Double Concerto CD is here! (And a bit about how it all came to pass…)

We’re excited to announce the release of our new CD of Double Concertos by Andrew P. MacDonald and Mendelssohn, with the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra and Marc David! Some of the highlights on the rather long journey to making this disc:

– Over 15 years ago: After hearing Andrew MacDonald’s JUNO award winning and beautiful violin concerto, we decide to commission a double concerto by this amazing composer. So, we do, with the help of the Canada Council for the Arts and the enthusiasm of the NSO, with whom we premiere the work in St. John’s.

– 2001- 2013: Numerous performances of Andrew’s Double Concerto as well as the Mendelssohn with various orchestras in NS, PEI, and ON help us to feel like we really “know” these pieces.

– About 5 years ago: We start thinking, ”Wouldn’t it be great to make a recording which shows off some of the classical music talent in Newfoundland and Labrador?” (The NSO has grown under Marc’s leadership and they have never made a commercial recording.)

– 2011-2014: Finding the $$$. Numerous grant applications (Tim spent hours figuring out FACTOR) and other ideas – some successful, some not – finally enable us to fund this ambitious project. We’re grateful for the support of FACTOR, the Newfoundland Labrador Arts Council, Memorial University, the NSO Foundation Inc., and numerous private donors (many through a Kickstarter campaign).

– 2013: The engineer we line up for the project — multi award winning producer/engineer Carl Talbot — breaks his hand. We need to completely reschedule the recording sessions and release plan. The project is delayed 10 months. Finding synergy in the schedules of conductor, producer, 60 players, and hall is no small feat! On top of all of this, there is still a lot of financial uncertainty. Our friend, Tom Gordon, tells us to persevere.

– September 2014: Three intense days of recording finally take place at the DF Cook Hall. Somehow we fit 60+ musicians on the relatively small stage, plus a grand piano. Andrew and Carl Talbot fly in from QC. Carl, who does a fabulous job, turns out to be more than worth the rescheduling hassles!

– December 2014 – March 2015: Final editing choices (hours of listening), reports to grant agencies (more hours trying to decipher FACTOR budgets), writing liner notes – but the end is in site!

– May 2015: The CD is released on the excellent Marquis Classics label! We did it!

This recording is dedicated to the memory of Gerry Germain, a great supporter of the arts in Newfoundland and Labrador, and in particular the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra and the Tuckamore Festival. He is dearly missed.

Duo Concertante also wishes to acknowledge the support of Timothy Brennan, Alice Collins, Margery and Raymond Dahn, Angela Dawe, Deborah Glassman, Terry Goldie, Adam Gravelle, Carolyn Jones, and Chris Ryan and our other Kickstarter campaign backers. We also wish to extend a special thank you to Lynn Kuo, guest concertmaster for the recording, and to Heather McKinnon, chair of the NSO, whose strong commitment to this project was critical.

May 15, 2015