2017–18 Season

Announcing three outstanding programmes under the direction of new Artistic Director David Bowser.

Romantic Masters
Sunday, October 29, 2017

Anton Bruckner  - Te Deum        
Johannes Brahms - Schicksalslied (Song of Destiny)
Ludwig van Beethoven - Choral Fantasy

Monica Whicher, soprano
Krisztina Szabó, mezzo-soprano
Adam Luther, tenor
Brett Polegato, bass-baritone
Asher Armstrong, piano
Toronto Mozart Players
David Bowser, conductor

Saturday, December 16, 2017 & Sunday, December 17, 2017

Francis Poulenc - Gloria
Quatre Motets - Maurice Duruflé
Cantique de Jean Racine - Gabriel Fauré
Noël - Charles Gounod             

Andrea Núñez, soprano, winner of the 2016 Toronto Mozart Vocal Competition
Daniel Norman, organ
David Bowser, conductor

Die Schöpfung (The Creation) - Franz Joseph Haydn
Sunday, April 29, 2018

Danika Lorèn, soprano
Charles Sy, tenor
Olivier Laquerre, bass-baritone
Toronto Mozart Players
David Bowser, conductor

All concerts are at Grace Church on-the-Hill, 300 Lonsdale Road.

A message from David Bowser, Artistic Director

It is my enormous pleasure to welcome you to Pax Christi Chorale.

With passion and commitment to excellence in choral performance, we are proud to present the Pax Christi Chorale 2017-18 concert season. Joined by exceptional Canadian guest artists and the superb Toronto Mozart Players, Pax Christi Chorale continues to grow as an ensemble of high calibre and a cultural beacon in our city. Each of our three programmes offers an exhilarating concert experience and I invite you to share in the celebration of great choral music.

I am thrilled to feature on my first concert as Artistic Director the glorious Te Deum by Anton Bruckner which the composer himself considered “the pride of my life.” With contrasts of monumental splendour and intimate poignancy this work is an authentic expression of devotion and gratitude. 

Next on the programme is Schicksalslied, or Song of Destiny, by Johannes Brahms. It took Brahms nearly three years to complete this beautifully lyrical work for chorus and orchestra, as it seems he had trouble deciding how the piece should end. He finally decided on a quiet nostalgia in the final phrases as he recalls the opening passage as a distant memory.

For the celebratory finale, Ludwig van Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy is an exhilarating affirmation of optimism and love of art.

Pax Christi Chorale’s second programme of great French choral works begins with Francis Poulenc’s festive Gloria. Also featured on this sparkling program are Quatre Motets by Maurice Duruflé, Cantique de Jean Racine by Gabriel Fauré, Noël by Charles Gounod, and old Christmas carols from Québec and France.

The final concert of the season offers one of the greatest oratorios ever composed, Franz Joseph Haydn’s Die Schöpfung, or The Creation. With marvellous musical depictions of light, stars, oceans and mountains, weather, plants, animals, birds, and all other creatures, The Creation is as captivating and moving to modern audiences as it was in 1798.

Pax Christi Chorale celebrates choral music among a diverse community. We have an inclusive philosophy and welcome audience members, choristers, and volunteers of all backgrounds and walks of life. Music has the power to unite people and communities, to allow us to celebrate, bond and heal, and to express emotions that connect us in meaningful ways. You are welcome here. We hope you will join us in celebrating great choral music!

With warmest wishes

David Bowser
Artistic Director Designate

About David Bowser, incoming Artistic Director

David comes to us with extensive and exciting experience as a choral and orchestral conductor, composer, and educator. He is Music Director and Conductor of the Hart House Chorus and the Oakville Choral Society, and teaches at McMaster University and conducts the McMaster Chamber Orchestra. His lengthy and varied career includes conducting for ballet, opera, film, television and the concert stage in countries around the world.

Pax Christi is particularly excited to collaborate with The Mozart Project where David is founder and artistic director. The Mozart Project operates the Toronto Mozart Players and the Toronto Mozart Vocal Competition, in which talented young singers from across Canada and the United States compete for top prizes and the opportunity to perform with professional orchestra.

“Mozart’s music challenges the best professionals and initiates the youngest musicians,” he says.

David believes that singing Mozart can make you a better singer. “He was essentially a vocal composer — everything he wrote has emotional depth and breadth. And beautiful lines!”

In addition to a Doctor of Musical Arts degree, David Bowser also holds a Master of Music degree in Composition from the University of Toronto.

His latest work, Farewell to a Soul Ascending, is for solo violin and string orchestra. David describes it as “lyrical and tonal with harmonic mixture and contrast. The violin often soars above the orchestra. I composed the work to express a personal loss.”

In March 2017, David will conduct the premiere performance of Farewell to a Soul Ascending as the opening work in a concert with The Toronto Mozart Players the Hart House Chorus, and Andrea Nunez, winner of the 2017 Mozart Vocal Competition. Watch for Andrea in Pax Christi's 2017-18 season!

David’s professional credentials and his vision for the choir are outstanding. He is an excellent fit with our commitment to artistic excellence and our goals for growth. We look forward to the many valuable synergies between David’s community and our own.” - Carol Ringer, Pax Christi Chorale Board Chair