Toronto's 21C Music Festival Gets Kronos Quartet, Tanya Tagaq for 2022 Edition

Other festival highlights include Morgan-Paige Melbourne, Eve Egoyan, the Danish String Quartet, Steve Reich and more
Toronto's 21C Music Festival Gets Kronos Quartet, Tanya Tagaq for 2022 Edition
Photo: Lisa Sakulensky
The ninth edition of the Royal Conservatory's 21C Music Festival is kicking off on January 12, 2022, and will include 13 concerts and one film over the span of two weeks, concluding with an additional performance on February 25. Today, the festival's lineup has been revealed, and it includes appearances by the Kronos Quartet, Tanya Tagaq, Morgan-Paige Melbourne, Eve Egoyan, the Danish String Quartet and many more in various venues across Toronto. 

The festival will kick off with the world premiere of Gould's Wall — a "re-imagining of the life of Canadian icon and classical pianist Glenn Gould." According to a release, the performance will see singers and dancers climbing the walls of the Royal Conservatory's atrium, representing Gould's artistic climb and constant strive for artistic perfection. The event — presented in collaboration with Tapestry Opera and Maniac Star — will take place from January 12 to 16.

On January 18, 21C will present A Thousand Thoughts in partnership with Hot Docs and Ted Rogers Cinema. The documentary will showcase the live music of the Kronos Quartet, and features interviews with Tagaq, Philip Glass, Steve Reich and more. On January 20, Kronos will present a joint concert called Fifty Forward with students from The Glenn Gould School. The group will again be in focus the following night (January 21), when they present Music for Change with Tagaq and sarangi player Aruna Narayan.

"Everything we do as citizens, as human beings, is a statement about how we want the world to be," Kronos founder/violinist David Harrington said in a statement. "Increasingly, I feel my role as musician is to point in constructive musical and cultural directions as we attempt to help repair the torn fabric of our society."

Other festival highlights include Gerald Finley, Brian Current, Kathryn Knowles, Nauroz Tanya, Mark-Anthony Turnage, Stacy Garrop, Marc Neikrug, Zachary James Watkins, Alex Baranowski, Antonio Haskell, Katia Makdissi-Warren, Abel Meeropol, Bent Sørensen and Julie Thériault.

"We are so fortunate to be back this year with 14 performances, including the premieres of two chamber operas with theatrical flair, our friends the Kronos Quartet with Tanya Tagaq, and Canada's beloved bass-baritone Gerald Finley," said Mervon Mehta, executive director of performing arts at the Royal Conservatory.

"Support from Michael and Sonja Koerner allows us to bring you this festival each season and to commission work from some of the most exciting composers on the planet," Mehta continued, "We hope that audiences will come often and be ready to stretch their ears."

Tickets for the events are on sale now. Find more details, ticketing information and a full list of performances at the festival's website.