Round Tables

Panel 1: Finding unity in diversity: the structural issues

Creative music is a complex art form, but it also involves a complex series of social and economic actions in order to thrive and prosper. Increasingly, artists and music advocates are working to create collaborative artistic, social and economic structures in order to help creative music move forward in society. How can we combine the need for effective, collaborative artistic structures with the need for artistic freedom? What role do independent artists play in this process? What role does the government play? Do we need social structures (associations, lobby groups, production companies), or physical structures (concerts halls, rehearsal and workshop spaces)? What role do associations and lobby groups play? How does one deal with the competing needs of different artists within a single “structure”: absolute equality, relative democracy, a formalized competitive model, unfettered chaos? What creates the best art? What creates the best structure? Does a good structure create good art, or…?


Moderator — Bob Bauer
Composer • Guitarist • Producer
(Bedford, NS)

Joël Bons
Composer • Artistic Director, Nieuw Ensemble & Atlas Ensemble • Coordinator of the composition department of theConservatory of Amsterdam
(Amsterdam, Netherlands)

Matthew Greenall
Executive Director, Sound and Music
(London, UK)

Jim Hiscott
Composer • Musician • Producer • Co-Artistic Director of Groundswell
(Winnipeg, MB)

Marie-Chantal Leclair
Vice President, groupe Le Vivier • Artistic Director, Quasar, saxophone quartet
(Montréal, QC)

Tina Pearson
Director, LaSaM • Member, Sonic Presence
(Victoria, BC)


Diversity — is it an issue? How is it an issue? Is it good for new music? Bad? Irrelevant? Essential? What does an artistic director do to deal with diversity — what factors do they have to weigh to create a “balanced” season: style, technique, aesthetics, age, nationality, regionalism, economic, language, gendre, sexual orientation, personality? Does the public care (should the public care?), or do they just want a great concert? How does one balance our obligations to represent the full scope of musical creativity with the desire to present a single, coherent, unified artistic vision? Is this possible, is it desirable?


Moderator — Jérôme Blais
Composer • Professor, Department of Music, Dalhousie University
(Halifax, Nova Scotia)

Paul Bendzsa
Clarinettist • Artistic consultant & founding member of the Sound Symposium
(St. John’s, Newfoundland & Labrador)

Shawn Bostick
Atlantic Regional Director, CMC • Percussionist • Teacher
(Sackville, NB)

Joane Hétu
Co-Artistic Director, Productions SuperMusique • Composer • Performer • President & General Director of DAME (Distribution Ambiances Magnétiques Etcetera Inc.)
(Montréal, QC)

Jerry Pergolesi
Co-Artistic Director, Contact Contemporary Music • Percussionist
(Toronto, ON)

Blair Mackay
Percussionist • Director, Evergreen Club Contemporary Gamelan
(Toronto, ON)


What is “Canadian” new music? Does it exist? Can it exist? Should it exist? How do we reconcile cultures with long, deep musical traditions with the almost pristine, virgin territory that is the Canadian musical landscape? We are (almost) all immigrants — how do we build a creative music tradition with so much diversity in our culture? How can we, how should we, create a positive environment for the expanding range of musical traditions that are becoming part of the Canadian new music world?


Moderator — Peter Togni
Composer • Organist • Pianist • Radio Host
(Halifax, NS)

Parmela Attariwala
Attar Project • PhD candidate (ethnomusicology), University of Toronto
(Toronto, ON)

Sandeep Bhagwati
Composer • Canada Research Chair in Inter-X Art • Director matralab, Concordia University, (Montréal, QC)

Kiya Tabassian
Artistic Director, Constantinople
(Montréal, QC)

Lan Tung
Erhu (Chinese Violin) musician • Artistic Director of Orchid Ensemble •Vice President of Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra (Vancouver, BC)

*Programming subject to change without prior notification* (December 16, 2009)