Phantom poster

The Vancouver Bach Choir presents a multimedia world premiere with The Phantom of the Opera, a specially commissioned work from Canadian composer Andrew Downing, on Saturday, April 20 at The Orpheum.

Les Dala
[Les Dala]

“Andrew‘s complex, powerful score brings fresh insight and emotion to a story that has become stitched into the fabric of our culture,” said Les Dala, Music Director of the Vancouver Bach Choir.

He added, “The composition is a beautiful work unto itself, but becomes something very rare and special when combined with the screening. We’re excited to share the experience with our audiences and hope it will introduce some of our city’s film lovers to live classical performance.”

The score, whose lyrics are taken from text within the film, will be performed by the Vancouver Bach Choir and a virtuoso chamber ensemble. The ensemble has been curated especially for this occasion, and will include an unusual combination of instruments including clarinet, piano, and double bass (Downing will perform on the latter).

As one of Canada’s most inventive and multifaceted musicians, Downing has received two Juno Awards, two West Coast Music Awards, and the Grand Prix de Jazz. The award-winning works range from contemporary jazz creations to a chamber ensemble piece based on the life of Andre the Giant.

Phantom film posters
[1925 Phantom of the Opera film posters]

Audience members will relive the terror, heartache, and romance of The Phantom of the Opera as a crisp print of the film is projected within the Orpheum concert hall. Released by Universal Pictures in 1925, Rupert Julian’s masterpiece is considered one of the best horror movies ever created; its success would prompt the studio to finance a legendary string of monster features including Dracula, Frankenstein, The Wolf Man, and The Mummy.

Lon Chaney’s performance as the Phantom remains harrowing, despite nearly a century passing since that first haunting screening (at which time the famous unmasking scene was said to have made patrons faint and scream).

Vancouver Bach Choir
[Vancouver Bach Choir]

As one of the largest choral organizations in Canada, the Vancouver Bach Choir explores a wide range of repertoire from the past to the present with passion and commitment. Through its series of concerts presented at the Orpheum, the VBC continues to meet its mandate of commissioning and performing works by British Columbian and Canadian composers as well as presenting the world’s favourite symphonic choral works.

Vancouver Bach Choir presents The Phantom of the Opera
Date: Saturday, April 20, 8 pm
Venue: The Orpheum, 884 Granville Street, Vancouver
Tickets: $25 to $59 (Student and senior discounts available); via online, by phoning 604-696-4290, or in person at the Orpheum Theatre Box Office (corner of Seymour and Smithe, Monday to Friday, 1 pm to 5 pm

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