Cantala Choir at Roy Thompson Hall: Thursday, May 25, 2023, 12 – 1 pm (arrive at 12:30 pm), Free

Cantala is thrilled to be invited to participate in the 23rd Annual FREE Noon Hour Choir & Organ Concerts and to perform with the esteemed organist David Simon at Roy Thompson Hall. Order free tickets in advance at  

The Infinite Beauty of Sound
Peace on Earth
– Words and Music by Errolynn Wallen
Austere and mysterious in its simple but dissonant harmonies, Wallen sets these beautiful words against a surprising organ counterpoint.
Missa Brevis in D, Op. 63 – Music by Benjamin Britten
Soloists: Rebecca Enkin, Linda Fetter, Corinne Passmore
iii. Sanctus/Benedictus
Soloists: Alison Armstrong, Rey Cadence
iv. Agnus Dei
Written in 1959, this work is concise in musical scope but does not disappoint in brilliantly exploiting the full colour of the treble voice with music that overflows with rhythmic vitality. Listen for Britten’s successful imitation of joyous bells in the Sanctus, soft organum in the Benedictus and the reserved Agnus Dei that conveys a dark, intense plea for peace.
Cantique de Jean Racine, Op. 11 – Words by Jean Racine, Music Gabriel Fauré, arr. John Rutter
The Cantique is a setting of words by the 17th century dramatist and poet Jean Racine. It was Fauré’s first significant composition, written in 1865 when he was only 19 years of age. This piece won Fauré a first prize in a competition but the work still took a significant amount of years to be published. Fauré wrote a lot of religious music – most notably the Requiem in 1888 – but it
is the Cantique that has captured the affections of choirs and audiences worldwide.
Trinitas by Eleanor Daley performed by organist David Simon
I. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters
II. To the thirsty I will give water without price from the fountain of life
III. And I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh
Dedicated to the late Mark Toews, former director of music and organist of Lawrence Park community church, Toronto composer Eleanor Daley’s Trinitas provides colourful and profound glimpses of the divine. From the undulating mystery of spirit, to flowing streams, to an exuberant toccata, the organ’s huge and tonal palette and variety of colour are on display.
Five Shakespeare Songs  – Words by William Shakespeare, Music by Beverly Lewis
I. Some Say That Ever ‘Gainst That Season Comes (Hamlet I., ii.)
II. Tell Me Where Is Fancy Bred? (The Merchant of Venice, III., ii.)
III. Take, O Take Those Lips Away (Measure for Measure, IV., i.)
IV. Farewell! Thou Art Too Dear For My Possessing (The Sonnets, LXXXVII.)
V. Blow, Blow, Thou Winter Wind (The Merchant of Venice, III.,II.)
Toronto composer Bev Lewis thrills us with harmonically surprising and rhythmically juxtaposing arrangements to these less familiar texts by William Shakespeare. She brilliantly captures the sass and rigor of Shakespeare’s tone and brings the work to an exciting, vigorous completion.
Waltzing Matilda – A new musical version by Ruth McCall, 2010, Words by Banjo Paterson
Waltzing Matilda has been labeled Australia’s ‘unofficial’ national anthem. The song (originally a poem) was written by Australian poet, Banjo Paterson in the late 19th Century. While the song sounds like a ‘boppy’ tune, it actually has quite a dark meaning behind it, with the man killing himself in a waterhole instead of being captured by a landowner after killing a jumbuck. The
Australian composer, Ruth McCall has reimagined this classic folk tune using complex rhythmic motives and demanding of the singer a high level of vocal agility.

Founded in 2008, the CANTALA WOMEN’S CHOIR is an award-winning, vibrant young choral
group in the Toronto choral community. Cantala is a “musical home” for those who have a
passion for achieving choral excellence and a great love of choral music. Each Cantala singer
values the quality of life that singing in a choir brings to one’s life. For the past 14 years, Cantala
has enjoyed workshops with esteemed Canadian and international conductors. Cantala has
participated in local festivals and has received many awards, scholarships, and accolades.
Cantala has recently performed a solo recital at Roy Thomson Hall, touring New York city to
perform with Eric Whitacre at Lincoln Center and attending the Banff Center for the Arts choral
arts program. All Cantala’s recordings are available on CD and through music streaming
NANCY SINGLA, Cantala’s founder and artistic director, is currently an occasional teacher for
the Toronto District School Board (TDSB), music director at Forest Hill United Church and
maintains a private music studio. She completed her Master’s in Music degree from the
University of Toronto and Undergraduate studies in vocal and piano performance at the
University of Victoria. She holds an Associate diploma in piano performance (ARCT) from the
Royal Conservatory of Music and the Victoria Conservatory of Music (AVCM). Nancy completed
her Master’s in Teaching (MT) degree from the Ontario Institute for Secondary Education (OISE)
at the University of Toronto in Spring 2022.
David Simon is an active concert organist, improviser, instructor, and liturgical musician. He
teaches organ, piano, and music theory at St. Michael’s Choir School and is the Associate
Director of Music at the Church of St. Mary Magdalene. David holds the Doctor of Musical Arts
degree from Yale University and has won first prize in the Royal Canadian College of Organists
national organ competition.