Summer Book and Music Sale

Summer Book and Music Sale

Saturdays and Sundays – 10am to 5pm
All July and August

The online sale and Summer Sale both start on July 4th!

Click here to access the Online Book & Music Sale

Thanks to the incredible Book and Music Sale volunteers we’re launching a one-of-a-kind Summer Sale!

We have set up the Book and Music Sale Warehouse at 602 B 51st that observes public health recommendations for social distancing. We’re taking every precaution to ensure that all shoppers and volunteers are safe.

The Book and Music Sale is an integral part of what makes the SSO. In its more than 3 decades, the sale has always been a major supporter of the SSO’s work, but this year the proceeds raised by the sale will make an even greater impact on making sure the SSO is around for years to come.

The sale features a sampling of everything (books, CDs, vinyl, etc), but as we ensure the ability to social distance we will have a limited stock out. It will be refreshed for each weekend.  We’re thankful that you understand we don’t have the capacity to have the same volume of stock we’re all used to at sales – but we’re thrilled to help you find that book/record you’ve been waiting for!

And for the first time ever, we’re launching an online portion of the sale!
The online sale is grouped into sections (alphabetic by section) and will feature a constantly refreshing stock. Books in the online sale are only available in the online sale, and will be available for contactless pick up at the SSO by appointment. Check back on July 4th for the online sale launch.

Important information:

We will limit it to 10 shoppers at a time. We have the space to do more, but prefer to be extra cautious. Expect to line up outside during busy periods.

We will have hand sanitizer to be used at the door and throughout the space. We ask that everyone uses, frequently.

All shoppers will need to wear face masks. Please come wearing your mask!

The layout of the room is being set up so that you’ll follow the path all the way from entrance to till – similar to the arrows on the floor at grocery stores, you’ll have to make sure you’re paying attention to which direction you’re going!

We ask you to use Tap to pay. In an effort to keep everyone safe, we’re asking everyone use tap on their debit and credit. We can also take cheques, but we are discouraging cash purchases.

We are NOT accepting donations of books/CDs/vinyl/etc to the Book and Music Sale.
Right now, we have far too much stock to be able to process any donations of boxes of books – we love that people are wanting to donate, but for now we’ll have to wait.

SSO For You

It’s strange to not be able to make music with your friends – and even stranger that we weren’t getting to make music FOR our friends!

While we all stay home to flatten the curve, the SSO wanted to bring you some special programming to enjoy from the comfort of your home.  Eric and the musicians have been busy working with the staff to create ways to connect with you during this time!

Meet the Musicians in Your Neighbourhood

Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7pm on at

Join Maestro Eric Paetkau every Tuesday and Thursday on Facebook live for a chance to talk to the musicians that make the SSO awesome.  Each episode gets chatty and explores how each person came to call Saskatoon home, their musical influences, and so much more!

Click to watch

Classical Now on CFCR

Mondays, 7:00-8:30pm on CFCR

Join our ED Mark Turner each Monday night for Classical Now – dig deeper into your music library and find out more about the behind the scenes stories of composers/performers and their music.  Discover music new and old and maybe even learn something on the way!

Online Performances

We are going to be sharing some music with you – some from past performances, and some filmed just for social media.  It’s a mix of stuff you’ll know well and stuff you should know better (it slaps, as the kids would say!).  We’ll be posting videos on Faecbook, Instagram, and YouTube – so keep your eyes pealed!

SSO Trivia!

with Richard and Stephanie – dates TBD

If you’ve been to one of our After Dark performances, you’ll know what we’re talking about!  From the musicians who brought you “Name that Tune on the Bassoon” and that weird thing with the cheese, we’re going to have a few trivia nights led by Richard and Stephanie to test your knowledge of all things pub-trivia mixed in with some music!

Beethoven 250 Festival

May 2nd to 8th

The festival week we had planned may have had to be cancelled, but we’ve got something up our sleeves for the stay-at-home edition.  Join us for some learn opportunities, catch some music, get interactive with the SSO!  Details announced soon!

Kids Learning Opportunities

Every day at 10am we’re posting a cool activity for your kids to try out – head over to our Facebook and check out the daily activity.


And more…

We have a bunch of plans in the works – maybe you’ll learn about the 12 most important symphonies ever, or how to make a double reed!  We are adjusting to this new world of having to connect with each other and with all of you in new ways – and its going to be a unique way to make music more during this difficult times!

Classical Music Online For You

With the impact of COVID-19 being felt around the globe, its become even more clear that music is something we all need at this time – and while we can’t gather together for performances, the classical music world is moving online as quickly as possible!

So we wanted to pull together some of our top picks for where to catch some brilliant performances online during this time.

Berlin Philharmonic Digital Concert Hall

One of the world’s most beloved classical music institutions has a 30 day free trial available of their Digital Concert Hall.  With that 30 day trial, you have access to hundreds of hours of music and live performances that you can enjoy!
You do have to sign up for the 30 day free trial.

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LA Phil

The Los Angeles Philharmonic has made itself an orchestra in a class of its own.  Their LA Phil Watch and Listen is always available and always free – they’ve got everything from concerts to interviews and more!

Click for More

Metropolitan Opera

The Met’s HD Broadcasts changed the game over a decade ago – and now they’re bringing you an HD Broadcast everyday on their website.  They announce their weekly line up the week before, and the videos are live on their website for 24hrs.

Click for More

Saskatoon Public Library – Naxos Music Library

Here’s something very special for folks with a library card!
You can sign on to the Saskatoon Public Library’s Digital Library Resources and with that you have full access to the Naxos Classical Music Library – it’s one of the largest online streaming systems and brings you a remarkable wealth of things to listen to!

Click for Digital Library

Enjoy the SSO!

We have lots of online opportunities you can enjoy from home:

On our Facebook –

Kids Music Activity -a special musical education activity to posted everyday at 10am

Take a Listen to This – a piece of music we think you’ll love, posted everyday at 8:30pm

Meet the Musicians in Your Neighbourhood – hosted by Eric Paetkau – Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7pm
Eric is joined by musicians in the SSO, and friends of the SSO, in conversations about music, life, and more.  When the chats are live, you can ask questions too!

Video Archive
We’ll be releasing some videos from past concerts – including our performances of Piazzolla’s Four Season of Buenos Aires


Rebecca Dale

Saturday, March 7th will feature a North American premiere of Rebecca Dale’s reflective Materna Requiem. If you’re thinking that you don’t know the music of Rebecca Dale, we’re telling you this is a must hear!

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Rebecca Dale is a British composer of screen and concert musicBorn in 1985, Rebecca started composing from a very young age, completing her first full musical at age 10 and piano concerto at 15. After school music scholarships, she studied at Oxford University (New College) and the National Film and Television School, and holds an MA with distinction in Composing for Film & Television. Her 2015 debut self-release for choir and orchestra, I’ll Sing, rose up the classical charts and was Classic FMChoral Classic of the Week. Her next release, Soay, spent five weeks at Classical No.1 and was named Classic FM 2016 album of the year. In 2017, Dale won a coveted place on the Sundance Composer Lab.

Check out this recording of Soay released in January 2019!

Most recently her track ‘Winter’, commissioned by bestselling vocal group Voces8 for their album of the same name, was described by Gramophone magazine as a “masterpiece”. A follow up album is due for release this year. Dale also recently composed original music for the BBC Christmas drama series, Little Women.

Dale has been involved in projects for 20th Century FoxDisneyWorking TitleThe Weinstein Co. and the BBC, and her score for Crossing The Line was nominated for best original music in feature film at the 2017 international Music & Sound Awards. She has recorded and conducted orchestral works at Abbey Road, Air Studios, George Lucas’s Skywalker Ranch and Fox Studios, Hollywood. Dale’s Full length albumRequiemwas released by Decca Classics in August 2018.

Hailed by Classic FM as “one of today’s most exciting young composers” and “a household name in years to come”, Rebecca Dale made history when in 2018 she became the first female composer to sign to Universal Music’s Decca Classics label, and the first woman to sign to Decca Publishing. In September her debut album recorded with the Royal Liverpool PhilharmonicRequiem For My Mother, smashed into the UK album charts at No.1 in the specialist Classical charts.

Here is a sneak peak of Materna Requiem – the Pie Jesu. The intention of this movement is to capture the feeling of a father singing to their newborn.

Originally mentored by Golden Globe-nominated Alex Heffes (“Last King of Scottland”) and Emmy-nominated Maurizio Malagnini (“Call the Midwife”), Rebecca has worked on films like Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, director Stephen Frears’ The Program, action film The Take starring Idris Elba, BBC period drama series The Paradise and The Secret Agent, famous US Miniseries remake Roots, Touching the Void Live and BBC’s Frozen Planet Live and Disney’s Queen of Katwe directed by Mira Nair.  She was a judge for Northern Ireland’s inaugural Royal Television Society Programme Awards, is a Berlinale Talents alumna and BAFTA Crew participant, and has been a regular interview guest on BBC Radio 3.

As a concert composer Rebecca has written for numerous classical artists and ensembles including Mari & Hakon Samuelson, the London Mozart Players, the Scottish Festival Orchestra, the Latvian Opera Orchestra, musicians of the London Symphony Orchestra, percussionst Joby Burgess and cellists Richard Harwood, Benjamin Hughes and Oliver Coates. She is a fellow of the prestigious MacDowell Colony in New Hampshire (notable composer alumni include Leonard Bernstein and Aaron Copland), and has been an associate composer with the London Symphony Orchestra on its Soundhub programme. She also directs and writes extensively for choral groups, was commissioned by Canterbury Cathedral Girls Choir for their debut album, and was 2017-18 Composer in Residence for the London Oriana Choir as part of its five15 project. I’ll Sing was performed at Cadogan Hall with ensemble and orchestra from the London opera houses, as part of the charity concert for Grenfell Tower.

She plays the violin and piano, and likes odd socks.

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Materna Requiem – Subscriber Perks

We’ve got some great perks for our Subscribers!

We are so excited about our concert on March 7th, Materna Requiem. This will be a North American premiere of Rebecca Dale‘s masterpiece, and we want all of our subscribers to be able to experience it in an even more intimate way – by attending a rehearsal at no extra charge! Here you will be able to witness the program before the evening’s performance, offering an opportunity to immerse yourself deeper in the work. Maestro Eric Paetkau will work the orchestra, guest soloists Spencer McKnight and Chelsea Mahan, and the Greystone Singers and Aurora Voce choirs to ensure everyone has a unified vision.

The dress rehearsal on Saturday, March 7th (starting strictly at 1:00pm), will be open to all subscribers to watch upon registering. To take advantage of this unique experience, you must register by February 28th with Matthew via email at, or by calling the office Monday-Friday 10:00am-3:00pm at (306) 665-6414 – please inquire for more information.

And how about something special for our ambitious concertgoers – we are implementing our “Inside the Sound” subscriber perk, where a small handful of people can sit scattered amongst the orchestra during a preliminary evening rehearsal (Thursday, March 5th or Friday, March 6th). Here you will be able to see an in-depth look at the rehearsal process, from the musicians perspective! The specific date will be decided once we can poll those who have requested to be a part of this – please don’t shy away! Email Matthew at or call the SSO office (306) 665-6414 to find out more information and secure one of the few spots!

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Materna Requiem

What does “In Concert Live to Film” mean anyways?

As we get closer to our performance of Disney’s The Little Mermaid In Concert Live to Film we are getting a lot of questions about what that actually means. While this is a first for us there are several orchestras in North America, and really all over the world, who have a whole variety of these shows. The National Arts Centre Orchestra has Mary Poppins In Concert Live to Film in February, the Vancouver Symphony is presenting one of the Harry Potter films, several orchestras show Home Alone over Christmas, and there are several other In Concert Live to Film options from Disney available at any time if you are willing to do some travel.

But what does it mean? What is the actual concert experience? Here are some answers to your In Concert Live to Film Frequently Asked Questions (or ICLFFAQ for short).


Is it the full Little Mermaid film we all know and love?

Yes! The whole movie will be playing above the orchestra on a large screen. Here’s a mock-up so you know what it will look like.

Is there an intermission?

We will have an intermission at the halfway mark. Snack breaks are important.

Whose voices will we hear?

All the dialogue and singing is from the original film, so you can think of it as reverse karaoke! You will hear the 1989 cast of Jodi Benson as Ariel, Christopher Daniel Barnes as Prince Eric, René Auberjonois as Chef Louis (we see you Deep Space Nine fans), and all the other iconic voices you know and love being accompanied by your Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra.









We know Sebastian. It’s amazing what you can do these days!

How will the SSO match the movie playing above them?

Music Director Eric Paetkau will be leading the charge. Eric will have a click track, essentially a metronome, in his ear that is synched with the film, and there will be a special version of the film on a laptop next to him so he can keep all the cues in time. It’s the same set up we’ve had for other concerts with film so Eric is a pro!

Have any other questions about what to expect at The Little Mermaid In Concert Live to Film? Let us know!

There are a handful of tickets left for this show so make sure you stop by the TCU Place box office before they sell out!

SSO Top 5 Stocking Stuffers!

Whether you know someone that goes our shows regularly or has yet to experience what we have to offer, tickets to the SSO are a great way to brighten your Christmas gift giving! And though the season has already begun, there are still many concerts not even listed in this top 5 that are waiting to be discovered.

5. Mozart’s Flute

– A great finale to our mini-Mozart week

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Leading up to the concert, there will be several other Mozart-themed shows that will take you on a journey through the mix of Mozart’s compositions.

Naomi Ford will be our guest that evening for the Flute Concerto No. 1. At the age of 16, she was the Grand Awards winner at the National Music Festival of Canada in 2017, and more recently named an Award of Excellence winner with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada in 2019. She is from New Brunswick, and is currently studying at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia with Jeffrey Khaner. It will be a night to remember!

Mozart’s Flute Concerto

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4. Accent with the SSO

– vocal jazz with orchestra

Saturday, March 21, 2020

They may not be joining us for Christmas, but Danny Fong and Andrew Kesler will be coming home for this performance. They with their 4 colleagues form the vocal jazz group ACCENT.

Accent with the SSO

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3. Rebecca Dale’s Materna Requiem

– North American Premier of a UK work!

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Rebecca Dale is the first female composer ever to signed with Universal Music’s Decca Classics label and Decca Publishing – and that was only last year! Her masterwork, Materna Requiem, is absolutely stunning. You do not want to miss the opportunity to see this!

This performance will include soloists Chelsea Mahan and Spencer McKnight, and SSO will be joined by the University of Saskatchewan Greystone Singers.

Materna Requiem

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2. Gift Certificates

– never expires!

We get it – people are busy, schedules change, life can be hectic. That’s why we have the gift certificate option!

Put any dollar amount on the card, and we guarantee that it will never expire until every cent is used up. That way, whoever you give it to can pick the concert that best fits them!

Call – (306) 665-6414

Visit the office – 602B 51st Street – Monday-Friday – 10:00am-3:00pm

1. Disney’s “The Little Mermaid”

– Watch the movie with LIVE MUSIC

Saturday, January 25, 2020

How could you pass up the chance to relive the music of this classic Disney film? Answer – you can’t! The evening will delight those well accustomed to the songs, and will capture those hearing them for the first time.

Act fast, because tickets are already selling fast!

The Little Mermaid

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Messiah Artist -Lisa Hornung

Lisa Hornung

Having performed across Western Canada, the United States, and Europe, Lisa is always happy to be close to home with the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra. And so are we! Lisa has long been a favourite of SSO audiences for her emotionally deep performances of Messiah.

She has been acclaimed for performances in repertoire ranging from Baroque to contemporary composers; her voice has been called rich and powerful and her stage presence has inspired audiences and musicians alike.

After completing a Bachelor of Music in Voice Performance at the University of Saskatchewan (Professor Dorothy Howard), Lisa went on to further her studies at the Institute of Vocal Arts in Chiari, Italy. This was followed by an intensive study time at Southern Illinois University (Mr. Richard Best). Later she completed a year of study, with the support of the Saskatchewan Arts Board, working with Mr. Nico Castel, Dr. Everett McCorvey, Dr. Cliff Jackson, Dr. Bill Cooper, Professor Micheal McMahon, Professor Tedrin Lindsey, and Mr. Richard Best.

Lisa believes that every child deserves the opportunity to sing, and runs a non-audition Community Youth Choir that provides this place. For several years she directed the Meota Men’s Choir, a non-audition men’s choir that was very active in the Battlefords and surrounding area. Lisa has gained a deeper appreciation and love of choral arts through her continued work as vocal coach for Cantilon and Belle Canto, professional touring choirs based in Edmonton, Alberta, under the direction Heather Johnson.

Lisa is the founder and director of Summer School for the Solo Voice, a week long study and performance opportunity for singers, choral conductors, accompanists and voice teachers of all ages and abilities. Growing from a local to a national, and now, international program, SSSV celebrated its 20th Anniversary in July, 2017.

In October of 2017, Lisa was presented with the Saskatchewan Music Educators Association’s Outstanding Achievement Award. She has also been bestowed as one of the University of Saskatchewan’s Arts and Science Alumni of Influence.

Lisa lives in North Battleford with her husband John.

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A Child’s Christmas in Wales

Part of our exciting celebration on December 7th will be telling of A Child’s Christmas in Wales.

The popular prose of Dylan Thomas‘ recollection of Christmases past were made famous by Caedmon Records in 1952 as being one of the earliest commercial audiobooks, with Thomas’ own voice telling the story. The reminiscent lines were a last minute addition to the LP that opened the general market for audio recorded books. This time it will be Dr. Garry Gable returning to help us bring the tales to life.

Selected excerpts of these childhood stories are further imagined with Gary Fry‘s orchestrations.

Fry’s version was commissioned not as long ago back in 2003 for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. You will be able to hear the familiar tunes “Good King Wenceslas” and an exuberant Celtic version of “Hark! the Herald Angels Sing” sung by the returning choirs – University Chorus (James Hawn) and University of Saskatchewan Greystone Singers (Dr. Jennifer Lang)!

There may, or may not be some sleigh riding going on later in the concert, too… But you will just have to come to find out!

See you at the Symphony, and Merry Christmas!

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Come join Elly Thorn and Dean McNeill in the Holiday Cheer!

With holiday preparations in full swing, the SSO would love to give you some Christmas cheer on Saturday, December 7th! Our cocnert Christmas with the SSO will feature many guests with the orchestra, including two very special people…

Dean McNeill – trumpet

He should look familiar!

Dean McNeill has been with the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra for over 20 years, and it is our pleasure feature him in this concert.

Our local trumpet player and composer is a Full Professor at the University of Saskatchewan, directing the University of Saskatchewan Jazz Ensemble, the Saskatoon Jazz Orchestra, and leading the Saskatoon Jazz Society’s Jazz Workshop program. He has received the University of Saskatchewan Department of Music’s Dwaine Nelson Teaching Award for his past administrative service as Department Head in 2004-2009, and a Special Recognition Award from the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival for his contributions to jazz in Saskatchewan. You can hear his stellar playing on the album O Music as soloist with the composition Kalla which won the 2012 Western Canadian Music Award for Classical Composition of the Year.

As a Yamaha artist, Dean has performed as a guest artist with the National Youth Band of Canada, as well as with professional ensembles such as the Winnipeg, Edmonton, Vancouver Jazz Orchestras and the Calgary Creative Arts Ensemble. He has performed alongside the likes of Kenny Wheeler, Pat LaBarbera, Michael Cain, Hugh Fraser, Tom Banks, Brad Turner, Kelly Jefferson, David Braid, Bob Mintzer, Denzal Sinclaire, PJ Perry, Ingrid Jensen, Jon Balantyne, Campbell Ryga and many others.

You can hear more of him on his two albums Prairie Fire: Large Jazz Ensemble Music of Dean McNeill and Mélange: New Music For Trumpet and Piano, and most recently composed repertoire on Complete Rebirth of the Cool.

Elly Thorn – vocalist

Performing artist Elly Thorn was raised in the small Saskatchewan community of Saltcoats. Typical of rural life, Elly took music lessons as a way to fill the long, hot prairie summer and cold winter days that keep you stuck indoors. She began her musical career touring with Saskatchewan Express, as well as the Canadian Heritage Society’s Spirit of a Nation.

Elly studied at the Canadian College of Performing Arts in Victoria, B.C, performed aboard Norwegian Cruise Lines, has acted in TV series like Rabbit Fall and Corner Gas, and appeared in stage adaptations of Evita and Toon Town with Saskatoon’s Persephone Theatre.

With the performance on December 7th as Elly’s debut with the SSO, we will welcome her original compositions and hope to share her excitement with the audience as she lives through this songwriter’s dream. You will even have the opportunity to take home her newest album of Christmas music, releasing the night of the concert!

Spoiler – one of the songs that will be featured that evening will be “There’s a Heaven”, and will be great reminder to cherish all the good family moments that you can:

I wrote is this song almost four years ago, two days after I heard about a young family whose lives were taken in a car accident.  The tragedy shook me to the core because we also had little ones of similar ages.  We were in the midst of putting away Christmas for the year, feeling that excitement and love as the festive season once again comes to a close when I heard the news.  I felt broken and shaky, without even knowing who they were. We are all so connected, even more than we realize – we feel each others pain, energy, joys and brokenness… but we heal together too. I am a great believer that music heals.

Check out this recent tribute of Elly’s to what can often be a very “busy” time of year.

Christmas with the SSO

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