Waltzes & Overtures

Sunday, February 5, 2017 at 3:00pm


Paolo Busato – conductor

Sydney Baedke – soprano
Rocco Rupolo – tenor

On the program

J. Strauss II – Eine Nacht in Venedig, Tales from the Vienna Woods
P. Mascagni – Cavalleria Rusticana, Overture
Ponchielli – Dance of Hours


Columbus Centre
901 Lawrence Ave W, Toronto, ON

Since 2011, the GTPO has established a strong partnership with the Columbus Centre, the multicultural community centre located at Dufferin & Lawrence W. There, the orchestra has performed vocal-instrumental programs in front of sold-out audiences. The program, usually planned for a Sunday afternoon, will follow in this tradition featuring a repertoire that is familiar and very attractive to audiences of that area. This time we will explore some of Strauss' "unknown" waltzes and will also focus on one specific period of Italian opera "Verissimo" featuring overtures by Puccini, Mascagni and Leoncavallo as well as Dance of Horses by Poncielli.

Paolo BusatoMaestro Paolo Busato studied in Paris, Sienna, England, Toronto, and the US, earning his Masters of Music and a Prix D’Excellence in Paris in Organ Performance and Intepretation as well as a Laureate from L'Accademia Chigiana in Sienna in orchestral conducting with Franco Ferrar. His further orchestral studies included: L'École Superiere de Musique, Paris, France with Maestro Pierre Dervaux, Accademia Santa Cecilia, Rome, Italy, with Maestro Leon Barzin and Loma Linda University, California,with Maestro Herbert Blomstedt. During his years in Paris, Paolo Busato was conductor for the Canadian American Orchestra. The Maestro was a private scholarship winner and student of Canadian Composer Samuel Dolan with whom he was a founding member and conductor for the Canadian Contemporary Music Workshop. Maestro Busato conducted this group until he passed the baton in 1987 to Gary Kulesha. He’s had a career that spanned the globe from France, Germany and Italy, performing for heads of state and church and playing piano with Pavarotti and then to Canada, the United States and here in Toronto He has released several albums, choral, instrumental and vocal, which can be found on itunes. In the Italian Community, Paolo has conducted, the Coro L’Italia Aquila, Coro Fruili, Coro Veneto, and Columbus Belle Voci (and Il Solisti) and started the St Charles Choir School. He is an extraordinary concert organist and beautifully trained Baritone.

Sydney BaedkeCanadian soprano Sydney Baedke recently made her professional debut as Betty in Voicebox; Toronto Opera in Concert’s production of Salieri’s FALSTAFF. An Alberta native, she is in her final year of undergraduate vocal studies through the University of Toronto under the tutelage of Darryl Edwards. Other recent performance credits include Malwina in Marschner’s DER VAMPYR, Cunégonde in Bernstein’s CANDIDE, and Lauretta in Puccini’s GIANNI SCHICCHI. She has been featured in concert with both the Calgary Youth and Medicine Hat Symphonic Society Orchestras, and has performed in a wide variety of venues including Avery Fisher Hall and the Casa Verdi Centre in Milan. Sydney is an alumnus of several prestigious training programs, including the Centre for Opera Studies in Italy; Opera NUOVA; Summer Opera Lyric Theatre; and the Walnut Hill School for the Arts Summer Opera Intensive in Boston. Sydney has also had the pleasure of exploring new Canadian compositions, including Pandora in Dean Burry’s PANDORA’S LOCKER, and the creation of Eva Braun in the premiere of Andrew Ager’s FÜHRERBUNKER (2014). This past summer, Sydney was a vocal fellow at the Aspen Music Festival Opera Centre, performing the role of Muffin in William Bolcom’s A WEDDING.

Rocco RupoloTenor Rocco Rupolo holds an Opera Diploma and a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Toronto. During his studies, he sang the roles of Nemorino in Donizetti's L'elisir d'amore, Ferrando in Cosi fan tutte, Monsieur Lacouff in Les mamelles de Tirésias, L'Amante in Amelia al Ballo, Cecco in Il mondo della luna and the Governor in Candide. Mr. Rupolo recently performed the role of Anthony in Sondheim's Sweeney Todd and Le Remendado in Bizet's Carmen with the Vancouver Opera where he was a member of the Yulanda M. Faris Young Artist Program for two years. His upcoming engagement will be singing the role of Manrico in Verdi's Il Trovatore with Opera by request.

With the generous support of

  • Premier Homecare Services
  • Columbus Centre
  • St. John's Music
  • Toronto Arts Council
  • Ontario Arts Council
  • Ontario Trillium Foundation