17th Season: 2011-2012

Sunday, May 6, 2012

“There is no true love, save in suffering.” Sounds Russian, doesn’t it? These are actually the words of Miguel de Unamuno, a Spanish essayist, poet, playwright and philosopher. Though Spain and Russia are geographically and culturally very far apart , there is a virtually identical saying about Russians who are “only happy when they are unhappy.” Considered side by side, how does the music of each country complement the other? Soprano Joni Henson, baritone Peter McGillivray and mezzo soprano Leigh-Anne Martin (OFF CENTRE DEBUT) help us find out!

Sunday, March 25, 2012
Ah! Sweet Mystery of Life – Inaugural American Salon!

> Please note the programme change for our next salon.

The mystery of life is indeed sweetened with the fascinatin’ rhythms of Bernstein, Copland, Gershwin, Kern and Barber. In true Off Centre fashion we’ve had to re-route our musical travel plans, and though we will not make it to sunny Italy as planned, we do still mean to journey South, in the great copmany of tenors Keith Klassen (OFF CENTRE DEBUT) and Rocco Rupolo (OFF CENTRE DEBUT), baritone Giles Tomkins, soprano Ilana Zarankin, and pianists Inna Perkis and Boris Zarankin.

Special guest: Jimmy Roberts – composer, pianist, entertainer from New York, composer of the second-longest running Off Broadway musical in theater history, “I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change”.


Sunday, October 30, 2011

Shostakovich’s only Cello Sonata was composed in 1934, only two years before Lady Macbeth of Mtensk gave Soviet censors the opportunity to publicity denounced Shostakovich as an enemy of the state. Twenty five years later, while he was being hounded to join the Communist Party, Shastakovich composed the Satires song cycle, setting five dangerously satirical poems by Sasha Cherny. Again, the censors were up in arms. To save himself, he joined the Party – a questionable move that ultimately allowed Shastakovich to keep pushing the compositional “envelope”. From there, our program reminds 100 years to Tchaikovsky’s 1879 opera Eugene Onegin based on Pushkin’s novel in verse. But who was Onegin? A careless, selfish cynic sacrificing the promise of young love and loyal friendship, or a man who could not recognize happiness because it was just too close? Uncovering the mysteries of a character who still resonates with audiences today are soprano Lindsay Barrett, mezzo soprano Erica iris Huang, tenor Ryan Harper, baritone Geoffrey Sirett (OFF CENTRE DEBUT), cellist Winona Zelenka, and our very own Inna Perkis and Boris Zarankin at the piano.


Sunday, February 5, 2012

Robert Schumann once described Schubert’s sonatas as being of “heavenly length” and his B flat major sonata (written in the final year of his life) is truly a piece of heavenly contemplation. But Schubert also wrote intensely dense and concise lieder – those one-page wonders! – that show off a kind of 19th Century musical intensity and humour that we’ve come to think of as twittering. Soprano Charlene Santoni, baritone Vasil Garvanliev, and violinist Jacques Israelievitch, joining Inna Perkis and Boris Zarankin in contemplation and in twittering.

Our Feb.5 Annual Schubertiad concert will also be launching Boris Zarankin’s exciting new recording of Schubert Sonatas on the DOREMI label. Boris will be signinig copies of his new CD following the concert. View new album >>

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