Category Archives: Spirituality & Religion

Holst’s Neptune and Wagner’s Lohengrin Prelude

I’ve just noticed something concerning Gustav Holst’s Planets suite. You’ve probably heard that Holst did not mean planets in the sense of astronomy but rather to be more of a meditation on the astrological significance of each planet. His seven … Continue reading

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Darkly Comic Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo

I’ve just come from the matinee of Rajiv Joseph’s play Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo, presented by Crow’s Theatre in co-production with Modern Times Stage Company. The title tells you the basic premise, a tiger is caged in a … Continue reading

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Philip Glass: The Complete Piano Etudes

Do you compartmentalize? I ask because it’s common, a given in a modern life. Whether we’re speaking of the things we do for work-life balance, as part of an artistic discipline or simply to get through a busy day, it’s … Continue reading

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Thinking of Diefenbaker for Canada Day

A good performance can change how you understand a piece. I stumbled upon a YouTube recording that I keep listening to over and over, a piece I thought I knew. There are two contrasting tenor arias in Mendelssohn’s oratorio Elijah. … Continue reading

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Ecology of Being –Duo Concertante

In childhood I heard musicians and performers protesting the Vietnam War or advocating as part of the Civil Rights Movement. Ever since I’ve admired activist artists. Music, film, satire, humour, painting, can all be powerful voices advocating change, moving emotions, … Continue reading

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Performing The Lord’s Prayer

Lent in 2022 is becoming darker, war casting a horrific shadow over our fortunate prosperity on this side of the world. I treat gratitude as a kind of sacrament, the foundation of everything; we begin with recognition that we are … Continue reading

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Missing church

The last thing I posted had the word “missing” in the title. A few days ago I wrote a rambly thing as I thought about a canceled show and one of its canceled performers, pushed off the stage by contagious … Continue reading

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Missing Greg

In the final week of 2021 I ponder the year that’s passed and contemplate the one that lies ahead. We all may have something we miss doing, something or someone that we wish we could see or hear. Re-reading Dickens’ … Continue reading

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2021 TSO Messiah

As Kevin Bazzana observes in his Toronto Symphony Orchestra program note, “there is no one definitive Messiah.” It’s an ironic turn of phrase considering the religious implications one might give that phrase. Indeed when I look at the bizarre mockeries … Continue reading

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Confronting mortality: AtG /COC Mozart Requiem

The pandemic is simultaneously new in its requirements and yet old in once again reminding us of our ultimate destiny. Modern science may blind us to history’s lessons. The images on the tray in this picture come from Täby kyrka, … Continue reading

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