Concert November 17 – Echo Lau, Ravel and Rose Cousins

Rose CousinsOur season of Renewal continues under the leadership of new music director Mark Shapiro with a concert November 17th that features rising piano star Echo Lau, music by Ravel and Nielsen – and a special guest appearance by PEI’s own Rose Cousins.

Under the direction of our new conductor Mark Shapiro, the PEI Symphony Orchestra presents “Echo Lau, Ravel and Rose Cousins”, Sunday November 17th 2:30pm, at the Homburg Theatre of the Confederation Centre of the Arts.

Our program for this concert:

  • Piano Concerto in G Major, by Ravel and featuring pianist Echo Lau
  • Symphony No. 4 – The Inextinguishable, by Carl Nielsen
  • Select works by Rose Cousins, with orchestrations featuring the PEI Symphony

 

 

On November 17th the PEI Symphony welcomes special guest Rose Cousins as she performs her music with the orchestra.  Originally from Kensington PEI, Rose has established herself as a leading Canadian singer-songwriter on the international stage.  Rose has released three albums as well as singles and recordings in collaboration with artists across Canada and the world, garnering a Juno, 2 Canadian Folk Music Awards, 3 Nova Scotia Music Awards, 3 PEI Music Awards, and a Polaris Prize long list nomination. The spirit of collaboration is in everything Cousins does. Her firm roots in two vibrant music communities – Eastern Canada and Boston Massachusetts – fuel her music with an evolving cast of talented fellow artists.   Equally unmistakable is the devastating emotions her music evokes. Her songs have appeared in climatic scenes in television shows including Greys Anatomy, Rookie Blue, Heartland, Hope for Wildlife and Drop Dead Diva.

Another highlight of the November concert will be the performance of Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G Major by PEI’s young master pianist Echo Lau, the recent winner of the Suzanne Brenton Award given each year to deserving advanced students who have performed exceptionally in the PEI Kiwanis Provincial Music Festival.  Ravel’s hyperactive rhythms and seductive harmonies are a perfect reflection of the Gatsby-style Jazz Age during which this music was written.

The November program also features the exciting Symphony No. 4 “The Inextinguishable” by Danish composer Carl Nielsen.   Composed against the backdrop of the First World War, this dramatic symphony traces a challenging and ultimately inspiring journey of struggle, hope and redemption.  The symphony famously features a rousing “battle” between sets of timpani.  The name does not apply to the symphony itself, but rather to “that which is inextinguishable” as Nielsen explains, “the elemental will to live”.

As new Music Director of the PEI Symphony, Mark Shapiro is committed to curating uniquely satisfying musical events in which music of widely varying styles offers both contrast and complementarity.   Mark Shapiro is all about Connection: across cultures, across musical styles, across landscapes, and is deeply interested in creating experiences for audiences wherein listeners can feel in their bones the connections between older and newer music.   From one era to another, music is always about human feeling, about yearning and loss and triumph.      Mark is especially excited about working with leading artists from Canada, such as Rose Cousins!\

Shapiro was the guest conductor for the PEI Symphony concert in February which was a highlight of this past season and a triumph of music and musicians over a significant snowstorm.   A versatile and talented conductor, Mark Shapiro is one of a handful of conductors in the United States to have won a prestigious ASCAP Programming Award four times, achieving the unique distinction of winning this award with more than one ensemble.   He regularly conducts The Cecilia Chorus of New York at Carnegie Hall, and is also the winner of multiple citations for performance and programming from The American Prize.  His performances have been praised by the New York Times for their “virtuosity and assurance,” which also remarked on their “uncommon polish.”  The New Jersey Star-Ledger characterized his artistic leadership as “erudite and far-reaching.”  Shapiro is the principal guest conductor of the chamber Nova Sinfonia in Halifax NS, through which he knows many of the PEI Symphony musicians.

Tickets for this concert are available  at the Confederation Centre Box Office, or online  - now only $44 adults, $40 seniors and only $15 for students and children.  Concerts begin at 2:30pm, and everyone is welcome to the pre-concert talk at 1:15pm in Studio One.  For more information please call 892-4333.

We are Your PEI Symphony!

 

A Season of Renewal with our new Music Director and some very special guests!

The PEI Symphony Orchestra announces a renewal season, lower pricing, the return of Lennie Gallant, and special guests Rose Cousins and Julia MacLaine!

CHARLOTTETOWN, PE – An exciting new music director, four extraordinary concerts featuring three nationally acclaimed special guest artists – Lennie Gallant, Rose Cousins and Julia MacLaine – and new reduced pricing for season subscriptions; these are the highlights of the upcoming 2013-2014 season for the PEI Symphony.

From 1967 through 2013, the 46 year tradition of excellence continues with a season of renewal for 2013-14 with new music director Mark Shapiro at the helm, and newly announced price reductions.  In an effort to make tickets more affordable for PEI families and music fans of all ages, the PEI Symphony has announced lower pricing for season subscriptions; now only $110 for adults and seniors, and $50 for students and children.  Four PEI Symphony concerts for only $110, bringing the per concert cost to $27.50 for adults and seniors and only $12.50 for students.  Music fans interested in purchasing season subscriptions are asked to visit www.peisymphony.com for details, or call 892-4333.

On October 20thLennie Gallant returns to the Confederation Centre of the Arts to perform some of his favourite songs with the PEI Symphony. Recognized by his peers as one of Canada’s best performing songwriters, and a member of the Order of Canada, Lennie has recorded nine albums which have won multiple JUNO Awards and East Coast Music Awards. His album, “When We Get There” was launched into space aboard Space Shuttle Endeavour in July 2009 with Canadian astronaut Julie Payette.  Gallant represented the East Coast of Canada at “Canada Day in London” in Trafalgar Square on July 1, 2011 in the largest Canada Day celebration outside Canada’s borders, and he performed 6 shows at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games.  With the release of “If We Had A Fire” in 2009 he claims it is his best work yet.

The October concert will also feature Mahler’s challenging 1st Symphony, the “Titan”, a brilliant debut by a composer not yet out of his twenties, famous for its bright youthful spirit, and soulful joy.

On November 17th the PEI Symphony will welcome special guest Rose Cousins as she performs her music with the orchestra. Rose has released three albums, as well as singles and recordings in collaboration with artists across Canada and the world.   She has garnered a Juno, 2 Canadian Folk Music Awards, 3 Nova Scotia Music Awards, 3 PEI Music Awards, and a Polaris Prize long list nomination. The spirit of collaboration is in everything Cousins does. Her firm roots in two vibrant music communities – Eastern Canada and Boston Massachusetts – fuel her music with an evolving cast of talented fellow artists.   Equally unmistakable is the devastating emotions her music evokes. Her songs have appeared in climatic scenes in television shows including Greys Anatomy, Rookie Blue, Heartland, Hope for Wildlife and Drop Dead Diva.

Another highlight of the November concert will be the performance of Ravel’s Piano Concerto by PEI’s young master pianist Echo Lau who was the recent winner of the Suzanne Brenton Award given each year to deserving advanced students who have performed exceptionally in the PEI Kiwanis Provincial Music Festival.  The November program also features the exciting newer Symphony No. 4 “The Inextinguishable” by Danish composer Carl Nielsen.   Composed against the backdrop of the First World War, this dramatic symphony features a rousing “battle” between sets of timpani.

While the Confederation Centre is closed for renovations this coming winter, the PEI Symphony is delighted to present it’s February and April concerts at the beautiful Zion Presbyterian Church, located at 135 Prince Street in downtown Charlottetown.

On February 16, 2014 the PEI Symphony will welcome guest soloist Julia MacLaine as she performs beautiful Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto No. 1.  After receiving her early training as a cellist on PEI, Julia studied at McGill University, the Mannes College of Music and at Juilliard.  MacLaine performs worldwide as a recitalist and chamber musician in music of every genre, ranging from classical to contemporary to ‘world’ to her own compositions.  She has been praised by The New York Times for her “rich tone”, “sweet, throbbing vibrato”, and “superb playing.   The orchestra will also perform Beethoven’s Symphony No. 2, and a new work by Canadian composer Kevin Morse.

And finally, on April 6, 2014 the PEISO presents Tchaikovsky’s famous “Pathetique” Symphony No. 6Stravinsky’s “Jeu de Cartes”, and for the first time ever, the PEI Symphony will perform a work selected by our patrons in an ‘audience choice’ contest entitled “Verdi Vs. Wagner”.

Mark Shapiro is the new Music Director of the PEI Symphony.  Mr. Shapiro was the guest conductor for the PEI Symphony concert in February which was a highlight of this past season and a triumph of music and musicians over a significant snowstorm.   A versatile and talented conductor, Mark Shapiro is one of a handful of conductors in the United States to have won a prestigious ASCAP Programming Award four times, achieving the unique distinction of winning this award with more than one ensemble.   He is also the winner of multiple citations for performance and programming from The American Prize.  His performances have been praised by the New York Times for their “virtuosity and assurance,” which also remarked on their “uncommon polish.”  The New Jersey Star-Ledger characterized his artistic leadership as “erudite and far-reaching.”  Shapiro is the principal guest conductor of the chamber Nova Sinfonia in Halifax NS, through which he knows many of the PEI Symphony musicians.

For more information about purchasing season subscriptions and concert tickets, please call 892-4333.   Tickets to individual concerts will be available through the Confederation Centre Box Office in October.

PEI Symphony AGM, Tuesday October 1st

PEISO logo

The Prince Edward Island Symphony Society will be holding it’s Annual General Meeting on Tuesday October 1st at 6pm, at Park Royal United Church which is located at 11 Christie Drive in Charlottetown. Please come to the side door off the parking lot, not the sanctuary entrance – and look for the room on the right at the top of the stairs.

The agenda will include a review of the audited financial performance from the 2012-2013 season, as well as a set of proposed updates to the bylaws including proposed changes to the number of board members and the nomination process, and other language clarifications.

Anyone interested in the PEI Symphony is welcome to attend.

 

Serenade to Spring Dinner & Auction, last week for tickets

Tickets are available this week for our most important fundraiser of the year. Please support your PEI Symphony Orchestra and plan to attend our Serenade to Spring Dinner and Auction on Saturday, May 25th.

Every spring the PEI Symphony presents our most important fundraiser, entitled “Serenade to Spring”.   It’s a gourmet dinner and auction featuring high quality items including paintings and works of art by local PEI artists, gift certificates for meals, golfing and quality services by local businesses, special music lessons and concerts by top Island musicians and other special items.

Please support your PEI Symphony Orchestra and plan to attend this key annual fundraising dinner and auction.

For 2013 the event is set for Saturday May 25th in the elegant Georgian Room of the Rodd Charlottetown Hotel, with a gourmet meal and a wonderful assortment of art, gift certificates and donations for both the live and silent auctions.

Saturday May 25, 2013

6:00 Cocktails and Auction Viewing
7:00 Dinner & Bidding

Location:  Rodd Charlottetown

Hosted by Fraser McCallum
Music by Singing Strings

Tickets are $90 per person with a $50 tax receipt. If you’re not available for the dinner why not just send us the $50 donation in return for the tax receipt for next year’s taxes.

Tickets are available by calling  (902) 892-4333.

We need your help. Thank you for your continued support, and please pass the word along!

Thank you James Mark and Jim O’Leary

In recognition of more than twelve years of inspired direction, and many more years of contribution to the PEI Symphony, we pay tribute and express our deep thanks to retiring PEISO Music Director James Mark.

Since 2000 James Mark has led our dedicated musicians, shaping the collaboration to a high level of artistic excellence and professionalism.

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Thanks to his talents and musicality, PEISO audiences have enjoyed so many wonderful performances and we will surely miss his flair for programming!   The Board of Directors is very pleased to announce that James Mark will become ‘Conductor Emeritus ‘ effective May 2013.

The PEI Symphony also wishes to thank our talented Composer-In-Residence Jim O’Leary as he moves on to other work. At our last concert the PEISO premiered Jim’s exciting new work entitled “Choose Other Routes”, featuring jazz trumpet virtuoso Paul Tynan to great reviews.  Unfortunately that groundbreaking work was Jim’s last piece for the PEI Symphony under this current contract.  We salute Jim for his great creativity, thank him for his contribution to the PEISO over many years as performer and composer, and we wish him all the best in his future work.

Effective May 2013, Mark Shapiro becomes the next Music Director of the PEI Symphony.

Now is the time to renew your subscription!  This year we are delighted to announce new lower pricing.  Our subscription series continues with four concerts for only $110 for Adults and Seniors, and $50 for Students and Children for any seat in the house; and we are delighted to confirm that we are HST free!

2013-2014 will be a great season of renewal for the PEI Symphony:

  • New Music Director – Mark Shapiro
  • Multiple ECMA winner Lennie Gallant will perform with the orchestra,
  • We have wonderful cellist Julia MacLaine,
  • PEI’s Roy Johnstone on fiddle,
  • And our Suzanne Brenton award winner from the Kiwanis Music Festival.
  • Enjoy interesting new venues for a fresh sound and experience,
  • With even more great classical and contemporary orchestral music;
  • All for only $27.50 per concert for adults and $12.50 for students, with no HST!

We have even more surprises in the works!   So please stay connected with us for the latest news & updates via our website or Facebook page.

Call 892-4333 to reserve your subscription now!

Mark Shapiro is our new Music Director

Mark Shapiro, PEISO Music Director
Mark Shapiro, incoming
PEISO Music Director

We are tremendously excited to announce that Mark Shapiro will become the new Music Director of the PEI Symphony, effective May 1, 2013. Mr. Shapiro was the guest conductor for the PEI Symphony concert in February which was a highlight of this past season and a triumph of music and musicians over a significant snowstorm.

A versatile and talented conductor, Mark Shapiro is one of a handful of conductors in the United States to have won a prestigious ASCAP Programming Award four times, achieving the unique distinction of winning this award with more than one ensemble. He is also the winner of multiple citations for performance and programming from The American Prize. His performances have been praised by the New York Times for their “virtuosity and assurance,” which also remarked on their “uncommon polish.” The New Jersey Star-Ledger characterized his artistic leadership as “erudite and far-reaching.”

Shapiro’s engagements in 2012-13 include a return concert with the Juilliard School to conduct a double bill of operas by Britten and Vaughan Williams; the concert premiere of Paul Crabtree’s new opera “The Ghost Train” with Carolina Coast Chamber Music Festival; two concerts in Carnegie Hall with The Cecilia Chorus and Orchestra where he is Music Director, including the New York premiere of the 1983 “Mass in D” by Dame Ethel Smyth; and a series of collaborative performances of new music with Cantori New York where he is Artistic Director, with prominent artists including violist Nadia Sirota and New York stage actor Kathleen Chalfant.

Shapiro is the principal guest conductor of the chamber Nova Sinfonia in Halifax NS, through which he knows many of the PEI Symphony musicians.

In an effort to make tickets more affordable for PEI families and music fans, the PEI Symphony has announced lower pricing for season subscriptions, now only $110 for adults and seniors, and $50 for students and children. That represents a reduction of $30 for adults, $10 for seniors and $5 for students. Each subscription provides tickets for four PEISO concerts, bringing the per concert cost to $27.50 for adults and seniors and only $12.50 for students.  We are happy to confirm that there is no HST for PEISO subscriptions!   Call 892-4333 to reserve yours today!

 

Concert April 14 – Celebrate Mozart & More

Join us on Sunday April 14th and Celebrate your PEI Symphony as we celebrate Mozart, Canadian composers and jazz musicians, wonderful PEI pianists, and especially the career and contributions of PEISO Conductor James Mark.    This concert will be Dr. Mark’s last leading the PEI Symphony as Music Director.  After more than twelve years of inspired leadership, and many more years of inestimable contributions to the PEISO, James Mark is retiring, and will become ‘Conductor Emeritus ‘ for the PEI Symphony Orchestra.

 

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Under the director James Mark, the PEI Symphony Orchestra presents “Celebrate Mozart & More” , April 14th 2:30pm, at the Homburg Theatre of the Confederation Centre of the Arts.  Our program for this concert:
  • Symphony No. 40 in g minor, by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
  • Choose Other Routes, by Jim O’Leary featuring jazz trumpet master Paul Tynan
  • Carnival of the Animals, by Camille Saint-Saëns and featuring piano soloists Frances McBurnie and Dr. Frances Gray, with narration by Patrick Ledwell.
[learn_more caption="Special Symphony & Supper Offer with Cedar's Eatery"]

Cedar's Eatery - PEIThe PEI Symphony is delighted to partner with Cedar’s Eatery with the latest edition of our popular “Symphony and Supper” special offer.   Bring two ticket stubs from the February 10th concert, order two entrées, and receive 50% off the second entrée.  Offer valid Sunday February 10th from 4pm to 11pm or Monday February 11th all day, at Cedar’s Eatery at 81 University Avenue.[/learn_more]

On Sunday April 14th the PEI Symphony Orchestra will present a concert celebrating Mozart, Canadian composers and the career and contributions of PEISO Conductor James Mark.  This concert will be Dr. Mark’s last leading the PEI Symphony as Music Director. After more than twelve years of inspired leadership, and many more years of inestimable contributions to the PEISO, James Mark is retiring, and will become ‘Conductor Emeritus ‘ for the PEI Symphony Orchestra.

As the PEISO’s Music Director since 2000, James Mark has masterfully lead the PEISO’s dedicated and gifted musicians, shaping the musical collaboration to a high level of artistic excellence and professionalism befitting the premiere orchestra of a provincial capital.  Thanks to his talents and musicality, PEI audiences have enjoyed years of wonderful orchestral performances and his flair for concert programming that fostered in PEISO performers both young and mature, while providing orchestral music with great appeal.

On the program for this concert, Dr. Mark will lead the orchestra to perform Mozart’s very popular “Symphony No. 40 in g minor”, often called the “Great G Minor Symphony”. One of his most admired works, this tragic and emotional work is one of only two that Mozart wrote in a minor tonality, and has been described as “a work of passion, violence and grief” by Charles Rosen in The Classical Style.

Also on the program, the orchestra welcomes guest artist Patrick Ledwell as narrator for Camille Saint-Saëns’ multimedia work “Carnival of the Animals”; an early example of poetry set to orchestral music, and a brilliant example of the composers’ ability to musically describe his animal subjects so the audience can visualize them. For this work, the PEISO is delighted to welcome back two of our finest piano soloists: Dr. Frances Gray and Frances McBurnie. French composer Saint-Saëns penned this suite as entertainment for his friends and family and never meant for the piece for public consumption, but it certainly has become a global fan favourite. “A kangaroo can jump incredible. It has to jump because it’s edible!” Saint-Saëns’ motifs musically describe creatures ambling across the stage: lions, hens, wild asses, tortoises, an elephant, and the kangaroos skipping along to the pianos.

Jim O’Leary, the PEI Symphony’s Composer-in-Residence will see the world premiere of his latest work.  A departure from his previous works, “Choose Other Routes” has been written for the acclaimed jazz trumpet performer Paul Tynan, who will be its featured soloist. O’Leary has dedicated this work to retiring music director James Mark. According to Jim “the only honest attitude of an artist is to express himself, to bring something in which one really believes. Because to follow the tastes of other people, to try to please them, it’s a false direction.” – Witold Lutoslawski.

The PEI Symphony is delighted to partner with Cedar’s Eatery with the latest edition of our popular “Symphony and Supper” special offer. Bring two ticket stubs from the April 14th concert, order two entrées, and receive 50% off the second entrée. Offer valid Sunday April 14th from 4pm to 11pm or Monday April 15th all day, at Cedar’s Eatery at 81 University Avenue.

To help make it easy for families to enjoy the beauty and power of live orchestral music, the PEI Symphony continues to offer discounted tickets for children and students at $15 for any seat in the house.

Concerts begin at 2:30pm, and everyone is welcome to the pre-concert talk at 1:15pm in Studio One.  Tickets at the Confederation Centre Box Office, or online.

Celebrate your PEI Symphony!

Storm Update – February 9th 2013

The PEI Symphony Fruit Sale at the Charlottetown Farmer’s Market is CANCELLED today due to this big storm. We’re still planning and hoping to have fruit for sale in the lobby at our concert tomorrow.

The forecast for Sunday is still calling for the blizzard to wind down by morning.  We are not able to reschedule a concert weekend – we either cancel or proceed – so as long as it’s safe for our musicians and patrons we will proceed.   Our guest conductor is here in PEI and our rehearsals are underway even during the stormy weather.  Each musician is making their own decision to attend the rehearsals at the Confederation Centre this afternoon.

During the day today we will work with our partners at the Confederation Centre to monitor the weather and will keep you posted via social media if anything changes.   At this point it looks like the worst will be over by Sunday morning. So if you feel safe, we hope you will join us Sunday at 2:30pm as we Celebrate New Directions with:

  • Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2,
  • Violin soloist Adrian Irvine performing Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1
  • and the world premiere of Richard Covey’s new work “Arise”

 

 

PEI Symphony Fruit Sale 2013

PEI Symphony Fruit Sale 2012

 

The PEISO Fruit Sale is back! Beat the winter blues by biting into a taste of sunshine! Help support live orchestral music in PEI by purchasing some juicy naval oranges, or perfect pink grapefruit from us this year.

Still only $10 per bag, or pick up a half box $30 or full box $50 to really beat the blues! You can pick up your fruit order at any of the following locations:

 

Fundraiser Depot:

On Brackley Point Road, right beside Chucker’s Trophies and across the street from Birt’s Furniture. The mailing address is 161 St. Peter’s Road, but the actual storefront is right on the Brackley Point Road in the old Canada Revenue building just before the mall.  Many thanks to Fruit Sale sponsor R. Birt & Associates for donating the depot.

Our depot will be open on Fridays from 12pm to 6pm and Saturdays from 9am to 3pm.

  • Friday February 8th and 15th, 12pm to 6pm, and
  • Saturday February 9th and 16th, 9am to 3pm

Confederation Court Mall:

Our booth is located by the TD Canada Trust and we’ll be there on:

  • Thursday February 7th and Friday February 8th
  • Wednesday February 13th and Friday February 15th
  • 10 am to around 4pm each of these days.

Charlottetown Farmer’s Market:

Our volunteers are at The Doctor’s Inn booth across from Island Taylored Meats, on:

  • Saturday February 2nd, 9th, and 16th
  • NOTE – due to the big storm the Fruit Sale at the Farmer’s Market has been cancelled for Saturday February 9th.

***

Fruit will also be available for sale in the lobby during our concert Sunday February 10th at the Confederation Centre of the Arts.

To order by phone please call 892-4333 and leave a message, or send us a message to fruit@peisymphony.com

For more information call Dan at 388-6042, or Natalie at 892-4333.

 

Special Offer: Two concerts for only $20 and up

PEI Symphony Special Two Concert Offer
The PEI Symphony is delighted to offer a special discount for orchestral music lovers.  Enjoy the PEISO’s February and April concerts for $75 for adults, $70 for seniors and only $20 for children and students:
  • On February 10th 2013 we “Celebrate New Directions” with guest conductor Mark Shapiro conducting Symphony No. 2 by Rachmaninoff and a new work entitled “Arise” by Richard Covey of UPEI Music Department; and Suzanne Brenton winner Adrian Irvine will perform Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with the orchestra.
  • On April 14th 2013 we “Celebrate Mozart & More” with James Mark directing the orchestra performing Mozart’s Symphony No. 40, Carnival of the Animals by Saint-Saens and a new work by PEISO Composer-in-Residence Jim O’Leary featuring jazz trumpet virtuoso Paul Tynan.

These two great concerts for only $75 (adult), $70 seniors, and $20 children and students!

Call 892-4333 to order, or visit the Confederation Centre website.

You gotta hear us now!