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

Download the Program Notes and Program Listing and Image Credits

Program Notes
by Alison Mackay

The first Toronto performances in early 2016 of Tales of Two Cities: The Leipzig-Damascus Coffee House coincided with the arrival of many newcomers to Canada fleeing from their homeland in Syria. Escaping terrible conflict, they brought with them a rich cultural inheritance which over the centuries had exerted a strong influence on the artistic life of Europe. In a week's time we will be sharing our exploration of the meeting places of eighteenth-century European and Syrian music, literature, and art with our neighbours to the south in a US tour which concludes in Frank Gehry's magnificent Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los  Angeles. We are grateful for the opportunity to launch our journey with a remounting of the program in Koerner Hall for our audiences in Toronto.

For centuries, both coffee and music have been celebrated for their stimulating properties and their restorative powers. The development of the coffee house in the cities of the Middle East and Europe offered citizens the opportunity to experience fine music making and coffee drinking at the same time. This was particularly true in the German city of Leipzig and the Syrian capital of Damascus in the eighteenth century.

Read Full Story
Jan 16, 2019

Remembering Neil Crory

By Ivars Taurins

"Neil Crory?” the general populous may ask “… who was he?”

Neil Crory

To those of us who had the good fortune to work with him, he was the master weaver who helped create the rich cultural fabric of Canada and the CBC.