Episode 2


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Aliénor Rougeot, climate activist and host
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Daniel Bartholomew-Poyser, NACO Principal Youth Conductor and host

Learn how musicians, composers, and other creative minds have reflected upon the climate emergency and a world that is changing beneath their feet. In the second installment of The Great Canadian Orchestra Field Trip, experience the nature-inspired music of Astor Piazzolla, Denis Gougeon, Bedřich Smetana, and Edward Top.

Featuring performances by the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra, and guest appearances from the former host of Daily Planet, Ziya Tong and flutist Ben Morency, this leg of the field trip navigates pressing social and environmental issues we face on Planet Earth today.

Learner’s companion guide

In the Learner’s companion to Episode 2, students use music and art to reflect on their own relationship with Planet Earth. Learn more about the music and musicians featured in the accompanying video series, and complete activities that range from “Climate Change 101” to mapping out soundwaves for everyday noises.

Curriculum links: Science, Geography, Social Studies, Music, and Visual Arts 

Learning outcomes

  • Explain how a changing world impacts people
  • Explain how musicians and artists have reflected on these changes

“We don’t often stop and reflect; we are driven to distraction all the time! Devices, gadgets... the news! It’s everywhere. When I reflect deeply, I realize that the planet I love will not stay this way if I don’t change and help others to do the same.”

  • Principal Youth Conductor and Creative Partner Daniel Bartholomew-Poyser

Featured performances 

ASTOR PIAZZOLLA Estaciones Porteñas: Verano Porteño
Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla’s Estaciones Porteñas quotes melodies from the well-known Italian work, The Four Seasons. Originally written for tango quintet, Piazzolla’s rendition speaks to his own experiences of living in Buenos Aires.

Performed by Orchestre symphonique de Montréal

DENIS GOUGEON L’oiseau blessé 
Inspired by a poem, Canadian composer Denis Gougeon’s L’oiseau Blessé is written about a wounded bird.

Performed by Benjamin Morency.

Inspired by a river that crosses the Czech Republic, The Moldau is the name of a movement within composer Bedřich Smetana’s symphonic poem Má Vlast— which translates to “My Country.” This piece reflects upon the beautiful rolling plains of the Czech countryside.

Performed by Orchestre symphonique de Montréal. 

EDWARD TOP Eruption 
Dutch Composer Edward Top’s orchestral composition Eruption is explosive in energy, representing the power that children and youth have when they come together to make a difference.

Performed by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra.