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Concert descriptions from recent Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra seasons

Under the Influence Festival

Tchaikovsky. Frank Zappa. Tanya Tagaq. John Corigliano's Three Hallucinations. In the Calgary Philharmonic's most boundary-pushing festival to date, the powerful influences that captivate artists' minds and bodies explode onto stage. In this raucous and unforgettable musical journey, we shine a light on the iconoclasts, some of the genre-defying musicians and composers whose music on first hearing may sound wild and unchartered, but prove to be the very influences required for profound artistic upheaval.

Rush Hour: Off the Beaten Path

Igor Stravinsky and Béla Bartók—two of the 20th century’s greatest composers—wrote boundary-pushing music that evoked the landscape and traditions of their native Russia and Hungary. Make no mistake, tonight’s programme of masterworks rewards the non-conformist listener who, in life and music, thrives off the beaten path.


A Symphonic Tribute to Prince

Prince exploded the world of rock and roll with his legendary musical talent, his larger-than-life stage personality, and an endless stream of hit songs. Featuring classics like Purple Rain and Little Red Corvette, this unique and moving tribute to the great artist brings his exhilarating work to life in majestic, symphonic scope.

Wall-To-Wall Percussion
Vancouver Symphony Orchestra percussionist Vern Griffiths takes the audience on a raucous adventure through the whacky world of percussion. Learn about the drumset, timpani, and other traditional percussive instruments, and even try your hand at a home-made concerto in the kitchen. You can safely say this concert’s a blast!

More samples linked here.
The Eastman Case Studies: Mount Royal Conservatory and the Bella Concert Hall

Located just east of the scenic Rocky Mountains in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, the Mount Royal Conservatory serves as the music school of the Mount Royal University, a post-secondary institution offering undergraduate and continuing education programs for some 15,000 students annually.


The conservatory itself provides primarily non-credit music and speech arts instruction to over 4,000 students of all ages and abilities. Private lessons, choirs, instrumental ensembles, as well as early childhood and advanced performance programs make up just some of the conservatory’s diverse offerings. To adapt to the growing needs of its students and community, the physical home of the conservatory has taken many forms.


After surveying a brief history of the conservatory, the case focuses on Director Paul Dornian’s efforts to build an entirely new performing arts and teaching facility. Following two decades of planning, fundraising, and preparatory work, Dornian faced a serious decision when construction costs skyrocketed unexpectedly. This case examines the conflicting factors Dornian was forced to weigh as he deliberated a path forward for his organization.

Volume 8, Spring 2020


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