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The Stairwell Carollers Choir Blog
Stairwell Carollers
Canada's bilingual, award-winning acappella chamber choir. En francais, Les Chanteurs Stairwell, Ottawa, Ontario
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Stairwell Carollers St. Barnabas church, Ottawa
Stairwell Carollers St. Barnabas church, Ottawa
Don't miss our gala 2016 Spring Concert June 4th 7:30 pm at St. Barnabas Church, 70 James St. Ottawa !

$15 in advance, $20 at the door.

ADVANCE TICKETS are available from all choir members in person, ONLINE HERE, and at selected local businesses.

We will be presenting a $2000 cheque to the local chapter of the Parkinson's society of Eastern Ontario at this concert. This gift is made possible through our concert ticket and CD sales. Thanks! CDs are always available at our concert during intermission and at the reception afterwards. Thanks to the Square, we can accept credit cards at the concert for cd sales, so do that early Christmas shopping :)

As always, there will be a post concert reception with lots of yummies supplied by the choir. There is also a door prize draw , but you must be at the reception to win -- so we will see you there!

Since it was so well loved last spring, we are continuing to explore musical selections from the contemporary scene alternating with glorious prices from the Renaissance period. Here is the repertoire for the evening.

Lux Aurumque 2016 Stairwell Carollers Repertoire Our director, Pierre, has again chosen some spectacular music for this concert.

Due to popular demand ( and the fact that we all LOVE it) we are again singing the modern Ave Maria by Franz Biebl. If you have been living under a rock and have never heard it, here is an exquisite version of it on YouTube performed by a lone virtuoso, Mr. Matthew Curtis. We are planning to do quest workshops with Matthew here in Ottawa for the Stairwell Carollers upcoming 40th anniversary in 2017 -- which coincides with Canadas 150th birthday!

Don't miss this concert!

Here is a text list of the concert repertoire:

1. Amor Vittorioso - Giovanni Gastoldi (c.1550-1622)

2. Pater Noster - Igor Stravinsky

3. Dindirin, dindirin - Anon.(c.1500)

4. Earth Song - Frank Ticheli

5. Cucú, cucú! - Juan del Encina (1464-1523)

6. O magnum mysterium - Morten Lauridsen

7. Come Again - John Dowland (1563–1626)

8. O vos omnes - Pablo Cassals

9. Fa una canzone - Orazio Vecchi (1551-1605)

10. In Remembrance - Eleanor Daley

11. Tourdion - Claude Gervaise (fl.1540–1560)

12. Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal - Paul Mealor

13. La Tricotea - Franco Alonso (c.1490-1520)

14. Spaséniye sodélal - Pavel Chesnokov

15. Fair Phyllis - John Farmer (1570-1601)

16. Lux aurumque - Eric Whitacre

17. Le chant des oyseaux - Clément Janequin (c.1485-1558)

18. Esto les Digo - Kinley Lange

19. O Jesu Christe - Jacquet de Mantua (1483 -1559)

20. Salve Regina - Francis Poulenc

21. Corten espadas afiladas - Cancionero de Medinaceli (1500)

22. Ubi caritas - Maurice Duruflé

23. El Grillo - Josquin Des Prez (1440-1521)

24. Ave Maria - Franz Biebl

Tonight we are also singing a concert at Almonte United Church in Almonte, Ont.

Please call 613 256 1355 for ticket info.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


And, for your listening pleasure, a TEASER PLAYLIST for the concert....

Check out our newsletter for more details!

2 days ago | |
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Jay Fee, Conduction Mastering records Stairwell Carollers CDs
Jay Fee, Conduction Mastering records Stairwell Carollers CDs
Our latest CD for Christmas, o Magnum Mysterium
Our latest CD for Christmas, o Magnum Mysterium
Our latest CD for Christmas, o Magnum Mysterium
Lit by the light of his Mac, Jay works intently
Lit by the light of his Mac, Jay works intently
The Stairwell Carollers are proud to have worked with Jay Fee for all our CD and thanks to him, they all have the same high quality and sound production. He really understands the Stairwell Carollers sound and the detailed audio needs of an a cappella choir.

Jay Fee, Conduction Mastering
Jay Fee, Conduction Mastering
Jay's recording company is Conduction Mastering and he has worked with many up and coming independent musicians, producers and even Sony. His impressive list of credits is HERE .

We can't say enough to recommend him for your recording needs whether you are a solo musician, pop group, a cappella ensemble or choral group. He records us on location in church venues but a large proportion of his record work is done in studio.

Our full compliment of Christmas, Sacred and Renaissance madrigal CDs can be perished and purchased directly from us HERE.

 

18 days ago | |
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Stained glass window at night, Carleton Place, Ontario
Stained glass window at night, Carleton Place, Ontario
Ottawa choir, The Stairwell Carollers, perform O vos omnes by Pablo Casals (1876 –1973), a Spanish cellist, composer and conductor from Catalonia.

A non-profit charity, The Stairwell Carollers raises funds for local charities through concert, CD and cookbook sales. http://www.stairwellcarollers.com/Purchases.html

We are an a cappella group, formed in 1977 by director Pierre Massie. We were ranked amongst the best of Ontario choirs in both the 2010 and 2013 Ontario Music Festival Association competitions. Pierre continues to demand excellence from us and we are currently rehearsing the songs for our Spring Concert season. http://www.stairwellcarollers.com/Concerts.html

All our CDs are available on our website in both CD form and as MP3 downloads. Buy our CDs and help Ottawa/Gatineau charities reach their goals.

Visit our blog or our website for updates.

Audio: Tom Barnes. Recorded at St. Barnabas Church, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, June 5th, 2015.

Videographer: Richard Auger.

Editing: Pierre Massie

Photos: Holly Massie




1 month ago | |
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Pierre Massie, Stairwell Carollers director and choral composer
Pierre Massie, Stairwell Carollers director and choral composer
Ottawa choir, The Stairwell Carollers, perform Christe redemptor omnium - an original sacred piece composed by Pierre Massie.

This version of Christe redemptor omnium is available on our Christmas CD, Laudemus cum armonia. http://www.stairwellcarollers.com/Purchases/Purchases6.html

Laudemus cum armonia cd
Laudemus cum armonia cd
A non-profit charity, The Stairwell Carollers raises funds for local charities through concert, CD and cookbook sales. http://www.stairwellcarollers.com/Purchases.html

We are an a cappella group, formed in 1977 by director Pierre Massie, and have earned the distinction of being ranked amongst the best of Ontario choirs in both the 2010 and 2013 Ontario Music Festival Association competitions.

All our CDs are available on our website in both CD form and as MP3 downloads. Buy our CDs and help Ottawa/Gatineau charities reach their goals.

Visit our blog or our website for updates.

Audio: Tom Barnes. Recorded at St. Barnabas Church, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, June 5th, 2015.

Videographer: Richard Auger.

Editing: Pierre Massie

Photos: Holly Massie




1 month ago | |
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Stained glass window, Arnprior church
Stained glass window, Arnprior church
Ottawa choir, The Stairwell Carollers, perform Tu es Petrus by Hans Leo Hassler (1564 – 1612), a German composer and organist of the late Renaissance and early Baroque eras.

A non-profit charity, The Stairwell Carollers raises funds for local charities through concert, CD and cookbook sales. http://www.stairwellcarollers.com/Purchases.html

We are an a cappella group, formed in 1977 by director Pierre Massie, and have earned the distinction of being ranked amongst the best of Ontario choirs in both the 2010 and 2013 Ontario Music Festival Association competitions.

All our CDs are available on our website in both CD form and as MP3 downloads. Buy our CDs and help Ottawa/Gatineau charities reach their goals.

Visit our blog or our website for updates.

Audio: Tom Barnes. Recorded at St. Barnabas Church, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, June 5th, 2015.

Videographer: Richard Auger.

Editing: Pierre Massie

Photos: Holly Massie




1 month ago | |
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Door detail from Knox Presbyterian, Ottawa
Door detail from Knox Presbyterian, Ottawa
Ottawa choir, The Stairwell Carollers, perform O Domine from the Requiem by Gabriel Fauré (1845 – 1924) -- a French composer, organist, pianist and teacher.

A non-profit charity, The Stairwell Carollers raises funds for local charities through concert, CD and cookbook sales. http://www.stairwellcarollers.com/Purchases.html

We are an a cappella group, formed in 1977 by director Pierre Massie, and have earned the distinction of being ranked amongst the best of Ontario choirs in both the 2010 and 2013 Ontario Music Festival Association competitions.

All our CDs are available on our website in both CD form and as MP3 downloads.

Buy our CDs and help Ottawa/Gatineau charities reach their goals.

Visit our blog or our website for updates.

Audio: Tom Barnes. Recorded at St. Barnabas Church, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, June 5th, 2015.

Videographer: Richard Auger.

Editing: Pierre Massie

Photos: Holly Massie

 

1 month ago | |
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Stained glass window, Arnprior, Ontario
Stained glass window, Arnprior, Ontario
Ottawa choir, The Stairwell Carollers, perform Pater noster, by Igor Stravinsky (1882–1971), a Russian (and later, a naturalized French and American) composer, pianist and conductor.

A non-profit charity, The Stairwell Carollers raises funds for local charities through concert, CD and cookbook sales. http://www.stairwellcarollers.com/Purchases.html

We are an a cappella group, formed in 1977 by director Pierre Massie, and have earned the distinction of being ranked amongst the best of Ontario choirs in both the 2010 and 2013 Ontario Music Festival Association competitions.

All our CDs are available on our website in both CD form and as MP3 downloads. Buy our CDs and help Ottawa/Gatineau charities reach their goals.

Visit our blog or our website for updates.

Audio: Tom Barnes. Recorded at St. Barnabas Church, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, June 5th, 2015.

Videographer: Richard Auger.

Editing: Pierre Massie

Photos: Holly Massie

 

1 month ago | |
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Stairwell Carollers are busy rehearsing for the 2016 Spring season!
Stairwell Carollers are busy rehearsing for the 2016 Spring season!
Ottawa choir, The Stairwell Carollers, perform Jubilate Deo by Orlando di Lasso (1532-1594), a Netherlandish or Franco-Flemish composer of the late Renaissance.

This version of "Jubilate Deo” is available on our sacred choral CD, “Cantate Domino”. http://www.stairwellcarollers.com/Purchases/Purchases7.html

A non-profit charity, The Stairwell Carollers raises funds for local charities through concert, CD and cookbook sales. http://www.stairwellcarollers.com/Purchases.html

We are an a cappella group, formed in 1977 by director Pierre Massie, and have earned the distinction of being ranked amongst the best of Ontario choirs in both the 2010 and 2013 Ontario Music Festival Association competitions.

All our CDs are available on our website in both CD form and as MP3 downloads. Buy our CDs and help Ottawa/Gatineau charities reach their goals.

Visit our blog or our website for updates.

Audio: Tom Barnes. Recorded at St. Barnabas Church, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, June 5th, 2015.

Videographer: Richard Auger.

Editing: Pierre Massie

Photos: Holly Massie

 

1 month ago | |
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Here's a cat to look at while you consider auditioning
Here's a cat to look at while you consider auditioning
Guest post by Rae, soprano. Photos by Holly.

We're having auditions for men soon, and, to this writing, there are yet no takers.

Hmmm.

Maybe my rendition of the audition experience last year was horrifically graphic and made you far too afraid of us.

Maybe we're really that scary. After all, 30-odd faces and voices sitting on stackable chairs in a church reception hall, with not a single instrument to hide quietly behind, could be seen as awfully intimidating. Or weird.

Maybe you think we're all really, really good.

Maybe you think we actually know what we're doing.

But, the truth is, we all just like to sing. And singing together is so much more powerful, more beautiful, just plain old bigger, than singing alone. Not everyone knows how to read music. Not everyone's been in another choir before. Very few of us know any Latin at all. Not everyone's ever sung outside of the shower before.

Pierre and his Maman at Christmas
Pierre and his Maman at Christmas
And no one's actually afraid of our director, Pete. (Sorry Pete, I know you wish it were true. But no, even that habit of hitting yourself upside the head with a tuning fork is just not that threatening.)

All choirs have trouble getting male voices. It's apparently not seen as all that manly to sing. I beg to differ. As a woman, trust me, it's sexy. We compete with all-male choirs for our men, with classical choirs, with professional choirs.

Graham, tenor, before dress rehearsal -- not doing his homework
Graham, tenor, before dress rehearsal -- not doing his homework
We even steal high school kids away from their homework and texting and videogames.


Morgan, tenor, focuses lights instead of going to the pub -- he is in two choirs and gets hired to sing solos on the side
Morgan, tenor, focuses lights instead of going to the pub -- he is in two choirs and gets hired to sing solos on the side
We've got barely padded metal chairs to offer, in an occasionally drafty church space, every Wednesday evening. No electronic devices. No instruments. No cookies or coffee. Plenty of cough drops. Bring your own water.

There's a spot waiting for you, where people will sit beside you. They'll tease you. They'll occasionally whisper and fidget and bug you until you get yelled at as if it were your fault, and then they'll giggle. And then, while you're trying not to laugh, they'll burst into sudden, glorious, astounding song.

Stairwell Caroller photo collage
Stairwell Caroller photo collage
And so will you.

At choir Pub night, Rae, soprano, finds Nikki's shyness endearing
At choir Pub night, Rae, soprano, finds Nikki's shyness endearing
There's nothing like it.

Come see for yourself.

--------

Rae



If you are a male bass, baritone or tenor (or have no clue, just love to sing) email us now at info@stairwellcarollers.com to book your 15 minute tryout.



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4 months ago | |
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All the Yule logs are burned away and resolutions made -- it's a New Year!

And, for the New Year, it's time for New Singers!


(Yes, we will miss our "old" singers -- we wish them well as they go off to school or are planning to travel the world in their retirement.)

Time... For tenors and basses to step up...

Peace Tower clock, Ottawa, Canada
Peace Tower clock, Ottawa, Canada

If you sing bass or tenor, and live within driving distance of the Ottawa (Canada's Capital) region, then the Stairwell Carollers may be the choir you're looking for. For our upcoming 2016 Spring season, we are auditioning Wednesday nights at the end of January. You must contact us to set up your audition time.

Sopranos and altos need not apply.

To qualify, all you need is a solid voice, a good ear and a great attitude. Many of us are bilingual ( we are proud of being an officially bilingual choir) but you need not be fluently bilingual to be part of the group.


Rehearsals start Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016 for our Spring madrigal and sacred music season.

(Reading music is an asset but not a necessity.)

For more info, send us an email -- info (at) stairwellcarollers (dot) com

Don't delay! Contact us to book your audition time.

Les Chanteurs Stairwell font des auditions régulièrement. Nous recherchons des basses et des tenors pour Janvier 2016.

(Lire la musique est un atout mais n'est pas essentiel.)

Pour plus de renseignements, envoyez-nous un courriel.

cute scroll


If you live in the Ottawa/Hull area and love to sing, set up your audition with us now!

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4 months ago | |
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