Musician Series – Daniel Payne

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Photo of cellist Daniel Payne

What Instrument do you play?

I play the cello.

How many years have you played with the orchestra?

16 years

What is your experience as a musician?

I’ve played cello since I entered high school and studied music at Western University for part of my undergraduate degree, then completed a MA in Musicology several years later. Currently, I hold the principal chair for both Counterpoint Community Orchestra and Arcady Choir and Orchestra. My interest in Baroque music has led to a rewarding career as a principal continuo player in Western University’s Early Music Studio, London’s Parnassus Ensemble and the Hamilton-based Te Deum Choir and Orchestra (1996-2002); this latter group gave me the opportunity of presenting regular concerts at the Glen Gould Studio. My involvement with Arcady has been long-standing: since 1987, I have performed a wide range of historically informed repertoire, participated in a live chamber performance on TVO’s Studio One, and played in three of the ensemble’s recordings.

What do you do outside of the orchestra?

My other passion in life is libraries! I am the Head of Reference and Instruction at the OCAD University Library and have enjoyed working with students, staff, and faculty to help empower creative research. I have kept current with new developments in art libraries through professional organizations and by presenting papers at conferences in locations such as Durban (South Africa), Dublin (Ireland), Seattle, and Washington, DC. Since 2008, I have also taught a graduate level art librarianship course for the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Information.

How do you think Counterpoint Orchestra has shaped you as an individual?

The orchestra has allowed me to grow musically and to feel more integrated in the LGBTQ2S community in Toronto. With the amazing Classical repertoire program over the years, I’ve been so thankful to be able to play works from Bach to Beethoven to Brahms. It’s music that moves me profoundly, so being able to perform in such an affirming community orchestra environment is powerful. One of the highlights in my time with CCO would definitely be when we performed Beethoven’s 9th Symphony in celebration of the group’s 25th anniversary. When we finished playing and the audience rose to their feet in appreciation, I truly felt part of a larger community!

What is something you can find at counterpoint that you cant find anywhere else?

Equal minded people that believe art can change our world and make it a more humane place.

What would you want audiences to know about Counterpoint Community Orchestra?

That the orchestra is full of people that believe art can change our world and make it a more humane place

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