April 2013 Volume 11 Issue 3 Published by the Music Undergraduate Students’ Association www.mcgillmusa.com
Perspectives on the student strikes: contrasting viewpoints (p. 8-10) October 2012 Volume 11 Issue 1
Published by the Music Undergraduate April 2012 Published Students’ Association
by Vol 10 Issue the 4 Music Undergraduate www.mcgillmusa.comStudents’ Association Published by www.mcgillmusa.com the Music Undergraduate Students’ Association
Food Make your own Greek yogurt (p. 5) February 2012 Vol 10 Issue 3
Photo by Arjun Mehta
photo by Diana Farnand
Table of Contents Editorial Upcoming Concerts Booking a Gig in Montreal On Success and Artistic Integrity Pulverizing Decibellage at Casa del Popolo Photo Gallery Interview with Vincent Lauzer Food: Curry Chicken More Food: Midnight CrĂŞpes
VP External Affairs: Katie Larson U3 Voice Faculty firstname.lastname@example.org
VP Publicity: Lorraine Rigden U4 Sax Music Ed email@example.com
...3 ...3 ...4 ...4 ...5 ...6 ...9 ...10 ...10
David S. Pierre U2 Violin Performance VP Internal Affairs: Nancy Zhang firstname.lastname@example.org U1 Flute Music Ed First-Year Representative: email@example.com Thomas Burton U0 Trombone Faculty
VP Finance: Adora Wong U2 Violin Performance firstname.lastname@example.org
VP Administration: Sarah Aleem U4 Piano Performance email@example.com
VP Academic: Gwenyth Epstein U2 Sax Music Ed firstname.lastname@example.org
Music Senator: Andrew Boudreau U3 Jazz Piano Performance email@example.com
VP Recreation: Bruno Roy U2 Voice Performance firstname.lastname@example.org
Athletics & Health Coordinator: Diana Farnand U1 Flute Performance email@example.com
Editorial Dear friends, aliens, and fellow travelers, This year has flown by, and I can’t quite remember where I’ve put most of it. Personally, academically, and musically, it has been a year of great growth and pushing boundaries and, yes, hitting the occasional wall, but given the chance to do it over again I would make (almost) all the same decisions. It’s been a year of ups and downs for The Phonograph, too. Student interest and submissions were up quite a bit from last year, and because of that we were able to put in some really interesting things. MUSA members generously provided me with a steady supply of recipes and helpful hints for surviving campus life; staff writer David Endemann provided in each issue an insightful critique of the way the classical music world works; and Huei Lin conducted a number of interviews with McGill music alumni and current students. Matt Horrigan’s reviews of non-classical albums provided a breath of fresh air and a break from our constant bombardment with “serious” music. Halfway through the year, we also switched to a new magazine format and color printing; now you can read The Phonograph without getting your hands dirty, and the pictures are all glossy and colorful! Many thanks to my staff writers/copy editors for making my job easier and providing me with material. This is my final issue as Editor-inChief; it’s been a great two years, but it’s time for me to move on (translate: start practicing more). It’s not yet certain who will be taking over, so if you have any ideas or questions, direct them to me in the meantime. Now, if you’re still reading this, you obviously haven’t noticed the big, beautiful, glossy photo spread on page 6. Go there now! Erica Jacobs-Perkins Editor-in-Chief U2 Violin Performance and English Literature firstname.lastname@example.org
Upcoming Concerts List Compiled by Erica Jacobs-Perkins World Music/Other: April 15th, 8:00 p.m. : McGill Tabla Ensemble, Tanna Schulich Hall, New Music Building, Montreal, QC May 17th, 8:00 p.m. : The Blue Eyes, Cabaret du Mile End, Montreal, QC Classical/Contemporary music : May 5th, 7:30 p.m.: One Equall Musick sings “Out of the Deep,” an adventure in psalmody at Trinity Memorial Church in NDG (5220 Sherbrooke Rue O, Montreal, QC) May 3rd, 7:30 p.m.: Opera da Camera presents “Le Tour du Monde en une Nuit,” at Le Theatre Rialto, 5723 Avenue du Parc, Montreal, QC As well as countless Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctoral recitals! Check the Concerts & Publicity board for daily updates and exciting possibilities. After all, the best way to have an audience is to occasionally be an audience. Jazz : June 28th-July 7th: Montreal Jazz Festival
Booking a Gig in Montreal: Favorite Venues Bruno Roy
Having played in countless venues ranging from seedy bars to Club Soda and the Olympia, I sometimes get asked where the best spots to hold a musical event are. Here are some suggestions of venues that I selected based on quality of sound, staff and ambience. Quai des Brumes: Great small indie venue with a friendly staff and special ambience. Perfect for a more casual gig where people can enjoy a beer while listening to some fresh indie music. Il Motore: This Mile End venue is quite similar in size to Quai des Brumes aswell as in sound and vibe. Perfect for any type of music or ensemble. Petit Campus: This is a great club for a smallish gig. It is located right below Café Campus and is the spot that many indie bands chose to play when on tour in Montréal. Great sound, look, ambience and staff, only downside is it needs to be booked quite in advance because of demand.
On Success and Artistic Integrity
Sala Rosa: Perfect for a slightly larger gig, this venue sits right above a Tapas restaurant. Don’t let that fool you though; the ambience is mesmerizing, the staff is friendly and most importantly the venue provides your ensemble with excellent sound both on and off stage. Surprisingly, it is also one of the less expensive venues considering it’s size. Casa del Popolo: Sala Rosa’s little brother, Casa del Popolo is perfect a more intimate gig. Founded by Mauro Pezzente of Godspeed You! Black Emperor fame it has been described as one of Montreal’s top indie venues and has hosted bands such as Arcade Fire and Buck 65 in the past. In booking a venue there are no two ways about it. Go out and visit them, enjoy a show to experience the sound and ambience of the place and it should becomes pretty clear which hall meets your needs and budget. My top picks: Sala Rosa and Petit Campus never disappoint. The sound, staff and look of these halls, while quite different, offer the perfect setting for almost any performance.
to do what we do as artists, and that is create a compelling and cathartic experience.
I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m personally tired of hearing that musicians and composers should “make music people want to hear.” This piece of advice is so prevalent in the musical world that it has passed into the area of conventional wisdom; why wouldn’t you make music people want to hear? Music is a performing art, and as such requires an audience, an audience which won’t be there if the music in question isn’t music the audience wants to hear. And besides, musicians are at the mercy of the public and their wallets; you gotta eat, after all. These are of course valid concerns, but I feel as though the solution given by many composers doesn’t give the public very much credit. Is it not rather condescending to think that the only sort of music the public wants to hear is hackneyed neoRomanticism? I think that it’s an elitist sentiment to assume that only those with sufficient education can appreciate, much less enjoy, music by composers such as Ferneyhough or Carter. In my opinion, it isn’t the promise of familiar music that brings an audience to a concert hall; it’s the promise of an artistically moving experience. But it’s not as though only certain musical idioms have a monopoly over such an aesthetic. What people want to hear is music written for beauty, and I would assert that it doesn’t matter whether it’s minimalist, polystylist or freely atonal. If we want people listening to our music, we simply have
I’m sure that I’ve angered many people in saying this, but it is what I believe, that the primary purpose of art is to arouse and stir emotion. If art is challenging intellectually as well, all the better, but art shouldn’t be a purely intellectual exercise. If it is, then I feel as though we make music to get a pat on the head from our colleagues and an “oh, aren’t you so clever” from the public instead of speaking to some profound human experience. There is nothing base or vulgar about emotion; it is the most pure and human thing about us. Some might say that I’m living in a bygone era, that I’m a sappy romantic, and that this notion of art is anachronistic and irrelevant today. And maybe these straw men are right. In my defense I can say very little, only that I don’t believe that artists and craftsmen are the same thing, and I don’t think that musicians, either composers or performers, fall into the latter category. In his Nobel Prize acceptance speech, the American author William Faulkner said that “…the problems of the human heart in conflict with itself alone can make good writing because only that is worth writing about, worth the agony and the sweat.” If I were to make a similar, though far less eloquent, statement about music, I would say that it is the profundity of human passion and despair that at the bottom of the human experience, and so must it be at the bottom of music. So we need not surrender our artistic integrity to a populist capitalism; if we hold it close, people will be riveted.
Pulverizing Decibellage at Casa Del Popolo Matt Horrigan
It's 6:00, load-in is technically over, and the floor of Casa Del Popolo's cosy show room is littered with amplifiers, guitar cases and the components of two and a half drum kits. One of them, mine, was hauled in from a taxi two minutes ago and already gasps for air beneath a pile of winter garments. The other full kit belongs to The Bodyshakes's Jeremy Singer, and, with some help from various members of the Peterborough-based post-rock act Light Company, seems to be making some headway towards a state of assembly. The .5 is an assortment of electronic drums belonging to Light Company's Adam Langiewicz, and at this point I'm not exactly sure what form they'll take. A total of twenty-odd musicians mill around the show room floor. Lacking the opportunity to make myself useful - I've just been informed, to my combination of chagrin and relief that my drumkit will no longer be the one used for the show - I take the opportunity to survey the dormant venue, its walls bedecked with posters of previous acts, a small-yet classy bar in one corner and a pulpit-shaped soundbooth in the other, complete with a darklyclad sound tech who demonstrates his displeasure with the gaggle of college kids as he ushers "those of us not working" to the basement. As the lot of us troop down the stairs to what passes for a green room, I realize that the soundtech has not simply dismissed the musicians - he's done us a perhaps-deliberate favor. Because the green room is so small and uncomfortable, with some ratty couches jammed into position facing the center of the room, that those of us who had previously insisted on carrying on conversations exclusively amongst our own bandmates can do so no longer. Instead, I, together with Cole Gleason and Austin Lloyd (the rest of Sister Island) meet singer-songwriter Antoine Martel, along with the sizable chunk of the McGill Jazz program that forms his band. We discover that Bodyshakes' guitarist Gintus Norvila's friendly manner belies the dust shaken from the ceiling when his band soundchecks, and that, if you ask an up-andcoming jazzer how many groups they currently play with, "eight" is not an absurd answer. (This makes us feel amateurish.) We also learn that the members of Light Company have already graduated from university, and have journeyed all the way from Peterborough not for any sort of monetary recompense, but for "the opportunity to play in Montreal". (This makes us feel important.) Only when a prospective audience begins to trickle from the adjacent bar into the showroom does once more act rush in. A brief conversation with pink-haired frontman Casimir Kaplan gives little indication of the type of music that The This Many Boyfriends Club is about to make, although the word "honkytonk" gets thrown around.
By the time the show begins, at a remarkably-close-to-on-time 9:30, the showroom has transcended "cosy" to arrive at "packed". The bartender does brisk business as Martel begins working his magic on the crowd, his airtight band weaving their craft at a merciful volume the more sober audience-members will remember with increasing nostalgia as the night wears on, first as Sister Island and I hammer the crap out of our instruments during a set too nervously energetic for precision, then as This Many Boyfriends sets drunken feet a'jumpin' with what turns out to sound like an intricate version of Sex Bob-Omb injected with an extra dose of crazy. (About twenty minutes into their set, a true rock'n'roll moment occurs when Cas shouts for his mic volume to be raised moments before the band drops into a stunningly distorted groove. It dawns on me that this is why people like small venues.) In no time, the Boyfriends are reaping the adulation of the crowd and Light Company has started doing their thing, which appears to consist mostly of atmospheric guitarmony until drummer Langiewicz launches into a frenzy of snare and crash that would make Animal's furry eyebrows climb clean off the top of his head. The crowd-approval meter jabs skyward, and the band charges forth into a series of tunes whose ethereal melodies do their best to escape what the relentless drum fills lay down. Then, just before midnight, comes Bodyshakes. "Beastly" seems the best word to describe the level of distortion that rattles the crowd as the band begins pounding out a special case of hard rock that leaves "eleven" - and "mercy" - far, far behind. I wallow in cognitive dissonance as I struggle to contemplate a world in which Bodyshakes and Antoine Martel exist simultaneously, let alone play the same venue. Evidently, a substantial portion of the crowd has decided that the only solution to this conundrum is... booze! Other solutions include screaming maniacally, jumping up and down until other patrons begin to question the structural integrity of the floor, and waving one's arms around like that "gooooooaaalll" balloon-thing you see at hockey games. Personally, I withstand the palpable sound pressure for the duration of my dive into the green room, where I discover that the basement ceiling is pretty well the same piece of plywood as the stage floor - the very same stage floor currently playing reluctant host to Singer's Bonhamish bass drum. What the hell. Beethoven had a good career, right? I return to the swarming crowd, comforted by the realization that the tinnitus will stop when all the stereocilia are dead. The Peace by PEACE Benefit Concert, Friday January 18th, 2013, everyone. If you weren't there, I can only suggest you haul your behind out to the next one.
Montreal panorama, October 2012
Student Photo Gallery
Suits in Montrealâ€™s Old Port, Auguust 2012
The Phonograph 9 Interview with Vincent Flûte Alors! has since passed the audition for Les Jeunesses Musicales du Canada, and is currently doing their JMC tour along Eastern Lauzer, Recorder Player Canada for the 2012-2013 season. “La flûte à bec dans tous ses états; April 2013
(MMus ’11) Conducted by Huei Lin
Against all odds, recorder virtuoso Vincent Lauzer has broken into the music scene as a rising star on an instrument otherwise mocked as a silly toy for grade-school students. After an astonishing sweep of competitions that secured him numerous grand prizes at the national and international level, Vincent is establishing himself as an uncommon musical force, causing listeners to reconsider their preconceptions about the recorder as a serious medium for musical expression. Hailed as “Canada’s best recorder player” and “Breakthrough Artist of the Year” by the 2012 Opus Awards, Vincent is also a member of the acclaimed recorder ensemble “Flûte Alors!” which is rapidly garnering praise and winning chamber music competitions across Canada. A Montreal native and McGill graduate, Vincent discusses his musical journey with The Phonograph. A “Serious” Recorder Player “I began music lessons at the age of four, I was so interested in every kind of music at a very young age… I was in this music school on the South Shore of Montreal, where they would teach recorder as seriously as piano or violin or anything else- so I heard recorder played by the older students and realized that it was just a fantastic instrument. [Recorder] is becoming more popular I would say, but it’s still very rare - it’s still too often seen as a pre-woodwind instrument, the easy one that you start with. “I was in a public school, everything super normal - I was taking my lessons out of school in this music school where I also got my theory, solfege and dictation classes, and I was doing all these exams and competitions very young. I had solid foundations, but it was not that serious until about the ages of, I would say 12, 13- when I joined Flûte Alors!.” Flûte Alors! “The group was created in 1999. I joined the group in 2002 or 2003 so. It’s been almost ten years - a very serious project! When I entered, we were not playing much, and we definitely weren’t having this concert series and all these things. It was more like student concerts and weddings and concert offers from people we would know; often, the deal was to play in senior homes, so we did that for many years. We played in shopping malls and things like that. Before I was [in the group] they played at conferences and cocktails. But it really started getting more serious in 2008, having our Montreal concert series from two to four concerts, depending on the year.” Ascent to Success "[Then] things kind of happened naturally. For example, the first big project was a trip; we’d just won a chamber music competition, and then went to France for a couple concerts during an exchange with students from Combs-la-Ville, near Paris. We came back having a goal of having more concerts, more and more. We would record some of [our concerts] and send them to many people. And then we started to apply for things - for concert series and grants and all this... and we’ve been refused many times before even getting the audition.”
everything the recorder can do, we want to do it. Of course, there’s always a core of Early Music in our projects - we do a lot of Baroque and Renaissance music - but we really try to extend [our repertoire] and collaborate. We also touch on contemporary music, and we’ve done jazz [as well]. We’ve commissioned many works for recorder, many from young composers; we also find it very important to have repertoire that comes from here, because it’s mostly European music [otherwise]." Competitions “I graduated from McGill in 2011, having done my Bachelor’s and my Master’s in four years and a half. The transition from school to professional life was kind of made when I was at school and that helped a lot, to have all these things going on when I was done with school. I think you have to be seen everywhere, and for me one way of doing that was competitions." “This year I realized that I have no competitions and I kind of miss that stress- that little push to play your solo music at a very high level. I’ve always been trying to have some of them every year just to play, play, and play- and also to get feedback. Every [competition] I could do, I tried it, because there aren’t too many recorder competitions anyway; there was one in Montreal that I did in 2009, but I think it’ll never happen again, sadly.” Vincent received first prize in that competition, as he did in the Stepping Stone of the Canada Music Competition, the Mathieu-Duguay Early Music Competition, and others... “And when the adjudicator calls you a month after the competition offering you concerts, it’s always a good thing, and you meet young recorder players from all over the world basically; and now you have contacts everywhere; of course on the spot, winning these prizes is just amazing, but I see these [prizes] as things that can bring you further- ‘how can I achieve this excellence outside of competitions where there’s no prize to win?’ ” Future Plans “Teaching children, and bringing the music to the young ones - and making sure that they might consider the recorder as a serious instrument - are the things that I really feel are important. I’m really happy for now, doing basically everything that I can; I’m playing solos a lot, playing with tons of orchestras and ensembles, and also having Flûte Alors!. I like this diversity, so I think I want to really vary my [musical] life. I’d like to still teach; I would probably like to travel a lot to play. It’s probably going to be a big challenge to find teaching jobs here in big universities, but we’ll see, and you never know what life will offer.” Vincent Lauzer is a graduate of McGill University’s Schulich School of Music and a rising star of the recorder both locally and internationally. A recipient of many first-place awards as both a soloist and chamber musician, Vincent is a member of the breakthrough recorder quintet Flûte Alors! which Is currently touring Eastern Canada as part of Les Jeunesses Musicales du Canada. Active in both the Early Music scene and the music scene at large, Vincent frequently gives concerts in Montreal and the greater Montreal area. More information can be found at www.vincentlauzer.com.
Curry Chicken Nancy Zhang
Food, Glorious Crêpes! Food Meiying Li
Here’s another super easy recipe for those late night/morning/ lunch/dinner cravings.
Ingredients 350g of boneless chicken cut into small pieces 2-3 potatoes (cubed) 1 inch piece of ginger 4 cloves of garlic 1 large onion (chopped) 1 tsp of cumin seeds 1 small green chili 1/2 tbsp of tomato paste or 1/2 a fresh tomato (chopped) Curry base: 1/2 cup of yogurt 1/2 cup of water 1/2 tsp of red chili powder 1/2 tsp of turmeric 2 tsps of salt (per taste) 1/2 tsp of coriander powder Directions: 1. In a pot, boil the whole potatoes in water for 10-15mins (when soft, peel and cut into cubes).
You’ll need: ½ cup flour 1 egg ¾ cup milk or water Pinch of salt 2 tsp of oil or butter Optional toppings: Sweet
Sliced fruits, such as strawberry, apple, banana, pear, peach Maple syrup, chocolate drizzle Jam, Nutella Ice cream, whipped cream Savoury
Cheese, egg Spinach, mushroom Ham, bacon (drizzle with maple syrup!), turkey, tuna, smoked salmon 1. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg, and mix well with the milk/ water.
2. Mix in a bowl all the ingredients under “curry base” and set aside.
2. In another bowl, mix salt with flour, and add the dry ingredients to the first bowl.
3. In a separate pan, heat 1-2 tablespoons of oil and add cumin seeds, onions, garlic, ginger, and green chili.
3. Heat 1 tsp of oil/butter in a non-stick pan over medium for 30 seconds.
5. Add chicken and cook for 2mins until the outer layer starts to turn white.
4. Pour 1/3 to ½ of the batter in the center of the pan, and either spread it out into a circle with a spatula, or whirl the pan in a circular motion to coat the pan with the batter.
6. Stir in the cubed potatoes, and the tomato paste or fresh tomatoes. 7. Stir in the prepared curry base.
5. Cook it for one minute, or until the bottom is light brown. Flip it with the spatula and cook the other side. Do the same for the remaining batter.
8. Simmer for 6-8mins (keep stirring in between).
Banana Chocolate Crepe:
10. Add salt to taste and cilantro leaves to decorate.
Place sliced bananas on the crepe, and fold it twice (in quarters). Top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Drizzle with melted chocolate over the entire surface. The chocolate will harden on top of the ice cream, but will remain syrupy on the crepe.
12. Enjoy with steamed rice or naan.
9. Check that the chicken pieces are thoroughly cooked.
MUSA Office: 555 Sherbrooke Street Room E-106, Montreal, Quebec H3A 1E3 TheWest, Phonograph April 2013
do you have a flair for writing? a talent for graphic design? maybe even a love of control? the phonograph is changing leadership and the position of Editor-inChief is available. furthermore, we are always looking for new columnists, photographers, cooks, and cartoonists! email Erica with any questions at email@example.com. Check out our Facebook page for photo contest submissions, news, and upcoming events! www.facebook.com/phonographnews
Contributors Editor-in-Chief Staff Writers Erica Jacobs-Perkins David Endemann Matthew Horrigan Written David Endemann Visual Matthew Horrigan Diana Farnand Erica Jacobs-Perkins Meiying Li Meiying Li Evan Shay Huei Lin Bruno Roy Copy Editors Nancy Zhang David Endemann Matthew Horrigan Erica Jacobs-Perkins
The Phonograph is the official publication of the Music Undergraduate Studentsâ€™ Association of the Schulich School of Music of McGill University. Its content does not necessarily reflect the views of the University, the School, or the Association.
Barn in Walla Walla: June 2011