For Orbiting Spheres

September 26, 2018 Download this release in PDF format

For Immediate Release – September 26, 2018

Esprit Orchestra’s 2018-19 Season Opens with a Trip to the Stars


On October 24, 2018, Founding Music Director & Conductor, Alex Pauk will lead the orchestra and audience on an intergalactic journey, with the opening concert of Esprit Orchestra’s 2018-19 season, For Orbiting Spheres. The program features three talented composers from abroad, whose music will transfix listeners, contemplating our place in the cosmos. For Orbiting Spheres will take place at 8pm in Koerner Hall, preceded by an engaging pre-concert chat moderated by Canadian composer Alexina Louie.

Sinfonia (for Orbiting Spheres) by American composer, Missy Mazzoli, is music cast “in the shape of a solar system”, weaving and coiling in pulsing loops that twist around each other within a larger orbit. The title plays on the double-meaning for the word ‘sinfonia’, which refers to the hurdy-gurdy in Italian. The pitches are drawn out, sustained and sliding, with no hints of rhythmic or metric momentum until nearly halfway in. In the composer’s note about the piece, she says, “it’s a piece that churns and roils, that inches closer to the listener only to leap away at breakneck speed”.

Keeping with the celestial theme, Unsuk Chin’s Chorós Chordón is a piece inspired by the composer’s reflections on natural phenomena and our physical relationship with the cosmos. The title translates to “Dance of the Strings”, though the music takes shape beyond the string section, rippling throughout the full orchestra. Chorós Chordón is inspired by Chin’s fascination with physical and biological processes, a common source of inspiration in the composer’s work. The celestial hints woven into the piece tie together with another of Chin’s recent works, Le Chant des Enfants des Étoiles. Chorós Chordón is dedicated to Simon Rattle, former chief conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, who has conducted several of Chin’s works in the past.

Sinfonia by Dutch composer Tristan Keuris is simply a work of utmost charm and pleasurable musical invention. The piece, for large orchestra, has two movements without a break. The first movement is made up of many fragments in various tempi, whereas the second forms one whole.

Lastly, Ives’ The Unanswered Question remains one of the greatest ever pieces expressing awe and wonder about the cosmos.


Pre-Concert Chat Moderated by composer Alexina Louie

Esprit Orchestra Presents: For Orbiting Spheres

Wednesday October 24, 2018 | 8:00pm Concert | 7:15pm Pre-Concert Chat

Alex Pauk – conductor

Missy Mazzoli (U.S.A.)Sinfonia (for Orbiting Spheres)*
Unsuk Chin (Korea)Chorós Chordón (2017)*
Tristan Keuris (The Netherlands)Sinfonia (1974)
Charles Ives (U.S.A.)The Unanswered Question (1908)

*Canadian Premiere

Royal Conservatory of Music TELUS Centre for Performance and Learning
273 Bloor Street West, Toronto
Individual concert tickets start at: Adult $45; Senior 65+ $45; Under 30 $27; Student $25
Please call (416) 408 0208 or visit

Season Sponsor:

Esprit Orchestra is Canada’s only full-sized orchestra devoted exclusively to performing and promoting new orchestral music. Esprit Orchestra gratefully acknowledges Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Foundation, SOCAN Foundation, The Koerner Foundation, The Mary-Margaret Webb Foundation, The J.P. Bickell Foundation, Timothy & Frances Price, and Judy & Wilmot Matthews for their generous support.

Media Contact:
Amber Melhado / Marketing & Outreach Coordinator
(416) 815-7887