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The 2017 New Music Festival is centred around the work of visiting prominent Italian composer Salvatore Sciarrino and features several Italian guest performers including violinist Emmanuele Baldini and pianists Roberto Turrin and Erika Crinò. The festival also presents the results of an ongoing musical collaboration with Italy’s Conservatorio G. Tartini. With a wide spectrum of chamber, vocal, electroacoustic, opera, dance and orchestral music, and partnering with Toronto’s excellent New Music Concerts, the festival offers an insight into the rich Italian culture of contemporary music, side-by-side with the creativity emerging from Toronto and UofT.

(Events are free unless noted otherwise. Visit the Faculty’s Upcoming events listing for individual concert information).

Saturday Jan 28; 7:30pm, MacMillan Theatre
CONCERT #1: University of Toronto Symphony Orchestra
$30, $20 senior, $10 student | BUY TICKETS


Sunday Jan 29; 7:30pm, Walter Hall
CONCERT #2: Karen Kieser Prize concert

A chamber ensemble and soprano Stacie Dunlop will perform Sophie Dupuis’ 2016 prize-winning Perceptions de La Fontaine. The Cecilia String Quartet will perform Salvatore Sciarrino’s String Quartet No. 7, as well as the winning student piece of the 2016 University of Toronto String Quartet Composition Competition. Also on the program: Salvatore Sciarrino’s Canto Degli Specchi. Presented by Dennis Patrick.


Monday Jan 30; Walter Hall

: Onde Notturne. Music for piano solo by Sciarrino, Nono, Fedele, Berio; Erika Crinò, piano

CONCERT #4: Conservatorio G. Tartini (Trieste)/U of T composition student exchange concert; M2MEnsemble and guest artists


Tuesday Jan 31;  Walter Hall

: John Burge: Preludes for solo piano; John Burge, piano

CONCERT #6: ‘Americas’; Modern Music of the Americas; Emmanuele Baldini, violin & Roberto Turrin, piano


Wednesday Feb 1; Walter Hall

Composition Masterclass I with Salvatore Sciarrino
(4 students)

CONCERT #7: The Killing Flower (Luci mie traditrici) by Salvatore Sciarrino
$30, $20 senior, $10 student | BUY TICKETS
The Canadian premiere of an opera by Salvatore Sciarrino. Produced by Wallace Halladay and Toronto New Music Projects. Love, infidelity and murder are captured in Sciarrino’s now iconic drama, based on the story of late 16th century composer Carlo Gesualdo, the count who murdered his wife and her lover. Starring alumni of the Opera School: Geoffrey Sirett, Shannon Mercer, and Scott Belluz.


Thursday Feb 2 – Walter Hall

12:10 – 1pm
Lecture by Salvatore Sciarrino, Roger D. Moore Distinguished Visitor in Composition

CONCERT #8: Composing for Dance; U of T composition students collaborate with Toronto’s choreographers


Friday Feb 3;  Walter Hall
Composition Masterclass II with Salvatore Sciarrino

: Electroacoustic Music Concert. A concert featuring works with live electronics and surround sound by graduate students including the winning electroacoustic work for The Ann H. Atkinson Prize in Composition. Presented by Dennis Patrick.


Saturday Feb 4; Walter Hall
: Contemporary Italian Music; gamUT ensemble. Presented by Wallace Halladay.

CONCERT #11: Jazz concert


Sunday Feb 5; Macmillan Theatre
2:30 pm
: Student Opera Composers Collective
For ticket information, please call New Music Concerts at 416-961-9594 or visit 

7:15 Walter Hall
Pre-concert talk with Salvatore Sciarrino
8pm, Walter Hall
FINAL FESTIVAL CONCERT: Four Views of Salvatore Sciarrino. Presented by New Music Concerts, Robert Aitken direction


Born in Palermo in 1947, Salvatore Sciarrino started studying music at age 12 with Antonio Titone and Turi Belifore. He has received many prizes including the IGNM and Taormina (1971), Guido Monaco (1972), Cassadó, IGMN and Dallapiccola (1974), Anno discografico (1979), Psacaropoulos (1983), Abbiati (1983) and Premio Italia (1984). He was director of Bologna’s Teatro Communale from 1987 to 1990 and has has taught at the Milan, Perugia and Florence conservatories. The complete catalogue of his works, published by Ricordi in 1999, consists of 164 works, to which one must add opera librettos and a number of writings, including the book Le Figure della musica, da Beethoven a oggi (1998).

Italian composer Salvatore Sciarrino (sha-REE-no) is considered one of the leaders of advanced or avant-garde music in Europe. His music uses isolated sonorities such as harmonics, other unusual methods of tone production, and additional sounds that can be made with instruments such as tapping and key clicking. In addition, it is characterized by artful and frequent use of silence as part of the compositional structure, as well as frequent introduction, in a questioning or confrontational way, of pre-existing music, including classical American popular song.

  • Organized by: New Music Festival, UofT
  • In collaboration with: Istituto Italiano di Cultura; Jackman Humanities Institute Program for the Arts