Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Toronto Boys Choir

Springtime is coming fast and I’m ready. I volunteered again with the Big Brothers, Big Sisters organization and everything has been approved so now I’m just waiting for them to find a little friend for me.

I’ve already got a lot of outings planned, like the aquarium, picnics in the mountains, the amusement park and stuff like that. It’s going to be so much more fun with a boy along to laugh with me.

The way things are today he will probably be into rap music but I have a plan to steer him in a more classical direction. I have a new CD called Mr. Bach Comes to Call. It’s part of a series of CD’s for kids that includes “Vivaldi’s Ring of Mystery”, “Beethoven Lives Upstairs” and “Mozart’s Magical Voyage”. There are several other CD‘s, as well.

The Bach one starts out with the NASA technician counting down the first Voyager launch, the first of two where they sent a craft into space carrying information about the Earth and it’s people. Besides the many pictures there was music, including several pieces by Bach.

On this CD a young girl is bored by practicing the piano so Bach magically appears and gives her some encouragement and demonstrations. He brings along some choir boys from the Toronto Boys Choir.
Bach talks about his life, his music and his family in a very interesting way and introduces her to some of his most popular music.
The boys are charming and it’s fun to hear them talk but they only sing one song and that’s the last one, “We Hasten, Cantata #78”. They do it so well it makes me want to hear more.

I can’t find out much about this choir and I have to assume that they have disbanded, which is too bad.

BCSD lists two albums, the Toronto Boys Choir, Volume 2 (1976) and the Toronto Boys Choir, Volume 3 (1979). They were founded in 1976 so it seems odd that there would be a Volume 1 and Volume 2 in the same year but it must so. Both of these albums are Jewish music and I would have to guess that Volume 1 was, also.

Interestingly, there is another album shown, “The Toronto Boys Choir-The Hanson Singers”, which is a traditional Christmas album.

I did find a website whose writer reports hearing from a former member of this choir and who says that some of the boys suffered abuse at the hands of Ned Hanson, who is now deceased.

All that BCSD has to say about them is this. “The Toronto Boys Choir, founded in 1976, allows boys to participate in a variety musical experiences, ranging from the most demanding classical repertoir and specially commissioned new works to cameo roles in SCTV and MGM movie production in Toronto.”


  1. Hope the big brother roll is enjoyable for you Larry.Hard to know what sort of music he is into, but your idea sounds like it is worth a try and who knows it might open up a whole new and interesting world for him, here's hoping.
    Maybe a bit of quiet Greig in the background when you 2 are talking might set the mood.That was the trigger to start my journey of discovery to how wonderful and big the world of music really is, and I am still on the journey.
    Best wishes and kindest regards Stef.

  2. Hi Stef,
    I hope you are well. Greig, huh? That's a good idea. I'll see what I can find.
    Wouldn't it be great if he turns out to be a singer. Actually, I just hope he knows how to laugh.
    I'm sure that when we go horseback riding and he sees me on a horse he'll laugh a lot.

  3. Good for you Larry, you will enjoy the mentoring I am sure.
    I have been active as a leader in the Boy Scouts for some 40+ years. I have had the privilege to pin Eagle badges on 43 young men. I have been asked many times why I would spend so much time, effort, and my own money at times, what is your reward for all of that? Stupid question because the answer is so easy. I point to a boy and say, do you see the smile on that kids face, do you see what a fine young man he has become, that is my reward, worth every second of the time I have freely given.

  4. 43 Eagle scouts is a lot. That's wonderful.
    Scouting is such a great thing to do so I hope when I get a little friend I can get him involved.
    I had a 'little brother' several years ago in Seattle. He was 12 when we met and this summer I got an announcement that he was graduating junior college.

  5. Met when he was 12 and now graduating from junior college sound like a little more than several years ago....giggles.

    I gave up being a Scoutmaster a couple years ago. I am now on a Council committee that interviews all Eagle Scout candidates. Several months ago I had the pleasure of interviewing a young man for Eagle that was the son of one of my 43 Eagles. Several of my old scouts stop by to visit from time to time and it is always fun when they bring their kids with them. Makes one feel kind of old though....giggles.

  6. The Toronto Children's Chorus may be the evolution of the Toronto Boys' Choir. TCC includes a treble choir among its specialised ensembles.

  7. TCC's "How Sweet the Sound" carries the subtitle "Music for Treble Voices and Orchestra." It's a good disc.

  8. Thanks for the link Kelsie. I'll look them up.

  9. Ned Hanson was a serial child molester who turned my sociopathic and satanic ex partner into a NIGHTMARE for everyone who knows them.