Thursday, August 1, 2013

National Youth Orchestra of Canada

Way back when I had graduated from McGill and had just arrived back home in British Columbia, I was riding the ferry from Vancouver to Victoria and started having the strangest feelings of deja vu. I kept catching glimpses of people I recognized, but couldn't quite place. Then finally I ran into someone I knew fairly well, a fellow McGill student. Talking to her, I found out what was going on. It was the National Youth Orchestra traveling on the ferry for the next concert in their annual tour. A hefty percentage of them were, of course, from McGill, probably the finest music school in Canada.

The Globe and Mail, as Canada's national newspaper, occasionally hits the nail right on the head. Here is their review this week of the National Youth Orchestra that captures what is so great about this tradition.

Here is an excerpt from the Globe's review of the NYO's Toronto concert:
One of the anomalies of the “dying” art of classical music is that every year, music schools the world over graduate thousands of classical players, people in their teens and 20s who missed all the articles about the demise of the classics, and find themselves drawn to the delights and mysteries of this unique art.
Yep, that's true enough. I still worry that all these brilliant young musicians are going to find it very, very hard to reach an audience. Just to hear how good these young musicians are, here is the second movement, the Allegretto scherzando from Bartók's Concerto for Orchestra in a performance from last year's tour.

If you have the evening free, tonight they are playing in Ottawa. Here is the schedule for the rest of the month.

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