Toronto Early Music Players Organization

About Us

The Toronto Early Music Players Organization is a registered non-profit group founded in 1984. TEMPO promotes the appreciation of early music and provides a venue for amateur musicians to receive professionally coached sessions and to play together.  At every monthly workshop we have a professional coach. Coaches provide fascinating music and bring insight, learning and instruction to it. If you are new to TEMPO, welcome! Please contact our President, Elan Dresher at for a link to the workshop’s music. You will need to print it and bring it with you to the session (along with a music stand). Our members primarily play recorders, viols, flutes, violins and other early instruments, but all instruments are welcome!

Year at a Glance 2023/24

September 17 (note change of date):      Colin Savage. "Refresh & Refocus". Reinvigorating our ensemble skills.

October 15: Tatsuki Shimoda. "Fugues, Fantasias, & Chorales". Ensemble repertoire from Byrd, Palestrina, Bach, along with popular tunes from Handel, Purcell, and the Beatles.                    

November 12: Anne Massicotte. ‘’In and around London’’.  Music by Byrd, Tomkins, Handel, Purcell, Corelli and Holst.        

December 17: Hooman Tootoonchianon on Persian musical concepts, rhythms, ornaments and more.

January 14: Francis Colpron“A Musical Journey with Francis”. Joy and felicity set the tone for a musical voyage. We'll be  playing composers like Fux, Schein, Tansman and Shannon, followed by some Irish airs.

February 11: Felix Deak: "Is Love a Sweet Passion?" Sometimes love is more bitter than sweet, and more painful than ease. Whichever it is, it is always worth it. We'll explore some works by Monteverdi, Purcell and Holborne.

March 10: David Fallis. “Early Music Animals”. Madrigals for both instrumentalists and singers! The animal kingdom has always inspired composers to write wonderful music. Bird-pieces come first to mind, since birds are such incredible singers themselves, but how about baboons? Fleas? Oysters, anyone? Come and sing and play as we explore delightful renaissance madrigals devoted to the animal world. Music by Weelkes, Gibbons, Ravenscroft, LeJeune and more. It will be the first time TEMPO's recorders, other woodwinds and string players will be blending with vocal colours and expressive qualities. A great way to usher in spring!

April 14: Robert Rivers. "A Renaissance Spring."  We shall explore spring music in agricultural societies, before the Industrial Revolution. Featuring music by, among others, Monteverdi, Morley, Byrd and di Lasso.

May 12:  "Introduction to Klezmer".  Tempo members and friends will have the unusual pleasure of having two workshop leaders. Martin van de Ven is a professional freelance musician performing on the clarinet, composing, directing and teaching. He performs with Canada's hottest klezmer band "Beyond the Pale”. He will guide us through a variety of tunes representing the distinctive modes, rhythms and ornaments of klezmer music. Alan Cantor, an amateur recorder player and semi-professional storyteller will recount his journey of rediscovering ancient klezmer melodies, some of which might even be connected to Telemann, and he will perform his reconstruction of two pieces as they may have been heard in a tavern in Krakow in 1704.

 June 9: TEMPO Tea. All welcome!

For workshop leaders` biographies and programme information click here


  • We are a group of 25-30 amateur musicians who love to play together. Renaissance and Baroque music is our passion!

  • A new professional coach at every monthly workshop. They provide fascinating musical scores and bring them alive.

  • Warm harmonic sounds as we play soprano, alto, tenor and bass parts – just like a choir.

  • A friendly welcome and a break for refreshments!

If you are interested in joining  please contact our President, Elan Dresher at The yearly membership fee is $95 and a single workshop  fee is $20. Fees for attending a first meeting will be waived, and any student may participate for free. Membership fees may be paid by e-transfer to or by cheque (payable to TEMPO Toronto) at a workshop. For how to pay membership fee or donate by e-transfer click here.

Feeling unsure? Your first meeting is free! Come and check us out or contact our President, Elan Dresher at for more information or to be connected with a mentor who will greet you at your first meeting.


Workshops run monthly on Sundays, September to May, 1:30 pm to 4:00 pm at Grace Church on-the-Hill Church, 300 Lonsdale Rd., Toronto.  (Please enter via Door 6 off Russell Hill Rd.)

Sessions will be livestreamed on Zoom for those who cannot attend in person.

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TEMPO welcomes donations to support our activites. TEMPO is a registered charity that can issue official tax receipts for donations received. We are registered under the name TORONTO EARLY MUSIC PLAYERS ORGANIZATION, Registration no. 119266419 RR 0001. Click here for page 2.