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Introducing Elizabeth Raum, Composer in Residence

Head and shoulders of Elizabeth Raum
Composer in Residence Elizabeth Raum

Her music is full of various techniques and styles, and it is always fun to listen to as well as to play.

Michael Newnham, Music Director
An excerpt from Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Mvt 5, by Elizabeth Raum, performed by Orchestra Toronto Feb.22, 2020

Orchestra Toronto Announces Elizabeth Raum as Composer-in-Residence
Ms. Raum Joins for Orchestra Toronto’s 2021-2022 Season

Toronto, Ontario – June 14, 2021 – Orchestra Toronto is thrilled to announce that Canadian oboist and composer, Elizabeth Raum, will be its Composer-in-Residence for the next year. Ms. Raum, whose music is played around the world, has had a career in music that has spanned over 45 years. She started in Halifax where she played principal oboe with the Atlantic Symphony Orchestra before moving to Regina in 1975 when she joined the Regina Symphony Orchestra, where she remained until her retirement in 2010, playing principal oboe as a member of the Chamber Players since 1986. As one of Canada’s most eminent composers, her works include four operas, over 90 chamber pieces, 18 vocal works and choral works, including an oratorio, several ballets, concerti and major orchestral works. She enjoys a reputation of being one of Canada’s most “accessible” composers, writing for varied mediums and in remarkably diverse styles.

“We are so excited to have Elizabeth join us for the 2021-2022 season,” said Michael Newnham, Music Director of Orchestra Toronto. “Her music is full of various techniques and styles, and it is always fun to listen to as well as to play. As an orchestral musician of years of experience, Betsy has a knack for writing music that inspires and challenges her colleagues. Her presence as Composer-in-Residence gives us at OT the opportunity to explore her music more thoroughly and be in on the ground floor with her for the development of new work.”

Elizabeth Raum said, “As an oboist and a composer, I can’t think of a better way of emerging from the past year of musical hibernation than this new season with Orchestra Toronto. Working with Michael Newnham has always been a treat and now this fresh start after a year of restrictions feels like we’re awakening to a whole new dimension of possibilities.”

Re-convening after several months’ hiatus, Orchestra Toronto will focus its 2021-2022 season on the power of music to re-connect communities and to restore spirits after a year of isolation. The season highlights the orchestra’s relationship with Toronto with several featured works having been composed in Toronto or by Toronto composers, as well as the Orchestra welcoming many Toronto musicians to share the stage.  The five-concert season reflects Toronto’s musical fabric and celebrates the city’s diverse musical influences. Within the orchestra and among its supporters, Orchestra Toronto creates a sense of community and of being and working together.

“As a Toronto orchestra, it is so important to us that we reflect the city and communities from which we originate and for whom we perform,” continued Mr. Newnham. “Now more than ever, we need music and we are all longing to come together – as performers and audiences. I know I can speak on behalf of the entire orchestra when I say that this upcoming season represents the highest level of anticipation for our performers – both in terms of being able to play and having Elizabeth join us for the season.”

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