Canada Day is almost here, and all of our hosts took a moment to celebrate and toast some of Canada’s most memorable classical musicians. On July 1 all day, we’ll be broadcasting the best of Canada’s performers, conductors, and composers. Starting today, I’ll post a favourite artist in the words of our announcers. Enjoy, and have a great Canada Day long weekend coming up!
Jean Stilwell, co-host, “Classical Mornings”
Weekdays 6 AM – 10 AM
Baritone Louis Quilico
Louis Quilico, Montreal-born, 1925 – 2000, had a voice of a warm, rich, generous baritone. His was a full, round, Verdi sound. Louis was one of the leading dramatic baritones of his day; he was often referred to as “Mr. Rigoletto”. He spent 25 consecutive years at the Met! If you were to ask me, “what was Louis Quilico like?” I would tell you that his voice was the epitome and extension of whom he was. Extraordinary was his portrayal of Rigoletto, especially when he sang the powerful aria “Cortigiani vil razza dannata” (“Courtiers, vile cursed kind, at what price did you sell my love?”) Courtiers abducted his daughter, Gilda, and will not release her to him and the Finale with Gilda dying in his arms is heart-breakingly beautiful. Louis was as great an actor as he was a singer. He was also a generous and supportive colleague. In November 1999, Louis received the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award, Canada’s highest honour in the performing arts for his lifetime contribution to classical music.