Ste. Anne church hos­ting amu­sing ope­ra eve­ning

For­mer Royal Con­ser­va­to­ry tea­cher lea­ding the way

L'Etoile - - IN OTHER WORDS -

GThe Royal Con­ser­va­to­ry of Music’s loss is the gain of a Ste. Anne-de-Bel­le­vue church that has found a real gem in choir mas­ter Pierre Gal­lant, who will lead an amu­sing ope­ra ap­pre­cia­tion eve­ning next week.

al­lant re­por­ted­ly mo­ved from To­ron­to to Ste. Anne-de-Bel­le­vue in or­der to get in touch with his French roots. Though he was tea­ching at the Royal Con­ser­va­to­ry, one of the world’s lar­gest and most res­pec­ted music edu­ca­tion ins­ti­tu­tions, the En­glish spea­king Gal­lant de­ci­ded to re­lo­cate to Que­bec in or­der to ex­plore the lin­guis­tic and cultu­ral side of his French fa­mi­ly’s his­to­ry.

At the same time he al­so found a home he loves in Ste. Anne, as well as a se­cond home at Union Church where he not on­ly leads the choir but is its pia­nist, or­ga­nist, and com­po­ser.

Su­san Haw­ker, a mem­ber of the church choir, says Gal­lant’s im­pres­sive mu­si­cal back­ground and abi­li­ties aside, he sim­ply makes music fun.

With that in mind the church will host A Night at the Ope­ra: from Ros­si­ni to Bugs Bun­ny, an Ope­ra Romp, Ita­lian Style, on Sept. 20. Haw­ker des­cribes it as an eve­ning com­bi­ning a de­li­cious meal with dishes being crea­ted by Ste. Anne Far­mers’ Mar­ket co­or­di­na­tor Pat­ty Mur­phy, with Gal­lant’s spe­cia­li­ties: mu­si­cal en­ter­tain­ment, anec­dotes, vi­deos, edu­ca­tion and fun.

All will be gea­red to­ward al­lo­wing par­ti­ci­pants to gain a ligh­thear­ted ap­pre­cia­tion for ope­ra.

Haw­ker says the eve­ning, Gal­lant’s idea, was ins­pi­red by Ita­lian com­po­ser Gioa­chi­no An­to­nio Ros­si­ni, who wrote 39 ope­ras in­clu­ding The Bar­ber of Se­ville, and La Ce­ne­ren­to­la, among others.

“Ap­pa­rent­ly he real­ly lo­ved food and was an ama­zing cook so Pierre thought this would be a great way for people to learn about him,” she said.

The eve­ning is ai­med at ope­ra lo­vers and those who might nor­mal­ly shy away from the mu­si­cal art form for fear of fee­ling in­ti­mi­da­ted. “This is per­fect for the per­son who doesn’t real­ly un­ders­tand ope­ra, or is not sure if it’s for them be­cause they can learn a lit­tle in a re­laxed set­ting,” Haw­ker said, ad­ding, “and it’ll be fun­ny.”

Gal­lant, who al­so teaches at John Ab­bott Col­lege in Ste. Anne-de-Bel­le­vue, is ad­di­tio­nal­ly lea­ding a se­ries of eve­ning com­mu­ni­ty classes that will coin­cide with se­ve­ral up­co­ming high de­fi­ni­tion scree­nings at re­gio­nal mo­vie theatres of live ope­ras that were filmed at New York’s fa­med Me­tro­po­li­tan Ope­ra.

The Meet the Met classes have been ti­med to coin­cide with the ope­ra broad­casts. Par­ti­ci­pants will learn the sto­ries be­hind ma­ny of the world’s most fa­mous ope­ras be­fore wat­ching the shows that were filmed live. The courses will start on Oct. 4 with an over­view of Ver­di’s Mac­beth. Other classes will in­clude Mo­zart’s Le Nozze di Fi­ga­ro, (Oct. 11;) Bi­zet’s Car­men (Oct. 25;) Adam’s The Death of Klin­ghof­fer (Nov. 8.) Th­ree more classes will be held in De­cem­ber and Ja­nua­ry.

A Night at the Ope­ra: from Ros­si­ni to Bugs Bun­ny, an Ope­ra Romp, Ita­lian Style will be­gin at 6 p.m. on Sept. 20, at Union Church, 24 Maple, Ste-An­nede-Bel­le­vue. For ti­ckets or in­for­ma­tion call Jan Lan­ge­lier at 514 453-7103.

For more in­for­ma­tion about the col­lege classes call John Ab­bott Col­lege’s com­mu­ni­ty courses l i ne at 514 457-3063.

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