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The Armenian Viol

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VivaVoce, Montreal’s chamber choir par excellence, presents the first of three “commentated concerts” in its 15th-anniversary season, The Armenian Viol. Artistic Director Peter Schubert will give the audience listening tips, using the ensemble to demonstrate musical ideas. The concert takes place on Saturday, September 21, 2013 at 8 pm at Christ Church Cathedral.

From soulful spiritual melodies to lively hand-clapping, this concert runs the gamut! To celebrate the 22nd anniversary of Armenian independence, VivaVoce teams up with virtuoso viol player Grigor Arakelian. They will perform Armenian folk music, sacred pieces by Komitas (the “Bartok of Armenia”), and the premiere of a new piece written for the occasion by Montreal composer Petros Shoujounian. This concert is in collaboration with the Hamazkayin Cultural Association.

VivaVoce was founded in Montreal in 1998 by Peter Schubert. The award-winning ensemble is committed to performing classical music from all periods and to developing the art of Canadian choral music by commissioning at least one new work each year. Their unusual “commentated concert” format, in which Schubert precedes pieces or sets with engaging demonstrations, is designed to stimulate knowledge and appreciation of choral music in all audiences, from novices to experienced listeners.

While VivaVoce performs and records works from all periods, from the Renaissance to the present, its virtuosic performances of difficult contemporary scores have gained it a reputation as Montreal’s leading chamber choir, and last year earned it an Opus prize for “création de l’année.” The ensemble is invited regularly to appear on contemporary concert series and festivals such as the Festival International de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville, Montréal/Nouvelles Musiques and MusiMars, as well as with ensembles like Quasar, Sixtrum Percussion Ensemble and Bradyworks. VivaVoce’s five CDs have garnered excellent international reviews. A sixth CD, of Renaissance music, will be released in January by ATMA Classique.

VivaVoce receives support from the Conseil des arts de Montréal, the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec and the Conseil des arts du Canada.

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