40 Years Young!
We’ve been singing for a long time. Read our GJS Chronicles to find out what we’ve been doing all those years!
2016 Winter programme “Christmas Jubilee: Our 40th Anniversary Season”
2017 Spring programme “Made in Canada – A 40th Anniversary Celebration” featured guest choir Command Performance of Picton, Ontario, with whom we made an exchange. We joined them again in Picton for our “Sesquicentennial Celebration Concert”. The performances featured three world premieres of pieces commissioned for the occasion by composers Laura Hawley, James Wright and Stephen Eisenhauer.
“Sing a Song of Nature”
The title of our 2016 spring concert, our first at a new venue , was “Sing a Song For Nature”, and the theme was the environment in all its various forms. The setlist included old repertoire such as Gjeilo’s Northern Lights, Erb’s stunning arrangement of Shenandoah, as well as new material, including Evening Star, a beautiful arrangement of a surprisingly lovely Edgar Allen Poe poem.
“Charlie Brown’s Christmas” On December 3, 2015 at Dominion Chalmers Church the Junior Jubilees joined the Jerry Granelli Trio for a live performance of Charlie Brown’s Christmas to a sold out crowd. The children sang the three pieces from the original television show: Hark the Hearld Angels Sing, a piece called My Little Drum which is a jazz version of Little Drummer Boy, and Christmas Time is Here. This is the second time the JJs have performed with the Trio. Read more
Our Spring 2015 concert was fun from first rehearsal to last line of the finale. Featuring familiar TV themes and songs from major motion pictures, which lent itself to choreography and props, most audience members could sing along throughout the show. We premiered a new arrangement of classic Canadian TV themes (everything from Don Messer’s Jubilee to Skinamarinky doo).
“Why We Sing” A repertoire that explores all the reasons GJS choir members sing – for life, in response to nature, to tell a story, in response to art and artists, for fun, for spiritual nourishment, to support and encourage each other, for inspiration, for love and as part of a community. Rich in songs written or arranged by Canadian composers, this was the subject of our CD launch concert in 2014!
“Alphabet Soup” Our spring programme in 2013, this was a spirited collection of song with titles from A to Z – The Alphabet Song to Zip-a-dee-dah. The repertoire included madrigals, Canadian arrangements of traditional music, jazz numbers and spirituals. Our challenge piece was in 10 part harmony “Io Son La Primavera”.
“Celtic Celebration” We began our 35th anniversary celebrations with a wonderful series of celtic concerts, in collaboration with the Siamsa Singers, from Montreal. We sang three concerts together, including many Scottish, Irish, and Welsh folksongs, and including some great celtic instrumentalists. After the shows, in Montreal, we all enjoyed a great ceilidh together, too! Choirs that sing well together also party well together!
“Changing Seasons, Changing Light” This concert, in late November, took our audiences on a musical journey from Fall, into Winter. Selections included In Flanders Fields, Cantique de Jean Racine, Midwinter, and other seasonal favourites.
Festival Mondial Choral The GJS has been pleased to perform at three of the wonderful choral festivals Mondial Choral, in Ville Laval, Montréal. We have really enjoyed singing in the lovely venues that are part of that festival, and also performing La Messe Québecoise (Houdy) in local churches. The audiences at that festival are fantastic supporters of the choral art.
“Handel and Holly.” The Christmas section of Handel’s “Messiah”, plus lighter Christmas carols and songs.
“Going Home” This programme featured songs from around the world, on the theme of “Home”, interspersed with appropriate readings. Some our favourites were “Going Home”, “Shenandoah”, “Loch Lomond”, “Un canadien errant”, and “Streets of London”, many of which were arranged by Canadian composers.
Kaleid Choral Festival, with Rajaton GJS was thrilled to be part of this excellent choral weekend, where we enjoyed working with Jackie Hawley and Jennifer Moir. Of course, collaborating with the Finnish super-stars, Rajaton, was exciting! GJS was the only non-auditioned community choir to be invited to this wonderful new initiative in the Ottawa choral community.
“Rule Britannia” This programme featured many favourites from England, including patriotic songs, folk songs, madrigals and motets, and pop hits. We had great fun, with special guests trumpeters Ruth Merkely and Carl Fraser. We were honoured with the presence of His Excellency, the British High Commissioner, who, it turns out, is a choral singer himself!