Renewed Partnerships Bring a Wealth of Music to United’s Residents

Residents at United’s two communities have the best of both worlds. Through partnerships with Calgary’s best musical organizations they go out to performances, but also have performers come into the communities for intimate concerts. Honens, the Calgary Philharmonic, Calgary Pro Musica, Calgary Opera and Calgary Civic Symphony have all renewed their partnerships with United Active Living. Several other partnership agreements are in the works.

“The partnerships we have with Calgary’s finest music and educational organizations make a wealth of musical talent available to our residents,” said Jill LaForty, music director at United. “These are great for our residents. They get preferred seating when attending performances, and these groups also bring their top talents to United’s two communities, giving our residents a much more intimate contact with the musicians.”

Luca Buratto speaks with residents at Garrison Green
Luca Buratto at Garrison Green

A popular event last year brought 2015 Honen’s Prize Laureate Luca Buratto into Garrison Green. He played to a full house and afterwards mingled with residents.



Calgary Pro Musica has also renewed its partnership with United.

The non-profit organization has brought in world-renowned chamber ensembles to perform in the Eckhardt-Gramatté Hall in the University of Calgary’s Rozsa Centre.

The New Orford String Quartet

The New Orford String Quartet

In April, they brought in the New Orford String Quartet, who won a Juno Award this year for “Best Solo or Chamber Recording”.

The musicians are part of Pro Musica’s Dick Matthews Young Artists Development Program, which was created to discover, nurture and promote young Calgary musicians. The program was named for the late philanthropist who was a long-time patron of the arts in Calgary.

“The concerts, whether at the Rozsa Centre or in our communities, enables our music lovers, and music-curious residents to hear a wide variety of the highest-level Canadian and international chamber music,” said Jill.

“My friend and I had season’s tickets to Calgary Pro Musica for many years,” said Garrison Green resident Doris Bingham. “Now I go out to hear them and to other concerts with the residents here, and I always go to see them and the other performers when they perform at Garrison Green. Hearing them again brings back fond memories of when I used to attend their concerts.”

CPO resident conductor Karl Hirzer at Garrison Green
CPO resident conductor Karl Hirzer at Garrison Green

The Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra has been a cornerstone of the city’s arts community since 1955. From the classics to rock and roll, to broadway favourites, the CPO entertains Calgarians with a range of music to satisfy every musical taste.

“That wide range of styles is a big reason why the CPO is a good fit as a United Active Living partner,” said Jill. “The beauty of the CPO is that they have programming that appeals to every musical taste, and our residents, who also have varying tastes have been able to benefit from that range.

“Our residents are able to attend the dress rehearsals the CPO holds prior to their performances,” said Jill. “We’ve arranged for some of the conductors and performers to come to our communities to perform some of the music, and to discuss the music and its history with the residents. This is something that would not normally be available, and many are very interested and engaged in the discussion.”

We’ll talk more about the rest of the partnerships in future articles.

United has partnerships with six musical organizations and two universities that provide our residents with a wide range of musical and higher learning opportunities.

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