Musical Journalism

Brian Chang has been involved with choral music as a singer, administrator, and conductor for over a decade. In 2015 he started writing for the Wholenote Magazine as its resident Choral Scene columnist; providing news and insight on choral music to a 30,000-print circulation. In 2016 he became a regular contributor with Ludwig Van Toronto, formerly Musical Toronto. Capable of writing blog-style quick reads, in-depth interviews, editorials, and features, Brian's work always seeks to illuminate the reader with new angles, authoritative voice, and a creative edge. 

*Ludwig van Toronto is a member of the National Newsmedia Council   

SCRUTINY | TSO Gets Sentimental With A Silver Screen 'Casablanca'

February 16, 2019

“Here’s looking at you kid,” says Humphrey Bogart, playing the lead of Rick Blaine. The music swells underneath with the main melody of As Time Goes By. The swirling music is at the heart of the film, a recurring and constant love theme that plays throughout the soundtrack. The rich sentimentalism of the soundtrack and the film came together for a captivating presentation of the 1942 film, Casablanca...

THE SCOOP | Sir Andrew Davis Gets A Surprise Birthday Serenade At The TSO (Video)

February 02, 2019

The agitated start of Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries” leads into one of the most well-known songs in opera canon. Saturday night’s performance was full of a hidden collection of Valkyries hiding in the Choir loft who burst into a rousing rendition of Happy Birthday, totally surprising Sir Andrew Davis, celebrating his 75th anniversary...

CHORAL SCENE | Choral Fire in Winter Snow

February 01, 2019

Two upcoming choral concerts promise to take some of the chill out of winter. The Nathaniel Dett Chorale, joined by alumni, premieres a new work, Hosea, to perform what artistic director Brainerd Blyden-Taylor calls a concert of “wonderful, inspirational, moving music.” This concert continues the Chorale’s 20th anniversary season. And two of the finest chamber choirs in Canada join forces to present a joint concert; the Vancouver Chamber Choir (VCC) is hosted by the Elmer Iseler Singers on their 92nd and last tour with Jon Washburn at the head of the VCC...

THE SCOOP | Musicians Tackle Homelessness With Musical Acts of Kindness

January 29, 2019

“It was New Years Day that I came across this article on Facebook,” says conductor David Bowser. The Toronto Star reported 70 deaths in the homeless community by October of 2017. A frigid winter was already underway in Toronto with temperatures reaching into the negative twenties when David felt the urge to call his fellow musicians to action...

PRIMER | The TSO's Star Wars Episode IV — "I’m already getting chills thinking about it”

January 21, 2019

Grab the edge of your seats and prepare to blast off into the grandest space saga ever created. The Toronto Symphony Orchestra begins a brave, bold, box-office-smashing foray into the live film concert format of the Star Wars Universe. First up, this week’s concerts of the original, 1977 Star Wars: A New Hope, music written by the incomparable John Williams...

SCRUTINY | Damien Sneed And Friends Captivate For “We Shall Overcome”

January 14, 2019

During intermission, the foyer was buzzing with energy. People were floored by the performance and loving the action of Damien Sneed and guests on stage. After, Anitra McKinney took the stage: “We’re gonna take it nice & easy, but we’re gonna get rough at the end.” We got a sultry jazz intro as McKinney slid into the Tina Turner staple, Proud Mary. And then things got roaring with a racing, soul-powered rendition...

PRIMER | Damien Sneed Brings 'We Shall Overcome' To Toronto

January 09, 2019

Koerner Hall opens its doors to a concert unlike any other. Damien Sneed is a powerhouse in the classical, jazz, blues, music theatre, and gospel fabric of the US...

2018 REWIND | Our Favourite Concerts Of 2018

December 31, 2018

As 2018 comes to a close, we have been reflecting on our favourite concerts of the year. And what a year it has been. While it was difficult to choose just one (or two if we must), there was much discussion at the LV headquarters about our picks...

PRIMER | Kids, Everywhere! Organizing The Toronto Children’s Chorus

December 13, 2018

Four-hundred-and-fifty-two singers make up the massed might of the Toronto Children’s Chorus (TCC). A small army of children and youth present their annual holiday concert at Roy Thomson Hall. Behind the 452 singers is an army of conductors, parents, staff, volunteers, and chaperones making sure that this concert happens successfully...

SCRUTINY | A Soaring Holiday Pops With The TSO And Matt Dusk

December 12, 2018

Three songs into the program, Matt Dusk walks onto the stage, a spin and a slide into the centre stage whitewashed-blue lights and he starts “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” Dusk is a charming performer, dressed dashingly in a slim suit with a suitably sparkly black slim tie. He looks the part of a charmer, and his voice is more than up to the task of melting some of the grinchy hearts out there this season...