Saturday, December 23, 2017 at 7:30 pm
River Run Centre
On December 23, 2017, four outstanding Canadian soloists and an orchestra of period instruments will perform Handel’s Messiah with the Guelph Chamber Choir. Performing together with players knowledgeable in historically informed performance practices over the past 17 years has been a very exciting journey for the members of the GCC. The expressive quality of the instruments enhances stylistic considerations for the singers and soloists, contributing to performances that our audience members enjoy immensely for their clarity, nuanced phrasing, and expressive delivery.
Friday, December 22, 2017 at 7:30 pm
St. George’s Anglican Church
Can’t get enough of Handel’s Messiah? Join us on Friday, December 22, 2017, the day before our performance at the River Run Centre for our Messiah Sing-Along. Donation from each person attending in lieu of ticket purchase supports the Children First Fund, Family & Children’s Services of Guelph and Wellington County.
Meredith Hall, soprano
Daniel Taylor, countertenor
Neal Banerjee, tenor
Alex Dobson, baritone
Music Viva Orchestra on period instruments
Canadian Soprano Meredith Hall delights audiences internationally with her “lustrous sound and fluent legato” (San Francisco Chronicle) and “bravura musical performance matched by a riveting [sense of the] dramatic” (Boston Globe). Recent and past performances include Elgar’s The Apostles for Pax Christie Chorale of Toronto, Messiah and ‘A Celtic Christmas’ programme for Apollo’s Fire in Cleveland in association with La Nef and Messiah (Newfoundland Symphony/Toledo Symphony/Amadeus Choir). Other engagements include appearances for St. Paul’s Lyra Baroque Orchestra singing Mozart and Haydn, Bach’s St. John Passion (Baldwin Wallace Bach Festival), B Minor Mass (Amadeus Choir), St Matthew Passion (Grand Philharmonic Choir), Hippolyte et Aricie (VOICEBOX: Opera in Concert), and Messiah (Symphony Nova Scotia). Ms Hall’s credits include the Göttingen Handel Festival, Ireland’s Shannon International Festival, Philharmonia Baroque (San Francisco), Boston’s Handel and Haydn Society, Toronto Symphony and the Houston Grand Opera.
She has recorded several albums on the ATMA label with La Nef and Apollo’s Fire. In release are discs for Deutsche Grammophon, Archiv, Philips, Naxos, Dorian, NPR Records and CBC Records with such groups as Les Musiciens du Louvre, Le Concert Spirituel, Opera in Concert/Aradia, The Toronto Consort and Tafelmusik. Ms. Hall can also be heard in the title role of Handel’s Partenope conducted by Nicholas McGegan.
A Sony Classical artist, Daniel Taylor is one of the most sought-after countertenors in the world. Daniel appears on 100 recordings which include Bach Cantatas/Monteverdi Choir/Gardiner (for Deutsche Grammophone Archiv and SDG); Renaissance duets with Bowman /Actor Ralph Fiennes/TEM (BIS); Handel’s Rinaldo with Bartoli /AAM/Hogwood (Decca); four recordings of Handel’s Messiah, these being with the Montreal Symphony/Nagano (Universal), Kammerchor Stuttgart/Bernius (Carus), with the American Bach Soloists/Thomas(Koch) and a CD/DVD with Tafelmusik (Bravo Television). Daniel has recorded the CD/DVD of the Bach B minor Mass with the Ensemble Orchestral Paris/Nelson (EMI Virgin) and also a CD with the Kammerchor Stuttgart/Bernius (Carus). Upcoming recordings include Bach Cantatas with the Magdalena Consort/Chandos, Bach St. Matthew Passion with the Kammerchor Stuttgart/Bernius (Carus) and Handel Messiah with the Handel & Haydn Society/Christophers (Coro).
Daniel Taylor is now recognized as “Canada’s star countertenor” and “Canada’s most prolific recording artist”. Upcoming engagements include the World Premiere of Robert Lepage’s production of Ades’ The Tempest‘, Handel’s Messiah with the Minnesota Symphony/Halls, Handel & Haydn Society Boston/Christophers and the Toronto Symphony/McGegan, Bach Cantatas with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, a recital with the Milwaukee Orchestra and also at Lincoln Centre and a recording of medieval music on the ECM label. Daniel’s latest recording was the new recital disc “Come Again, Sweet Love” on Sony.
The University of Toronto recently appointed Daniel Taylor to the position of Head of Historical Performance in the Faculty of Music. Daniel’s responsibilities will include directing the Schola Cantorum Choir and Orchestra at the University of Toronto as well as coaching students in the Opera Department and maintaining a voice studio. Daniel is also a Visiting Professor at the University of Ottawa, Artist in Residence at the Opéra de Montréal and Artistic Director of the Quebec International Festival of Sacred Music. Daniel is Artistic Director and Conductor of the Choir and Orchestra of the Theatre of Early Music. The Theatre of Early Music performs more than 30 concerts every year in concert halls all over the world.
Born in London, Ontario, Neal Banerjee was inspired by then high-school teacher Darryl Edwards, to sing. He earned his ARCT (piano), Bachelor’s (vocal performance) from Western and a Master’s from Basel (Switzerland). He furthered his studies in Vienna under renowned artists Norman Shetler and Edith Matthis, singing in the Arnold Schöneberg Choir and the Bayreuther Festival Chorus under Harnoncourt, Levine, Runnicles, Dutoit among others. After singing in smaller opera productions he became a prize winner of the Sylvia Geszty Coloratura Competition, leading to further engagements throughout the world. He has held multiple year contracts in Germany and Switzerland and has guested in Festivals such as Salzburg and Bregenz. His opera repertoire spans from Monteverdi, Haydn, Mozart, Donizetti, Verdi and Wagner to Britten and Bernstein. On the concert stage, Mr. Banerjee is well versed in works of Bach, Händel, Haydn and Mozart. With Tony Rooley (Consort of Musicke) he has focused on madrigals, recorded with Alan Curtis (Il complesso barocco) and recently was awarded for the recording of Vivier’s Kopernicus. When not singing, Mr. Banerjee teaches, conducts and composes. In 2017 he was commissioned by Bamberg’s Kaiserdom, and his first symphony is under way.
Alexander has appeared with conductors such as Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Elmer Iseler, Trevor Pinnock, Nic McGegan and Paul Goodwin; on the stages of L’Opéra du Montréal, Opera Ontario, Milwaukee’s Florentine Opera, Calgary Opera, Saskatoon Opera, Pacific Opera Victoria, Opera Lafayette, Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Soundstreams, Queen of Puddings Music Theatre Company, Against the Grain, Bard Summerscape, L’Opéra de Québec,Théatre du Nouveau Monde, and Opera Pacific; and with the Toronto Symphony, Orchestre Métropolitain, Montreal Symphony Orchestra, Calgary Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Orchestra London, National Arts Centre Orchestra, Edmonton Symphony, and Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. Contemporary works include The Midnight Court by Ana Sokolovic, Against Nature by James Rolfe, and Airline Icarus by Brian Current.
Mr. Dobson is also a dedicated recital artist, one for whom Derek Holman wrote the song cycle Daybreak and a Candle End (with the Talisker Players). He has also sung Winterreise to great acclaim in Montréal, Victoria, England, Paris,and with Yannick Nézet-Séguin at the piano, in Toronto and Orford. Alexander has also been heard frequently on CBC Radio Canada in recital and concert.