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Juno award for School of Music

Juno award for School of Music

John Burge
Students from the Queen’s and
U of T music schools recently
performed Juno Award-winner John
Burge’s composition “Mass for
Prisoners of Conscience” in Kingston,
Toronto, and New York City. The
above photo was taken as the
students rehearsed in Grant Hall.

Photo by Bernard Clark

John Burge, Head of the Department of Music, was awarded the 2009 Juno for Best Classical Composition for his piece entitled Flanders Fields Reflections.

Flanders Fields Reflections was commissioned by Sinfonia Toronto in 2005 for their 2005/06 season. “I was asked to fill about 30 minutes of a concert with a composition that would capture some aspect of their season’s theme of war and peace,” says Burge. “It dawned on me that a perfect vehicle would be to musically interpret some of the important lines from John McCrae’s famous poem, ‘In Flanders Fields’. The resultant musical work is in five movements and when people hear it, they seem drawn to the slowly unfolding sadness of the fourth movement which is titled, ‘Loved and Were Loved.’” 

In related news, another of Burge’s compositions, “Mass for Prisoners of Conscience”, was featured as a joint performance by music students from Queen’s and the U of T. The work was performed in Toronto and Kingston prior to its U.S. premiere at the Lincoln Centre in New York City. Watch the Summer issue of the Review for a story on the New York performance. To hear an audio interview with John Burge in which he talks about “In Flanders Fields”, listen to the November 2008 edition of QPod (Issue #4-2008), the Review’s podcast. It can be found at the 19:16 mark of the recording.

[Queen's Alumni Review 2009-2 cover]