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Manitoba Chamber Orchestra returns for season opener

Coast Recital Society
Conductor Anne Manson.

The Manitoba Chamber Orchestra (MCO), conducted by Anne Manson, opens the Coast Recital Society (CRS) 2017-18 concert season on Sunday, Oct. 1, at 2:30 p.m. at the Raven’s Cry Theatre.

The MCO is “Canada’s tiny, perfect chamber orchestra” (Toronto Star). The ensemble has toured widely, commissions often, embraces a diverse repertoire, and collaborates regularly with the world’s leading soloists. The superb Canadian cellist Ariel Barnes will be the guest soloist. A player of dazzling virtuosity and magnetic expressivity, Barnes is, in the words of maestro Bramwell Tovey, “the outstanding Canadian cellist of his generation.” Barnes’ recordings have garnered two Western Canadian Music Awards and a Juno nomination, and are met with critical acclaim.

Conductor Anne Manson has been music director of the Manitoba Chamber Orchestra since 2008. Her strong commitment to contemporary music shows in her programming that reflects both standard repertoire and new compositions. Her activity in the field of new music has led to numerous commissions and recordings with the MCO. Among them are Philip Glass’s Symphony No. 3 and Piano Concerto, and the Juno and Western Canada Music award nominated Troubadour and the Nightingale with soprano Isabel Bayrakdarian. Anne Manson was the first woman to conduct the Vienna Philharmonic at the Salzburg Festival (1994: Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov).

The CRS concert will include Mozart’s Symphony #29 in A Major, K. 201 and Haydn’s Cello Concerto in C major with Barnes as soloist. New works by Jeffrey Ryan and Michael Oesterle – two outstanding Canadian composers of the new generation – will also be featured on the program: Ryan’s Earthshine – a reflection of the composer’s masterful command of colour and strong personal voice – and Michael Oesterle’s cello concerto Ironman, with Barnes as soloist. The Oesterle work was singled out by Maclean’s magazine as an extraordinary recording. 

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