The intrepid and dedicated members of Ensemble Paramirabo come together as a single voice to perform contemporary music, showcase emerging Canadian composers, and expand the boundaries of the traditional concert experience. As a creator of innovative events, the group provides young composers with a venue for refining their trademark within Montreal’s vibrant new music scene and act as a springboard for exposure abroad. The ensemble’s flutist, Jeffrey Stonehouse, has been the group’s artistic director since its founding.
Taking its name from the piece Paramirabo, by Montreal composer Claude Vivier, Ensemble Paramirabo’s roots date back to 2008 at the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal. Since its foundation, the ensemble has toured internationally to England and Mexico and has been invited to Domaine Forget, Waterloo Region Contemporary Music Sessions, New York’s Mise-En Festival, Winnipeg’s Cluster New Music Festival, and the Montreal Contemporary Music Lab. In June 2019, Paramirabo will again be ensemble-in-residence for the Domaine Forget International Music and Dance Academy’s Composition Session.
A proud ambassador of local contemporary music, the ensemble has over 70 premieres and commissions to its credit. Its recordings, both live and studio, have garnered numerous awards for composers such as James O’Callaghan (AMONG AM A; Salvatore Martirano Award 2016, 1st prize); Julien Robert (Flash Point: 1st prize at the 2013 Sond’Ar-te Electric Ensemble Competition and 3rd place in the Serge Garant category of the 2014 SOCAN Foundation Awards); Scott Rubin (The Torn Cubist: 2nd prize at the 2013–2014 OSSIA New Music Composition Prize); and Matthew Ricketts (Graffiti Songs: 1st place in the Serge Garant category of the 2011 SOCAN Foundation Awards). The ensemble has been presented by a number of organizations, including ECM+, SCMQ, CMCQ, Groupe Le Vivier, the Music Gallery: Emergents Series, the SMCQ, Erreur de type 27, Innovations en concert, and Codes d’accès.
Over the years, the group’s efforts have been noted by a number of journalists and music critics. Crystal Chan mentioned the ensemble in a March 2012 Scena Musicale article entitled “Yin/Yang, Montreal’s Musical Entrepreneurs.” The website Bachtrack describes the group as demonstrating “total fearlessness” and “a rare gem … born solely of creative inspiration, [whose] evolution as an up-and-coming musical force is not to be missed.”
Ensemble Paramirabo wishes to thank its loyal partners, along with the SOCAN Foundation, the Conseil des arts de Montréal, the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec and the Canada Council for the Arts for their generous support.