Orchestre de la Francophonie – providing important performance opportunities for young classical musicians

The mission of the Orchestre de la Francophonie is to provide important performance experiences for young, classically trained musicians who graduated from their respective schools. Their performance experience is designed to help prepare them for employment with national and internationally recognized orchestras. The three central objectives are for the musicians to learn, innovate and share.

I recently met with Board Chairman, Jacques Robert – a great supporter of classical music. We discussed the importance of the orchestra’s mandate to provide a bridge for recent music school graduates to assist them in their quest for employment. OF alumni have moved on to gain employment with various Canadian, regional and international orchestras. It’s an impressive list that includes the Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal, Orchestre Métropolitain, Calgary and Edmonton Symphony Orchestras, Symphony Nova Scotia, Winnipeg Symphony, and orchestras in the United States, Europe and South America. The 2015 – 2016 classical season will see Tremblay conducting in Ottawa, Hamilton, Toulouse, Avignon, Manchester and London.

The orchestra was founded by Jean-Philippe Tremblay, an internationally recognized conductor and accomplished violist. He is also the Musical Director and continues to actively work with the orchestra, bringing his own international experience to the rehearsals and concerts during the summer months. Under his leadership, the orchestra has given more than 250 concerts across Canada, China and the United States.

Tremblay has served as guest conductor for several European ensembles: the Orchestre National de France, the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, the Philharmonia Orchestra, The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Spanish National Orchestra, and radio orchestras in Prague, Dresden and Budapest. A nationally broadcast 2012 debut performance with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra earned Tremblay high praise from the discerning reviewers in Utrecht. These musical relationships contribute to the reputation of the Orchestre de la Francophonie and the applications of highly talented graduate musicians seeking an opportunity to study and perform with a world-renowned conductor.

This past summer, the Youth Orchestra of the Americas was part of the programming for the Pan American Games in Toronto. Rather than competing for audiences, Maestro Tremblay proposed that orchestras work together. It was a highly successful experiment; with eighty young musicians from twenty countries in The Americas joining musical forces with the Orchestre de la Francophonie participants. They performed at Festival de Lanaudière, three times at Domain Forget and twice at Festival Orford.

The summer of 2015 saw the Orchestre de la Francophonie perform 23 concerts in 17 cities in Quebec, New Brunswick and Ontario. It was a record number of performances, and has prepared the organization for its 15th Anniversary in the summer of 2016.

We’ll keep you posted in the coming months as the 2016 concert schedule is released.


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