The Global TV documentary on A Toronto Symphony aired last week. It shows many pivotal behind-the-scenes moments in the creation of the piece. We hear Tod is working on a video compilation that will include more music. In the meantime, you can watch this documentary by clicking here. (Correction: We have replaced the incorrect link in our original post with the correct link).
Tag Archives: Arts Festivals
Coming next Saturday at the MIT Media Lab! Open to the community. Download the flyer here: The Other Festival.
From Tod Machover’s Facebook page:
Did a fun live interview today on BBC Radio Scotland about my new Edinburgh “Festival City” collaborative symphony project. It was for a brand new show – The Culture Studio with Janice Forsyth – that premiered…today! My segment starts at 1:34:00 and runs to the end of the show http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01rlrmh. There is also a fantastic interview with David Hendy (at 1:21:00), a UK media historian, who talks about the role of noise in human history (and even plays a soundscape from an imagined early 19th century Edinburgh. Plus a superb interview with Annie Lennox (at 0:04:21). Enjoy the lot of it!!
Listen to The Culture Studio with Janice Forsyth here, with guests Annie Lennox, Kristin Scott Thomas, David Hendy and Tod Machover.
The official blog for Tod Machover’s newest project, “Festival City”, has just been launched. Please visit and sign up for updates! “Festival City” is an orchestral work commissioned by the 2013 Edinburgh International Festival. It will receive its world premiere on August 27, 2013, by the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.
No rest for the weary! This just in from the Edinburgh Festival:
A crowd sourced orchestral work by boundary breaker Tod Machover is just one of the many highlights of this year’s Edinburgh International Festival programme. Set over three weeks this August, the EIF’s line-up includes an homage to Allen Ginsberg with Philip Glass and Patti Smith; a new commission from experimental artist Laurie Anderson; a tribute to Frank Zappa; and a return to the festival for the Wooster Group with the company’s inspired (re)take of Hamlet, complete with Richard Burton film footage.
Read all about it at the Edinburgh Festival Guide. Sounds like an exciting line-up!! Programme for the Edinburgh International Festival 2013 puts artists and technology centre-stage
Saturday evening saw the successful debut of Tod Machover’s “A Toronto Symphony”, described aptly by conductor Peter Oundjian in this BBC News interview as “the most collaborative piece of music that has ever been written.” Nearly a year in the making, the new work was commissioned by the Toronto Symphony for its New Creations Festival. Scored for a full symphony orchestra, the half-hour-long piece involved thousands of citizens of Toronto who contributed acoustic samples, compositions, and manipulated parts of the work-in-progress using apps developed by the Opera of the Future group at the M.I.T. Media Lab.
You can see footage of some of the collaborative activities as well as hear parts of the world premiere performance in the BBC News video here: Tod Machover: composer’s social media symphony for Toronto.
Check out the CBC’s MetroMorning interview with Tod Machover. Click here.
Toronto Symphony Orchestra conductor Peter Oundjian and composer Tod Machover talk about the genesis of Toronto’s new “crowdsourced” symphony. Sneak preview of “A Toronto Symphony” in rehearsal. Read the story and watch the video by clicking here -> A Toronto Symphony: CN Tower light show to accompany world premier
The Opera of the Future team has been sleepless in Toronto, frantically finishing the audio and visuals that will accompany the world premiere of “A Toronto Symphony” whilst squeezing in rehearsals in between New Creations Festival performances. Tickets are available here.
The spectacle will spill out beyond the confines of Roy Thomson Hall to take over the landmark CN Tower! Music blogger John Terauds broke the news in this story: News flash: CN Tower to make Toronto Symphony Orchestra début on Saturday night:
The finished piece is clocking in at nearly 30 minutes, which means that there will be thousands of people unaware of the concert gawping at the city’s tallest landmark wondering what the heck is going on.
“We were given all the controls, even the one to make it brighter,” said Machover, with more than a hint of glee.
Here is what the press has been saying:
NEW! Toronto Life - The Argument: Musical visionary Tod Machover crowd-sourced a symphony for Toronto—now other cities want one too - “The Toronto experiment demonstrates that our most precious creative resource is not necessarily crowds of eager, iPhone-wielding amateurs, but rather a few utopian-minded geniuses like Machover who believe there are better and more fun ways to make music than sitting alone in a room.”
Toronto NOW - Tod Machover: What does Toronto sound like anyway? - “It’s not just about technology, but figuring out how the symphony can evolve into the 21st century,” he says. “The relationship between the public and artist, how we participate – I think all of that is going to change.”
Toronto Star - Toronto gets the symphony treatment - “Tod was really different. Mozart and Beethoven are not as crazy as Tod,” says the violinist from Oakville, who notes city sounds are entirely different than those of the suburbs. “Toronto is living, it doesn’t die, doesn’t sleep,” says Choi, 18. “It is filled with colours. There is a story on every street.”
Musical Toronto - A Toronto Symphony composer Tod Machover keeps adding interaction weeks before premiere ”A Toronto Symphony is a great exercise in harnessing the latest digital and social media tools for something that is normally a small, esoteric part of our larger culture. It is a great way to remind anyone of any age that creativity is not the domain of uniquely gifted individuals.”
Canadian Jewish News - New symphony features the sounds of Toronto - “Our city needs a symphony of our own, and it was due to Tod’s vision and the thousands of collaborators in Toronto, [that we could] create a music composition that will make us all proud,” said TSO music director Peter Oundjian, who will conduct the new composition.
From Tod Machover’s Facebook profile:
Terrific launch to the New Creations Festival at the Toronto Symphony last evening. Great crowd (with lots of young people), fun pre-show with Youth Symphony giving excerpts of my A TORONTO SYMPHONY, varied show with my “Jeux Deux”, Nicole Lizee’s classic videogame-inspired “Arcadiac”, and Mason Bates’ rocking, resonant “Alternative Energy.” As lively an orchestral program as anyone was likely to have heard, with Mason DJ’ing in the lobby afterwards. And this is just the beginning.
For more information, check out the Toronto Symphony’s Media Room
The Toronto Symphony’s New Creations Festival opens today!
With Machover as guest-curator, the 2013 New Creations Festival takes a suitably technology-driven perspective, exploring the evolution of music from past to future with a selection of boundary-bending works which bring the past to the present and redefines the instruments of an orchestra. The Festival opens with the Canadian première of Arcadiac, where Canadian composer Nicole Lizée’s work will have the orchestra perform live accompaniment to vintage arcade games of the 1970s and 1980s, followed by Machover’s Jeux Deux, an interweaving of hyperpiano, orchestra, interactive software and live graphics (Mar 2, 2013). The Festival’s opening programme closes with guest conductor Carolyn Kuan leading the Canadian première of the Mason Bates’s symphony-scale piece Alternative Energy, which depicts the past, present, and future of energy using field recordings and acoustic orchestra.
Here’s Tod Machover yesterday onstage at Roy Thomson Hall with “hyper pianist” Michael Chertock rehearsing “Jeux Deux”, composed for the Boston Pops in 2005. Chertock performed in the world premiere (watch video clip).