Luminato Announces 2011 Music and Celebrations Programs

Full press release below.

Also a pdf for your downloading convenience.

Cool Luminato 2011 logo

Download the pdf: 030111 – Luminato 2011 Music Program Announcement

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LUMINATO ANNOUNCES 2011 MUSIC PROGRAM,

FEATURING k.d. lang, THE JOEL PLASKETT EMERGENCY, BEAST, KRONOS QUARTET,

AND A CELEBRATION OF ITALIAN MUSIC


TORONTO (March 1, 2011) – Luminato, Toronto Festival of Arts and Creativity, today announced the Festival’s 2011 music and celebrations program. The fifth anniversary edition of Luminato introduces a new downtown Festival Hub, marks the return of fan favourites such as Kronos Quartet and Nitin Sawhney, and introduces a diverse line-up of musical artists from around the world.

 

Luminato 2011 presents the Grammy Award-winning, genre-bending Kronos Quartet in four concerts that reflect Kronos’ ongoing global musical journey through cross-cultural collaborations.  A series of concerts – including a free outdoor concert – and initiatives with Luminato’s Education and Outreach programs comprise the Kronos Quartet Residency at Luminato 2011.  Performing with Kronos for the first time in Canada are international guest artists the Alim Qasimov Ensemble, leading exponents of the Azerbaijani sung poetry known as mugham; Afghan rubâb player Homayun Sakhi; and Wu Man, whose virtuosity on the ancient Chinese pipa has won that instrument a new place in the modern musical world. The Kronos Quartet also performs a free concert at Metro Square on June 12.

 

Following last year’s critically acclaimed TSO Goes Late Night: Beethoven Symphony 9, Luminato and the TSO partner to present TSO Goes Late Night: Mahler 5, a concert of Gustav Mahler’s epic “Symphony No. 5,” conducted by TSO Music Director Peter Oundjian. This audience-wide party with TSO musicians, guest artists, and live music takes place on June 18 at Roy Thomson Hall, and includes a post-concert reception in the lobby.

 

For the first time in the Festival’s history, Luminato’s free music programs inhabit one central, downtown location for the entire 10 days of the Festival.  From June 10-19, Metro Square, located at the corner of King Street West and John Street, is transformed into Luminato’s Festival Hub, serving as the home to nightly free concerts, a variety of interactive events, and the return of President’s Choice® 1000 Tastes of Toronto™, where more than 70 chefs prepare a decadent assortment of gourmet street food from around the world. Free concerts at the Festival Hub cover a wide spectrum of musical genres and styles, ranging from an opening night concert featuring Montreal-based trip rock artists Beast and Halifax-based rockers The Joel Plaskett Emergency, to a musical tribute to the Italy 150 celebrations, to a rare performance of Egyptian pop music sensation Hakim, to a concert by bhangra superstar Malkit Singh, to a performance by k.d. lang of her upcoming album Sing it Loud.

On Friday, June 17, Luminato presents multi-award-winning singer/songwriter k.d. lang. Winner of four Grammys and eight Junos, k.d. lang has consistently defied conventional categorization.  From her early-career reinvention of country rock with a dash of punk, to her stunning covers of standards by artists such as Leonard Cohen and Roy Orbison, elements of torch song, jazz and even bossa nova have found their way into a style she has made uniquely her own—a style as elegant and sophisticated as it is impassioned. k.d. lang kicks off the Canadian leg of her tour at Luminato’s Festival Hub.

 

“Luminato’s free celebrations are the heart of the Festival,” said Janice Price, CEO of Luminato. “We are tremendously pleased that, for the entire Festival, Metro Square will be home to free concerts, a Festival box office, a gourmet street food fair, and a host of other free, participatory events.  Luminato 2011 celebrates 10 days of free creativity in a centrally located, outdoor public space.”

 

“Over the past four years, Luminato has presented a diverse musical program, ranging from world music stars, to renowned orchestral ensembles, to Canadian pop and folk icons,” said Chris Lorway, Artistic Director of Luminato.  “Now, celebrating the Festival’s fifth year, Luminato presents a music program that runs the gamut of musical genres, representing artists from all over the world, as well as those here at home.”

Complete Luminato 2011 Music and Celebrations Programs:

 

The Kronos Quartet

With thousands of concerts and dozens of recordings to its credit, the Grammy-winning Kronos

Quartet is one of the world’s most acclaimed and influential ensembles. Collaborating with a

dizzyingly eclectic range of artists, from Dawn Upshaw to David Bowie, Kronos enthralls audiences around the world with its stunning redefinitions of the string quartet’s role in music today.  Resident artists at this year’s Festival are violinists David Harrington and John Sherba, violist Hank Dutt, and cellist Jeffrey Zeigler.

Friday, June 10, 8:00 PM: Kronos performs with Alim Qasimov Ensemble

Saturday, June 11, 8:00 PM: Kronos performs with Homayun Sakhi

The Royal Conservatory, TELUS Centre for Performance and Learning, Koerner Hall

273 Bloor Street West

Ticket Prices range from $51.50-$91.50

Sunday, June 12: Kronos performs in a FREE concert at Luminato’s Festival Hub

9:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Marketing Partner: The Weather Network

Wednesday, June 15, 8:00 PM: Kronos performs with Wu Man

Location TBD

Ticket Prices range from $51.50-$91.50

TSO Goes Late Night: Mahler 5

Stay up late with Mahler as Luminato and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra present TSO Goes Late Night: Mahler 5, conducted by TSO Music Director Peter Oundjian.  The second annual late-night concert with the TSO invites you to bring your beverage into the performance and enjoy an audience-wide post-concert party with TSO musicians and live music.

Saturday, June 18

10:30 PM

Roy Thomson Hall

Ticket prices range from $22.50-$76.00

FESTIVAL HUB SCHEDULE:

Friday, June 10

National Bank First Night

Luminato celebrates the opening of the 2011 Festival with a free outdoor concert featuring stellar performers from Canada’s indie-rock scene.  Montreal-based electronica duo Beast, and Nova Scotian rockers The Joel Plaskett Emergency, launch Luminato’s Festival Stage concert series.

Beast

Comprising vocalist and lyricist Betty Bonifassi (soundtrack singer for the movie Les Triplettes de Belleville) and composer-producer Jean-Phi Goncalves, Beast specializes in what Bonifassi describes as “trip rock.”

8:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

The Joel Plaskett Emergency

Joel Plaskett has won several East Coast Music Awards, both for his solo work and as leader of his band, The Emergency, whose albums include Make a Little Noise and Ashtray Rock.  A six-time Juno Award nominee, Plaskett won the 2010 Juno for Adult Alternative Album of the Year for his most recent solo album, Three.

9:20 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Presenting Partner: National Bank Financial Group

Major Media Partners: Toronto Star, CBC

Additional Support: L’Oréal Paris

Saturday, June 11

They Might Be Giants’ Family Show

These zany New Yorkers’ best-selling albums for youngsters include Here Come the ABCs, the Grammy-winning Here Come the 123s, and the Grammy-nominated Here Comes Science. Grammy winners for “Boss of Me,” the theme song from Malcolm in the Middle, they also supply the themes for Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Higgleytown Heroes. Throughout the free performance in Metro Square, dance-party specialists Bunch will be on hand to complement the concert with creative fun for the whole family.

2:00 PM Bunch Family Activities

3:00 PM Concert

Metro Square

FREE

 

Celebrating 150 years of Italian unification, Luminato presents a tribute to the music of Italy, with Dominic Mancuso, Marco Calliari, and Bandabardò with Peppe Voltarelli.

Dominic Mancuso

Long-time resident attraction at Toronto’s famed Lula Lounge, Mancuso brings his distinctive vocal style to a richly emotional blend of Italian folk song, blues, soul, and jazz. Last year, his breakthrough album Comfortably Mine, a tribute to his Sicilian parentage, won him the Juno Award for World Music Album of the Year.

 

Marco Calliari

A founding member of the Francophone thrash metal band Anonymous, the Italian-born Calliari has more recently returned to his musical roots with the release of the best-selling folk-inspired albums Che la vita and Mia Dolce Vita.

 

Bandabardò with Peppe Voltarelli

Formed in 1993, this Florentine folk band is renowned both for its live performances and for such albums as Ottavio, Fuori Orario, Tre Passi Avanti, and Bondo! Bondo! Bandabardò is joined by special guest singer/songwriter Peppe Voltarelli.  Hailing from Calabria, Voltarelli mixes rock with the folk music of Southern Italy.

8:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Presenting Partner: OLG

Major Media Partners: Toronto Star, CBC, TLN

Additional Support: L’Oréal Paris

Sunday, June 12

Alim Qasimov Ensemble

Qasimov is the world’s leading exponent of mugham, a sophisticated Azerbaijani art form that combines music with classical poetry.

Homayun Sakhi

Considered the finest rubâb player of his generation, Sakhi infuses his musical interpretations with rhythms and melodic ornamentation that reflect his Kabuli heritage.

2:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Annex Quartet

This versatile and highly sought-after quartet delights audiences with repertoire ranging from classical, to world music, to modern jazz, and recently joined the Kronos Quartet in a residency at Carnegie Hall.

Kronos Quartet

With thousands of concerts and dozens of recordings to its credit, the Grammy-winning Kronos Quartet is one of the world’s most acclaimed and influential ensembles. Having collaborated with a dizzyingly eclectic range of artists from around the world, Kronos now presents a selection of their most popular works.

8:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Presenting Partner: OLG

Major Media Partners: Toronto Star, CBC

Additional Support: L’Oréal Paris

 

 

Monday, June 13

A Musical Monday

Some of Canada’s finest musical theatre performers showcase the biggest hit songs from current productions of three classic and contemporary shows—Billy Elliott (Mirvish Productions), Jesus Christ Superstar (Stratford Shakespeare Festival), and My Fair Lady (Shaw Festival)—along with a special medley from Dancap Productions. In addition, two-time Tony Award nominee Gavin Creel (Hair; Thoroughly Modern Millie), accompanied by musical director Lance Horne and his house band, presents his own selection of favourite show tunes. The festivities are hosted by Toronto-based cabaret performers Sharron Matthews and Shawn Hitchins.

8:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Presenting Partner: OLG

Major Media Partners: Toronto Star, CBC

Additional Support: Maybelline NY

Tuesday, June 14

Yemen Blues

An original fusion of traditional Yemenite melodies with blues, jazz, and funk, Yemen Blues is a nine-member group whose West African roots and enhanced modern compositions blend to make a breathtaking experience of beautiful and complex grooves.

8:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Major Media Partners: Toronto Star, CBC

Additional Support: Maybelline NY

Wednesday, June 15

Art of Time Ensemble

Including many of Canada’s finest musicians, this award-winning group is renowned for bringing contemporary relevance and context to classical music. Band members include: Rob Piltch, guitarist and member of the band Blood, Sweat and Tears, pianist Jonathan Goldsmith, violinist Stephen Sitarski, violinist Steven Dann, cellist Thomas Weibe, and renowned composer, arranger and saxophonist Phil Dwyer.  Collaborating with Art of Time as a special guest, one of Canada’s most beautiful voices, Gregory Hoskins, sings original material and covers by Paul Simon, Nick Cave, Gordon LIghtfoot, Mary Margaret O’Hara, Jane Siberry, Cole Porter, Tom Waits, Radiohead, Leonard Cohen, and others, in innovative new arrangements.

 

Gravity Radio

In 2008, Mikel Rouse’s multimedia trilogy (Dennis Cleveland, Failing Kansas, The End of Cinematics) mesmerized Luminato audiences. Now, in this live acoustic performance of Rouse’s latest work – inspired by the theoretical physics of gravity waves – a cycle of 14 songs intersects with shortwave frequencies and reports of the day’s actual news to create a richly poetic soundscape unique to each performance. Commissioned by Luminato.

8:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Major Media Partners: Toronto Star, CBC

Additional Support: L’Oréal Professionnel

Thursday, June 16

Delhi 2 Dublin

A sexy fiddle player, two bouncing bhangra percussionists, and a vocalist straight out of a Bollywood music video present an exhilarating mash-up of Punjabi bhangra, Celtic, dub reggae, and electronica.

Malkit Singh

Punjabi singer/songwriter Malkit Singh has toured in 27 different countries throughout the world and is well known for his singing on the film soundtrack of Bend it Like Beckham. In 2000, Singh was listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the biggest selling bhangra artist of all time.

8:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Major Media Partners: Toronto Star, CBC

Friday, June 17

The Belle Brigade

Inspired by the likes of Fleetwood Mac and Simon & Garfunkel, songwriter siblings Ethan and Barbara Gruska’s upcoming self-titled debut album brims with breezy, California melodies and bracing pop harmonies.

k.d. lang

Winner of four Grammys and eight Junos, k.d. lang is truly one of Canada’s all-time greats. From her early-career reinvention of country rock with a dash of punk to her stunning covers of standards by such other artists as Leonard Cohen and Roy Orbison, she has consistently defied easy categorization. Over the years, elements of torch song, jazz and even bossa nova have found their way into a style she has made uniquely her own—a style as elegant and sophisticated as it is impassioned. k.d.lang kicks off the Canadian leg of her tour at the Luminato Festival Stage.

8:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Major Media Partner: Toronto Star

With Support From: VICHY

Saturday, June 18 & Sunday, June 19

President’s Choice® 1000 Tastes of Toronto™

The John Street corridor becomes the venue for a huge open-air smorgasbord as a select group of the city’s finest chefs present their gourmet variations on the theme of street food, with each delectable item designed to be enjoyed on the go, and each priced at only $5.  This year, an extra dimension has been added to this perennially popular event.  Throughout the weekend, participating chefs demonstrate how they prepare their delicacies on a food demonstration stage.

Saturday, June 18, 12 PM to 9 PM; Sunday, June 19, 12 PM to 6 PM

John Street (From Richmond to King)

FREE access, each food item is $5

Presenting Partner: President’s Choice®

Major Media Partner: Toronto Star, CBC

Saturday, June 18

Natacha Atlas

Viewed as one of the leading female voices in contemporary Arabic culture, this Anglo-Egyptian singer has spent more than a decade fusing electronic beats with North African and Arabic music alongside such renowned collaborators as Sinead O’Connor, Sarah Brightman and Nitin Sawhney.

2:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

George Sawa

An acknowledged expert in both medieval and modern Arabic music, Sawa is a master of the zither-like instrument known as the qanun. He has performed in Europe, North America and the Middle East, and has recorded with Maureen Forrester, Raffi, Bram Morrisson, and R. Murray Schafer, with whom he collaborated on the dusk-to-dawn spectacle Ra.

Hakim (The Lion of Egypt)

Hakim has won international recognition for his electronica-infused brand of sha’abi—a popular urban musical genre rooted in traditional Egyptian folk music. His powerful vocals mesh with rock and techno beats in songs that capture the vibrant, raucous, tumultuous essence of life.

8:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Presenting Partner: TELUS

Major Media Partner: Toronto Star, CBC

Additional Support: Garnier, VICHY

Support for Hakim From: The Egyptian Embassy in Canada

Sunday, June 19

Tasa
Created by tabla player and composer Ravi Naimpally, Tasa performs original repertoire inspired by the traditions of India as well as contemporary versions of traditional songs from the Indian diaspora.

Nitin Sawhney

Classical and jazz pianist, flamenco guitarist, songwriter, orchestral composer, producer, DJ—this internationally feted cultural pioneer is a one-man symphony of creative talent. As a free sequel to his appearance with Akram Khan in the North American premiere of their music and movement collaboration Confluence, Sawhney and his band bring Luminato’s closing weekend to its thrilling finale.

2:00 PM

Metro Square

FREE

Presenting Partner: TELUS

Major Media Partner: Toronto Star, CBC

Marketing Partner: ATN

Additional Support: Garnier, VICHY

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