Our third biennial Young Composers Development Programme gave us the perfect opportunity to discover new and exciting choral works and to support and encourage the enthusiastic young composers.
First on the calendar, though, was preparing for the beautiful acoustic of the Holy Rosary Cathedral for our fall concert. Our fall retreat got us off to a good start.
The programme, performed on October 30th, included “Missa Rigensis” written by the Latvian composer Uģis Prauliņš, and Fauré’s Requiem. We were lucky enough to have the Shaughnessy Heights United Church Choir and Roy Campbell, organist, join us for this portion of the programme. The concert finished with Ēriks Ešenvalds’ Amazing Grace, with the solo beautifully performed by Patti Fletcher.
Our Christmas season was light that year, with a single concert at Shaughnessy Heights on December 19th. I think we all appreciated the break at that crazy time!
The deadline for entering the Young Composers Development Programme was December 30th and ffteen composers enrolled. On January 25, Phoenix gave a workshop at Shaughnessy Heights in which various choral styles, approaches and textures were discussed and demonstrated, and each student received a booklet of examples. The composers then had until March 7th to submit their compositions.
On Saturday, April 2 Phoenix held another workshop where we read the student compositions. Each student was asked to briefly introduce his or her work and explain its inspiration, structure, etc. to the choir and fellow participants. Following the read-through, there was a discussion by the choir and Ramona of the music’s strengths and weaknesses, ideas for further development and possible changes to make the work more successful. A recording of the workshop was made.
When April 30 arrived, there were seven compositions included in the programme for “Revelations III”. The composers who were selected were Matthew Emery, Trevor Hoffmann, Adam Zolty, Matthew Smith, Winston Lanyon, Chris Sivak, and Naithan Bosse. The compositions were warmly received and the compositional styles showed remarkable range and variety. The audience was very appreciative and enjoyed being given the opportunity to vote for their personal favourite (the audience chose Matthew Emery's piece as the night's winner!) And, that wrapped up another season for Phoenix!
In 2010/2011, Phoenix was…
If you're enjoying the Phoenix History Project, please be sure to like our Facebook page or leave us your email address so we can keep in touch with you in the future. Season 29 - 2011/2012 will be posted next weekend!