My Tafelmusik … with May Webster

In our ongoing series of featuring long-term supporters, “My Tafelmusik” invites donors to share their story in a Tafelmusik house program, and various digital platforms.

 Individual support is integral to Tafelmusik. It funds live concerts in Toronto and across the world, education programs for young people, innovative new multi-media and recording projects … in addition to bringing renowned guest artists to our stage.

By May Webster

Tafelmusik has been part of my musical life for many years. I sang in a church choir, and the music director, who was a subscriber, would tell us about what he had heard at the concerts. I was intrigued, especially by the concept of hearing music played as it was originally intended to be played. So I went to a concert, and became a subscriber myself, and then a member.

Tafelmusik has educated me. I have learned to appreciate choral music sung in original languages — from a choir whose words are so clear I could almost hear the words as if they were in English! I have learned from the pre-concert chats many details about the works I then would hear. Or about the composers and their world. I have learned from the Membership Academies about the baroque world itself, about baroque performance practices, and a little about how the baroque instruments differ from the modern ones. (And I am somewhat saddened that the Academies are no longer available to members at the lower ranges of contribution, although I appreciate that their popularity may have made this necessary.) I have learned to appreciate the works of composers I once thought obtuse or complicated — Bach, for instance, as against Haydn, Handel, or Mozart. So many thanks to all the musicians and other experts who have presented those lectures over the years.

I look forward to each new season, for what I shall hear and enjoy, from the Orchestra and from the Chamber Choir, and for what I might learn. I also look forward to sharing my Tafelmusik experiences with friends, and perhaps introducing them to music that I find life-enhancing.


Membership makes a difference! Membership donations allow Tafelmusik to continue inspiring the love of baroque and classical music. Give today!

My Tafelmusik … with Margaret Szücs

In our series of featuring long-term supporters, “My Tafelmusik” invites donors to share their story in a Tafelmusik house program, and various digital platforms.

 Individual support is integral to Tafelmusik. It funds live concerts in Toronto and across the world, education programs for young people, innovative new multi-media and recording projects … in addition to bringing renowned guest artists to our stage.

Margaret Szücs

By Margaret Szücs, Tafelmusik donor

Summer afternoons in my high-school days (the “golden years” of the CBC) I listened to classical radio programs, and thus became an avid Mozart fan at age 17. I even attended the Salzburg Festival when I was 23. I took piano lessons for about eight years, and when I was older, I sang in the alto section of our church choir when they performed Handel’s Messiah. Yes, I did finally “do” a Sing-Along Messiah a few years ago. Wish I had done it sooner, and more often.

Approaching my sixties, I found that a program with a 110-piece orchestra was rather tiring after a long day’s work, so I was delighted when a colleague offered me a Tafelmusik subscription she had “inherited.” I forsook the TSO, and went on to continue her subscriptions. For about 25 years I went to dinner and Tafelmusik concerts with my best friend. For 14 of those, I came in from Fergus, Ontario by car, and later, by bus. Tafelmusik was one of the reasons why I moved back to Toronto.

Baroque and classical music suit my personality. They’re structured and polite, even when they’re emotional. You know where you’re headed, but the fun lies in getting there.

My mother’s family lived at 103 St. George Street. They were Methodists, so I like to assume they attended church at what is now Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre. This prompted me to donate four seats in the Balcony, commemorating three generations.

I donate to the Education Fund regularly in hopes of attracting younger people to the orchestra’s superb musicianship. In recent years I have also donated to the Regent Park School of Music, convinced that music is not a “frill.”

There is a big gap in my life since I broke a third vertebra a year ago. I’m hoping that one day I’ll be able to attend the occasional concert at Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre.

Classical music is what keeps me going, and Tafelmusik has been my primary source. My sincere thanks for years and years of enjoyment — of the pre-concert talks as well as the concerts.


Support a global leader! Membership donations allow Tafelmusik to continue
inspiring the love of baroque and classical music. Give today!