The Royal Canadian College of Organists presents; Changing Tides: Halifax Organ Festival
Various Events from Sun, July 7th - Thur, July 11th, 2019
The Royal Canadian College of Organists holds an annual festival each summer, and in 2019, it’s coming to Halifax! While Canada’s organists gather for professional development, the public gets the chance to hear some of the country’s finest musicians performing a wide range of repertoire, including some premier performances in various Halifax churches. Check out the full schedule at changingtides2019.ca. There are eight concerts and recitals open to the public.
Sun, Jul 7 at 4pm
Changing Tides pays tribute to the late organist and choir director, David MacDonald, in this musical tribute by his friend Shimon Walt (cello), his sister, Lorna MacDonald (soprano) and Peter-Anthony Togni (organ) who has composed a new piece, Elegy for David, that will premiere at RCCO 2019. Originally from Cape Breton, David MacDonald attended Dalhousie University and McGill, where he obtained his Master of Music degree in organ performance. He later studied in Paris with Marie-Claire Alain and Daniel Roth, returning to Nova Scotia where he was Director of Music at both Rockingham United and First Baptist Church. He commissioned and premiered new works for organ, and performed the complete organ works of J.S. Bach, winning the 1999 East Coast Music Award for his recording, David MacDonald Plays the Casavant Organ. Two scholarships bear his name - the RCCO (Halifax) David MacDonald Organ Scholarship and the David MacDonald Bach Scholarship at the Maritime Conservatory of the Performing Arts. The Marvin Duchow Music Library at McGill University is the home of his Organ Music Collection. Diverse Canadian organs are recorded for posterity through the release of eight acclaimed CBC-issued recordings. David MacDonald was just age 51 at the time of his death. Joining in the performance will be Jennifer Jones (violin).
Mon, Jul 8 at 8pm
Quebec City born organist and composer, Denis Bédard has been organist and music director at Holy Rosary Cathedral in Vancouver since 2001. He’s performed across Canada, in the US, in France and in Brazil.
Tue, Jul 9 at 10:30am
Now living in Newfoundland where is Artistic Director of the St. John’s Choir, the Philharmonic Choir of the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra, the Director of Music and Organist at St. Michael and All Angels Church, and a member of the Artistic Faculty for Atlantic BoyChoir, Stephen Candow has worked in Ireland and throughout Canada.
Alan Klaus is Associate Professor of Trumpet and Horn at Memorial University. He’s given performances throughout the US, Canada, China and is developing a smartphone app that will help musicians incorporate the benefits of contextual interference into their practice routines.
Tue, Jul 9 at 3pm
Dr. Matheson has commissioned and premiered several new works for organ, and is currently Director of Music at Port Nelson United Church in Burlington, ON and the conductor of the Haldimand Chorairs. He’s released a solo organ CD, Acclamations: Canadian Organ Music.
Wed, Jul 10 at 8pm
Organized Crime is the organ duo that grew from the friendship of organists Rachel Mahon and Sarah Svendsen, who met at the Unviersity of Toronto. Their programs include a combination of classic organ repertoire and pop music arranged for the instrument. Unlike any other organ concert, this performance must be seen as well as heard and appeals to everyone (note: there will be costume changes and dazzling shoes!).
Thu, Jul 11 at 1:30pm
Born and raised in Halifax, Donald Hunt studied at McGill University with John Grew, and now lives in Victoria where he is Director of Music at Christ Church Cathedral. He’s been broadcast live on BBC radios 3 and 4, including playing for the Scottish celebration of Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee.
Thu, Jul 11 at 4:15pm
Based in Vienna, Canadian organist Craig Humber hails from Corner Brook, Newfoundland, and studied physics before transferring into music studies. He’s been featured on live broadcasts by the CBC and German Radio, and regularly concertizes on historic organs (Baroque and Romantic) in Germany, Austria, Holland and Canada.
Thu, Jul 11 at 8pm
Organist, composer and improviser, Rachel Laurin is from Quebec, and has performed organ recitals throughout Canada, the US and Europe. She’s recorded more than twelve albums and soloist and with ensembles, and premiered new works with orchestras. An Associate Composer of the Canadian Music Centre, she has composers more than a hundred works for solo instruments, voice, instrumental ensembles and orchestra. A feature-length program devoted to her work as a composer and organist, titled “Rachel’s Children”, was broadcast by American Public Media’s PIPEDREAMS presented by Michael Barone, in October 2012. Rachel Laurin has been a member of the “Comité d’Honneur de la Fédération Francophone des Amis de l’Orgue” (FFAO) since 2016. For more information visit www.rachellaurin.com