I am home for a day before I head off to Vancouver to spend some more time for concerts in Canada. My Montreal experience was wonderful! I played with Les Voix Baroques (led by Matthew White and Alex Weimann) and Le Nouvel Opera (Susie Le Blanc and Alex Weimann). It was wonderful to play with new people, to get new musical perspectives, and to make new friends. The rehearsal days were very long and intense, so I had no energy to come back and do any work, including writing for the blog. However, the music making was energizing at the same time. I am inspired by the high levels of singing and playing. It was also pretty incredible to see how much is happening in Montreal with early music. The province puts a lot of money into arts and culture. There are numerous baroque orchestras and EM chamber groups in Montreal. It is possible to make a living there in early music!
I had breakfast with a good friend of mine one day, Matt Jennejohn. He is making a living there as a cornetto maker, baroque oboist, and cornetto player. I knew him in the mid 90's when we both played music for the Utah Shakespeare Festival. Those were fun days, and then he wasn't even playing Baroque oboe and had just begun playing cornetto (recorder player first). Very good to see him doing well!
The music for LVB was a beautiful program of madrigals - very hard! I played tenor viol and lirone, and there were two violins, cello, theorbo, and harpsichord. It was refreshing to hear a new take on violin playing with these great players! This country is dominated by the IU school of playing (which I love), and it was good to hear a new perspective. The theorbo player (Sylvain Bergeron) was great and loads of fun. The director, Alex Weimann, had an excellent sense of style, and was an excellent conductor! When I travel for concerts, it is normally with people whom I have played before or people who have studied at the same school. Very exciting to have this experience!