Elora Festival Online runs Aug. 6 to 8

ELORA – Elora Festival Online, which officials are billing as a “reimagined and abridged version” of the annual festival, will take place Aug. 6 to 8 with pre-recorded concerts.

Originally scheduled for July 10 to 26, the annual live event was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This has certainly been a difficult time for the cultural community around the world,” stated artistic director Mark Vuorinen.

“Concert halls are dark, and artists have lost many performance opportunities since the middle of March.”

He added, “The absence of live performance during this pandemic has been deeply felt by all of us and we are looking forward to presenting some of the artists who had been engaged for this summer’s festival, but at a distance, in pre-recorded performances from their homes and studios.”

Elora Festival Online guest artists include:

  • tenor Lawrence Wiliford and lutenist Lucas Harris;
  • jazz pianist and singer-songwriter Laila Biali;
  • opera superstar Measha Brueggergosman;
  • Tom Allen and company in his new chamber musical The Missing Pages;
  • Confluence Concerts and a stellar cast of artists with a new program called At the River; and
  • the heart of the Elora Festival: The Elora Singers, one of Canada’s finest professional chamber choirs.

Officials say the festival also aims to “bring the charm of Elora to online guests” and will include cooking demos with chefs from The Evelyn and The Friendly Society.

Tickets are $20 for a day pass or $50 for the festival pass and may be purchased online at www.elorafestival.ca, or by calling the box office at 519-846-0331.

Due to COVID-19 safety regulations, the Elora Festival office remains closed to the public for in person box office purchases.

The complete Elora Festival Online program is listed below.

Day 1 – Aug. 6

  • 6:30 pm: Festival Welcome with Artistic Director Mark Vuorinen
  • 6:40 pm: The Elora Singers
  • 6:45 pm: Chat with Lawrence Wiliford and Mark
  • 6:55 pm: The Elora Singers
  • 7:00 pm: ‘Tis Nature’s Voice – Tenor Lawrence Wiliford and lutenist Lucas Harris present a recital of 17th century English songs for voice and lute, featuring works by Henry Purcell, John Blow, Henry Lawes and others. Lucas Harris performs on a 12-course lute by Travis Carey.
  • 8:00 pm: Festival chat with Larry Beckwith – Confluence Concerts
  • 8:15 pm: At the River – presented by Confluence Concerts – words and music on an enduring theme by Matthew Barber, Emily Dickenson, Nick Drake, T.S. Eliot, Peter Gabriel, Rūhollāh Khāleqi, Joni Mitchell, Franz Schubert and more.

Day 2 – Aug. 7

  • 6:30 pm: Festival Welcome with Artistic Director Mark Vuorinen
  • 6:40 pm: The Elora Singers
  • 6:45 pm: Tapas – Cooking demo at The Evelyn in Elora
  • 7:30 pm: Festival chat with Laila Biali 7:45 pm: An Evening of Jazz with Laila Biali (The multi award winning singer-songwriter and pianist presents a program featuring selections from her new album Out of Dust. She will be joined by George Koller on bass and Ben Wittman on drums.

Day 3 – Aug. 8

  • 6:30 pm: Festival Welcome with Artistic Director Mark Vuorinen
  • 6:40 pm: The Elora Singers
  • 6:45 pm: Tapas – Cooking demo at The Friendly Society in Elora
  • 7:25 pm: The Elora Singers 7:30 pm: The Missing Pages, written by Tom Allen Richard Greenblatt – Director Derek Boyes (On Dec. 16, 1825, Theodor Molt became the sole Canadian to meet Ludwig van Beethoven, but what could have happened between the two men? After Molt’s florid greeting in one of Beethoven’s notebooks, the following four pages were violently ripped out and destroyed.
  • 8:55 pm: The Elora Singers
  • 9:00 pm: An Evening with Measha Brueggergosman (a program of spirituals and cabaret that have inspired her throughout her life and career).
  • 10:00 pm: Closing remarks from Mark Vuorinen