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ashiq aziz

Ashiq Aziz, founder and artistic director of the Classical Music Consort in Toronto, and the Royal College of Music Bach Consort in London, has concentrated his efforts in producing thought-provoking historically-informed performances of music from the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.

As well, an advocate of new music, Ashiq has recently conducted two world premiere performances in Toronto with the Classical Music Consort: Sinfonia for Strings, op. 25, and Vaettir, by Canadian composers Ian McAndrew and Adam Sherkin, respectively.

Ashiq's upcoming engagements include two concerts in April in Sweden with the Gonzaga Consort, featuring the music of Bach and Handel on period instruments. The Classical Music Consort will complete its first full season this March with a concert of English orchestral music including the world premiere of English composer Neil Luck's Concerto Grosso. The performance will also comprise of Tippett's Concerto for Double String Orchestra and Vaughan Williams' The Lark Ascending, with the versatile Polish violinist Anna Banaszkiewicz. The CMC has also been selected to present seven fully-staged performances of Handel's Acis and Galatea, which Ashiq will conduct in July as part of the Fringe of Toronto Theatre Festival. Rodrigo's Concierto Madrigal for two guitars and orchestra follows shortly thereafter with The Rodrigo Ensemble in London at St. Martin in the Fields in August.

Ashiq, a Toronto native, is currently living in London, England where he recently served as assistant to Laurence Cummings in the London Handel Festival's production of Handel's Poro (2007) as well as the English National Opera's production of Monteverdi's Coronation of Poppea (2007). He has also served as the assistant conductor of the Royal College of Music Chamber Choir. Actively seeking to expand his skills, he has also participated in masterclasses with Bernard Haitink, Helmuth Rilling, Jean Ashworth Bartle, and Henry Leck, in which he has had the opportunity to lead several orchestras and choirs including members of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the Royal College of Music Symphony Orchestra, University of Toronto Chamber Orchestra, as well as the University of Toronto MacMillan Singers, the Moran Chamber Choir of Israel, the Elmer Iseler Singers, and the Toronto Children's Chorus.

Ashiq holds a Master's degree in Conducting from the Royal College of Music in London, where he was generously supported by the Philip Carne and Gladys Hay Study Awards. His principal conducting teachers have been Peter Stark (London) and Paul Spicer (London). He has also studied with Andrew Parrott (Toronto and UK), Ivars Taurins (Toronto), and Raffi Armenian (Toronto). In addition to being a conductor, he is an accomplished pianist and vocalist. His studies have led to him to performances in Canada, United States, and the UK.


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