Musical Moment: Listen to TSO Double Basses Timothy Dawson and Paul Rogers play a special piece at Toronto Zoo

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The Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) and the Toronto Zoo have teamed up for a new creative collaboration called “Zoophony”, which will explore the musical side of animal sounds and the animal side of musical sounds for younger audiences.

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digital concert This week was filmed on site at the Toronto Zoo and will be released in schools on November 22, 2021.

The digital concert collaboration for young audiences is part of a wider partnership between the zoo and TSO to explore new and creative ways to serve their communities.


TSO double bass Timothy Dawson and Paul Rogers took a break from filming and performed their piece written specifically for “Zoophony” to perform their piece called double bass number 10, “Mother and Calf”. Sean Rogers (Paul’s son and a bass player himself) wrote “mother and calf” specifically for the Masai Giraffe of the Toronto Zoo. Three short sections of the piece depict the giraffe walking and reaching with its neck towards the food, the sound of a baby giraffe, and, at night, the low humming sounds of a giraffe. The piece ends with a happy ending.

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This concert is best suited for kids from Kindergarten to Class 4. It lasts about 45 minutes, and will include 21 musicians from TSO and several animals from the Toronto Zoo. “Zophony” is a unique opportunity to connect youth with wildlife and music, and hopes to ignite the imagination and curiosity of children everywhere.

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