LSM Newswire

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Toronto Summer Music Festival Enjoys 25% Increase in Attendance


The 2011 Toronto Summer Music Festival (TSM) has just wrapped up its sixth and most successful year — the first under the artistic leadership of Douglas McNabney. 90-plus Canadian and international musicians converged on Toronto for 13 mainstage concerts exploring the theme Beethoven and the Romantics. Festival concerts attracted a record number of patrons who attended performances at Koerner Hall, The Royal Conservatory of Music, and at Walter Hall at the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto.

TSM is now firmly established with a growing and devoted audience. The 2011 Festival drew an unprecedented number of concert-goers: six of the 13 concerts were sold out and overall attendance increased by almost 25% compared to 2010.

2011 marked a turning point in the Festival’s history as Douglas McNabney inaugurated his tenure as Artistic Director. McNabney ushered in several innovations, including a new fellowship program for young artists at the Academy; an increase in the number of concerts at Koerner Hall — from two in 2010 to five this year — broadening the scope and reach of the Festival; an earlier concert start-time of 7:30 PM; the introduction of a new Friday (Late) Night Experiment; and performances by Academy Fellows at the Ottawa Chamber Music Festival and the Colours of Music Festival in Barrie.

“The success of this year’s festival is gratifying – I think we exceeded expectations in almost all respects. I was particularly pleased with the energy of the Mentors and Fellows concerts and the enthusiastic public response to the redesigned Academy programs. I’m already looking forward to next year!” says McNabney.

The Festival attracted some of the most renowned artists in the world of chamber music for performances at Koerner Hall, including pianist Kirill Gerstein, baritone Sir Thomas Allen with pianist Joseph Middleton; pianist Menahem Pressler with the Leipzig Quartet; and the Nash Ensemble.

Other Festival highlights included sold-out performances of Beethoven’s complete Piano Trios by theGryphon Trio over two nights; concerts by the Vienna Piano Trio; a performance by pianist André Laplante with Jonathan Crow, the newly-appointed concertmaster of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and the TSO’s Principal Viola Teng Li; the Zebra Trio; pianists Anton Kuerti and Michael McMahon; violinists Mark Fewer, Erika Raum and Ian Swensen; cellists Christopher Costanza and Antonio Lysy; and soprano Nathalie Paulin. Two extraordinary young singers, soprano Kiera Duffy and tenorNicholas Phan, made their Toronto debuts at the Festival.

TSMF 2011 introduced audiences to the next generation of excellent musicians at a performance by theNational Youth Orchestra of Canada at Koerner Hall and regular Wednesday and Friday night TSM Mentors and Fellows concerts at Walter Hall. As well, several free Academy Outreach concerts were performed in other venues including the North York Central Library and the Church of the Redeemer.

The 2012 Toronto Summer Music Festival and Academy will run July 17 to August 11.

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