Felicem Chordis is a new presenter and producer of chamber concerts in the heart of Halifax. Felicem Chordis creates an environment where emerging talent is encouraged to actively participate in the creation process, challenged to create collaboratively, and present alongside seasoned musicians in a professional, creative environment.
The Togni Consort
Jeff Reilly bass clarinet Peter-Anthony Togni composer/keys Kerry Bursey tenor/lute Hilary Allister mezzo soprano David Piper bass Janelle Lucyk soprano
Sunday November 24th at 4 pm, St. David’s Presbyterian Church
Hear music that spans over 1000 years, from Gregorian chant and medieval music to new repertoire of this century performed by new vocal quartet, The Togni Consort. The program is based around sacred and mystical music of Halifax composer Peter-Anthony Togni. His works are influenced by Gregorian chant and Russian Orthodox liturgical music. The concert prominently features bass clarinetist Jeff Reilly and lutenist Kerry Bursey. Reilly & Togni’s duo, Blackwood, has travelled to the finest concert stages around the world. The lute was the most popular instrument of the Western world during the Renaissance, and its inclusion within the context of Togni’s writing further connects the Ancient and modern soundscapes. Highlights from Togni’s fascinating work Responsio, winner of the 2014 Nova Scotia Masterworks Award will also be performed.
Nova Scotian-based composer Peter-Anthony Togni’s music is being sung across Canada and around the world. He is internationally appreciated for his writing style which transcends time, blending ancient and modern traditions. Currently writing a large scale work for the esteemed Latvian Radio Choir, this concert provides a unique opportunity to hear Togni’s works locally, within a distilled context of vocal quartet and select instruments, in the stunning acoustic of St. David’s Presbyterian Church.
$25 at the door ($20 advance tickethalifax.com)
Peter-Anthony Togni composer/organist
Peter-Anthony Togni’s music is spiritually rooted and contemplative, ranging from the ethereally quiet to the explosive outer limits of contemplation. One of Canada’s busiest contemporary composers, Juno nominated Togni has toured internationally and his music is regularly broadcast worldwide. Togni’s works have been released on XXI Records, CBC Records, Hänssler Classics, Warner Classics UK and ECM. He is also a well-known Canadian broadcaster. Recent recordings include Lamentatio Jeremiah Prophetae, (bass clarinettist Jeff Reilly and the Elmer Iseler Singers – 2010), Spatium (Togni Trio – 2012), Piano Alone (solo piano – 2013) and Estuary (Sanctuary Trio – 2015, ECMA nomination 2016). Responsio (premiered 2013) won the 2014 Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia Masterworks Arts Award, was released on ATMA classique (2015) and was nominated for a Juno Award (2016). Warrior Songs, for percussionist Jerry Granelli and choir, premiered in Boulder Colorado (2014), with its Canadian premiere in Toronto (2015). Peter-Anthony played at the 53rd Magadino International Organ Festival (Switzerland – 2015), co-founded by his father the late Victor Togni. Isis and Osiris, Gods of Egypt, a new Canadian opera, premiered during Opera in Concert’s 2016 season.Sea Dreams, for choir and two flutes, premiered in Calgary in 2018, and Living Flame of Love will premiere in Edmonton in 2019. Originally from Pembroke, Ontario, he currently resides in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, where he composes and teaches at Acadia University.
Jeff Reilly bass-clarinet/composer
Jeff Reilly leads a multifaceted life as a bass clarinetist, composer, conductor, a CBC radio music producer, and as a radio documentary maker. A recording artist for the prestigious German label ECM, he has performed with choirs, orchestras and chamber groups, in music festivals, cathedrals and concert halls around the world – with his trio Sanctuary he has performed in Shanghai, Paris, London, New York, St Petersburg, Moscow, Riga, Sochi, Toronto, Montreal and more.
The pure emotional accessibility of his rich, lyrical performance and compositional style reminds us that extended techniques, avant-guard sonorities and complex forms of notation can be executed within the service of musicality and sensitivity. Receiving 4 Juno nominations, an ECMA award as well as 4 ECMA nominations, his approach to music blurs any simple distinctions between improvisation and composition, and does so with a musicality and sensitivity that reminds us that such distinctions are moot. Jeff has commissioned many large-scale works that feature bass clarinet, including Eriks Esenvalds, Christos Hatzis, David Mott, Peter-Anthony Togni, and Barry Guy.
Kerry Bursey tenor/lutenist
Kerry Bursey (tenor/lutenist) is one of Canada's most captivating emerging artists. A herald of the lost art of self-accompaniment, he is one of a small number of professionally active musicians to sing and play early repertoire simultaneously. A graduate of the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal in classical guitar, he has performed as a soloist with the Orchestre symphonique des jeunes de Montréal and was a finalist at both the 2011 Grand prix de guitare de Montréal and the Concours de musique de Sorel. Kerry now concentrates on historical repertoire, performing as a lutenist in recital and in concert. He is especially interested in songs and ayres, accompanying singers in medieval, traditional, renaissance and baroque music.
As a tenor, his natural, unwavering vocal strength and alluring stage presence has resonated across Canada's early music scene. He sings with Studio de musique ancienne de Montréal, Ensemble Caprice, Theatre of Early Music, Harmonie des Saisons, Arion Baroque Orchestra, Clavecins en concert and Aureas Voces. He also sings with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre Métropolitain, I Musici, les Grands Ballets and the choir of the Church of St. Andrew & St. Paul. He has participated in Tafelmusik's Baroque Summer Institute, and has studied and performed sacred cantatas of Bach in Germany and Italy at the renowned Bachakademie in Stuttgart and Bachkantatenakademie in Weimar. Kerry is based in Montreal and is a graduate student of Dominique Labelle and Suzie LeBlanc in early music vocal performance at McGill University.
David Piper bass
Before emigrating to Canada in the 1970s in order to take up doctoral studies in Linguistics and Developmental Psychology at the University of Alberta, David Piper worked as a professional choral musician in England. As a musician, his studies began as a double major in piano and voice at the Royal College of Music in London, where he obtained an ARCM diploma. This period was followed by a Choral Scholarship to St. John’s College Cambridge, where he also studied for his bachelor’s degree in English Literature. At Cambridge, he took part in recordings that included the masses of Palestrina and Haydn with the St. Martin’s Academy under the direction of Sir Neil Mariner, and sang in the first performances of the Durufle Requiem in England. He also went on several successful foreign tours by the St. John’s choir to Europe and North America. While at Cambridge, he was a professional soloist in a number of operas, ranging from roles in Monteverdi’s Il ballo del Ingrate to Verdi’s Kovencina. He also produced and directed a performance of Handel’s Ariodante in the Cambridge Senate House. Following graduation, he maintained a strong interest in both singing and piano while teaching at St. Paul’s School in London, a school with a rich musical tradition, and where Gustav Holst had once been the head of Music. After two years at St. Paul’s, which included many performances at both St. Paul’s and Westminster Cathedrals, he was awarded a Windsor Scholarship to sing in the Choir of St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle, where he was fortunate enough to live for two years while studying for a masters degree in Linguistics at Reading University. Following emigration to Canada, he has sung with numerous groups across the country, including the Pacific Chamber Choir in Vancouver, and Calgary Opera.
Janelle Lucyk soprano
Janelle Lucyk (soprano/violin) graduated in 2014 with distinction from the Conservatoire Royal de Bruxelles in Belgium where she debuted Lux Aeterna, written for her and the Brussels Chamber Choir by Jan Moeyaert, performed as a soloist and recorded with Musica Fura (Praetorius Christmas Mass) and Laudantes Consort (Palestrina), and formed Voces Desuper, an ensemble performing regularly in the magnificent Cathédrale de Saints-Michel-et-Gudule, and especially at the Te Deum ceremony for the King and Queen of Belgium. Following, she completed her Masters in Management at Durham University in the UK and won the role of Susanna in Durham Opera Ensemble’s The Marriage of Figaro for which she was awarded the Best Soloist by Music Durham, and Best Female Soloist by her peers at the DOE.
Growing up as a violinist, Janelle was the youngest member of Regina Symphony Orchestra and with them performed Vivaldi's Four Seasons as soloist in 2009. Janelle has been captivated by Nova Scotia’s flourishing music scene since arriving in the stunning maritime province. She has had the good fortune of working as a soloist with the Kings College Chapel Choir under five-time Grammy winner Paul Halley on many unforgettable concerts including Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610 and Selva Morale e Spirituale and multiple Bach Passions. She performed as a soloist with Per Sonatori, Boar’s Head Festival, Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra, Scott MacMillan's Celtic Mass for the Sea (Canada 150), Aureas Voces, Daniel Taylor's Theatre of Early Music, Ensemble Caprice & Constantinople and has organized concerts involving improvisation, early music, and jazz with Sarah E. Myatt (mezzo), composer/organist Peter-Anthony Togni, and Jeff Reilly (bass-clarinet).
Alongside mentor and arts champion Barbara Butler, Janelle oversees Musique Royale (est. 1985), which presents upwards of 70 concerts yearlong with a Summer Festival featuring Early Music in over 25 beautiful and historic venues across Nova Scotia.