Wherever one wants to go, whatever one wants to accomplish, there is always a way one has to choose, a method one has to apply, and work that needs doing to get there. Sometimes we get there fast, sometimes only via detours of the geographical kind or another variety.
If a name is Via Salzburg, we can assume that the current situation has come to fruition from or involving Salzburg. This is certainly true about a chamber orchestra from Toronto called, you guessed it, Via Salzburg. We have reported on this extraordinary little orchestra with its artistic director Mayumi Seilern quite a few times over the years. Their fan base is growing only slowly, which is astounding, considering the immense talents that perform a series of concerts every year in Toronto’s finest smaller venue, the Glenn Gould Studio in the home of the local CBC building on Front Street.
The last concert of the season was to feature all 4 Seilern sisters, who come to join their sister Mayumi at least once a year via plane from various parts of Germany, where they hold great positions as musicians. But one of them could not make it and was replaced by a Rumanian friend who came to us via Hamburg.
Many vias, same goal, namely good music; and the result is, as always, great music!
While it is a bit long ago to actually review the concert itself, it is good to know that the next season is prepared and ready for your inspection on the websitewww.viasalzburg.com .
In October the series starts with "Conversations", continues in December with "Festivity", goes on in February with "Movement", in April with "Gathering" and closes in June with "Clarity".
In this last concert Dennis James returns with his magnificent Glass Armonica, which creates a sound so pure, if heard once it will never be forgotten again.
These well-spaced concerts leave lots of room for other events of your favourite venues, and you will not regret having arrived.
Alicier Arts Chamber Music
Much like Via Salzburg the much younger and vivacious Alicier Arts group of musicians has similar goals and purposes, but is not as established yet as the nine year old Via Salzburg. Founded only in February of 2006 we have attend two of their concerts and found them interesting, charming, ambitious, heart-warming and enlightening. We heard some extremely professional and even seasoned performers, as well as some less professional beginners. We were delighted with old and new music, and even heard a world premier.
It is true that young musicians are having a difficult time establishing themselves because there are only so many platforms for them to showcase so many of them. The old adage: "If no one hires you then simply create opportunity for yourself" has become more important than ever for young artists, certainly in this country. It takes a lot of perseverance to "make it big" in the arts and entertainment scene.
This young and enthusiastic group could become another Via Salzburg, if given an opportunity to continue from their home base of St. Georges on the Hill, a beautiful little Anglican Church, surrounded by very manicured grounds and with wonderful light flooding through many stained glass windows, some older, some quite new and modern. What better place to celebrate life and the spirit of man through music than in a church, and this one is a jewel!
We really wish that this merry group of dedicated artists and their friends make it via this spiritually spiked place of worship into your hearts, as they have into mine. It takes less than you might think to help young people succeed and give them opportunity to do what they like to do most: keep classical music alive! Go to their website atwww.alicierarts.com and learn more about these wonderful young musicians and the contributions they want to make to the world through their art.
Remember, what we remember of any civilisation long after it has disappeared from ravages of war and weather, is what artists and artisans have created. That is what we admire and revere, not what politicians and soldiers have destroyed. It is in the arts that we find freedom, as Friedrich Schiller pronounced centuries ago.
It is fine to support the big orchestras and revel in their near perfection, but one needs to get there first. Young people are our future and they deserve our help, especially the artists, because we need them to keep us sane. Via their art we will have a better and easier life, lives with occasional sighs of relieve and pleasure, when we can forget our day-to-day troubles.
I hope to see you during the next season in the church on the hill!
After the 10th season every volunteer and the founders of Opera York got busy organizing the gala to end 10 years of growth. But instead of a review of the last 10 years, which we hoped for hearing the title of this festivity, Jewels of the Opera, we were treated to a mainly Italian flavoured evening from start to finish. A fabulous multi course meal with the best risotto I ever had, three Italian tenors, a live auction of expensive items, including a Vespa, offered in a loud staccato voice over dessert, all contributed to the lively Italian atmosphere.
Of course the founders, Joan Sax and Philip Trow, thanked all the many people who had a hand in making the opera such a success, but stressed also that money was an ongoing concern, and that like so many other art organisations, regardless of how successful they are, under-funding remains a problem. Thus professional auctioneers were asked to participate and indeed raised many thousands more dollars than expected.
Other funds were raised through a silent auction of many lovely items and a raffle.
Every local politician past and present of the Vaughan area appeared to have been there and a few more of great importance, like Julio Fantino and his wife Livianna as honorary patrons, who where especially welcomed and honoured. Mr. Fantino in turn participated vigorously and bid to win for himself a lovely Muskoka vacation for a fair price.
For the 10 year young opera, which came to be still here via the efforts of so many people of good will and skill, this evening was the culmination of incredible fervour. Joan Sax and Philip Trow are to be commended for their stamina in preserving an art form through their programming in the vast community above Toronto. Geoffrey Butler, who ran us through the program, would have been a lot busier if all the artists who performed over the years had been there as well. I am sure some of them would have loved to contribute to such an evening.
For the next season you can inform yourself atwww.operayork.com . We are looking forward to which road any and all of these organisations are taking. No matter which via they chose, we shall be there to cheer them on and hope to see some of you there to help us!
Until next time
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