Jeremy Spurgeon organ recital

Francis Jackson (b. 1917): Fanfare “Royale” (1956)
Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750):
Fantasia in G major, BWV 572
Meine Seele erhebt den Herren, BWV 648
Fuga sopra il Magnificat, BWV 733
Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland, BWV 659
Passacaglia in C minor, BWV 582
Louis Vierne: Carillon de Longpont Op. 31 No. 21
Olivier Messiaen: “Les mages” from La Nativité du Seigneur
Louis Vierne: Berceuse Op. 31 No. 19
César Franck: Choral No. 3 in A minor
Igor Stravinsky, arranged Maurice Besly: Berceuse and Finale from The Firebird

Davis Concert Organ, Winspear
Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Jeremy Spurgeon is one of the mainstays of Edmonton’s classical music scene, whether hidden among the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, playing the piano or celeste or the organ, or as accompanist to solo recitals, or, of course, as the music director at All Saints’ Anglican Cathedral, a post he has held since 1980 – so he is now celebrating his 40th anniversary there.

He’s hardly been heard, though, in a solo recital, so his concert on the Winspear’s Davis organ on February 12, 2020, was a major event, put on by the Edmonton Recital Society, and very well attended. It was also beautifully presented, with atmospheric, colourful, and yet discrete lighting giving a sense of intimacy, of the performer playing for each individual member of the audience, in the giant space of the hall, backed by the magnificent cliff of pipes that is the Davis organ.

Two of his major teachers were Lionel Rogg, the famed Bach interpreter, and Gillian Weir, perhaps the finest of all the Messiaen organists, so it was hardly surprising that the first half should be largely devoted to Bach, and the second to Messiaen and his French precursors, Vierne and César Franck.

For Mark Morris’ full review of the recital in the Edmonton Journal, click here.

Tracy Dahl recital

Tracy Dahl (soprano)
Shannon Hiebert (piano)

Muttart Hall
Sunday, January 26, 2020

Tracy Dahl brought an entertaining recital of songs about flowers and the seasons – and thus about love – to the Muttart Hall on Sunday January 26. For Mark Morris’ review in the Edmonton Journal, click here.

ESO Symphony for Kids Peter and the Wolf

Painting by Andrea Mueller (

Edmonton Symphony Orchestra

Alan Menken: Suite from Aladdin

Paganini: variations for one string on the theme “Dal tuo stellato soglio” from Rossini’s opera Mosè in Egitto

Prokofiev: Peter and the Wolf

Stravinsky: ‘Infernal Dance’ from The Firebird

Jonah Hansen (cello)
Bridget Ryan (narrator)
conducted by Cosette Justo Valdés

Saturday, November 23, 2019

The Winspear was packed to the rafters with kids and adults for Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf in the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra’s series Symphony for Kids on Saturday afternoon.

For Mark Morris’ review in the Edmonton Journal, click here.

Richard Eaton Singers: Ein deutsches Requiem

The Richard Eaton Singers

Brahms: Ein deutsches Requiem, Op. 45

Leslie Ann Bradley (soprano)
Geoffrey Sirett
Richard Eaton Singers
Edmonton Symphony Orchestra
conducted by Leonard Ratzlaff

Sunday November 10, 2019

For Mark Morris’ review of the Richard Eaton Singers’ performance of Brahms’ masterpiece, click here.

Edmonton Symphony Orchestra: Mazzoli, Rachmaninov, and Shostakovich

Boris Giltburg, the soloist in Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No.4
photo by Sasha Gusov

Chief Conductor Alexander Prior celebrated his first concert of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra’s new season with an epic performance of an epic symphony, Shostakovich’s Symphony No.11, with the orchestra once again showing how far it has come.

It was preceded by fine performances of Missy Mazzoli’s River Rouge Transfiguration and Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No.4, with the ESO debut of pianist Boris Giltburg

For Mark Morris’ review in the Edmonton Journal, click here.

Zemlinsky Quartet: Janáček, Novák, and Zemlinsky




The Czech Zemlinsky Quartet returned to the Muttart Hall on Sunday October 27, for an Edmonton recital Society concert with an unexpected and most attractive highlight: Vítězslav Novák’s Piano Quintet Op.12, where the quartet were joined by a young Canadian pianist, Adam Boeker.

For Mark Morris’s full review in the Edmonton Journal, click here.

Eddins and the ESO: Spanish influenced music

Edmonton Symphony Orchestra

Image result for Nights in the Gardens of Spain

Fauré: Le Pas Espagnol from the Dolly Suite
Corelli/Karl Jenkins: La Folia for marimba and string orchestra

Massenet: excerpts from the Act II ballet of El Cid
Rózsa: Love music from the soundtrack of El Cid
Tchaikovsky: Danse Espagnole from Swan Lake
Chabrier: España
Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio Espagnole
de Falla: Noches en los jardines de España

William Eddins (conductor)
Cosette Justo Valdés (conductor)
Eric Buchmann (violin)
Angela Cheng (piano)
Jacob Kryger (marimba)

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Bill Eddins kicked the Robbins Lighter Classics concerts off on Thursday, October 10, at the Winspear, with a program of Spanish-influenced music.

To read Mark Morris’ review of the concert in the Edmonton Journal, click here.


Trio de Moda

Trio de Moda at the St. John Lutheran Church of Golden Spike

Trio de Moda
St. John Lutheran Church of Golden Spike
Sunday, October 6, 2019

Trio de Moda is still a relatively new chamber group, formed in 2017 by three young Edmonton string players: violinist Neda Yamach and viola player Clayton Leung, both of whom play with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, and the cellist Kathleen de Caen.

The wonderfully named St. John Lutheran Church of Golden Spike is a relatively new chamber music venue. Golden Spike is the name of an area south of Spruce Grove: on the corner you turn into to get to the church is the old local Golden Spike general store, now a private home, and between it and the church is a little fenced-off graveyard marking the place of the original church (St. Paul Lutheran Church), that burnt down in the 1920s.

The church’s musical society, the Golden Spike Concert Society, put on its first concert only last year.

But all happily combined on a warm autumnal Sunday afternoon for an afternoon of mellow but enthusiastic chamber music.

For Mark Morris’ review in the Edmonton Journal, click here.

Edmonton Symphony Orchestra: Symphony Under the Sky, Dvořák and Brahms

Edmonton Symphony Orchestra

Robert Bernhardt, conductor of Symphony Under the Sky. Photo by D.T. Baker

Dvořák: Symphony No. 9 in E minor, From the New World, Op. 95, B. 178
Brahms: Violin Concerto in in D major, Op. 77

Blake Pouliot (violin)
conducted by Robert Bernhardt

Hawrelak Park
Friday, August 30, 2019

Friday night was classical music night at Edmonton Symphony Orchestra’s mini festival Symphony Under the Sky, with rousing performances under the baton of Robert Bernhardt of Dvořák’s New World symphony, and with the exciting young violinist Blake Pouliot of Brahms’ Violin Concerto.

It also featured an experimental sound reinforcement system.

For Mark Morris’ review in the  Edmonton Journal, click here.