President's Message

President’s Message

The organizational aspect of this season has not been going as well for me as I had hoped due to a series of mini-crises.   I am the treasurer of a choir who changed its membership structure starting this past September and the choir’s budget became unworkable in early October.  After solving the budget problem, my computer died in November, forcing me to recall all my plans, schedules, and tasks from my feeble memory.  In December, my house cleanup for Christmas dinner caused most of my notes for TEMPO newsletter articles to go missing.  In January, I had back-to-back colds, and I had deadlines to meet in February for a grant application and a CRA filing.  Happily, these things cleared up for me in March when I finally found my lost newsletter article notes.    Now things are moving forward once again! Angelique Davies and Janos Ungvary are planning a recorder demonstration at a public school sometime in late May or early June. TEMPO members participated in a similar event in December 2013, so if you missed it then, you have another chance to play recorders for and with young students.  It's a wonderful opportunity for students to perform in an intergenerational concert and to become acquainted with associations for early music enthusiasts who, in turn, have a special opportunity to encourage the next generation of recorder players.  As a side note, schools in general sometimes like demonstrations of early music and early instruments for their students, so if you have experience organizing such a demonstration or would like to perform in one, please let me know and I will compile a list of names for future reference.  This is the second season where our nine workshops have been held at two different venues, with seven at Armour Heights Community Centre and two at a church.  The reason is that Armour Heights is no longer charging for room rentals for qualifying groups such as ourselves, and this creates a high demand for rooms.  If there is a conflict with the dates we submit, a lottery system is used in June to resolve the conflict. This means we might not get all the dates we applied for months in advance of the June lottery.  I am looking into different locations to see if there is a more stable venue and also for other venues we could use as an emergency backup.  We have used two different rooms in St. Leonard’s Church so far. Please let me know what you think of St. Leonard’s. With the number of rentable areas they have, it is unlikely we will ever encounter a conflict with dates, but it comes at a price!  The TEMPO Tea comes up on Sunday, May 27th at Grace Church on-the-Hill.  We will need help serving snacks and refreshments, and setting up and running the sales tables and silent auction tables.  Please let me know if you can volunteer.  Also, please think of things you could donate for sale or auction, and please think about forming a chamber group to perform at the tea.  Frank Nevelo  President, TEMPO 


Welcome to a new season of TEMPO after an August of chilly weather! I was camping in Brighton in late August and the temperature in my tent repeatedly reached down to 12 and 13 Celsius each night. My week there started with summery high temperatures of 27, but after 20 mm of rain fell, the highs dropped to around 21 for the remainder of the week. Other campers were dressed in shorts and T-shirts but were probably not enjoying the cold. I ended up wearing the very small amount of autumn clothing I had brought, and my summer clothes were largely left unworn. We welcome two brand new coaches to TEMPO this season, Stéphane Potvin and Justin Haynes! Stéphane Potvin is a vocal coach and conductor as well as a baroque specialist. He directs such groups as the Rosewood Consort of recorders, Villanella and Musikay vocal ensembles, and the Brott Festival Singers. He is a stickler for tuning individual notes in a piece, so we will have a good opportunity to see just how he tunes those notes. Justin Haynes is a founding member of Elixir Baroque Ensemble and has performed on viola da gamba with Tafelmusik, Opera Atelier, Les Voix Humaines, Toronto Masque Theatre, and the Toronto Consort. He studied instrument making in London and has constructed the viola da gamba he performs on. Over the summer, TEMPO was able to help out with a weeklong music camp in Jamaica by purchasing 30 plastic soprano recorders for students attending the camp, which were afterward donated to local schools. The Maggotty Music Day Camp Mission Trip was held August 6-14 and allowed rural southwest Jamaican primary and high school students to learn music literacy and theory, and learn how to play a musical instrument, some for the first time and some who are in a grade at school where they have no access to music resources. The organization Equip to Serve, based in Oakville, assembled a team of musicians to teach various instruments at the camp. One of these musicians was a student studying recorder at Wilfrid Laurier University who was selected to teach recorder technique. A man from Vancouver used two 40-foot steel shipping containers to create practice cubicles, a classroom, and an amphitheatre for this camp. Throughout most of the summer, preparations for the new TEMPO season were running smoothly up until the end of August when our Treasurer, Sharon Geens, had to undergo some emergency back surgery, and then two of the venue bookings she made at Armour Heights Community Centre were overturned to allow some other event to use our space. Sharon had a successful surgery and she will need about two months of recovery time at home. We hope to see her again at workshops later in 2017. At the moment, I have found a new venue for our October 1st workshop. It will be in the sanctuary of St. Leonard’s Anglican Church, 25 Wanless Avenue, 2 blocks north of Yonge/Lawrence and Lawrence subway station. Depending on how we like the venue, we might book it again for our April 8th workshop