“On a recent spring evening, commuters on their way home were stopped in their tracks by the sound of the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir singing in Brookfield Place’s Galleria,” writes Trish Crawford in Saturday’s (5/16) Toronto Star (Canada). “This performance was a pop-up concert—a surprise treat for those who toil amongst the city’s towers. It’s part of a trend by classical music organizations to lose their stuffy image, reach out to new audiences and invigorate their own members with exciting performing challenges. ‘We feel we made the impact we wanted to: to stop them in their tracks and give them a unique experience,’ says the choir’s executive director, Cynthia Hawkins.” At Toronto’s Union Station, “The Toronto Symphony Orchestra staged five concerts on Feb. 4, featuring Canadian pianist Emmanuel Ax on Steinway grand pianos. Besides Union Station, Ax played at the CBC Atrium, Royal Bank Plaza, City Hall Rotunda and the Hospital for Sick Children.” At Wychwood Barns, “a community cultural hub that opened in 2008 in a former streetcar repair facility at 601 Christie St. … Music in the Barns, founded by artistic director Carol Gimble, plays two or three concerts a year since 2011.”

Posted May 18, 2015