News & Notes

Singing Valentines from La Scena Musicale

La Scena Musicale presents Singing Valentines 2016.

Trained singers will telephone your amour (friend, husband, wife, parents, sister, brother or children) on February 11 to 14 and serenade a favourite love song in your name. The cost is $30 to $60 and it’s a donation to La Scena Musicale, a non-profit charity whose mission is to promote music and the arts through the power of the written word. It produces the magazine La Scena Musicale and the website.

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WMCT Artists Get JUNO Nominations

WMCT Performers Nominated for 2016 Juno Awards
The nominees for the 2016 Juno Awards have been announced, and, once again, the lists are packed with artists who have performed for Music in the Afternoon. In the category of Instrumental Album of the Year, two of the five nominees are WMCT alumni.

Jens Lindemann and Tommy Banks are nominated for “Legacy Live” – Jens played for Music in the Afternoon March 12,

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James Ehnes turns 40





James Ehnes turned 40 on Wednesday, January 27. He was born on Mozart’s birthday, although 220 years later, and, like Mozart, Ehnes displayed considerable musical ability from an early age. On the occasion of his 40th the CBC was able to persuade him to participate in building a “40 photos for 40 years” slide show which is available here:


See CBC Newsletter for more photos and info.

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Romantic music on Valentine’s Day

Romantic music on Valentine’s Day

The superb all-Chopin concert in Toronto on January 15, headlined by our most recent Career Development Award winner and Chopin-interpreter extraordinaire, Charles Richard-Hamelin, will be featured on CBC Radio Two’s In Concert on Sunday, February 14 between 11am and 3pm. The first half of the concert showcased the talented young pianist Tony Yike Yang who, like Charles, placed in the finals of the International Chopin Competition last fall (Tony – 5th and Charles – 2nd).

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And Soprano towards Diva

And Soprano towards Diva

Simone Osborne, after her “surprise” debut at Music in the Afternoon on November 19, 2015, will take another large step forward in her career next year. The Canadian Opera Company has announced that its new season will include a remounting of Harry Somers’s grand opera Louis Riel in a co-production with the National Arts Centre. Composed for the 1967 centennial, this return will celebrate the work’s 50th anniversary, and will help mark the 150th anniversary of Canada’s confederation.

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Mezzo to Soprano

Mezzo to Soprano

“Disappointment to a noble soul is what cold water is to burning metal; it strengthens, tempers, intensifies, but never destroys it.”  Eliza Tabor (1835-1914)

“The pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”  Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

Planning for the WMCT’s November 19th Concert with mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard (Met Opera star, Grammy Award and Richard Tucker Award winner) began two years ago. Artistic Director Simon Fryer suggested Miss Leonard to the Artists Selection Committee as a possibility for the 2015/16 Season.

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CDA Winner Plays Toronto Concert Jan. 15

The Royal Conservatory of Music has announced the addition of a joint recital featuring CDA winner Charles Richard-Hamelin and Tony Yike Yang, both winners at the recent International Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw. The Conservatory concert takes place January 15 at 7:30 pm in Mazzoleni Concert Hall, located in historic Ihnatowycz Hall.
Both artists will perform works by Chopin.
Charles Richard-Hamelin won the WMCT’s $20,000 Career Development Award live competition last April and will play in the Music in the Afternoon 2016-17 season.

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Simone Osborne’s Surprise Debut


Simone Osborne threw her arms in the air and her signature big smile beamed as she greeted the Music in the Afternoon audience in Walter Hall Nov. 19.

Scant 30 hours before Isabel Leonard – due to illness – had cancelled her performance and Simone Osborne had graciously agreed to make her debut with the WMCT.

“The audience was indeed pleasantly surprised’, says Joseph So in his La Scena Musicale review.

“…it was a truly an auspicious WMCT debut.”

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Congratulations Emily D’Angelo

Each year young singers from across Canada – preselected in auditions – are invited to compete in the Centre Stage finals for a spot in the COC Ensemble the following season. Mezzo soprano Emily D’Angelo, this years’ recipient of the WMCT’s $10,000 Centennial Scholarship, won both First Prize ($5,000) and the Audience Choice award ($1500) in the competition held at the Four Seasons Centre Tuesday, Nov. 3. Despite having to appear on crutches –

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