Part of the UMS mission is to encourage life-long involvement in music. To this end, we would like to encourage musicians to engage with music-making not only at UTSC, but in the local community.
Below, you will find some links and resources on opportunities available in the Scarborough community, and beyond. Please take a look, and keep making music!
Pickering Community Concert Band
East Shore Community Centre, Pickering
“The Pickering Concert Band was formed in the fall of 1989 to provide the community with musical services at all levels and as an outlet for citizens who wish to participate in band music. Band members include a wide variety of people, high school students, music teachers, accountants, telephone installers and nuclear reactor operators. Every level of musician is welcome to come and join us. So dust off that old instrument case and come out some Tuesday night!”
Markham Concert Band
The Markham Community Centre (2nd floor)
Southeast corner of Hwy 7 and Hwy 48 (Markham Rd or Main St.)
The Markham Concert Band has over 65 members and is one of Canada’s largest community bands! The band has members ranging from the young and old and of a variety of career paths. The MCB aims “to serve the community with the best in concert band music”. They play a variety of music such as contemporary pieces, marches, show tunes, light classics and, occasionally, a little jazz. The Band performs its concert series in the Flato Markham Theatre, as well many Markham and York Region festivals and events such as the Markham Village Music Festival, Unionville Festival and the Markham Fair.
Scarborough Concert Band
Winston Churchill Collegiate
2239 Lawrence Avenue East, Toronto, ON
The Scarborough Concert Band is a community band that performs several concerts each year around the east end of Toronto. They actively perform for the local community and entertain audiences from all walks of life. They continue to “bring quality music and yet maintain the tradition of the community band”. A list of their current repertoire can be found on their website along with selected recordings of past performances. Their members consist of people who find time to dedicate to music regardless of career path- for example: nurses, engineers, teachers, and attorneys. The Scarborough Concert Band is looking for new members. They currently have the following openings: Trumpet (2), French Horn (2), Clarinet (2), Bass Clarinet (1), Tenor Sax (1), Baritone (1), Tuba (2).
Scarborough Society of Musicians
Dr. Norman Bethune C.I., Room C103
200 Fundy Bay Blvd., Scarborough, Ontario, Canada
The Scarborough Society of Musicians is a non-profit organization which provides post-secondary school students the opportunity to continue developing and exploring their talents regardless of their chosen career path. SSM’s mission is: to keep music alive.
SSM’s goals are:
(a) to extend the high school musical experience by creating an environment where post-secondary students currently not studying music can continue to enjoy the benefits of participating in musical ensembles;
(b) to advocate the benefits and importance of music education and appreciation for the arts;
(c) and to develop a connection between the youth and the community through music.
Swansea Community Concert Band
125 Evelyn Crescent, Toronto, ON
near Bloor Street and Runnymede Road
The Swansea Community Concert band is made up of musicians of all ages. Their focus is “playing music for fun”. Annually, they play about six concerts at retirement homes throughout the Toronto area as well as an end-of-the-season concert for “Family and Friends” at Western Tech in June. Rehearsals are on Thursday evenings from 7:00p.m. to 9:00 p.m. from September to June in the music room at Western Technical-Commercial School. They play standard band arrangements but “non-standard” instruments such as soprano saxophone, alto horn etc. are often accommodated. They want to maximize participation, so new members are always welcome. Novice players are welcome as well as players returning to music after taking a few or many years off. The membership fee is $30-40 per term (September-December, January-March, and April-June). There are no auditions; you can sit in with the band during a few rehearsals to see if you are interested in joining- please remember to contact them by email or telephone first.
- Rehearsals: Thursday evenings from 7:00p.m. to 9:00 p.m., September to June, in the music room at Western Technical-Commercial School.
- Contact: Website – Email – Phone: 416-286-1045
The Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra
3663 Danforth Avenue
The Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra celebrated its 25th season in 2010. The Scarborough Philharmonic is comprised of professional musicians, as well as amateur musicians of all ages, including students, seniors, retired musicians, and music educators. It is volunteer-driven, however, there are paid section leader positions which occasionally become available. More musicians are always welcome to join. There are no formal audition processes.
Toronto Centre for the Arts (Rehearsal Studio)
5040 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON
Orchestra Toronto is a community orchestra whose organization of volunteers is committed to making symphonic music accessible to the public beyond the concert hall. Orchestra Toronto’s vision is to “entertain and inspire our many communities and strive to ensure the love of symphonic music is embraced by future generations”. The Orchestra strives to provide serious amateur musicians with a high-caliber opportunity to continue their development in music.
Their ideal musician is:
• willing to commit to attending all rehearsals
• committed to practise and learn the repertoire at home, and
• committed to support the non-music realities attached to ensuring the welfare of the orchestra as a well-managed organization
Counterpoint Community Orchestra
519 Community Centre (2nd floor)
519 Church Street, Toronto, ON
The Counterpoint Community Orchestra has a tradition of orchestral performances in the downtown Toronto community for 28 years. It was founded in 1984, and it was the first lesbian/ gay/gay positive orchestra in Canada and in the world. Counterpoint is a full symphony orchestra whose repertoire includes music from Baroque through contemporary. Experienced musicians of all levels are welcome. There are no auditions, and members must provide their own instruments. Rehearsals are Counterpoint is actively seeking new string players: Bass, Cello, Viola and Violin players, as well as French Horns and Clarinets.
- Rehearsals: Monday evenings from 8:00p.m. to 10:00p.m. throughout the fall, winter and spring.
- Contact: Website – Email – Phone: 416-926-9806
The Annex Singers
St. Thomas’s Anglican Church on Huron Street (Parish hall)
The Annex Singers is a sixty-voice community choir which holds two formal concerts each year (in December and April) as well as a Cabaret evening at the end of May. The Choir also holds outreach performances in downtown Toronto. “Though the Annex Choir rehearses in St. Thomas’s parish hall, it is a community choir and not affiliated with a church or any religious organization.” The repertoire includes selections from the Western classical choral. There is a $200 membership fee for the season, however, for members under thirty years of age, the fee is $100. The choir is seeking prospective members with vocal experience.
- Rehearsals: Monday evenings from 7:30p.m. to 9:45p.m.
- Contact: Website – Phone: 416-968-7747
The Bell’Arte Singers
Toronto Mennonite Centre, 1774 Queen St. E
The Bell’Arte Singers is one of Canada’s finest community choirs consisting of advanced amateur singers, music educators, music students and professionals who value the connection between community and music. They perform three concerts each year at St. Simon the Apostle Church in downtown Toronto, as well as community concerts as fundraisers for the choir or for specials causes. Their repertoire includes global and traditional chorals from all periods. They also include chant, medieval and renaissance polyphony, chromatic, minimalistic music and jazz. Bell’Arte would like singers who demonstrate musical and vocal proficiencies in order to keep up with rehearsals and the group’s artistic goals. There is an audition for prospective members, where they are checked for singing ability, sight reading and voice placement. Members are expected to donate time and sell tickets to Bell’Arte’s concerts.
Common Thread Community Chorus of Toronto
58 Cecil Street, Toronto ON
The Common Thread Community Chorus is a 80-voice SATB choir which promotes community through music. Their repertoire is based on multicultural folk music traditions. One of their goals is “to encourage people to sing in their everyday lives”. Their three main goals are:
- To build a culturally diverse group that performs music in languages from around the world
- To develop a sense of community within the chorus and between the chorus and the broader community
- To promote social justice through music
There are no auditions; singers with a wide range of musical experience and cultural backgrounds are welcome. Non-mandatory workshops for musical training and skills development are available. To join the choir, please fill out the online membership application form on the website. Orientation sessions are held twice a year in March and June where general information, fees, and policies are discussed. In September, 23 voices per section are accepted. Members are allowed an absence for up to two years before rejoining the choir.
Orpheus Choir of Toronto
Yorkminster Park Baptist Church, 1585 Yonge St. (north of St.Clair subway station)
The Orpheus Choir of Toronto is one of Canada’s finest choral groups and has been entertaining Canada for over 45 years. Their mission is “to engage and enthrall audiences through the performance of rarely heard and newly created choral music, celebrating the ‘expect something different’ experience”. Their diverse repertoire includes music ranging from secular to sacred, classics to experimental works, choral collaborations and multimedia performances. Auditions are in late May through early June and August. Small auditions also take place throughout the season. Candidates have to prepare an excerpt of their choice from the classical repertoire as well as do sight-reading and ear tests.