Mar 15, 2019

Passion for the Passion: Thoughts on singing Bach’s St Matthew Passion

by Carrie Loring, soprano

I was very young when I first heard about Bach’s St Matthew Passion. My mother had sung it as a teenager in The Hamilton Bach Choir. It was performed in English. She loved this Passion with all her heart and would try to explain to me the meaning of singing in this great work, with double choir, double orchestra, and soloists. She described the story as told by the singers. She spoke particularly of how the choir would become the crowd: the faithful followers or angry mob. I would listen as she talked herself to tears. I’m not sure I understood at that time, but I knew enough to listen. This obviously was special to her.

Skip ahead many years to 1996. I had been singing with the Tafelmusik Chamber Choir for four years. My Mum was bursting with pride that I was a part of this distinguished group. That season, it was announced that Tafelmusik would be presenting the St Matthew Passion. My Mum was ecstatic and could barely contain herself. “I can’t wait for you to sing this work, and I can’t wait to come and hear it!”, she told me. I guess I would have the chance to experience what moved her so many years earlier.

Tafelmusik Chamber Choir, circa 2001

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Mar 7, 2019

US Tour 2019: Update from violinist Cristina Zacharias

Halfway into our 2019 US tour the theme seems to be snow. The sunny view from my hotel in Boulder, Colorado this morning is of gorgeous snow-covered hills. The view on our first tour day was a bit less welcome — the snowstorm in Toronto stayed with us for almost all of our drive to State College, Pennsylvania, and added a couple of hours to the already long trip.

Feb 20, 2019

Alison Mackay invites you to Tales of Two Cities

Alison Mackay, double bass and program creator. Photo by Bruce Zinger
Alison Mackay, double bass and program creator. Photo by Bruce Zinger

Feb 14, 2019

Behind the Musik: Tales of Two Cities

Performance of Tales of Two Cities from 2016. Photo by Bruce Zinger
Photo: Bruce Zinger