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Leaf Music and Kate Read Proudly Present “After”

Kate Read is thrilled to present After, her first record on Leaf Music set to be released on November 18, 2022. After is the culmination of a pandemic’s worth of time and experimentation directed towards melding the organic with the electronic. After features famous works from Bach, Muhly, and Heinrich Ignaz Franz Biber, as well as two newly commissioned works from Canadian composer and professor Andrew Staniland and composer Benton Roark.

Inspiration for After began to form during the pandemic, when, like many artists, Kate Read found herself alone and in need of some solace. She found this solace in two forms. One, perhaps expected, was through the works of Bach and Muhly. The other, however, was through experimenting with electronics. This eventually led to the masterful combination and integration of baroque and electronics heard on After.  

Speaking on the power of music to provide solace in times of difficulty and stress, Read comments, “I continued on to spend a lot of time with Nico Muhly’s “Keep in Touch”. Interestingly, in playing this piece I found that my sense of isolation was alleviated, despite Muhly’s words: “Every dimension of the piece accentuates the “in-betweenness” of these two strange voices: …Antony’s (Hegarty) voice, so stately on his own records, is here reduced to abrupt, extemporaneous gestures, mirroring, not alleviating, the viola’s isolation.” 

Based in St John’s, Kate’s diverse talents can be heard at festivals such as Sound Symposium and Tuckamore, performing with the Atlantic String Quartet (winners of MusicNL Classical Musicians of the year, 2021) and as principal violist in the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra. In demand as a session musician Kate is also the violist of Dark by Five, resident ensemble at Gros Morne Summer Music and the Harbourlight Piano Quartet. Kate is also principal viola with Opera on the Avalon and collaborates with many musicians around town including Duo Concertante, Vernon Regher, Duane Andrews, Benton Roark and Tiber Reardon. Favourite memories of Sound Symposium include playing the ice breaker on the coast guard ship for the Harbour Symphony and an improv session with John Wyre, Bill Brennan and Paul Bendzsa. 

Kate Read ~ After  

Release Date: November 18, 2022 

Physical/Digital Release 

 kateread.ca 

leaf-music.ca 

MEDIA CONTACT: Andrew Brown | andrew@leaf-music.ca

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Leaf Music and The Andara Quartet Proudly Present “De mille feux”

Leaf Music and Andara Quartet present the group’s second album De mille feux, available November 4, 2022. Recorded during two sessions almost two years apart at the Carleton Dominion-Chalmers Centre, De mille feux is the result of the collaboration between the Andara Quartet and four remarkable composers. The four pieces, from composers Benjamin Britten, Samuel Barber, Kelly Marie-Murphy, and James Wright, each allow the quartet to display their full dynamic and tonal range.

De mille feux translates to of a thousand lights, which in turn gestures toward the choice between embracing light or darkness when faced with the “innumerable traumas and nihilisms of the twentieth century, and the recently discovered perpetual expansion of interstellar voids, myriad forms of terrestrial energy continue to burst forth with light, passion, and life!” De mille feux is a celebration of turning toward and contemplating the good, particularly when circumstances make doing so difficult.  

In September 2014, the members of the Andara Quartet—Marie-Claire Vaillancourt (violin), Jeanne Côté (violin), Vincent Delorme (viola), and Dominique Beauséjour-Ostiguy (cello)—met for the first time at the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal, while preparing the Ravel String Quartet in F major under the tutelage of Denis Brott. Since then, their passion, dynamism, quality of execution, and unique repertoire have brought them critical acclaim across Canada and internationally. 

Andara Quartet ~ De mille feux 

Release Date: November 4, 2022 

leaf-music.ca 

MEDIA CONTACT: Andrew Brown | andrew@leaf-music.ca 

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Christina Raphaëlle Haldane Releases Debut Album Tu me voyais

Christina Raphaëlle Haldane is thrilled to present Tu me voyais, her first record on Leaf Music set to be released on October 21, 2022. Tu Me Voyais is the result of the collaboration between Haldane and Carl Philippe Gionet, along with several other artists, writers, and composers who have contributed their own offerings.

The album is anchored around Gionet’s new arrangements of Twelve Acadian Folk Songs, tailored for Haldane’s voice. These re-imaginings are set in the 19th century lieder aesthetic or art song where voice and piano play equal solo parts within the musical architecture.  

Carl’s approach to the Acadian folk song arrangements is rooted in the oral tradition, where music and texts are passed orally from generation to generation, without the use of musical notation. He selected folk songs that were already committed to his memory, passed on to him orally from family members and childhood musical activities. In the arrangements, Carl has remained as faithful as possible to his musical memory. He has also taken liberties with the traditional texts, often re-working the order of the storytelling, making omissions, and creating repetitions to enhance the dramatic arc of the pieces. 

Christina Haldane’s career spans the UK, Europe, Asia and North America, and she is currently based in Canada’s Atlantic provinces. She has interpreted many lead opera roles, having performed for opera houses such as The Finnish National Opera, The Royal Opera Covent Garden, Scottish Opera and Musica Viva Hong Kong. Her specialty is performing Handel’s Heroines, Comedic Bel Canto roles and Contemporary opera. Christina enjoys performing and curating recital and chamber music concerts, and she is often invited to perform with leading orchestras. Her exploration of contemporary music has led to many collaborations with composers, and she continues to bring their vocal works to life. Christina is a bilingual English and French speaker with Acadian heritage, and she is proud to be a citizen of Canada and Great Britain.  

Christina Haldane – Tu me voyais 

Release Date: October 21, 2022

https://christinahaldane.com/ 

Tu me voyais is available to stream on all major streaming platforms.

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Alice Ho Releases New Album, “A Woman’s Voice”

“A Woman’s Voice” is an album written for female voices and piano. The repertoire is inspired by literature that celebrates the female spirit and their challenging, and changing, roles throughout history. The multi-lingual lyrics (English, French, and Mandarin) reflect the multicultural Canadian ethos and presents a wide spectrum of text, including ancient Chinese poems from the Tang Dynasty, a war poem by English poetess Charlotte Mew, as well as Alice Ho’s collaborations with seven Canadian writers across the provinces: Marjorie Chan, Madeleine Thien, Carole Languille, Phoebe Tsang, Tong Wang, Thomass Muir, Anna Camara, and Michael O’brien. These writers span a wide range, both in their racial and geographic diversity, as well as where they are in their careers. 

 “A Women’s Voice” features an “all Canadian” lineup. Many astounding young performers have contributed passionately to this album, including pianist/vocalist Jialiang Zhu, coloratura lyric soprano Vania Chan, soprano Katy Clark, soprano Maeve Palmer, soprano Ariadne Lih, mezzo-soprano Alex Hetherington, pianist/writer Tong Wang, and cellist Andrew Ascenzo

This recording intends to aim the spotlight at women’s empowerment and strength by leading the audience through a cross-cultural musicscape, and ultimately serves as a reflection on how women of the past and present navigate love, desire, grief, and hardship.

One of the most acclaimed composers writing in Canada today, Hong Kong born Alice Ping Yee Ho has written in many musical genres and received numerous national and international awards, including the 2022 Nova Scotia Symphony’s Maria Anna Mozart Award, 2022 Barlow General Commissioning Award, 2019 Johanna Metcalf Performing Arts Prize, 2016 Louis Applebaum Composers Award, 2014 Prince Edward Island Symphony Composers Competition, 2014 Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Friendship Orchestral Composition Competition, 2013 Dora Mayor Moore Award for “Outstanding Original Opera” for her opera The Lesson of Da Ji, and the 2013 Boston Metro Opera International Composition Competition, K.M. Hunter Artist Award, du Maurier Arts Ltd. Her upcoming project is a new opera called CHINATOWN commissioned by City Opera Vancouver with renowned Canadian writer/librettist Madeleine Thien and Hoisanese co-writer Paul Yee, premiering September 13-17 at the Vancouver Playhouse.

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The Charke-Cormier Duo Release “The Equation of Time”

 

Leaf Music and award-winning ensemble the Charke-Cormier Duo are proud to present The Equation of Time, the duo’s third full-length album and their second to feature a medley of different genres and styles. Recorded on opposite sides of the country, the Charke-Cormier duo recorded all tracks in Wolfville, NS, with Brazilian multi-instrumentalist Celso Machado recording percussion in Gibsons, B.C. 

The Equation of Time begins with Brazilian-Canadian guitarist and percussionist Celso Machado’s second book of music for flute and guitar; six dance and groove-based pieces on which the Charke-Cormier duo float effortlessly over the top. The versatility of bass flute and guitar is showcased again in Derek and Eugene’s more conventional performance of Wilhelmine von Bayreuth’s Sonata in A minor. Although the bass flute would be unknown to the work’s original performers in the mid-18th century, the bass flute’s warm and airy tone is reminiscent of the wooden transverse instruments that would have been in use at that time.  

The group follows this opening piece with renditions of pieces from 17th century Italian composers Girolamo Frescobaldi and 18th century German composer Wilhelmine Von Bayreuth before closing the album with Derek Charka’s “The Equation of Time”, a piece exploring the relationship between the passage of time and the listener’s experience of music. The piece sees Charke and Cormier oscillate between changing tempos and shifting perspectives. “The Equation of Time” is the second work that Derek has written for bass flute and guitar. With many improvisatory figures woven throughout the score, it was composed with the Charke-Cormier Duo’s skills as improvisers in mind. 

Derek Charke (flutes) and Eugene Cormier (guitar) formed the Charke~Cormier Duo several years ago culminating in a debut recital at the KC Irving Centre in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. This sonorous union of flute and guitar continues to charm audiences across the Maritimes. Their repertoire includes many of the most important works for this pairing of instruments, and creates a sonic journey for audiences from the street corners of Argentina to the halls of Europe, as well as introducing fresh new works created today. Both performers are highly accomplished musicians who are on the teaching faculty at Acadia University’s School of Music. 

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Leaf Music Proudly Presents Beethoven: Complete Music for Piano and Cello from cellist Robert deMaine and pianist Peter Takács

Halifax-based record label Leaf Music is pleased to announce the release of cellist Robert deMaine and pianist Peter Takács’s 2-disc album of Beethoven’s complete works for piano and cello. Set to be released July 8, 2022, this stunning collection showcases Beethoven’s unprecedented textures and formal innovations found in his sonatas for cello and piano. 

DeMaine is a master of Beethoven’s conversational tone and technical flourishes, playing with “lapidary technical precision, and a persuasive identification with the idiom of the music at hand.” Takács showcases the composer’s experiments in harmony and form with his noted ability to communicate musical interpretations. As the inventor of the modern cello sonata, Beethoven’s Op. 5 joins the cello and keyboard into a dialogue of near equals. 

While Beethoven’s compositions demonstrate his lifelong interest in counterpoint and move toward instrumental parity, his arrival was not immediate. deMaine and Takács take listeners on a journey through this progression, concluding with Op. 102 as Beethoven’s ideal balance, weaving their two instruments into a single unified texture of equal forces.

Robert deMaine is the Principal Cellist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and sought-after solo artist and chamber musician. His solo repertoire includes concertos by Haydn, Dvorak, Elgar and Penderecki. And as a recitalist, he is known for magnificent interpretations of J.S. Bach’s cello suites. A first-prize winner in many national and international competitions, deMaine was the first cellist ever to win the grand prize at San Francisco’s prestigious Irving M. Klein International Competition for Strings. He is an exclusive Thomastik-Infeld artist, and performs on a cello made in 1684 by Antonio Stradivari.

Romanian-born Peter Takács has performed widely, receiving critical and audience acclaim for his penetrating interpretations. Takács has performed as a guest soloist with major orchestras in the U.S. and abroad, as well as at important summer festivals such as Tanglewood, Music Mountain, Chautauqua Institution, and Sweden’s Helsingborg Festival. Since 2008 he has been a member of the faculty at the Montecito Summer Music Festival in Santa Barbara, California. He performed and recorded the cycle of 32 Beethoven piano sonatas to critical acclaim in 2011.

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Leaf Music & Infusion Baroque Proudly Present “Virtuosa”

Leaf Music and award-winning ensemble Infusion Baroque present Virtuosa. Recorded at Église St-Agustin in Mirabel and Conservatoire de musique et d’art dramatique de Montreal in Quebec, Virtuosa is the ensemble’s first collaboration with JUNO-award winning producer Martha de Francisco. Virtuosa offers 14 pieces and almost two hours of music spanning 400 years. The album features Alexa Raine-Wright on flute, Sallynee Amawat on violin, Rona Nadler on harpsichord, and Andrea Stewart on cello and viola de gamba, with guest performances by soprano Ariadne Lih, Sari Tsuji on violin, and Gili Loftus on fortepiano. The group is celebrating the release of Virtuosa with a performance at the Montreal Baroque Festival on June 23, the eve before Virtuosa’s release.

An in-depth booklet and companion website display stories and artwork surrounding the women featured on the recording. The goal of the Virtuosa Project is to provide cultural and socio-economic context for the women’s lives, the music they wrote, and to highlight their accomplishments in a time saturated with adversity. As the members of Infusion Baroque delved deeper into the stories of the composers, they began to form a shared admiration for the depth of perseverance and passion they encountered.

Virtuosa is the culmination of many shared frustrations and conversations between the members of Infusion Baroque. “One of the most poignant thoughts brought about by Infusion Baroque’s Virtuosa Project exploration is that, had I been born during the time that the music on this album was composed, I would not have been allowed to play the flute, says flutist Alexa Raine-Wright. 

Underneath the Virtuosa Project umbrella is a web series dedicated to four women across the 18th and 19th centuries: Princess Anna Amalia of Prussia, Lise Cristiani, Teresa Milanollo, and Élisabeth-Claude Jacquet de La Guerre. Each composer is profiled in a mini-documentary, and accompanied by a companion video in which a piece written by or composed for the featured musician is performed. Each of the women featured is recognized as a pioneer in their field. There are also four pieces from four different male composers on the album, all of whom have in some way contributed to or supported the cause of women musicians during their time. 

Infusion Baroque draws new audiences to early music through a captivating concert experience, effortlessly connecting seasoned musicianship with theatrical flair. Playing music of the seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth centuries on historical instruments, the four women of Infusion Baroque enthrall audiences across North America with their creative and interactive programming.

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Infusion Baroque – Virtuosa

Release Date: June 24, 2022

Physical/Digital Release

Download or Stream HERE

Infusionbaroque.com

leaf-music.ca


MEDIA CONTACT: Andrew Brown | andrew@leaf-music.ca

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Leaf Music Proudly Presents Souvenirs of Auguste Descarries from Quebecois pianist Isabelle David

Souvenirs of Auguste Descarries is the debut solo album from Quebecois pianist, Isabelle David, set to be released May 27, 2022 through Halifax-based label, Leaf Music. The album includes 14 works from the distinguished Quebec pianist and composer Auguste Descarries. This prominent pianist holds a special place in Ms David’s musical background, as her maternal grandmother was one of the students who benefited from his teaching. This special link and the discovery of the composer’s manuscripts, led Ms David to pursue a doctorate in music performance where she devoted four years of research to Descarries’s piano works. 

Eight of the album’s recordings are unreleased works, adding to the original contribution of Quebecois piano literature. Ms David champions Descarries’s compositions through this beautiful collection.  After his passing in 1958, journalist Pierre Saucier wrote of Descarries in La Patrie, “Nobody could convey the message of the classic works with such verve. He was a master of phrasing, which is such a trite concept today. With his inspired improvisations, music came alive as if by, with a very personal twist.”

Nostalgie” was written in Descarries’ last years, featuring sophisticated harmonies and profound romantic expression. Isabelle David holds the honour of having performed the piece for the very first time during a recital at the Salle Claude-Champagne in September 2018. The manuscript for “Étude en sol majeur” was discovered by Ms David during her research in the Université de Montréal archives earlier that year.

The “Rhapsodie canadienne” was originally composed in 1927 as part of a Canadian competition intended to promote folk songs. Though it was not selected, Descarries revisited this work six years later and changed it from a small-orchestral piece to a large-orchestral piece. In December 2017, 60 years after its last performance, Ms David performed this piece with the Orchestre symphonique de Longueuil, and again in 2018 with the Orchestre symphonique de Drummondville. Then in 2020, Ms David revived this work by transcribing it for solo piano, with its debut performance as part of her last doctoral recital that year.

This album is the culmination of all the work undertaken in the past few years. It is part of an endeavour shared with other musicians and music lovers who wish to raise the profile of Auguste Descarries’s great piano legacy. I trust you will enjoy the composer’s unreleased pieces, whose opus makes a very original contribution to the piano literature of Quebec. – Isabelle David

Isabelle David is a national award-winning pianist from Quebec, who made her debut as a soloist with the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal at the age of 17. Her involvement in various international festivals and competitions has led her to perform at Jordan Hall (Boston), Carnegie Hall (New York), Helsingin Musiikkitalo (Helsinki), and Zipper Hall (Los Angeles). She released her first album, The Wild Swans, with violinist Yolanda Bruno in 2019. The prominent pianist and composer Auguste Descarries, from Quebec, holds a special place in her family’s musical background, as her maternal grandmother was one of the students who benefited from his teaching. Throughout Ms David’s childhood, her grandmother shared cherished memories from the time she studied with the master. This special link to Descarries and the discovery of the composer’s manuscripts, now part of the Université de Montréal archives, led her to pursue a doctorate in music performance where she devoted four years of research to Descarries’s piano works. She completed her doctorate in 2020 and has created this album as a culmination of that work.

Souvenirs of Auguste Descarries

Release date: May 27, 2022

leaf-music.caIsabelleDavid.net

MEDIA CONTACT: Andrew Brown | andrew@leaf-music.ca

Halifax-based classical label, Leaf Music is excited to release the debut solo album from Quebecois pianist Isabelle David. The album includes 14 works by Quebec composer Auguste Descarries, eight of which have never before been released. The piece, “Rhapsodie canadienne” is filled with well-known French-Canadian folk themes and was transcribed for piano by Ms. David as part of her doctoral studies at the Université de Montréal. This album is a culmination of her doctoral work, and endeavors to honour Descarries’s great piano legacy.

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Nathaniel Watson Releases “Winterreise”

Halifax-based record label Leaf Music is pleased to announce the release of baritone Nathaniel Watson and pianist Michael McMahon’s rendition of Schubert’s Winterreise, recorded last winter in Montreal.

Baritone Nathaniel Watson and pianist Michael McMahon, both based in Montreal, give us their rendition of Franz Schubert’s monumental song cycle, Winterreise, written in 1827, the year before Schubert’s tragic, early death. The 24 settings of poems of Wilhelm Müller are a journey deep into the psyche of a young man, unlucky in love, who sets out with neither friend nor destination, in the dead of winter, an epic figure in the dawning of German Romanticism. In this recording, also made in winter (and during a pandemic), Watson and McMahon share their experience and lifelong passion for Schubert. The composer, who had already composed some 600 Lieder in his short life, confessed to his close circle of friends that these songs moved him more than all the others.

Canadian Nathaniel Watson is a versatile artist who has performed successfully in a wide variety of musical styles. Highlights include Der Freischütz with the New York Philharmonic under Sir Colin Davis, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony under Kurt Masur, and in Carnegie Hall with Sir Roger Norrington in the conductor’s debut concert in New York. 


He appeared in the title role in the Boston Early Music Festival production of Cavalli’s Ercole amante in Boston, at Tanglewood, and at the Utrecht Festival in Holland, and was featured in the Salzburg Festival production of Weill’s Mahagonny. Recent seasons have included performances of Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with Nicholas McGegan and Philharmonia Baroque, Messiah with the National Symphony at the Kennedy Center, Mendelssohn’s Paulus and Mahler’s Eighth Symphony with L’Orchestre symphonique de Québec, and Handel’s Semele with Pacific Opera Victoria.

Nathaniel Watson has recorded works by the American composers Samuel Barber, Philip Glass, Andrew Imbrie, and Claudio Spies, as well as premiering works by Mr. Spies, Miriam Gideon, Scott Lindroth, Ronald Perera, Lewis Spratlan, Chan Ka Nin and Earl Kim. He has been featured as a soloist in Ruth Fazal’s Oratorio Terezin, a work that has been performed in six countries, including Israel, and in Carnegie Hall.

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Distinguished pianist Michael McMahon has served on the Faculty of the Schulich School of Music at McGill University in both the Piano and Voice Areas, since 1984, and has partnered with a long list of prominent singers in North America and in Europe.

Nathaniel Watson: Winterreise
Release date: February 11, 2022
Physical/Digital Release
Stream/Purchase HERE

nathanielwatsonmusic.com

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Lara Deutsch and Phil Chiu Release “Night Light”

Leaf Music is pleased to announce the release of Lara Deutsch & Phil Chiu’s collaborative album Night Light. Working and performing together since 2008, Lara and Phil have come together to record a wide range of works by Takashi Yoshimatsu, Jocelyn Morlock, Franz Schubert, and a world premiere by Frédéric Lacroix. 

Society, musical conventions, and tastes inevitably change and develop over time, but the shared human experiences that artists draw upon do

not. The two overarching ideas that Lara Deutsch and Phil Chiu used as inspiration for this album are dreams and journeys. Dreamy music is often associated with relaxation and easy-listening, but don’t be fooled; this music has wickedly fast and thrilling sounds that capture the chaotic nature of dreams as well!

Described in La Presse as “a pianist-painter who transforms each musical idea into a beautiful array of colours”, Philip Chiu is acclaimed for his brilliant pianism, sensitive listening, and a presence that eschews the hermit-pianist image in favour of openness, authenticity, and connection.

Named one of 2020’s “Rising Stars” by BBC Music Magazine, flutist Lara Deutsch is a versatile soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral player known for her engaging warmth and ability to connect with audiences. Recipient of the $125,000 Prix Goyer for collaborative artists in 2019-2020, her debut album, Origins (as Duo Kalysta), was previously released on the Leaf Music label and was named one of CBC Music’s “20 Favourite Canadian Classical Albums of 2019.”

Lara Deutsch & Phil Chiu: Night Light
Release date: February 4, 2022
Physical/Digital Release
Stream/Purchase HERE