Manson, Barnes


Ariel Barnes,
Canada’s Cellist

A player of dazzling virtuosity and magnetic expressivity, Ariel Barnes is, in the words of Maestro Bramwell Tovey, “the outstanding Canadian cellist of his generation.”

Canadians have noticed. His recordings have garnered two Western Canadian Music Awards, and a JUNO nomination, and are met with critical acclaim. After taking in his 2017 Winnipeg performance, Canadians eagerly lined up to see him perform with MCO in venues across BC; a collaboration that culminated in the CD recording of Michael Oesterle’s Cello Concerto.

After opening with Holst’s folk-inspired St. Paul’s Suite, we’ll hear Tchaikovsky’s String Serenade. It’s a melodious and wistful work inspired here and there by Tchaikovsky’s role model Mozart, and infused with the former’s signature borrowings from Russian folk music. The evening concludes with Tchaikovsky’s Rococo. Its name should give away its similarly Mozartian inspiration, though the wonderful piece also shows signs of a more controversial influence: cellist Wilhelm Fitzenhagen, who premiered the piece and reworked its composition more to his liking. Ultimately, history has canonized Fitzenhagen’s adaptation, and in this instance we are perhaps better for the meddling.

Audiences will have another chance at this concert to marvel at Ariel under the spotlight, as he premieres a new cello concerto by the popular Canadian composer Marcus Goddard.

‘Cello Concerto’ CD

Under the baton of Anne Manson, the MCO and Ariel Barnes perform Cello Concerto, Michael Oesterle’s “extraordinary” (Macleans) musical statement about the effects of industrialization on humanity. Together these artists achieve practically everything audiences desire of new art music: technical brilliance, passion, beauty, social relevancy, accessibility. Get your copy of Cello Concerto online at or at the MCO’s concerts.

The concert begins at 7.30pm on February 12th in Westminster United Church, 745 Westminster at Maryland. Tickets, at $36 for adults, $34 for seniors and $15 for students and those under-30 (incl. GST), are available at McNally Robinson, Organic Planet (877 Westminster Ave), and on MCO’s Ticketline at 204-783-7377.

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Manitoba Chamber Orchestra
Anne Manson, Music Director
Karl Stobbe, Concertmaster
Westminster United Church
12 February 2020

Anne Manson, conductor
Ariel Barnes, cello

Gustav Holst
St. Paul’s Suite, Op. 29, No. 2

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Variations on a Rococo Theme, Op. 33

Marcus Goddard
New composition

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Serenade for String Orchestra, Op. 48

Concert Sponsor / Johnston Group Inc.

Coming soon!

Coming soon!