List of Works || Hockey Night in Canada: A Game in 3 Periods

Hockey Night in Canada: A Game in 3 Periods (1985)

Choir, SATB, Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Bass

Duration: 3 minutes 30 seconds

First Performance: 12 April 1987, Toronto; Opera in Concert Chorus, Robert Cooper

Following a thirty-year break from choral writing, Weinzweig wrote seven choral works in short succession (from 1985-87), five of which were premiered by the Opera in Concert Chorus in April 1987. Among these new works was Hockey Night in Canada, a difficult and energetic work that seeks to evoke the three-period game in a short three and a half minutes.

The choir sings in mostly block rhythms, with an emphasis on terms and phrases routinely used by game commentators (e.g., “high shot,” “slap shot” and “there goes the whistle”); the transparent choral texture allows the text to be clearly discerned, a matter which was of great concern to Weinzweig. While the love the game comes through in the strong choral declarations, Weinzweig’s wit is not lost. The cacophony of voices builds towards a climatic cry: finally, “he scores!”

Written by Alexa Woloshyn