A portrait of new music in Canada

New Chapter Project

On the occasion of Canada's 150th anniversary, Quasar commissioned 8 work to 8 Canadian composers. A jury representing all regions of Canada selected a composer for each of the following five regions: Maritimes, Prairies, British Columbia / Yukon, Ontario and Quebec. The selection of the other three composers was left to the jury's discretion.

A true sonic portrait of Canadian new music, this project has enabled the creation of inspiring works that reflect the world in which we live. A current and vibrant anthology of the diversity, creativity and richness of artists from across the country. More than a series of commissions, this project is a gathering, sharing and exchange space for the music community and for the public. Indeed, the composers will have participated in a series of research and creation workshops with the performers of Quasar during the fall of 2017.

This project was made possible by the New Chapter program of the Canada Council for the Arts.


Rebecca Bruton (AB) Émilie Girard-Charest (QC), Alec Hall (ON), William Kuo (C-B), Ana Dall'Ara Majek (QC), Jim O'Leary (IPE), Ofer Pelz (QC), Hiroki Tsurumoto (ON)

Research and creation workchops

From November 20 to 24, 2017, four composers participated in a first week of creative workshops in Montreal at Gesù. From November 26 to 30, 2017, four other composers participated in a second week of creative workshops in Vancouver at the Western Front.

List of works

Mammalian Mother Tongues, Rebecca Bruton
Bestiaire, Émilie Girard-Charest
God keep our land glorious and rich, Alec Hall
Intended Assembly, William Kuo
Lux Operon, Ana Dall’Ara Majek
Music for Saxophone Quartet, Jim O’Leary
I need to hear it first, Ofer Pelz
voice box ii, Hiroki Tsurumoto


SALT Festival 2019 (Victoria, C-B) : August 23, 2019
Victoria Open Space (Victoria, C-B) : February 9, 2019
University of Alberta (Edmonton, AB) : February 5, 2019
New Works Calgary (Calgary, AB) : February 3, 2019
Banff Centre for the Arts and Creativity (Banff, AB) : February 1st 2019
Memorial University of Newfoundland (Saint-John, T-N) : January 23, 2019
Amphithéâtre du Gesù (Montreal, QC) : May 31, 2018
Amphithéâtre du Gesù (Montreal, QC) : May, 30 2018
Amphithéâtre du Gesù (Montreal, QC) : December 15, 2017 – Creation Residency

All the works were premiered in Montreal at the Gesù, in collaboration with Le Vivier, on May 30 and 31 2018, in the presence of the composers. A second tour component is planned for the 2019-2020 season.


Opus prize:

  • Nomination – Concert of the year : new music, electroacoustics (2018)