he Toronto Consort offers an extensive Student Education Project designed for students of high school age. The programs are presented at Trinity-St. Paul's Centre in Toronto, thanks to support from the J.P. Bickell Foundation, The Edwards Charitable Foundation, The Lloyd Carr-Harris Foundation, The Mary-Margaret Webb Foundation, The Catherine and Maxwell Meighen Foundation and The Pluralism Foundation.
Forty-Part Motet workshops – Special Project in Fall 2012
In September and October 2012, the Toronto Consort will present Janet Cardiff's Forty-Part Motet, organized by the National Gallery of Canada. This unique sound installation will be running in the gymnasium of Trinity-St. Paul's United Church during Scotiabank Nuit Blanche.
As a part of this project, we are also offering two different workshops to students in the Greater Toronto Area, free of charge.
1) We are pleased to offer a workshop and installation experience to school groups at Trinity-St. Paul's United Church on October 1 and 2, 2012. This 60-minute hands-on workshop is available to Grade 7 to 12 students. This workshop will be general in nature, appropriate for students of music, visual art, drama, history, media studies, and other subjects.
2) From October to December 2012, we are offering in-school, performance-based workshops in Renaissance music. These are aimed at music students in Grade 7 to 12, in any performance discipline: vocal, strings, band, guitar, or keyboard. Toronto Consort musicians will come to your school to work with a music class or ensemble, either on repertoire that teachers have previously selected, or on repertoire that we bring. The workshop can be adapted to any level of experience.
This innovative undertaking by the Toronto Consort has been generously supported by the Metcalf Foundation under its Strategic Initiatives Program.
Download a comprehensive Teachers' Guide aimed at schools who are attending the Forty-Part Motet workshop/installation experience at Trinity-St. Paul's. The information and activities in the teachers' guide can also be used to help give students a context for the Toronto Consort's in-school Renaissance performance workshops, and Renaissance music in general.
Three Program Opportunities!
The first program, entitled
Shakespeare's Songbook, brings alive the kinds of music
would have been heard by William Shakespeare in Renaissance England.
Based on researches in the field, this 50-minute concert/lecture uses
the songs and dances of Shakespeare's plays as a way of introducing high school students to
the wonderful world of Elizabethan music.
With music for fools, fairies and Falstaff, students hear and are
introduced to ballads, recorder and hurdy-gurdy improvisations, harpsichord fantasias and a
capella vocal works. A great way to increase understanding of William Shakespeare, and to be introduced to an unforgettable musical world!
The second program, entitled An Introduction
to Medieval Music (click here to download Teachers' Guide PDF), is a wonderful way to introduce students
to the unusual world of medieval music.
The 50-minute program is devised as a pilgrimage, just as it might have
happened in medieval Europe in the early 13th century.
First stop is Paris, where we hear the cries of street vendors, listen to
itinerant students singing the original Carmina Burana, and take part in lively instrumental
dances. As we travel through France we encounter a group of knights on their way to the
Crusades, and hear their songs and stories. Finally we reach Spain where we are joined by
throngs of pilgrims singing cantigas and dancing. Throughout, students are introduced to
medieval instruments and their unique sounds.
The Toronto Consort has prepared a special Teachers’ Guide, introducing
medieval music history, and the instruments heard in the concert, which is available to
The third program, entitled “The Marco Polo Project” is a creative re-imagining of the extraordinary music the 13th-century Venetian explorer might have heard on his travels.
The impetus for this new 50-minute education concert came from the fact that students in Toronto today come from all around the world, and represent a wide range of cultures and musical backgrounds. The Consort wanted a way to connect early music with these other musical traditions. Marco Polo is a perfect vehicle, because he travelled so extensively through the middle East and southern Russia to China. This education concert follows Marco Polo’s travels, with an emphasis on the instruments and the singing style of the different cultures he might have encountered on his journey.
Students hear examples of Chinese musical styles and instruments and traditional Georgian music, which features incredible vocal gymnastics, including nimble counterpoint and strident dissonant chord tunings. Around these pieces from Georgia and China, the Toronto Consort plays examples of the lively dances and haunting laude (Italian spiritual songs) which would have been known by Marco Polo and his family.
The Student Education Project is designed for secondary school students, to introduce them to the rich musical and cultural heritage of the Middle Ages, Renaissance and early Baroque periods. These programs complement studies in many areas including English, Music, Modern Languages, Performing Arts, and History. For more information on the programs and dates of presentation, please call Lisa at 416-966-1045.
Click here for our Teachers' Guide to An Introduction to Medieval Music.
© 2012, Toronto Consort
Janet Cardiff Forty-Part Motet
(Teachers' Guide; PDF 1.18MB)
An Introduction to Medieval Music
(Teachers' Guide; PDF 2.9MB)
The Toronto Consort
427 Bloor Street West
Box Office: 416-964-6337
Administrative Office: 416-966-1045