Montréal’s classical string band collectif9 has been attracting varied audiences since their 2011 debut. Known for energized, innovative arrangements of classical repertoire, the group performs “with an infectious energy and vigour that grabs an audience’s attention” (The WholeNote). collectif9 has performed over 150 concerts across North America, Europe, and Asia. As performers of classical and contemporary music, the ensemble combines the power of an orchestra with the agility of a chamber ensemble.
The ensemble explores new repertoire and new artistic partnerships, including with Canadian indie rock band Yes We Mystic, composer and DJ Gabriel Prokofiev, and others. From these collaborations, collectif9 creates stunning and revolutionary multidisciplinary programmes like My Backyard Somewhere (2018) and Heroes (2020). In 2021 they released Rituæls, a 60-minute concert-film bringing together works dating from the Middle Ages to the 21st century, which launched a series of forthcoming films creating various multidisciplinary universes.
*Representation in collaboration with Jonathan Wentworth Associates Ltd in the USA
Programmes and projects
Night of the Flying Horses
A concert that encompasses five centuries of musical traditions
collectif9 is proud to present The Night of the Flying Horses, a programme of music that has enchanted and energized us for centuries. Centered around the music of Osvaldo Golijov, an Argentinian contemporary composer with international roots, The Night of the Flying Horses explores moments of wonder and melancholy, interspersed with frenetic, electrifying cavalcades of sound. With works spanning over five centuries, this show features music inspired by the Gypsy musicians of more than 500 years ago (known to us through the Romanian band Taraf de Haidouks), the Baroque extravagance of François Couperin, and classical music from the 21st century.
Rituæls slowly and meticulously offers moments of beauty and calm during a time of mental and emotional turbulence. Rituæls is a mystical artistic experience confronting the infinitely large to the infinitely small, the cosmic with the microscopic, delicately questioning our place in the universe and in relation to our environment. The performance of the charismatic dancer Stacey Désilier accompanies us through the concert like a supreme presence, complementing this imagery.
Created as part of the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth.
collectif9 presents Heroes, a reflection on our attachment to significant composers of the past – in this instance, Beethoven – and their ability to continue to live through the passage of time, affecting our ears, our
musical tastes and programming, and our impressions of what art music is, even today. The glorification of these composers, now considered heroes, generates several questions. Do we consider the past to be “perfection”? How does this preoccupation with impactful music from 300, 200, 100 years ago affect creation today?
“What strikes with collectif9, is the attitude. We see it in their photos, we see it when they are on stage, we hear it in their way of playing: they take in hand the future of classical music by giving it a serious youth cure.”
— Frédéric Cardin,
“They perform them with an infectious energy and vigour that grabs an audience’s attention.”
— Paul Ennis,
“Known for pushing the boundaries in their music, Montréal-based classical string band collectif9 is forging into uncharted territory with the release of their debut album.”
— Kiersten van Vliet,
My Barckyard Somewhere
a collaborative show about people and their places
collectif9, in collaboration with Architek Percussion, present My Backyard, Somewhere, a reflection of our malleable sense of belonging in a vast country. Inspired by the text of poet Kaie Kellough, this project explores boundaries, location, and sense of belonging of people: our displaced sense of home, travelling to and from places that have home-like meaning to us, and the elements of communication - interpretation and misinterpretation - between people and places.
Collaboration with Yes We Mystic
collectif9 collaborates with the Winnipeg-based group Yes We Mystic on their album Ten Seated Figures. They also performed together in Montreal and Winnipeg, offering a unique genre-bending concert experience.
No Time for Chamber Music
music by / inspired by Gustav Mahler
No Time for Chamber Music is as ironic as its title: exploring extreme dualities, this programme satirically magnifies the play between lighthearted joy and inconsolable despair - the unregulated emotions we feel in our most vulnerable, most child-like, states. With glimmering folk dances and allusions to the stillness of nature, collectif9 delves into rich and complex musical textures that are more intimate, yet at the same time psychologically global.