Mar 8, 2017

Karina Gauvin brings star power to Tafelmusik’s The Baroque Diva, March 23 to 26, 2017 at Koerner Hall

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Program Includes Canada 150 World Premiere by Colin Labadie

 “Karina Gauvin has one of the most beautiful voices in the business – a glinting crystal blade sheathed in velvet… In Handel she’s peerless …” — The Arts Desk (UK)

Toronto, March 8, 2017 … The outstanding, internationally celebrated Canadian soprano Karina Gauvin makes her long-awaited return to the Tafelmusik stage as guest soloist in The Baroque Diva, March 23 to 26, 2017 — a program of music that is beautifully suited to her exceptional vocal virtuosity. Rodolfo Richter is guest director and violin soloist for these concerts, which include orchestral works by baroque composers, and the world premiere of Entwined: Sesquie for Canada’s 150th, a new work by Colin Labadie.

Karina Gauvin’s 2010 program of opera arias with Tafelmusik “demonstrated again that she is one of the best Handel singers on the planet – and that she has mastered Vivaldi(The Globe and Mail). For her highly anticipated March concerts Gauvin returns to the music of these baroque masters, performing virtuoso arias from three Handel operas — Ezio, Alcina, and Rinaldo, and O qui coeli, an exquisite motet by Vivaldi that perfectly shows off the pure and luminous quality of her voice.

The program opens with Labadie’s Entwined, composed for Tafelmusik. In his note for the work Labadie writes, “Canada as a country is only 150 years old, but the shared history between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples goes back much farther. The interwoven layers of Entwined are meant to suggest how our stories are (and will continue to be) diverse yet deeply connected, and how we all have a role to play in reconciliation.”

Rodolfo Richter’s “remarkably light and fluid, yet expressive” playing style (Musical Toronto) will be showcased in Telemann’s programmatic concerto for violin in A Major, “The Frog,” and Pisendel’s Concerto da Chiesa in G Minor. Rounding out the program are an orchestral concerto by Telemann and Pisendel’s Sonata da Chiesa in C Minor.


Recognized for her work in the baroque repertoire, soprano Karina Gauvin also sings Mahler, Britten, and the music of the late-20th and 21st centuries with equal success. In the 2016-17 Season Ms. Gauvin will make operatic appearances with the Teatro Real Madrid in Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito, and the Theatre du Champs-Elysées in Handel’s Rodelinda, as well as appear with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, National Arts Centre Orchestra, and a tour with the Boston Early Music Festival. Karina Gauvin’s extensive discography — over 30 titles — has won numerous awards, including a “Chamber Music America Award” for her Fête Galante album with pianist Marc-André Hamelin, and several Opus Prizes. Other recent recording projects include a European tour and a recording of Handel’s Ariodante for EMI Virgin Classics, and Britten’s Les Illuminations with Les Violons du Roy under the direction of Jean-Marie Zeitouni. Ms. Gauvin has performed frequently with Tafelmusik in Toronto, as well as on tours and recordings.

British/Brazilian violinist Rodolfo Richter appears as soloist and director with, among others, Academia Montis Regalis (Italy), Bach Collegium San Diego (US), Barokkanerne (Norway), B'Rock (Belgium), Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, English Concert, and Academy of Ancient Music (UK) in concert halls around the world. He is also very active as a chamber musician, and is a member of the acclaimed Palladian Ensemble. His extensive discography includes concertos by Bach, Telemann, and Vivaldi, and sonatas by Handel, Petersen, Tartini, Erlebach, and Veracini. Rodolfo Richter is professor of baroque violin at the Royal College of Music in London, and director of the Early Music Course and Festival at the Oficina de Música de Curitiba in Brazil.

Audience members are invited to join soprano Ann Monoyios for a free pre-concert chat one hour before each performance.

Karina Gauvin’s appearance with Tafelmusik is generously sponsored by John & Margaret Catto.

Listing information:

Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra presents The Baroque Diva with guest artists soprano Karina Gauvin and violin soloist/director Rodolfo Richter.

Dates & Times: Thu Mar 23, Fri Mar 24, Sat Mar 25, 2017 at 8pm. Sun Feb 26 at 3:30pm

Ticket Prices: Reg: Start at $49 | 65+: Start at $40 | 35 & Under: Start at $26

Venue: Koerner Hall, Telus Centre, 273 Bloor St. West, Toronto 

Box Office: Koerner Hall, Weston Family Box Office: (416)

Full program:

Labadie Entwined: Sesquie for Canada's 150th
Telemann Concerto in A Major for violin, “The Frog”
Handel Aria "La mia costanza" from Ezio
Telemann Concerto in D Minor for 2 oboes, bassoon & strings
Vivaldi Motet “O qui coeli”
Pisendel Sonata da chiesa a 5 in C Minor
Handel Aria “Ah, mio cor” from Alcina
Pisendel Concerto da chiesa a 5 in G Minor
Handel Aria "Furie terribili" from Rinaldo


Colin Labadie commission funded by / financé par:


Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra, founded as a registered charity in 1979, is one of the world’s leading period performance ensembles. In January 2017 the orchestra appointed violinist Elisa Citterio as Music Director, succeeding Jeanne Lamon, who stepped down in 2014 following a remarkable 33-year tenure that began in 1981. Lamon continues her association with Tafelmusik as Music Director Emerita. The Tafelmusik Chamber Choir, under the direction of Ivars Taurins, was formed in 1981 to complement the Orchestra. The orchestra performs some 80 concerts each year at home in Toronto, and travels extensively around the world. The choir and orchestra’s multi-platform recording label Tafelmusik Media was launched in January 2012, along with the Watch and Listen site. Tafelmusik’s discography of 80-plus CDs has been recorded on the Sony Classical, CBC Records, Analekta and Tafelmusik Media labels. Since 1991, Tafelmusik has received nine JUNO Awards and a Grammy Award nomination. Tafelmusik is the Baroque Orchestra-in-Residence at the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto and operates annual artist training programs, Tafelmusik Baroque Summer Institute and Tafelmusik Winter Institute. Managing Director William Norris joined the Tafelmusik team in 2015.


Tafelmusik wishes to thank the following for their generous support: RBC Emerging Artists Project for its generous support of Tafelmusik Winter Institute; BMO Financial Group, RBC Foundation, TD Bank Group, John and Margaret Catto, Margaret and Jim Fleck, Great West Life, London Life, Canada Life, Hal Jackman Foundation, KPMG, Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council, Classical 96.3 FM and NOW Magazine. Tafelmusik is a proud partner of the Bloor St. Culture Corridor.

Media contact:
Luisa Trisi, Big Picture Communications, (416) 456-0499 |
427 Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON M5S 1X7

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High‐resolution photos of Tafelmusik and guest artists are available for download here.