I am picking up where I left off yesterday in the National Arts Centre, with the art installation Cloud, which was ideal for photo ops on Canada Day. Music was being played in the lobby while people were waiting for the evening concert- in this case a jazz band.
Turning around close to where I was for the above shots is a doorway leading into what I'd describe as a prep room. I've always liked the look of it. It's rather sci-fi and ominous, like architecture out of Blade Runner. From time to time, I've given blood at clinics inside, so I know what's behind it, but otherwise it would be easy to mistake this for a wall. The door can be seen in the following shot, behind the jazz band and the ascending staircase.
I headed into Southam Hall and found a seat as the orchestra and choir started coming in, listening to the musicians and that swirling sound of readying their instruments.
The concert was quite a mix of influences, opening and closing with a small group of First Nations men, the Eagle River Singers. Sitting in a circle around a large drum, they beat the drum and sang a traditional song, a sound that was mesmerizing to hear. Music Director Alexander Shelley led the orchestra with the national anthem, moving into classical selections mixed with choral songs- Rachmaninoff's Rhapsody On A Theme Of Paginini, The Blue Danube Waltz by Strauss, Mozart's Piano Concerto #21, Mussorgsky's Night On Bald Mountain, and Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto.
The Unisong choir, made up of seventeen choirs from around the country, sang under the direction of Lydia Adams- with music of English, French, and First Nations influences. And there were soloists- a blues singer, Dione Taylor, sang Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah and Oscar Peterson's Hymn To Freedom in collaboration with the choir and the orchestra. Three solo musicians performed as featured soloists as part of the classical selections- violinist James Ehnes and young piano prodigies Jan Lisiecki and Daniel Clarke Bouchard. The evening was hosted by Chantal Petitclerc, a Canadian Paralympian who has since been named to the Senate.
Coming out, I took a shot of the Chateau Laurier in evening light. From here, I was bound for Major's Hill Park and the fireworks.