LSM Newswire

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Soundstreams presents the world premiere of Brian Current's opera Airline Icarus

Toronto — Soundstreams concludes its 2013/14 concert series with the world premiere of the opera Airline Icarus, with music by award-winning composer Brian Current and libretto by acclaimed playwright and novelist Anton Piatigorsky, at Ada Slaight Hall in Daniels Spectrum from June 3 to 8. Featuring exquisite poetry and gorgeous music, Airline Icarus is a darkly compelling and sometimes comedic look at the unsettling mix of hubris and technology inherent to contemporary air travel.

Inspired by the story of a 1983 Korean commercial flight that was shot down over the Soviet Union, as well as the myth of Icarus, who flew with waxen wings only to plummet to his death after soaring too close to the sun, Airline Icarus takes place aboard a plane bound for Cleveland. We are invited into the minds of passengers and crew, revealing their relationships and innermost thoughts, as well as the spiritual joy and angst of flying.

Brilliantly staged by innovative British director Tim Albery (The Children’s CrusadePrima Donna), and designed by The Globe and Mail’s Artist of the Year, Teresa Przybylski, Airline Icarus promises to leave audiences pondering our society’s need to reach higher and higher in an endless cycle that can sometimes lead to disastrous consequences.

Current remarks, “I can’t tell you how thrilled I am that the fully staged Maniac Star production of Airline Icarus, directed by Tim Albery, will be presented as the final Soundstreams event of this season. Huge thanks go to Lawrence Cherney, who has been following the development of the piece since the early workshops in Vancouver, and to all those at Soundstreams for making this production possible.”

The composer himself conducts, with a cast that includes soprano Vania Chan, mezzo-soprano Krisztina Szabó, tenor Graham Thomson, and baritones Alexander Dobson and Geoffrey Sirett.

For those interested in learning about developing and presenting new music theatre, Soundstreams’ free Salon 21 at the Gardiner Museum on May 9 at 7:00 pm will feature creative teams from Soundstreams and Tapestry New Opera Works in discussion and performance exploring the challenges and rewards of this process.

Airline IcarusMusic by Brian Current, libretto by Anton Piatigorsky
Produced by Maniac Star, presented by Soundstreams
June 3-8, 2014
Tuesday to Friday at 8pmSaturday at 4pmSunday at 3pm

Ada Slaight Hall, Daniels Spectrum, 585 Dundas St E

Directed by Tim Albery
Music Directed by Brian Current
Set & Costume Design by Teresa Przybylski
Lighting Design by Kimberly Purtell
Stage Managed by Kristin McCollum

Featuring: Dawn Bailey, Vania Chan, Sean Clark, Alexander Dobson, Larissa Koniuk, David Roth, Zorana Sadiq, Geoffrey Sirett, Krisztina Szabó, Jennifer Taverner, Graham Thomson

Post-concert chats after each performance with members of the creative team.

Tickets range from $20-$75 and are available through The Royal Conservatory Box Office at 416-408-0208 or online

Thanks to the generosity of BMO Financial Group, nearly 100 tickets to all 2013/2014 Soundstreams concerts are available for just $20.


In additional to our main stage concert series, Soundstreams also presents Salon 21, a free performance and discussion series at the Gardiner Museum the third Friday of each month.


Led by Artistic Director Lawrence Cherney and Executive Director Chris Lorway, Soundstreams is a Toronto-based music presenter that commissions, develops, and showcases the work of contemporary Canadian composers and their international counterparts.
These innovative collaborations are performed by the finest artists from Canada and around the world, and are presented in an annual concert series, our monthly Salon 21 series at The Gardiner Museum, in national and international tours, and through a variety of education and outreach activities. To mark our 30th anniversary season in 2012/2013, Soundstreams launched SoundMakers, an innovative website and iPad app that invites music lovers to explore Soundstreams’ commissioned works, create new works of their own, and share them with the online community.

Over the past three decades, Soundstreams commissions have added more than 150 works to the musical repertoire worldwide, reflecting a diverse variety of genres and cultural traditions. Projects have included Thomson Highway and Melissa Hui’s Cree operaPimooteewin: The Journey and R. Murray Schafer’s site-specific opera The Children’s Crusade.


Airline Icarus is presented with the support of

Soundstreams acknowledges the support of: Department of Canadian Heritage, Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council,
BMO Financial Group, TD Bank, SOCAN Foundation, Ontario Trillium Foundation, Metcalf Foundation,, The Mary Margaret Webb Foundation, The Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation, The Koerner Foundation, The Charles H. Ivey Foundation, The Catherine and Maxwell Meighen Foundation, RBC Foundation, Hal Jackman Foundation, J.P. Bickell Foundation, The Chawkers Foundation, Ontario Arts Foundation, Classical 96.3 FM, The Grid, Gardiner Museum, Harbord Bakery, Robert Lowrey Piano Experts, and Steam Whistle Brewery.

For more information on Soundstreams concerts, Salon 21 series and education and outreach activities, visit

Stream music, explore and create using SoundMakers at

Please visit and follow @soundstreams on Twitter for behind-the-scenes news, special offers, and advance notice of events.

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