Bel Canto reunites for visiting artists

David
David Newell
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Concert to feature internationally renowned vocalist, composer

It is not often you will hear a composer describe his or her work as "A Bunch of Nonsense." But that is the name of a piece that will be performed at a concert in Grand Falls-Windsor this week.

The Bel Canto Chorale will be joined by Metropolitan Opera singer Wendy Nielsen on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the Memorial United Church for a performance of Peter Tiefenbach's composition. As an added treat, Tiefenbach, an accomplished pianist, will be in attendance at the show.

Soprano Wendy Nielsen and composer Peter Tiefenbach will join the Bel Canto Chorale for a Debut Atlantic concert on Thursday night in Grand Falls-Windsor at the Memorial United Church. - Submitted photo

Grand Falls-Windsor -

It is not often you will hear a composer describe his or her work as "A Bunch of Nonsense." But that is the name of a piece that will be performed at a concert in Grand Falls-Windsor this week.

The Bel Canto Chorale will be joined by Metropolitan Opera singer Wendy Nielsen on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the Memorial United Church for a performance of Peter Tiefenbach's composition. As an added treat, Tiefenbach, an accomplished pianist, will be in attendance at the show.

The concert is a part of Debut Atlantic's 30th anniversary tour.

Neil Edwards, executive director of Debut Atlantic, said the night promises to be an enjoyable one.

"Debut Atlantic is about making things as accessible as possible to groups across the region," he said.

The organization, funded by the Canada Council, the governments of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia and corporate and private donors, strives to make classical music available to everyone.

Tiefenbach's work was commissioned by Debut Atlantic for the tour.

"We wanted it for soprano and choir," Edwards said. "It was suggested by Wendy Nielsen to get into smaller communities and have that one-on-one kind of experience. At this point in her career, she has sung everywhere and she wanted to kind of go back and be accessible on a smaller scale."

Neilsen, in addition to her time at New York's Met, has performed with the Canadian Opera Company, New York City Opera, Opera Company of Philadelphia, Boston Lyric Opera, L'Opera de Montreal, Calgary Opera, Minnesota Opera and Florida Grand Opera.

A noted educator, she holds several degrees, including honorary doctorates from the University of New Brunswick and the University of Lethbridge, and is a member of the Order of New Brunswick.

Tiefenbach is originally from Regina, and is now a Toronto-based performer, composer, writer and teacher. He was nominated for a Juno award in 1993 and since 1997 has been a faculty member of the Glenn Gould Studio at the Royal Conservatory of Music.

Bel Canto Chorale director Maxine Stanley said the group's involvement in the concert is a commitment she had made some time ago. The Singers gave a final concert last year under Stanley's direction and indicated she was moving on. But she got some of the singers back together and changed the name to "Chorale" for this week's performance.

"I didn't dream we would be doing this again, but this is just for one night," she said. "It is an evening not to miss. How often do we have a world-renowned signer like Wendy or a composer like Peter Tiefenbach in town? I didn't want to miss that opportunity and make it available to people in this area. We will do some old repertoire as well, and there will be some soloists from the choir."

Stanley said the choir is having fun preparing for the concert, which she said will be exceptional.

Tickets will be available at the door, or by calling 489-5347.

Organizations: Metropolitan Opera, Memorial United Church, Canadian Opera Company Canada Council New York City Opera Boston Lyric Opera Minnesota Opera Florida Grand Opera University of New Brunswick University of Lethbridge Royal Conservatory of Music

Geographic location: Grand Falls, New Brunswick, Grand Falls-Windsor Nova Scotia New York Philadelphia Montreal Calgary Regina

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