Con Spirito: Inside the SSO

FEBRUARY   2015 

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Our heartfelt thanks to


Berthold Carrière

Barbara Steed Young 

Music Directors Emeritus 

  whose support and leadership have guided the SSO to a firm and stable position. 



Warm greetings from the Stratford Symphony Orchestra. Con Spirito enables us to carry on a conversation with music lovers in the Stratford community and beyond. Please feel free to send us an email  

with your thoughts or comments.



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Orchestra Photo: 
Larry Folliott 

Next concert:


Out of This World


Saturday, Apr. 11
7:30 p.m.
Knox Presbyterian Church, Stratford


Guest conductor:
Paul Pulford

Guest artist: Adam Despinic
Winner of the 2014 SSO Emerging Artist Competition 


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              SSO presents
   Hot Latin Nights

The Stratford Symphony Orchestra explores a treasure trove of Latin-inspired music to warm SSO concertgoers as it presents Hot Latin Nights on Saturday, March 7, the fourth concert of the  
2014-2015 season. 


The concert ranges from Canarios, by 17th century baroque Spanish guitar composer Gaspar Sanz, to the contemporary classical Milonga by Argentine Jorge Cardoso, and stops along the way to visit Giacomo Puccini, Domenico Scarlatti, Astor Piazzolla and others. (See the entire program.)


The program has been assembled by Stratford percussionist Graham Hargrove, who has arranged most of the selections and will perform them as well (marimba, frame drum, bones, drum skin and vibraphone) along with guitarist  Kevin Ramessar. Mr. Hargrove will also perform his own composition, Skin and Bones.


The orchestra will be led by guest conductor William Rowson. Mr. Rowson is one of five candidates for the newly created position of SSO principal conductor, which will be decided in March. (Read about the process here.)


The concert will be held at Knox Presbyterian Church Saturday, March 7, beginning at 7:30 p.m. Individual tickets (adults, $35; students, $20; children 12 and under, $10) are available online and at Fanfare Books, Blowes Stationery downtown, Festival Marketplace kiosk and Lyric Flowers in St. Marys. Tickets will also be sold at the concert.

SSO principal conductor?
Who will conduct the SSO in Season 11 and beyond? The orchestra's board of directors will name the principal conductor, a newly created position, in March. 
Read all about the process.

Meet the SSO musicians:  

Miriam Stewart-Kroeker, principal cello 


Only in her mid-20s, Miriam Stewart-Kroeker has been playing for 22 years. Read more about her.

"Percussion" cushion concert March 1

The SSO's upcoming Family Cushion Concert will feature musicians from the orchestra's percussion section demonstrating a wide variety of instruments and offering the audience a chance to try them as well.


This special concert for the young and the young at heart will take place Sunday, March 1, at Gallery Stratford, 54 Romeo Street South, Stratford. It will run from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. Tickets ($5 for children, $10 for adults, and $20 for a family) are available at Fanfare Books and Gallery Stratford.


Daniel Ramjattan: SSO office assistant 


In the January edition of Con Spirito, we reported that Daniel Ramjattan had been named SSO office manager. Well, not quite. Mr. Ramjattan, who will be with the SSO into the coming summer, is the new office assistant. 


On March 8 he will be performing in Stratford's INNERChamber music festival with flutist Liesel Deppe and Ottawa percussionist Zac Pulak. He recently finished the premiere recording of "Catharsis," a work by Raphael Weinroth-Browne, a Toronto-based cellist-composer, which will appear online in February.


His website:


2015 Concerto Competition March 7


Entries are now being accepted for the 2015 SSO Emerging Artist Concerto Competition. This year's competition, to be held Saturday, March 7, will be open to classical vocalists only, age 18 to 28 as of January 1, 2015.


If you are interested in entering the competition, read the Competition Regulations and fill out an entry form. Entries must be received in the SSO office by Friday, February 27, and be accompanied by payment of a $30 entry fee. For additional information: or 519-271-0990.


The 2014 Concerto Competition winner was violinist Adam Despinic, Hamilton. He will be guest soloist (Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto) in the April 11 SSO concert, Out of This World.

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George Pearson / Editor, Con Spirito