Larry Beckwith has been a creative and varied contributor to Toronto’s musical life as a conductor, violinist, singer, writer, educator and programmer for over 30 years. He studied violin and musicology at the undergraduate and graduate levels at the University of Toronto and has since performed and worked with most of this city's leading musical organizations.
In 2003, Mr. Beckwith founded Toronto Masque Theatre, which — under his tireless and imaginative artistic leadership from 2003 to 2018 — presented over 75 innovative programs of interdisciplinary performing art, including a cycle of the five major music theatre works by Henry Purcell and stage works by Moliere, Stravinsky, John Blow, John Beckwith, Monteverdi, Handel, Charpentier and others. Through TMT, Mr. Beckwith commissioned and premiered new works by Canadian composers Abigail Richardson, James Rolfe, Omar Daniel, Juliet Palmer, Dean Burry and Alice Ho with texts/libretti by James Reaney, André Alexis, Steven Heighton, Pablo Neruda, Anna Chatterton and Marjorie Chan. Ho's The Lesson of Da Ji won the 2013 Dora Mavor Moore Award for Best New Opera and was released in November, 2015 on the Canadian Music Centre's Centrediscs label, conducted by Mr. Beckwith.
In September of 2018, Mr. Beckwith's eclectic new company Confluence Concerts had its first event and has since been going from strength to strength. Since 2012’s Toronto Operetta Theatre production of Taptoo!, Mr. Beckwith has conducted many productions for TOT and Opera in Concert, including Los Gavilanes, Ernest, the Importance of Being, La Vie Parisienne, Rodelinda and Salieri’s Falstaff. In the summer of 2018, he conducted the successful Festival of the Sound world premiere and subsequent Ontario tour of SOUNDING THUNDER: THE SONG OF FRANCIS PEGAHMAGABOW by Timothy Corlis and Armand Garnet Ruffo. In 2019, in collaboration with director Isaiah Bell, he conducted Handel’s Acis and Galatea at the University of Victoria and the University of Toronto. Mr. Beckwith is a committed educator and runs the celebrated voice and strings program at the arts-intensive Unionville High School, as well as conducting the Mooredale Senior Youth Orchestra.