FOUNDATIONS: Life & Living

CHRISTOPHER DAWES’ musical life and ministry span genres, ideas, playing for royalty and the homeless, serving and seeking across what some consider to be musical divisions and segregated worlds. He has given solo recitals and accompanied choral tours across North America and Europe, and been broadcast repeatedly on domestic and international radio services.

He is a noted collaborative keyboardist and choral conductor, a veteran theatre musician and composer, and the occasional guest of jazz combos, gospel choirs, praise bands, contemporary music and opera companies. His work appears on over two dozen commercial CDs to date and has been heard in Canada’s greatest concert halls and organ lofts. A Toronto-based performer, thinker and media professional active in many facets of the musical scene, Chris works with many of the region’s top musical institutions

He serves as Organist and Director of Music to Toronto’s Rosedale Presbyterian Church, Accompanist to the Orpheus Choir of Toronto, Music Director of the 18-voice a capella Marion Singers of Greater Toronto, and Artistic Director to the 80-voice Georgetown Choral Society. For two decades he has served as Accompanist and Collaborative Musician to graduate and undergraduate instrumental and choral conducting programs of the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto, and as a Director of Canada’s Summer Institute of Church Music. He also currently serves, as Executive Chair, the Southern Ontario Chapter of the Hymn Society of the United States and Canada.

Chris’ passion is discovering and sharing all that is interesting and inspirational in music – and frankly, in every other area. His creation through the 1990s of the Toronto production/publication company “Organ Alternatives”, and later graduate work in the area of musical genre led eventually to blogging and podcasting under the banner “Ideas About Music,” speaking at conferences, and founding Toronto
Celtic-crossover band Chroí in 2013.

While keeping his other musical, ministerial and personal commitments and trying to make sense of the post-COVID world of music and ministry, he blogs on Tuesdays, tries to make every event he has a hand in presenting to be powerful, meaningful, and thought-provoking, and tries to remain open to a world of music and ideas he sees constantly unfolding along his travels. Originally from near Kingston, Ontario, Chris lives with his wife Marcia, their three teen-aged and rapidly growing and departing children, and their soul-mate dog Martha (a ‘potcake’ rescue from the Dominican Republic who has given far more than she has demanded in return), in Georgetown, Ontario.