Conductors

Beverly Lewis' Five Texts of William Shakespeare

Every year I receive many scores from composers near and far asking Cantala to consider learning and performing their music. So I decided to add on a spring project every year into Cantala’s season where we will workshop and record this music for these composers. It is exciting work and we are thrilled to do it.

Petites Voix: 5 reasons its a Choral Gem

This past January I took out my score of Francis Poulenc’s Petite Voix,: 5 Choeurs faciles pour 3 voix d’enfants to prep for rehearsal. I quickly started feeling regret for picking such a dissonant, difficult piece. Would we survive? Surprise! This is the story of how the piece entered our hearts and dug a bore for life.

Magical Endocannabinoids

We have all come to choir rehearsal feeling drained and walking out feeling energised. This is not just an observation anymore but proven science. And it is due to a chemical called endocannabinoids….. Hubba what??

Me too. No idea.

Choral Cartoons

In 2005 I came to audition at the University of Toronto for choral conducting. I was staying with my cousin in Richmond Hill and at dinner he says to me “ Choral conducting…hmmm…So you’re studying coral reefs?”. This was just the beginning…

Upcoming 2019 Spring repertoire

The excitement of the holiday season is here and now. Take a moment and see what your next musical Cantala project will entail. It's going to be a party and I'm uber excited...

Cantala's collaborating musicians

It is always very special to share music making with collaborators. We have two special artists that will be joining us for our coming Christmas Concert, A Ceremony of Carols tomorrow night, 7pm, in Toronto. Come and join us!

In the Bleak Midwinter

I've recently discovered a lesser-known work by Britten, A Boy is Born; a very demanding unaccompanied choral work for mixed choir. But lucky for us, the 5th movement In The Bleak Midwinter, is only for treble voices and Cantala is set to perform it in concert on December 8, 2018.

 

Rehearsing in a Circle

This is a guest post from choir director Chris Rowbury. He has a website called From the Front of the choir where he muses about all sorts of choral related topics. Here we discuss the pros and cons of rehearsing in a circle; something Cantala loves to do.

Agnes Grossman, on warming up the choir

Years ago I had a very experienced choral singer come up to me in Cantala and tell me that I spend a lot of time on warming up and inquired "isn't there an urgency to get to rehearsing the repertoire?".

Can Everyone Sing?

As a singing teacher and choral conductor for many years, I have yet to meet anyone I can not teach to sing. Pleasant voice? not guaranteed. But singing? Yes. You can if you either don’t believe it or have been told so. Trust me. You can sing.

Upcoming 2018 Fall/winter repertoire

We made it. 10 years have passed and Cantala is brimming with passionate choral singers, long lasting friendships and excitement for the year ahead. Here is the upcoming 2018 Fall/Winter repertoire. 

A spring flourish of Russian Beauty from Cantala

The Cantala Women’s Choir Spring concert Russian Beauty brought an extraordinary rendition of Sergei Rachmaninoff and more familiar choral music to Toronto. Listen to their version of Rise Up, My Love. Guest post by John Gregory @gregiej

Russian Beauty: Spring Concert Program

The final concert of our 10th Season is quickly approaching and we are celebrating in many ways, including performing Rachmaninoff’s Six Choruses for Treble voices, op. 15; a special gem from the Women’s choral literature in May. 

Consonants + Singing: part 3

In part 1 and 2 of  "Consonants + Singing" we have looked at the differences between voiced and unvoiced consonants. Now in part 3 we take a closer look at why Julie Andrews' voice is so vibrant and what we can do to apply her techniques to our singing. 

Consonants + Singing: Part 1

There are 21 consonant sounds in the English language, and they are defined as “speech sounds that are articulated with complete or partial closure of the vocal tract”. Now just a minute….Closure of the vocal tract? Let's understand how they are produced then look at how they can improve and/or enhance our singing.

Cantala Concert 2017: In the Bleak Midwinter

I've recently discovered a lesser-known work by Britten, A Boy is Born; a very demanding unaccompanied choral work for mixed choir. But lucky for us, the 5th movement In The Bleak Midwinter, is only for treble voices and Cantala is set to perform it in concert on December 9th, 2017, Toronto.

 

Cantala: The History

Naming Cantala happened rather spontaneously. My husband googled "choral singing names" and came back to me shortly with “Cantala” meaning “on wings of song”. No more than a moments thought later I made it official. "Cantala" it was.

Sight reading: Musical experience and confidence needed

Enthusiastic singers can be nervous about sight reading. Sight reading takes practice. Read here how to build these skills.