2020 has been a challenging year for artists and arts organizations all around the world. It has also been a time of reflection and the opportunity to reconsider our art and its role in society. To support this important reflection, Jean-Sébastien Vallée will host four Choir Chats with world-renowned artists who are rethinking and reshaping choral music. This series is a unique opportunity to discover ground-breaking artists and to explore several important issues related to equity, diversity, and inclusion in the field of classical music.


Wednesday, February 10, 7 PM
Brad Wells - RoomFul of TeetH

Brad Wells is the founder and artistic director of the Grammy Award-winning new music vocal group Roomful of Teeth. Wells has led the ensemble in premieres of over seventy five works by many of today’s leading composers... MORE

Wednesday, March 10, 7 PM
Alexander Lloyd Blake – Tonality choir

Dr. Alexander Lloyd Blake works as a conductor, composer/arranger, vocal contractor, singer, and music activist. Blake is the Founding Artistic Director of Tonality, a new choral ensemble focused on spreading a message of unity, peace, and social justice through a culturally diverse choral setting. MORE

Wednesday April 14, 7 PM
Carmen Braden – Composer

Carmen Braden is a versatile, genre-jumping musician from the Canadian sub-Arctic. Winner of the 2019 Western Canadian Music Award for Classical Composer of the Year, Carmen is a composer/performer based in her hometown of Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. MORE

Wednesday May 12, 7 PM
Justin Jalea – INSPIRE choir


Human rights scholar, conductor, and JUNO-nominated tenor, Justin Jalea is an internationally sought-after consultant for projects that seek positive social change through the arts. Justin has collaborated with organizations such as Musicians for Human Rights, Americans for the Arts, the Young People’s Chorus of New York City, and the United Nations Orchestra and Singers. This work is facilitated by Justin’s unique educational background. He holds an MA from the Institute for the Study of Human Rights at Columbia University, as well as an MA and BA from the University of Alberta and University of Toronto respectively, both in philosophy.

Justin is a seasoned choral artist and conductor. He has sung with professional and community choirs throughout Canada and the United States, which have included the Pro Coro Canada, Spiritus Chamber Choir, Luminous Voices, and the Choir of Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church in New York. He has founded and directed numerous vocal ensembles dedicated to fostering compassion and action for diverse social causes – work he continues as Artistic Director of the New York City-based activist ensemble Inspire: A Choir for Unity.

Currently, Justin is a BCL/JD candidate in the Faculty of Law at McGill University. He also works at McGill’s Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism and is an Adjunct Professor of Human Rights and Philosophy in the School of Interdisciplinary Studies at Durham College in Ontario. Justin remains active as a professional choral singer, appearing frequently with the Choir of St. Andrew and St. Paul and the Canadian Chamber Choir.


OCS members are automatically enrolled in all of the 2020-21 season's series.

If you are a subscriber, patron, or a lover of the arts, we’d love to meet you in our Zoom Studio. Your fee will go to support these wonderful presentations: 

  • General Admission $15 per session 
  • Students and people under thirty and under - $5

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