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Amadeus Sings Mozart

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Amadeus Choir and Orchestra conducted by Lydia Adams

Leslie Fagan: Soprano, Christina Stelmacovich: Mezzo-soprano,

Stephen Harland: Tenor, Daniel Lichti: Bass-baritone

Location: George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts

Date & Time: Saturday October 21, 7:30 p.m.

A few minutes before the concert started, there still were some people coming in to the concert hall looking for their seats. The hall itself was not as big as I expected; it was about the same size as a high school concert hall. It was a very modern-looking hall inside and out. It was noticeable that the building was fairly new.

The cover of the booklet introduced the title ÐŽoAmadeus Sings MozartÐŽ± and the solo singers with the conductor. It looked quite interesting that Amadeus, the first name of Mozart, sings MozartЎЇs pieces. But soon, I realized that the name of the choir was Amadeus, and everything was understood. The programme gave the list of pieces they were performing. They were all composed by Mozart. Even though all the titles were in Latin or some other languages that could not be understood, some titles like ÐŽoSancta MariaÐŽ± and ÐŽoAgnus DeiÐŽ± showed they are sacred pieces that are related to the church.

The concert was very well organized, and they started on time. They started their first piece ÐŽoLitanyÐŽ±. The piece is composed of many little movements. Luckily, there was a translation of every piece they were performing. The translation of very first phrase of the first music started with ÐŽoLord have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord have mercyÐŽ±; it was Kyrie from the Mass. Many movements started with the orchestra and either or both the choir and soloists came in. The music gave a similar impression as if I was attending a Mass. The only difference was that there was no pipe organ but the orchestra with brass instruments were. Another noticeable point was that every movement finished with repeating ÐŽoamenÐŽ± at the end. Although I could not understand a word they were singing without translations, I could hear the amenЎЇs and recognized that the movement was almost over.

After three to four movements, it got a bit tedious, but soloistsЎЇ performance spiced the piece a little bit. Among the four soloists, the soprano and the bass voice grabbed my attention. The sopranoЎЇs voice was not too light but it harmonized very well with the orchestra, especially the violin section. Despite all the high pitched voices and the orchestral work, I still could hear the bass. He looked more experienced than any other performers on the stage. The last movement ended with a big ÐŽoamenÐŽ± and the conductor escorted the four soloists off the stage.

The conductor came back to the stage with a big applause from the audience. She picked up her baton and the music soon started. The second piece, ÐŽoSancta Maria, Mater DeiÐŽ±, was performed only with the choir and the orchestra. This piece started with the full orchestra with every part in choir. The choir with a hundred people made quite a great harmony. It seemed ÐŽoSancta Maria, Mater DeiÐŽ± is a bit lighter than the previous piece, ÐŽoLitanyÐŽ±. I found a lot of moving notes such as sixteenth notes. It certainly had a faster rhythm as well. Although both pieces are sacred church music, just by listening, they gave me an impression that they are in different genres. Personally, this second piece was easier to listen to.

Coming back to a slow-paced music, the third piece of the concert, ÐŽoAve Verum CorpusÐŽ±, started. Again, it was performed only by the choir and the orchestra, mainly the string and the woodwind section. The translation says ÐŽo Hail, true body, born of the Virgin Mary, who has truly suffered, was sacrificed on the cross for mortals, whose side was pierced, whence flowed water and blood: be for us a foretaste of heaven during our final examining.ÐŽ± There was no doubt why this piece was so serious and slow moving. Although it was in a major key, the music sounded very depressing.

Before the intermission, one more piece was performed. The title was ÐŽoRegina CoeliÐŽ±. The soloists came back on stage. The whole orchestra with the tympani started the music. Very often during the piece, ÐŽoAlleluia!ÐŽ± was heard. This piece also had very familiar tune, especially the phrases ÐŽoAlleluia, AlleluiaÐŽ±



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