Montreal Musicians of the World Symphony Orchestra presents Jazz & Symphony

A Gala Evening at the Rialto Theatre on Thursday, May 9 at 8:oopm

Celebrating Seven Extraordinary Years of a World of Musicians in Montreal with Special Guest Julie Lamontagne

Montreal’s unique and exuberant Musicians of the World Symphony Orchestra celebrates 7 years of extraordinary music making with a Gala concert at the Rialto Theatre on Thursday, May 9 at 8:00pm, a tribute to the great jazz musicians of the 20th-Century with a symphonic twist and featuring pianist Julie Lamontagne.  Music is the common language for this professional orchestra who come together under the baton of founder and Artistic Director Joseph Milo, hailing from and China, Russia, Korea, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Romania and ten other countries from across the globe.

Musicians of the World Symphony Orchestra (MWSO) was founded in 2006 when conductor Joseph Milo, along with his wife Lucy Ravinsky, discovered that a tremendous pool of professional musicians, recently immigrated to Montreal, had no opportunity to make use of their valuable talent in their new home. The MWSO has provided these new Quebecers with the opportunity to make beautiful music in an orchestral setting, sharing their talents with the music lovers of Montreal, and has given them back the professional dignity they had enjoyed in their homelands.

Seven years later, MWSO has performed almost 50 concerts, received numerous press accolades, and been the subject of four documentary films. With the collaboration of musicians from Quebec who help the newcomers to integrate into society, the musicians have found friendship, colleagues, students, and have formed their own chamber music groups. “The musicians all bring with them a special cultural spirit that exemplifies the music and energy of this orchestra,” says bassoonist Linda Rand, originally from Israel, “The love of music and the vibrancy of the musicians is contagious.

Julie Lamontagne, declared by La Presse to be “one of our most gifted jazz pianists,” in praising her “true artist’s sensibility” and “feats of virtuosity,” headlines a program featuring an exciting fusion of jazz and symphony. Lamontange joins the orchestra for It’s About Time, a medley of Dave Brubeck songs including “Take Five;” George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and a new original work by Lamontagne for piano and strings. Julie will also offer several solo selections, including Rachmania and Chopinries from her latest award-winning solo CD, as well as Trilogies Colorée (doré, violet, jaune), and the atmospheric L’Hymne de Mr. H. In addition, the MWSO will perform medleys of music by Duke Ellington, Cole Porter and a salute to Big Band favorites. Says Lamontagne: “The collaboration with musicians from across the world brings to the stage a richness worth its weight in gold.”

Taking place in the stunning, fully-restored Rialto Theatre, the Gala evening will also feature a silent auction, and art exhibitions by photographer Burney Lieberman, artist Lisabel, and others. A portion of the evening’s proceeds will benefit The Montreal Children’s Hospital.

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