The SPOGreatMusic Performance Series: S42E00

Canada Day Special

Release Date: July 1, 2021

On this special summer episode of our SPOGreatMusic Performance Series (Season 42, 2021/2022), we’re pleased to present the following videos:


Ronald Royer’s “Night Music I: Echoes of Film Noir”

Performed by Alexander Panizza, piano  *  WORLD PREMIERE

Notes from the Composer: Night Music for piano (2021) was created during the Covid-19 pandemic. Feeling nostalgic, I was drawn to night themes and music from the past. The composition is in the form of a piano sonata, but each of the four movements also functions as an independent character piece. Night Music was written for and dedicated to the wonderful Argentinian/Canadian pianist Alexander Panizza. Due to Toronto’s restrictions concerning live concerts, it was composed to be premiered on the Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra’s YouTube channel.

Echoes of Film Noir was inspired by the dramatic, gripping, and multi-layered music commonly found in this genre. Film noir was commonly set in dark locations and shot in black and white. In creating music for my fantasy nighttime crime drama, I used a traditional sonata allegro form for the structure. The movement starts with a first theme representing a hardboiled detective, followed by a second theme representing a “femme fatale”. The rest of the movement allows for the music (and the story) to develop, build to a climax, and come to a conclusion. I invite listeners to create their own stories.

Audio recording and video by Alexander Panizza.

This video was sponsored by the Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra and was made possible in part by support from the Toronto Arts Council, and the SOCAN Foundation.


Audio recording copyright 2021 Alexander Panizza and Ronald Royer. Video copyright 2021 Alexander Panizza. Music copyright 2021 Ronald Royer.


Ronald Royer’s “Night Music II: A Nostalgic Waltz”

Performed by Alexander Panizza, piano  *  WORLD PREMIERE

A Nostalgic Waltz was inspired by music of the early 1900’s, especially Maurice Ravel’s Valse nobles et sentimentales. I imagined the music being played in a Parisian cabaret at night, during The Belle Époque. The movement starts with nostalgic, calm, and elegant music, builds to a faster and more agitated middle section, and then returns to the calm music of the beginning.


Ronald Royer’s “Night Music III: A Nocture”

Performed by Alexander Panizza, piano  *  WORLD PREMIERE

A Nocturne is a form that is inspired by the night. The music represents a person climbing into bed, hoping to quickly fall asleep, but instead thinking of the day’s activities. After a struggle to doze off, sleep finally comes. The music is partially inspired by Frederic Chopin’s nocturnes. In addition, there are three short sections using a whole-tone impressionistic scale, giving a questioning feel to the music, and providing a nod to Claude Debussy’s atmospheric Nocturnes.


Ronald Royer’s “Night Music IV: Bartók Meets the Blues

Performed by Alexander Panizza, piano  *  WORLD PREMIERE

Bartók Meets the Blues aims to mix musical styles derived from Central-Eastern European folk music and Afro-American music. First, I used musical elements from Béla Bartók’s Six Dances in Bulgarian Rhythm (and other pieces from his Mikrokosmos) and mixed them with major and minor Blues scales. I imagined this piece being debuted in a late-night jazz club, by a pianist who was not sure if this venue was the best place for this composition. The music begins in playful manner and becomes more intense and virtuosic as it goes along. My goal was to create a slightly quirky and humorous showpiece for the piano.

Audio recording and video by Alexander Panizza.

This video was sponsored by the Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra and was made possible in part by support from the Toronto Arts Council, and the SOCAN Foundation.


Audio recording copyright 2021 Alexander Panizza and Ronald Royer. Video copyright 2021 Alexander Panizza. Music copyright 2021 Ronald Royer.


“Who Ami I?” – Animated Short Film

Adi Messinger, filmmaker and animator; Sergei Kofman, 2021 music composer

As we celebrate another birthday of our country, and after more than 18 months of lockdowns, limitations, and lonliness, the title of this amazing animated short video is a question we’ve all been asking these days, “Who Am I?”. Enjoy, and feel better through the creativity of this video and music score.

Created by a graduate of the Sheridan College Animation program and featuring newly composed music. For more information on the Sheridan College Animation program, visit

“SPO 2020/2021 Year In Review?” … And What a Year!

Video compiled and prepared by Devin Scott, Executive Director, Scarborough Philharmonic Orchestra | Executive Producer/Editor, SPOGreatMusic Digital Content

This video was originally presented at the Scarborough Community Renewal Organization May 27th “Our Scarborough” Online Presentation. Thanks and appreciation to our friends and Community Partners at Scarborough Arts. Derek Spooner and his team have also evolved quickly, and amazingly, to continue to create opportunities and connections during the pandemic. SCRO President, David Hardy (Hardy Stevenson & Associates) called the video “emotional” and “Ken Burns-esque“.

Thanks to everyone who helped make this video come together, and to Devin Scott for making it all happen.

Performer and Composer Bios

RONALD ROYER:Ron is our SPO Music Director and Conductor. Learn more about Ron by visiting his new website,


ALEXANDER PANIZZA: Acclaimed by the specialized press and public alike, Canadian-Argentinian Alexander Panizza developed his musical education in Toronto, Buenos Aires, Geneva, Paris, Barcelona, and London, where he completed a post-graduate diploma at the Royal College of Music. His mastery of pianistic sonorities and powerful sound allow him to shine in the grand piano concerti repertoire, including those by Brahms, Rachmaninoff, Tchaikovsky, Chopin, Beethoven and Schumann. His discography features Beethoven’s 32 Piano Sonatas, Alberto Ginastera’s complete piano compositions, and works by Carlos Guastavino, Muzzio Clementi and David Winkler (Naxos, American Composers Series).

Alexander Panizza has performed in over twenty-five countries worldwide including prestigious venues such as the Barbican Hall in London, Herkulessaal in Munich, Colón Theatre in Buenos Aires, Richelieu Amphitheatre in Paris, Palas Theatre in Athens, Nanning’s Guangxi Concert Hall in China, National Theatre in Panama City, Solis Theatre in Montevideo, and Prince Mahidol Hall in Bangkok. With a special interest in collaborative piano, Alexander participates in chamber music series including the Soesterberg Music Festival (Holland), Long Island Mozart Festival (USA) and Seven Lakes Festival, in Patagonia (Argentina), where he mentors young musicians. An active pedagogue, he is a faculty member at the Catholic University in Buenos Aires and has led masterclasses at the University of Toronto, Lynn University, Lakehead University , and other higher education institutions in the Americas, Europe and Asia.

During the 2020 season, due to the unique circumstances regarding public concertizing, Alexander has been actively developing his musical activities in the digital space. Aside from online teaching internationally, he has been experimenting with recordings that combine music with other expressive mediums (visual arts, literature, and video) sharing the results through his website and various social media platforms.

Learn more on his website, and on his YouTube, Facebook, Spotify, Instagram, and SoundCloud pages.


SERGEI KOFMAN: (b. 1996) Sergei is an imaginative young composer based in Toronto. Having recently completed his masters degree in Composition at the University of Toronto, he is active as a composer, producer, audio engineer, pianist, and educator. Sergei writes music for various media as well as the concert hall. He draws on an eclectic combination of influences in his work. His music has been performed by ensembles around Canada and the United States.

Learn more about Sergei by visiting his Website.

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