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Charke Cormier Duo to release debut album May 4

PRE-ORDER NOW! EX TEMPORE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Leaf Music is pleased to announce the release of Ex Tempore from the Charke-Cormier Duo Friday May 4. This is the debut release for the Nova Scotia ensemble. Prominent musicians and Acadia University faculty Derek Charke (flute) and Eugene Cormier (guitar) produced the album in Wolfville, Nova Scotia.

The album includes Musiques Populaires Brésiliennes, a suite of six pieces by Canadian/Brazilian composer Celso Macado with titles named for popular Brazilian sweets such as Paçoca, and Algodão Doce (Cotton Candy.)

The recording also features original arrangements of Scarlatti Sonatas for flute and guitar by Eugene Cormier and published by Productions d’Oz (Québec). The album’s title track “Ex Tempore” is a brand new 6-minute work by Charke, who in addition to being a celebrated flute performer is a JUNO and East Coast Music Award-winning composer. “Ex Tempore” includes driving rhythms and pushes the sonic limits of the flute and guitar combination while also exploring the boundaries between fully-composed material and extemporaneous (or improvised) music.

The album will be available on popular music services including iTunes, Spotify, and Amazon Music. CDs will also be available from Amazon.com, Renaud-Bray, Barnes and Noble and other fine retailers. The Charke-Cormier duo will be hosting album launch events in Wolfville, Nova Scotia (May 12) and Halifax (May 20) to celebrate their debut recording. Visit charkecormierduo.com for more details.

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About Charke-Cormier Duo

Derek Charke (flutes) and Eugene Cormier (guitar) formed the Charke-Cormier Duo several years ago culminating in a debut recital at the KC Irving Centre in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. This sonorous union of flute and guitar continues to charm audiences across the Maritimes. Their repertoire includes many of the most important works for this pairing of instruments, and creates a sonic journey for audiences from the street corners of Argentina to the halls of Europe, as well as introducing fresh new works created today. Both performers are highly accomplished musicians who are on the teaching faculty at Acadia University’s School of Music.

About Leaf Music

Leaf Music is an independent recording label based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, that specializes in high quality classical music recordings by artists and composers from Atlantic Canada (New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland.)  Our growing catalogue of solo, orchestral and chamber music is distributed by Naxos of America to the world’s most important music retail, download and streaming providers.

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OSCAR®-winning composer Howard Shore collaborates with the New Brunswick Youth Orchestra

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
“Sea to Sea”, the New Brunswick Youth Orchestra’s Canada 150
Celebration song to be released on iTunes December 8
OSCAR®-winning composer Howard Shore collaborates with the NBYO.
Nov 23, 2017 (Halifax, NS) – The New Brunswick Youth Orchestra (NBYO) has something extra special to celebrate this December with the release on iTunes of “Sea to Sea”, the song it commissioned by OSCAR®-winning Canadian composer Howard Shore.

“Howard Shore is one of the most celebrated composers in the world,” says Ken MacLeod, CEO of the NBYO. “We are thrilled that he created this special celebration music for the talented young musicians of the NBYO. Written for orchestra, soloist and choir, the music and lyrics celebrate our Canadian landscape and diverse culture. We are excited to share it with audiences around the world.”
Shore’s music is heard in dozens of top Hollywood films including The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Gangs of New York, Silence of the Lambs and the recent Academy Award-winner Spotlight. It is unprecedented for a Canadian youth orchestra to work directly with a living composer of this calibre.
“Sea to Sea” premiered in Moncton on Canada Day weekend and featured internationally renowned soprano Measha Brueggergosman along with a 120-voice choir. The outdoor event, which took place along the shores of the scenic Petitcodiac River, attracted more than 7,500 people, the largest audience ever for an NBYO performance.
In continuing its Canada 150 celebrations, the NBYO performed ‘Sea to Sea’ during its eastern Canadian tour this summer, receiving standing ovations at Kingsbrae International Residence for the Arts in St. Andrews, NB, the National Arts Centre in Ottawa and at the prestigious Maison symphonique de Montréal.

During the 2017-2018 concert season, ‘Sea to Sea’ is being performed in communities across New Brunswick, including Woodstock, Caraquet, Saint John, Moncton and Fredericton. In total, the NBYO performances of “Sea to Sea” will engage more than 500 local musicians and singers and more than 20,000 audience members.
The recording ‘Sea to Sea’ will be the orchestra’s sixth release, produced by Atlantic Canadian classical label Leaf Music and distributed by Naxos of Canada.
About the New Brunswick Youth Orchestra
The mission of the New Brunswick Youth Orchestra is to inspire children and youth to achieve their full potential through learning and performing orchestral music. The NBYO is one of the most innovative and distinguished youth orchestras in Canada, and features some of the province’s most talented young musicians. The NBYO has performed in some of the world’s great concert halls, including Carnegie Hall in New York, The Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing, China and the Musikverein, the home stage of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, in Vienna, Austria. In 2011, the Orchestra was awarded first place in the category of Symphony Orchestra at the Summa Cum Laude International Youth Music Festival in Vienna, Austria.  It has six CD recordings and has received an East Coast Music Award for best classical recording.  In addition to performing with a high level of excellence, the Orchestra continues to commission original works, collaborate with guest conductors and performers, and tour both in New Brunswick, Canada and internationally. The NBYO’s key goals are to develop an outstanding provincial youth orchestra, expand the participation of young people, and create greater awareness and appreciation for orchestral music in New Brunswick.  For more information about the orchestra, members and upcoming events across the province, visit www.nbyo-ojnb.com

About Leaf Music
Leaf Music is an independent recording label based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, that specializes in classical music recordings by artists and composers from Atlantic Canada.  Our growing catalogue of solo, orchestral and chamber music is distributed worldwide.
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For more information, please contact:
Mariam Mesbah 
New Brunswick Youth Orchestra
L’Orchestre des jeunes du Nouveau-Brunswick 
506.875.3611 
mmesbah@nbyo-ojnb.com
Jeremy VanSlyke
Leaf Music
902.802.1526
jeremy@leaf-music.ca

With the participation of the Government of Canada

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Maureen Batt met en vedette “Lady of the Lake” de Walter Scott

Maureen Batt, une chanteuse soprano basée à Halifax, lance cette année son premier album Lady of the Lake, qui met en vedette sa voix captivante ainsi qu’une rencontre entre les univers de Schubert et de la compositrice canadienne Fiona Ryan.

“La musique d’une autre époque rejoint celle de Fiona, qui apporte aussi une voix moderne aux morceaux de Schubert. C’est spécial.”

Cette relation entre les mondes est soulignée sur Lady of the Lake par la contribution des deux compositeurs qui se sont inspirés du même poème de Sir Walter Scott. Batt livre ceux-ci avec brio, en saisissant les subtilités de chacun des univers musicaux, vocaux et lyriques de Schubert et Ryan.

“La musique classique moderne capte mon attention. J’aime chanter des oeuvres écrites par mes collègues et amis. Ça me donne de l’énergie.”

Batt avoue être enthousiaste à l’idée d’avoir endisqué les chansons de Ryan, écrites exclusivement pour ce disque.

“On connaît déjà bien l’oeuvre de Schubert. Tandis que beaucoup de compositeurs écrivent pour des musiciens, Fiona sait aussi écrire pour les chanteurs. C’est un talent spécial, selon moi. Nous sommes si chanceux d’avoir Fiona, ici, à Halifax.”

Lady of the Lake fut lancé cet été via l’étiquette Leaf Music et distribué par Naxos. L’initiative de faire appel à un compositeur canadien fut lancé par le propriétaire de Leaf Music.

“Je lui ai suggéré de demander à Fiona. Le projet au complet a pris trois ans, avec un total de six jours d’enregistrements, étalés sur deux semaines.”

Bien qu’elle ait étudié la musique, avec une maîtrise et un baccalauréat en poche, respectivement des universités de Toronto et Dalhousie, la relation de Fiona avec cette discipline artistique remonte à d’autres instruments comme le piano, le violon ou le saxophone.

“Quand j’étais adolescente, je faisais partie d’une chorale. D’autres filles me disaient qu’elles avaient des cours de chant en privée et j’ai fait part de cette information à ma mère.”

C’est là que c’est fait le déclic chez elle.

“Chanter c’était organique et bien plus naturel que lorsque j’étais au piano.”

C’est à l’école secondaire, à Fredericton, qu’elle s’est mise à perfectionner sa pratique grâce à des cours de chants qui lui ont permis de trouver sa voix.

“En dixième année, mon école secondaire présentait la comédie musicale Carousel, composée par Richard Rodgers. On a fait des auditions pendant une longue période de temps pour les divers rôles. Je voulais celui de Nettie qui interprète You’ll Never Walk Alone, qui allie la comédie musicale au chant classique. En répétant ce morceau avec ma professeure, j’ai commencé à apprendre à chanter d’une manière classique.”

De là, elle mène une carrière avec brio qui l’a amené tant à chanter, qu’à étudier, peaufiner et enseigner sa technique au Canada et aux États-Unis, en plus d’avoir également cofondé diverses compagnies.

“À l’école, on apprend l’histoire, les différents styles et la diction lyrique, mais il faut pratiquer le métier pour le comprendre. C’est un style de vie être chanteuse et il faut savoir prendre des risques et vivre ces expériences pleinement.”

 

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New album from Mark Fewer

Mark Fewer and Hank Knox’s new double album, J.S. Bach: Sonatas for Violin and Harpsichord, BWV 1014-1019created in collaboration with independent label Leaf Music​, is now available for purchase.

Described as “genre-bending” by the National Post, and “intrepid” by the Globe and Mail, Juno Award-winning Mark Fewer has performed around the world to critical acclaim in virtually every role asked of a violinist, from the early baroque to the avant-garde. As one of today’s busiest musicians in the field of Early Music, Hank Knox is hailed internationally for his “colorful, kinetic performances” (AllMusic Guide) which “abound in vitality” (Early Music America). Together, this duo brings warmth and energy to these rarely-performed works: six sonatas for violin and harpsichord.

After his father’s death, CPE Bach wrote that “[the Six Sonatas for Violin and Harpsichord]… are among the best works of my dear departed father. They still sound excellent and give me much joy, even thought they date back more than fifty years.” Interpreted now by a duo so well-suited for the eminently singable melodies, the Six Sonatas are indeed a pleasure to listen to. With the tour Bach Intime, Mark Fewer and Hank Knox will take these Six Sonatas to Midlands, ON (24-09-2017), Gatineau QC (29-10-2017), Prévost, QC (24-03-2018), and Hudson, QC (25-03-2018).

The album is now available for purchase on CD and for download on major digital music providers including NaxosAmazon, ​and iTunes​.

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Media Contact:
Jeremy VanSlyke, Leaf Music Inc., Halifax, Nova Scotia
jeremy@leaf-music.ca
tel: 1-902-802-1526

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New album from Robert DeMaine

Praised by the New York Times as “an artist who makes one hang on every note,” Robert deMaine is the Principal Cellist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. His playing is noted for its “beautiful singing tone, lapidary technical precision, and a persuasive identification with the idiom of the music at hand.”

DeMaine’s latest recording on the Canadian classical label ‘Leaf Music’ contains cello sonatas by Sergei Rachmaninoff (Op. 19), Edward Grieg (Op. 36) and the beautiful Élégie, Op. 24 by Gabriel Fauré. The album is a collaboration with American pianist Andrew Armstrong and was recorded at Detroit’s Symphony Hall.

The album is available July 7, 2017 for purchase on compact disc through all major classical music retailers (Catalogue LM215), and on major digital music download and streaming providers.

The album is now available for purchase on CD and for download on major digital music providers including Naxos, Amazon, ​and iTunes​.

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Media Contact:
Jeremy VanSlyke, Leaf Music Inc., Halifax, Nova Scotia
jeremy@leaf-music.ca
tel: 1-902-802-1526

 

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Début album from soprano Maureen Batt

 

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Canadian soprano Maureen Batt will be releasing her debut album LADY OF THE LAKE in collaboration with independent label Leaf Music​. Batt has joined forces with pianist Simon Docking, bass-baritone Jon Paul Décosse as well as the Halifax Camerata Singers to record two exciting song cycles based on the epic poem ‘Lady of the Lake’ by Sir Walter Scott.

Noted by Opera Canada as a “young, lovely and captivating soprano,” Batt is passionate about sharing Canadian contemporary music with the world. She is co-artistic director of Essential Opera, now in its seventh season, and has performed throughout the world in opera roles and as a recitalist.

The recording features a rare recording of Franz Schubert’s Op. 52 song cycle Sieben Gesänge aus Walter Scotts “Fräulein am See” (Seven songs from Walter Scott’s “Lady of the Lake”) combined with a newly composed cycle by Nova Scotia composer Fiona Ryan. While the Schubert cycle includes the famous melody ‘Ave Maria,’ the work is rarely heard in its full context among six lesser-known Schubert songs.

Ryan’s work includes a ‘Prayer’ inspired partly by Schubert’s ‘Ave Maria’ as well as a strong influence of folk traditions. She writes: “I draw upon Scottish (and Nova Scotian) folk music traditions in my songs. Some movements are very obviously influenced by Scottish folksongs, such as ‘Soldier’s Farewell’ (which could be as much at home at a folk music session in a pub as in a concert hall) and others draw inspiration from rhythmic patterns, ornamentation, and droning sounds found in Scottish bagpipe music.”

In 2017-18, Lady of the Lake will embark on a tour of Eastern Canada, and in 2018, dates will be added throughout Canada, and abroad. For all concert dates please see: maureenbatt.com and facebook.com/maureenbattsoprano.

The album will become available for purchase on CD and for download on major digital music providers including Naxos, Amazon, ​and iTunes​ June 23, 2017.

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This project is funded in part by FACTOR, the Government
of Canada and Canada’s private radio broadcasters.

Ce projet est financé en partie par FACTOR, le gouvernement
du Canada et les radiodiffuseurs privés du Canada.

Leaf Music recognizes the support of the Music Nova Scotia Investment Program and The Province of Nova Scotia

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New album from Infusion Baroque

On the eve of an extensive U.S. tour, early music quartet Infusion Baroque releases their debut album 1747: C.P.E. Bach in collaboration with independent label Leaf Music​.  Infusion Baroque hosts an album release event on Sunday February 26, 2017 from 2-4pm at Café Les Oubliettes in Montréal, shortly following the album’s official release.

With performances described as “dynamic and alive” and a stage presence that is “poised and elegant”, the Montréal-based ensemble seeks to draw a new audience to early music by integrating chamber music performance and other artistic media.  Winners of the Grand Prize and Audience Prize at the 2014 Early Music America Baroque Performance Competition​, Infusion Baroque’s innovative programmes have featured live painting, scandalous stories from the lives of great composers, and an interactive murder mystery soirée.

The recording features five trio sonatas by C.P.E. Bach which were either written or extensively revised in 1747.  Combining early classical elegance with a wide emotional range, these sonatas are perfectly suited to Infusion Baroque’s refined, sensual, and expressive performance style.  The recording also showcases their impeccable ensemble playing and brilliant virtuosity.  Infusion Baroque has performed across Eastern Canada ​and the United States​, including appearances at the Montreal Baroque Festival, the Boston Early Music Fringe Festival, and the San Francisco Early Music Society.  In 2017 Infusion Baroque continues their U.S. tour including engagements with Early Music Now (Milwaukee), Renaissance & Baroque (Pittsburgh), Early Music in Columbus, the Houston Early Music Festival, and the Indianapolis Early Music Festival.

Infusion Baroque’s 2017-18 season includes engagements with the Early Music Guild (Seattle) and a tour of the Montréal region supported by the Conseil des Arts de Montréal.  For all concert dates please see: infusionbaroque.com

The album is now available for purchase on CD and for download on major digital music providers including Naxos, Amazon, ​and iTunes​.

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New album from Ensemble La Cigale

ENSEMBLE LA CIGALE RELEASES NEW CELTIC BAROQUE ALBUM ‘UP IN THE MORNING EARLY’

JANUARY 6, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Montreal-based Ensemble La Cigale has released their new album Up in the Morning Early.  This is the group’s second full-length album and features a collection of rarely recorded gems from Celtic countries (Ireland, Scotland and Wales) performed on period instruments.  The ensemble’s first recording Tiorba Obbligata was nominated for Québec’s prestigious Opus prize for Album of the Year: Medieval, Baroque, Renaissance in 2014.

The group is led by Baroque music specialist Madeleine Owen who plays lute and theorbo and complemented by some of Canada’s best Baroque interpreters including Marie-Laurence Primeau (viola da gamba), Sara Lackie (harp), Vincent Lauzer (recorder), and Sari Tsuji (violin.)

The album is available for purchase on CD at ensemblelacigale.ca, and for download on major digital music providers including Amazon, iTunes, and for streaming on Apple Music, and Spotify.

 

 

About Leaf Music, Inc.

Leaf Music is an independent recording label based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, that specializes in high quality classical music recordings by artists and composers from Atlantic Canada (New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland.)  Our growing catalogue of recordings includes solo, orchestral and chamber music titles that are distributed worldwide and have received nominations at the JUNOs, East Coast Music Awards and OPUS.  We are also recognized as a leading provider of professional audio production, post-production services, and integrated music marketing for classical music in the region.

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Leaf Music announces distribution deal with Naxos

Naxos and Leaf Logos

Leaf Music is pleased to announce a new worldwide partnership with Naxos of America, Inc.   Effective September 1, 2016, Leaf Music’s catalogue will be exclusively distributed through Naxos with content soon to be available for streaming on the Naxos Music Library, as high resolution downloads on ClassicsOnlineHD.com and through the unClassified platform on major streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music.

The first new release under the partnership will be the debut album of Infusion Baroque, The Berlin Bach.  The Montreal-based ensemble won the Grand Prize and Audience Prize at the 2014 Early Music America competition and will be touring throughout the USA and Canada in support of the new release.

“We’re pleased that this new agreement allows us to better serve our artists and audiences through greater resources and support from the world’s largest independent distributor of classical music,” explains Halifax, Nova Scotia based producer Jeremy VanSlyke, who founded Leaf Music in 2012.  “As the only classical recording label located in Atlantic Canada, we’re especially excited to offer fresh opportunities to classical artists and composers from this region who want to share their music with the world.”

 

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About Naxos of America, Inc.

Founded in 1991 in Pennsauken, New Jersey, Naxos of America, Inc. is a subsidiary of the Naxos Group, founded in 1987 by Klaus Heymann.  As of October 2015, NoA physically distributes the Naxos labels and over 400 CD and DVD labels that bridge the many genres of music and performing arts. These include Sony Classics, New York Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic, LSO Live, Chandos, Opus Arte, BIS Classics, Brilliant Classics, Fanfare Cincinnati, Orfeo, PentaTone, and many others. This impressive roster of labels allows the Naxos of America sales team to approach retail each month with over 60,000 titles.  Whether servicing traditional retail accounts or direct-to-consumer orders, the location of the NoA warehouse allows shipments to reach 50% of the U.S. population within 48 hours.

Naxos of America is also the largest digital distributor of classical, jazz and world music. The catalogs and new releases of over 700 labels are delivered worldwide each month to hundreds of high resolution digital download, streaming and mobile sites such as Apple Music, Amazon MP3, HDtracks, Spotify, Pandora and ClassicsOnline HD, among others.

Aside from the success of NoA’s digital and physical distribution, Naxos Music Library has grown in North America to service 1,700 subscribers including libraries, universities, schools, school districts and other institutions. It is estimated that over 11 million students in North America have access to the Naxos Online Libraries.

About Leaf Music, Inc.

Leaf Music is an independent recording label based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, that specializes in high quality classical music recordings by artists and composers from Atlantic Canada (New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland.)  Our growing catalogue of recordings includes solo, orchestral and chamber music titles that are distributed worldwide and have received nominations at the JUNOs, East Coast Music Awards and ADISQs.  We are also recognized as a leading provider of professional audio production, post-production services, and integrated music marketing for classical music in the region.

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New CD “Mélancolies” from Julien Leblanc

After many years of performing as a concert pianist, working as the artistic director for the Barachois Summer Music Series and collaborating on a variety of critically acclaimed musical projects across Canada, Julien Leblanc has released his first solo album, a piano recording entitled Mélancolies

The album is a compilation of French compositions that became a staple of Leblanc’s repertoire after he discovered them early on in his career. The composers included in this recorded collection — Franck, Poulenc and Dutilleux — all hail from France and their combined output stretches from the mid-nineteenth century to Dutilleux’s last work which was published in 2009 when he was ninety-three.

Francis Poulenc was a less avant-garde contemporary of Erik Satie and Jean Cocteau and so, his work is accessible but inventive and fresh. Poulenc’s “Fifteen Improvisations” are known for their charming and buoyant character as well as for the technical artistry of the composer’s pedalling.

Henri Dutilleux’s work was more heavily influenced by his environmental context when he was composing music just after World War Two. The included piece by Dutilleux, “Sonata for piano”, denotes the turbulence, anguish and anxiety that pervaded during that period through his use of contrast — he juxtaposes rhythmic and jagged sections with sensual, dreamlike and ethereal parts.

Composing fifty years before Dutilleux and Poulenc, César Franck‘s “Prélude, choral et fugue” is religious and takes a cyclic form. In its closing coda, Franck masterfully superimposes the previous sections of his composition. The character of the work is philosophical and contemplative yet at the same time passionate and fervid.

Julien Leblanc connects these differing French compositions through his acute sensibilities and expressive piano playing. He fuses the works together with a consistent expression of melancholy which he identifies in each work.

Leblanc writes of this feeling in the notes of his album when he says ”A sense of melancholy pervades the pieces presented in this recording and I am especially attached to them. Be it dreamlike or loving, resigned or fatalistic, or caused by the absence of a loved one, this feeling of melancholy runs through these four pieces. As a shadow in the light, it contrasts with expressions of joy and happiness, intensifying them in the process. I present this recording to you humbly and with all my heart.”