2023 Montreal/New Musics International Festival Lineup

By Afton Wooten

The 11th annual Montreal/New Musics International Festival will take place from Feb. 23 to March 5. The event will host 70 new musical works including 20 premieres all with the theme “Music and Spirituality.”

For this article, only concerts featuring vocalists will be mentioned.

Composer of Cree origin Andrew Balfour’s choral work “Notinikew” tells the story of Aboriginal soldiers in WWI. Mel Braun will conduct Ojibwa song keeper Cory Campbell, Dead of Winter featuring tenor Nolan Kehlerm and bass John Anderson and the Winnipeg Boys’ Choir. Robert Falcon Ouellette will provide narrations. The concert will be held at the Montreal Symphony House at 7 pm. 

Performance Date: Feb. 24, 2023 

Mezzo-soprano Marie-Annick, soprano Virginie Mongeau, and the Chœur de l’église Saint Andrew & Saint Paul will perform Walter Boudreau’s “Golgot(h)a.” Boudreau will lead the musicians and narrations by Pierre Lebeau through the poems by Raoul Duguay at the Pierre-Péladeau Center at 3 pm. 

Performance Date: Feb. 26, 2023 

Next, Voces Borealis will perform in “From Tremblay to Feldman: Faces of Spirituality in Music” under the direction of Isak Goldschneider. Their performance will take place in the Concert Hall at the Montreal Conservatory of Music at 7 pm.

Performance Date: March 1, 2023 

The SMCQ Woman’s Voices Ensemble with I Musici and Louise Bessette under the direction of Jean-François Rivest will offer “Three Little Liturgies of the Divine Presence.” The concert is to be presented at the Pierre-Péladeau Center at 7 pm.

Performance Date: March 2, 2023 

“Intercontinental dialogues,” primarily a saxophone concert features countertenor Kai Wessel and ensemble Mixtura at the Agora Hydro-Québec, Heart of science at 3 pm.

Performance Date: March 4, 2023 

“Viva Italy and Canada!” explores the chamber music of these two countries. The program features two works written for the mdi ensemble by Salvatore Sciarrino and Lorenzo Troiani. Soprano Livia Rado serves as the soloist. This event takes place at the Pierre-Péladeau Center at 7 pm.

Performance Date: March 4, 2023 

The closing performance will feature works by Montreal- based composer Brian Cherney and end with “Les illumination” by Benjamin Britten. Alain Trudel conducts the Montreal Classical Orchestra and soprano Magalie Simard-Galdes. The concert will be held at the Pierre-Péladeau Center beginning at 3 pm.

Performance Date: March 5, 2023