Prix Opus Montréal – Inclusion and diversity 2023
ClassiqueInclusif is a project that aims to elevate and celebrate diversity in classical music by presenting concerts curated by and in collaboration with performers, composers and community members from visual minorities and indigenous communities in the greater Montreal area.
The concerts presented as part of ClassiqueInclusif are framed under the theme Our Music, Our Stories, and aim to enable a platform for integration by celebrating the rich cultural heritages of the communities represented and by facilitating the sharing of stories of immigration, identity and belonging through music, poetry, and storytelling.
Since its launch in 2022, ClassiqueInclusif has presented four concerts curated for the Latino immigrant and refugee community of Montreal and the South Shore. With the help of partner institutions such as CAFLA (Centre d'aide aux familles latino-américaines) and the Refugee Centre, we have been able to identify and invite members of this community to take part in our concerts, presenting their stories of immigration. Their contributions to ClassiqueInclusif concerts were moving, powerful and festive.
In its 2023-2024 season, ClassiqueInclusif will present concerts for the Afro-descendant community and other immigrant and refugee communities in Montreal, featuring composers, musicians and members from these communities.
Artistic Director ClassiqueInclusif
Karin Cuellar Rendon
Born in Bolivia, Karin A. Cuellar Rendon is a Montreal-based historical violinist and scholar. Cuellar performs regularly with Montreal early music ensembles such as Ensemble Caprice, Arion, Les Boreades, and L’Harmonie des Saison.
As an advocate for inclusion, diversity, equity, and access in early music, she serves as co-chair of Early Music America’s IDEA Task Force. Cuellar is currently pursuing a PhD in Musicology at McGill University supported by the Fond de Recherche du Quebec with a research focus on performance practices in South America in the first half of the nineteenth century, using as a case study the music of Peruvian composer Pedro Ximenez Abrill Tirado (1784-1856).
Our Music, Our Stories
Concerts with audience participation and testimonies from members of diverse immigrant communities
Venezuelan community member
I never imagined that as soon as I arrived in Canada I was going to witness such a warm welcome and would have never thought to have the opportunity to share my story with other immigrants like me here. For me all of this is like a dream...when I was crossing the Darien Gap I never imagined that on the other side, I would be listening to the music of love and hope that you performed last night. God bless you all and multiply for you everything you are giving to us.
Dancer from Colombia
Thank you for the opportunity to dance with you.... Congratulations to all the musicians for such a spectacular group. I haven't seen a group like this for many years... I don't think ever; the soul with which each one surrenders to their instrument and to each piece of music moved me and touched my soul. Thank you for the best Christmas present ever. Many successes for all in 2023.... you are an incredible group.
Action Prévention Verdun
I find this a serious, meaningful and beautiful project and a great idea. Most of the people we help, dont even allow themselves to have any leisure time and dont even think they deserve it. You have shown them that they are important to you and that they have the right to access this high quality music making. The concerts were incredibly touching and wonderful, and I am sure these community members who participated will never forget of this chance of sharing their stories, of having their voices being heard, especially when as an immigrant in a new place we feel that we are voiceless. Thank you very much for all of this!