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Dragon’s Tale is an opera about a Chinese-Canadian woman who travels back in time to discover the rich history and mythology of dragon boating. Dragon’s Tale dives into the rich and sometimes tense dynamics of first and second-generation immigrants, exploring the fable of Chinese poet Qu Yuan as a foil to the journey of a young Chinese-Canadian woman Xiao Lian and her ailing father. Dragon’s Tale bursts with soaring music, song and storytelling, spanning continents and generations.  

We are thrilled to collaborate once again with composer Chan Ka Nin and librettist Mark Brownell, who created the oratorio The Weaving Maiden, commissioned and premiered by Soundstreams in Glenn Gould Studio in 2006. That work also explored how classic Chinese legends have resonance for our time and place. Dragon’s Tale is directed by Tapestry Opera’s Artistic Director, Michael Hidetoshi Mori, with Musical Direction by David Fallis featuring Choir 21 and Ensemble Soundstreams.


Founded in 2010 by Soundstreams’ Artistic Director Lawrence Cherney, Choir 21 is a  pre-eminent group of exceptional singers selected on a project basis by Music Director David Fallis. Soundstreams Choir 21 members are handpicked for their ability to perform contemporary choral music. They are drawn from a pool of professional choristers, including the Canadian Opera Company Chorus, Tafelmusik Choir, and The Elmer Iseler Singers. The choir appears in Soundstreams’ concerts under David Fallis and with renowned guest conductors such as James MacMillan, Tõnu Kaljuste and Péter Eötvös. Choir 21 has performed with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and for the Toronto International Film Festival, Art of Time, and Continuum. Choir 21 is committed to the highest possible standards for the performance of compelling new choral music in the 21st century.


Soundstreams has no permanent ensemble but has worked for more than twenty years with a nucleus group of some of Toronto and Canada’s finest instrumentalists assembled by the excellent cellist David Hetherington. As with Soundstreams’ Choir 21, they have appeared under esteemed international conductors of the stature of James MacMillan, Tõnu Kaljuste and Péter Eötvös. Ensemble Soundstreams made its first international tour to the Beijing Modern Music Festival and Taiwan’s National Concert Hall in 2013, returning to China in 2018 at the invitation of the Shanghai New Music Festival.


  • David Fallis, music director; Soundstreams’ Choir 21; Chan Ka Nin, music; Mark Brownell, libretto   
  • Alicia Ault, Xiao Lian (soprano); Evanna Lai, Mom/ Zhang Yi/ Woman Friend (mezzo); Mishael Eusebio, King/ Male Friend (tenor); Todd Jang, Qu Yuan/ Father (baritone)      

Dragon’s Tale is co-produced with Tapestry Opera and realised in partnership with the Luminato Festival Toronto and Harbourfront Centre.

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Fête Chinoise is a cultural platform that aims to empower individuals to deepen the connection between identity and Chinese culture. Through a curated lens and critical thinking, they present meaningful stories, artful experiences, and inspiring products and editorial content. Their mission is to move culture forward, through compelling editorial and design work surrounding the arts, tradition, lifestyle and community which are areas in the Chinese-Canadian community that suffer from the lack of representation and high-quality presentation.

All seating is general admission. Please arrive 15-30 minutes before the performance for the best seats. All performances are at Harbourfront Centre Concert Stage. Please allow additional time to reach the venue.

This is a free outdoor public performance on Toronto’s waterfront: please dress for the weather and bring layers for cooler evenings next to the water.

Accessible tickets can be booked using the Luminato Access Concierge service by emailing Emily Maxwell at [email protected] or by phone at (437) 776-1569‬.