Wednesday, 6 July 2016


"If I were to agree to write the music for your beautiful poem,
it would tie your poem up for some years
as I have agreements and obligations which I must respect."

- Jules Massenet

Enjoy below a breathtaking rendition of Massenet's "Ô Souverain, ô Juge, ô Père" ("O Sovereign, O Judge, O Father") from the French maestro's 1885 opera in four acts and ten tableaux "Le Cid," as performed by the venerated tenor Ben Heppner. In celebration of Canada's first steps toward full autonomy which began on July 1 1867 (and which reached its Zenith in the early twentieth century following the passing of the Statute of Westminster in 1931) as the formation of the four formerly British colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ontario and Quebec (the latter two formerly known as the “Province of Canada”) which were brought together under one Dominion some 149 years ago; and in recognition of my paternal ancestry (and my subsequent birth) divided across both Nova Scotia and Ontario - and in honor of my late father, unravelingmusicalmyths is proud to present to the reader for the entire month of July only prime Canadian talent (my previous posting on the spacecraft JUNO features French-Canadian contralto Marie-Nicole Lemieux).

The living legend Thomas Bernard (Ben) Heppner, CC, better known as Ben Heppner,  who performs Massenet's tender aria below is a staple member of Canada’s vast operatic entourage.

Canadian tenor Ben Heppner
The 60 year old Chanteur d'opéra hails from Murrayville, British Columbia, located on Canada’s gorgeously lush west coast and had first attracted the attention of Classical Music’s elite players following a victorious performance at a local talent festival organized by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in 1979.

Heppner’s repertoire came to him (and luckily to us) in a manner most fast and furious, and included the much esteemed and highly revered Wagnerian roles, thrusting Canada’s golden boy into the highly privileged heldontenor status.

Although Heppner announced his retirement in April of 2014, he continues to contribute heavily to the opera industry, performing duties such as vocal coaching, setting up master classes for future singers, and also enjoys a career in broadcasting.

Ben Heppner sings "Ô Souverain, ô Juge, ô Père" from Massenet's Le Cid,  accompanied by the London Symphony Orchestra under the
baton of Korean maestro
Myung-whun Chung.

Joyeux Anniversaire, O Beloved Canada!


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