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The Royal Occasion

The Royal Occasion

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The Royal Occasion is The Royal Conservatory of Music’s signature fundraising gala event celebrating excellence in shaping and supporting our music landscape.


This year's recipients of honorary fellowships are:

Yannick Seguin Photo
James and Louise Temerty
Chilly Gonzales


Postponement of The Royal Occasion

Dear Friends of The Royal Conservatory of Music,

As we navigate this unprecedented time, it is our responsibility to consider the well-being of our many Royal Conservatory communities, including our generous patrons and those directly involved in our annual fundraising gala, The Royal Occasion.

As such, we have made the difficult but necessary decision to postpone this year's Royal Occasion, co-chaired by Rayla and George Myhal and scheduled for May 26, until such time that social interactions are once again fully possible.

Uncertain circumstances do not allow us to be more specific about timing, but we look forward to the day when it is safe and appropriate to once again come together with our community of supporters, to recognize extraordinary champions of the arts, and enjoy each other’s company.

We thank you for your understanding. It is in times like these that we even more deeply appreciate the value of community and the power of music to provide comfort and healing.

If you have any questions, please contact Sarah Dineen, Manager, Fundraising and Stewardship Events, at [email protected] or 647.953.5898.

About the 2020 Honorary Fellows 

Yannick Nézet-Séguin became the third Music Director of the Metropolitan Opera in New York in September 2018. He has held the role of Music Director of the Philadelphia Orchestra since 2012, and the Orchestre Métropolitain de Montréal since 2000. He also became Honorary Conductor of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra after being their Music Director from 2008 to 2018. In 2016-17, he joined fellow maestros Nikolaus Harnoncourt and Bernard Haitink to become the third-ever Honorary Member of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. In September 2019, on the cusp of his 20th season with the Orchestre Métropolitain de Montréal, Nézet-Séguin announced the lifetime renewal of his contract with them. He has conducted the Orchestre Métropolitain in Koerner Hall on two occasions.

As philanthropists and senior volunteers, Jim and Louise Temerty have made significant contributions to arts and culture in Canada and abroad. Their generous support of The Royal Conservatory, which includes multiple major gifts and annual scholarships, has been recognized with the naming of Temerty Theatre and the Temerty Orchestral Program at The Glenn Gould School. In 2007, the Royal Ontario Museum named the James and Louise Temerty Galleries of the Age of the Dinosaurs in recognition of the couple’s outstanding contribution to the transformative Renaissance ROM campaign. The Temertys maintain and foster strong connections with the Ukrainian community and are devoted to numerous Ukrainian cultural causes across Canada and in Ukraine.

Chilly Gonzales, a Grammy Award-winning Canadian pianist and entertainer, as well as an alumnus of the Conservatory, is known as much for the intimate piano touch of his best-selling Solo Piano album trilogy as for his showmanship and composition for award-winning stars. He performs and writes songs with Jarvis Cocker, Feistand Drake, and holds the Guinness World Record for the longest solo concert at over 27 hours. In 2014, he won a Grammy for his collaboration on Daft Punk’s Best Album of the Year. Most recently, one of Gonzales’ compositions was included in the 2015 RCM Certificate Program piano curriculum, and he also inaugurated his own music school: The Gonzervatory. Gonzales has appeared in concert in Koerner Hall on four occasions and was commissioned by The Royal Conservatory to write a piece for its inaugural 21C Music Festival in 2015. Gonzales starts the Canadian leg of his latest tour on January 13 before going to Europe in March.

Click here to read the full press release.