This Week in Montreal: December 15 to 21
The McGill Chamber Orchestra and the Christ Church Cathedral Choir, under the baton of Boris Brott, takes their turn to present The Messiah with soprano Aline Kutan, mezzo Mireille Lebel, tenor Michael Colvin and baritone Peter McGillivray. The choir’s musical director, Peter Wedd, has prepared the singers and will accompany them on the harpsichord. A pre-concert talk will take place at 6:30 pm. Christ Church Cathedral, December 15 at 7:30 pm. www.ocm-mco.org
Conducted by Michel Brousseau, the Choeur Philharmonique Nouveau Monde also presents highlights from The Messiah with over 200 singers on stage, sans soloists. Église Saint-Germain, Outremont, at 7:30 pm.
Kensho Watanabe, replacing the originally-scheduled Alexandre Bloch, will visit three Montreal neighbourhoods with the Orchestre Métropolitain and Stéphane Tétreault. Winter Evenings is a program full of contrasts, beginning with Corelli’s Concerto Grosso, op. 6 no 8 (“The Christmas Concerto”) which is followed by Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme and Symphony no. 1 “Winter Dreams”. Verdun (Dec 17), Hochelaga-Maisonneuve (Dec 18), and Saint-Leonard (Dec 20). www.orchestremetropolitain.com
I Musici revamps Christmas this year with recorder ensemble Flûte Alors! Under the baton of conductor-in-residence Jean-Michel Malouf, audiences will hear arrangements for four recorders and orchestra of works by Bach, Corelli, Vivaldi, Haber, and Charpentier. These four recorder-loving virtuosos have, according to critics, developed a musical mechanism of clockwork precision together. Chapelle historique du Bon-Pasteur, December 18 to 20. www.imusici.com
Ensembles VivaVoce and La Rose des vents unite for a concert titled “Noël à Dresde”, featuring trombonist Catherine Motuz and French horn player Matthew Jennejohn. They will perform works by Praetorius, Scheidt, Schein, and Schütz for choir and string ensemble as well as traditional Christmas works. Redpath Hall, December 21, 3 pm.