Montreal Chamber Orchestra/Orchestre de chambre de Montréal
Montreal Chamber Orchestra/L'Orchestre de chambre de Montréal. Professional chamber orchestra founded in 1974 by Wanda Kaluzny, its artistic director. The ensemble began with a core group of 14 strings (expanded to 16 by 2007) and has on occasion grown to 35 to 38 players depending on the repertoire played. The orchestra gave its concerts at the Centaur Theatre 1974-5, Pollack Hall 1975-85, Tudor Hall 1987-8, Redpath Hall 1988-91, the Erskine and American United Church 1991-7, Pollack Hall again 1997-2005 and Salle Claude-Champagne at University of Montreal beginning in 2005. (During 1981 and 1986-7, the orchestra was temporarily inactive.) The orchestra is unusual in that it offers its regular concerts free, relying solely on corporate sponsorships and donations.
Devoted to chamber repertoire, the ensemble performs one Canadian work in each concert; it has premiered works by David Eagle, Bengt Hambraeus, Alcides Lanza, Anne Lauber, Hope Lee and Donald Patriquin.
In 1995 the Montreal Chamber Orchestra offered 12 concerts a year; in 2007 there were five main concerts in its season. Among the Canadian soloists who have performed with the orchestra have been soprano Karina Gauvin, tenor Ben Heppner, violinist Judy Kang, trumpeter Jens Lindemann, thereminist Peter Pringle and cellist Shauna Rolston.
In 1990 the group toured Korea and the southeastern US; in 1992 it performed in California. With the trumpet player Ken Wheeler the ensemble recorded Timothy Brady's Visions (Justin Time JTR-8413-2). It also recorded Suites for Strings/Pour cordes (1996, SNE 607) and Cinématique (2006, JM 61132). For Vermont Public Television (VPT), the orchestra performed Gabriel Fauré's Requiem (Requiem for September 11th: A Tribute by the Montreal Chamber Orchestra), which aired 9 Sep 2003.
The orchestra's 30th anniversary concert was held 10 Jun 2004 at Théâtre Maisonneuve and included works by Keith Bissell.