, and musicals. His most known choral works include Canadian Mosaic, Caribbean Mass, and World Music Suite One among several others.
Andrew Ager has, in recent years, risen as a prominent voice within the Canadian musical landscape. His compositions of choral, organ, orchestral, and chamber works have won him both national and international recognition and have been performed by such
renowned ensembles as the Penderecki String Quartet and The Elmer Iseler Singers. An Ottawa native, Ager’s compositional
language has received influence from the Francophone culture, as well as characteristics reminiscent of the Maritimes, due in part to the time he spent living in Nova Scotia. He has served as composer-in-residence with the Georgian Bay Symphony, Timothy Eaton Memorial Church, and at St. James Cathedral, Toronto. Several of Andrew Ager’s works will be premiered during 2009-2010, including “Winter – as Evocation” (December 2009), as well as his opera “Frankenstein” (January 2010) and Symphony no. 1 (November 2010).
Known as both a music educator and composer, Stephen Hatfield’s music incorporates a multiplicity of styles and cultural influences. He has worked as a teacher in several areas including concert band, stage band, choir, jazz, and keyboard. Hatfield’s music has achieved national and international success. He has composed works for almost all types and sizes of choir and has written and premiered the Maritime-inspired chamber opera titled Ann and Seamus. Un Flambeau, Jeanneatte, Isabelle is based on the traditional Provençal carol Vénès leou Vieira la Pieoucelle. The text describes the traditional nativity scene and the Christmas village characteristic of the seasonal traditions in Provençal.
Originally from Parry Sound, Ontario, Eleanor Daley is one of Canada’s most recognised choral composers. Her output is vast and her works have been performed throughout Canada, the United States, Britain, Asia, Europe, and South Africa. Daley’s music has been performed and commissioned by several noteworthy Canadian Ensembles including The Elmer Iseler Singers, The Toronto Children’s Chorus, and The Amadeus Choir to name only a few. Also active as an organist and accompanist, Daley serves as the Director of Music at Fairlawn Avenue United Church in Toronto and works as a freelance accompanist with several Toronto choirs. The Huron Carol is based on a traditional French melody adapted to the text written in 1643 by the Jesuit Missionary Jean de Brébeuf at St Marie among the Huron. Originally written in the Huron language, the song was titled “Jesous Ahatonhia,” in which the traditional images of the three Magi were replaced by the more familiar metaphor of Chiefs who bring the newborn child gifts of fox and beaver pelt rather than gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
A native of Kingston, Ontario, Mark Sirett’s musical expertise encompasses organ performance, choral conducting, and composition. He holds undergraduate degree from Queens University and graduate degrees in choral conducting and pedagogy from the University of Iowa. His works have been performed by several eminent Canadian ensembles including the National Youth Choir of Canada and The Toronto Mendelssohn Choir. Sirett has taught at the Queen’s University and the Universities of Alberta and Western Ontario. He is currently the music director and founder of the Cantabile Choirs based in Kingston, Ontario. His Celtic Carol is based on a traditional sixteenth century Irish text “Sweet was the song, the song the virgin sang.” Balulalow, the old Scottish term for “lullaby,” is accompanied by an anonymous text dated from 1567 Wedderburn. Sirrett complements the text with expressive harmonies reminiscent of the traditional sonorities of the 16th century.
Notes: Jamie Loback
Imant Raminsh est né en 1943 à Ventspils en Lethonie et immigra au Canada en 1948. Il étudia au Royal Conservatory of Music à Toronto où il obtint son ARCT en violon puis poursuivi ses études à l’université de Toronto et à l’Akademie Mozarteum à Salzburg en Autriche. Raminsh est reconnu tant comme chef que compositeur et ses œuvres ont été interprétées par les orchestres symphoniques de Vancouver, d’Edmonton et de Toronto, le Vancouver Chamber Choir, le Tafelmusik Baroque Chamber Choir et plusieurs autres ensembles sur le plan international.
Le Magnificat, connu en vernaculaire comme le Chant à Marie est basé sur un passage biblique de Luc 1 :46-55, ‘Magnificat anima mea, Dominum’ – ‘Mon âme exalte le Seigneur’. Dans la narration biblique la vierge Marie chante le Magnificat en réponse aux paroles de sa cousine Elisabeth qui proclame ‘Vous êtes bénie parmi toutes les femmes et Jésus le fruit de vos entrailles est béni,’. Cette prière offerte à Marie sert aussi de texte à l’Ave Maria de Raminsh