If you have a class in Room 323 you might have noticed an odd pamphlet in the corner of the counter. If you don’t and haven’t, follow me for a bit. That pamphlet is the Chinese version of the TSO’s 2012 – 2013 programme. Admittedly, it is an odd thing to find in a physics classroom. I left it there. Now why would I do that?

My first answer would be that I brought it to school and I misplaced it. But then the question repeats itself. And I would reply that I brought it to school to show my friends: to show Avrilynn and Maylynn and Mahan and Michelle and Mandy and Christian and Jordan and even (though he is not my friend) Mr. Hussey. And because that answers so little, the question asks itself a third time.

“Because beautiful music is meant to be shared.”

And so I show my Chinese TSO programme to my friends (and one nemesis) as an invitation. To point at the symphonies and concerti and tone poems and say, “Look! This is what they’ll play!” To stab dramatically at the great performers and swoon backwards in celebrity worship. Mind you, that’s just me. As for my friends (and one nemesis), well—some of them pay up. Some of them get to spend an evening at the concert hall, under the spell of the baton and the strains of the human soul. And they get to spend it with me.

Musings aside, the 2012 – 2013 season is one of the best yet. Tickets are only $14 (ah, the splendors of youth!) through the tsoundcheck program for 15 – 30 year olds. Or you can get the tsoundcheck 3-pack, like I did. I’ve listed (but in no way will be limited by) my 3-pack picks below.

See you during intermission!


1. Beethoven Triple Concerto (November 4th and 5th )

Conductor: Peter Oundjian

Violin: Jonathan Crow

Cello: Shauna Rolston

Piano: Jon Kimura Parker

Mercure: Triptyque

Beethoven: Concerto for Piano, Violin, and Cello “Triple Concerto”

Shostakovich: Symphony No. 12 “The Year 1917”

The Beethoven Triple Concerto is an absolute gem, a massive work that comes every once in a blue moon. The challenge is the interaction between the soloists and the orchestra: not one, but three, almost a sort of repartee between orchestra and piano trio.  When it is done well (and knowing the TSO, it will be done well) the effect is tremendous.


2. Davis Conducts Schumann and Strauss (November 29th and December 1st)

Conductor: Sir Andrew Davis

Piano: Jan Lisiecki

Cello: Joseph Johnson

Viola: Teng Li

Mendelssohn: Overture to A Midsummer Night’s Dream

R. Strauss: Don Quixote

Schumann: Piano Concerto

This concert will be absolutely amazing. The first reason is the conductor, Sir Andrew Davis, a genius of the baton. The second is the brilliant programme, rich in storytelling, especially Mendelssohn’s classic Overture to A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The third is Jan Lisiecki with the Schumann piano concerto.  He’s easily one of my favourite living pianists, a 17 year old Canadian prodigy who can play damn well.


3. Late Night: Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini (June 15th)

Conductor: Peter Oundjian

Piano: Yuja Wang

Violinist: Jonathan Crow

Rachmaninoff: Rhapsody on a theme of Paganini

Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade

This is a late-night concert, worth going to simply because of the programme. Rachmaninoff’s famous Rhapsody on a theme of Paganini (sinfully catchy, more so than the original tune) played by Yuja Wang—or as I like to call her, the girl with the Devil Fingers. Her technique is supernatural, I swear. An exciting work and an exciting soloist, the concert ends with Rimsky-Korsakov’s fantastical suite Scheherazade.