The New Music Ensemble of the Glenn Gould School (Royal Conservatory)

Brian Current, director 

In its fourth year of operation, the New Music Ensemble of the Glenn Gould School performs several free concerts per season at the Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre, the Telus Centre for the Arts and other venues.  The group is comprised of advanced students from the Glenn Gould Professional School who are interested in contemporary music and are seeking to expand the performance of cutting-edge works in the city of Toronto.

The New Music Ensemble of the Glenn Gould School is dedicated to performing large-scale historic works from the 20th century as well as brand new pieces featuring the latest developments in international contemporary music. It is uniquely situated in the city to provide large works at a minimal cost.   The ensemble is particularly focused on works involving groups of musicians alongside interactive electronics and is working to develop this area in the future.  This season we are presenting works by Philippe Leroux, Stefan Niculescu and a newly commissioned work by Robert Lemay.

The ensemble is also dedicated to commissioning and aims to premiere at least one large-scale work per season. Past commissions include works by Omar Daniel, Andrew Staniland, Robert Lemay, Dean Burry and an upcoming world premiere by Linda Catlin Smith.

Recent selections from our past seasons include:

R. Murray Schafer – Hymn to Night

Chris Paul Harman – Amerika

George Benjamin – At First Light

Michael Oesterle – Assume Sometimes

Webern - Two Songs, op.8

 Webern - Four Songs, op.13

Ana Sokolovic  - Geometrie Sentimentale

Lutoslawski – Chain I

Ligeti - Melodien                                                                      

Philippe Leroux: D’Aller

Philippe Leroux: Continu(ons)

Stefan Niculescu:  Ison II

Karen Tanaka, Wave Mechanics

Akira Nishimura, Chamber Symphony No.3

Andrew Staniland, Yupana*

Webern - Symphony, op. 21

Varese - Offrandes

Varese – Deserts

Todd Machover   - Another Life

Omar Daniel – Chamber Concerto No.1*

Linda Catlin Smith – Knotted Silk

Magnus Lindberg – Marea, for orchestra

Paul Frehner – Lila, for two chamber ensembles

*World Premiere, commissioned with funds from the Ontario Arts Council 

The Amphitheatre concerts are an excellent way to introduce new audiences to contemporary music.  The house is invariably filled with lunch-hour spectators who have little experience with new works. Between the pieces there is a casual discussion about ways to approach more challenging works. It is hoped that through these concerts we can introduce new ways of thinking about music by discussing features such as texture, colour or unusual forms.  It is also hoped that the young musicians themselves will develop an appreciation for the importance of performing and commissioning new works, and that this will carry through to their future careers as orchestral, solo and chamber musicians.