gallery 345

Gallery 345
345 Sorauren Avenue
Toronto ON M6R 2G5

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Past concerts at Gallery 345.

2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014  | 2013  | 201220112010 2009  |  2008

Chamber Opera for Clarinet and Piano

Saturday April 14, 2018 at 2 pm
Tickets: $20 (Cash only at the door) 
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Mitchell Yolevsky, clarinet
Madison Ryley Arsenault, vocals
Deena Nicklefork, vocals 
Hye Won Lee, piano


1st Act:

  1. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)
    "Parto! ma tu ben mio." (from La Clemenza di Tito)
    Vocal-Madison Ryley Arsenault 
    Piano-Hye Won Lee
    Clarinet-Mitch Yolevsky
  2. Luigi Bassi (1833-1871)
    "Fantasia Da Concerto (based off of Verdi's Rigoletto)
    Piano-Hye Won Lee
    Clarinet-Mitch Yolevsky
  3. Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868)
    "Theme and Variations"
    Piano-Hye Won Lee
    Clarinet-Mitch Yolevsky


2nd Act:

  1. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) 
    "Non Piu Di Fiori (from La Clemenza di Tito)
    Vocal-Deena Nicklefork
    Piano-Hye Won Lee
    Clarinet-Mitch Yolevsky
  2. Carl Maria Von Weber (1786-1826)  
    Grand Duo Concertant
    Piano-Hye Won Lee
    Clarinet-Mitch Yolevsky

Mitchell Yolevsky is a unique performing clarinettist musician based in Toronto Canada.  Mitchell enjoys performing both composed and improvised music and is open to various forms of musical collaboration.  Mitchell obtained a bachelor of performance in clarinet from the University of Toronto and will continue performing indefinitely.

Madison Arsenault obtained a Master’s of Music in Voice Performance and Literature at Western University under the tutelage of Anita Krause-Wiebe. She made her operatic debut in 2012 as Cherubino in Mozart’s ‘The Marriage of Figaro’ with SOLT. Madison was featured as a soloist for Orchestra London with The Canadian Operatic Arts Academy. She was also featured as The Secretary in Menotti’s “The Consul” with UWOpera that year. In 2013, Madison made her international debut as “Giulietta” in Offenbach’s “Les Contes D’Hoffmann” with FIO Americas in São Paulo, Brazil. She was also seen as the title role in Britten’s “The Rape of Lucretia” with UWOpera that same year. During the summer of 2014, Madison was in England performing the title role in "Iolanthe" with Yorkshire Opera Workshop, and back in Canada to sing Ježibaba in Dvorjak’s “Rusalka” with Halifax Summer Opera Festival. In 2015, she traveled to Lucca, Italy to perform the title role in Handel’s “Rinaldo” with AEDO. This past year, Madison performed the roles of Sesto in Mozart’s “Clemenza di Tito” with Opera By Request, and Hansel in Humperdinks classic tale “Hansel & Gretel” with Grande Prairie Opera.

In 2016 Madison became a certified yoga instructor.  Confident in the benefits a regular yoga practice has for singers, she plans to specialize her teachings in yoga for singers. She has been teaching music full time and hopes to combine her two passions and share the incredible practice that is yoga with her peers in the music industry.

H.W. Cecilia Lee is a diverse freelancer musician based in Toronto, Canada. She collaborates on all three major keyboard forms, from full – orchestral and graphic score readings to figured/unfigured continuo parts and traditional classical piano writing.
Dr. Lee received her DMA at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (2008) with Paul Barnes and Nicole Narboni, with generous support from Hixon – Lied Scholarship and Creative Activity Grant. Her teachers include Lynda Metelsky, University of Toronto (BME, 2004), Jack Winerock and Robert Koenig, University of Kansas (MMus, 2006). In addition, she studied organ/harpsichord (Douglas Bodle, Eugene Gates), clavichord (Gerhard Erber, Hochschule für Musik, Leipzig), fortepiano (Bart van Oort, Netherland).
Dr. Lee have attended numerous international festivals with scholarships: Institute and Festival for Contemporary Performance at Mannes College (USA), Juilliard – Leipzig Summer Academy (USA- Germany), Casalmaggiore International Music Festival (Italy), Pablo Casals Music Festival (France), Banff Centre of Arts String/Winds Masterclasses, 2009 Winter and Fall residency (Canada). In addition to performing, Ms. Lee is an active recording engineer, working with Faculty of Music, University of Toronto and various freelance projects in the city, and recently started writing for Ludwig-Van-Toronto.
Find Lee on facebook | reverbnation |

Deena Nicklefork is thrilled to be performing with Mitch once again! Deena has had the privilege of singing across Europe, but her favourite stage will always be in Toronto. Past performances include: Cio-Cio San "MADAMA BUTTERFLY", S.O.L.T.; Donna Elvira "DON GIOVANNI", F.A.V.A.; Judit "BLUEBEARD'S CASTLE", OBR; Santuzza "CAVALLERIA RUSTICANA", OBR; Rusalka "RUSALKA", OBR; Marschallin "DER ROSENKAVALIER", OBR. Upcoming performances include: Musette "LA BOHEME", OBR; Cio-Cio San "MADAMA BUTTERFLY", OBR; Donna Elvira "DON GIOVANNI", PSOW. Thank you always to my family and friends for their continuous love and support. Phil 4:13. 

Marilyn Lerner - piano
Andrew Downing - bass
Patricia O’Callaghan - voice

Friday April 6, 2018 at 8 pm
Tickets: $25/$10 (student) (Cash only at the door)

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An evening combining classical songs and jazz improvisation, with music spanning over 250 years, featuring the songs of Rameau, Fauré, Poulenc, Debussy, Satie, Messaien, Barbara, Serge Gainsbourg, and Artur H, featuring three world-renowned Canadian artists.

Patricia O'Callaghan is something of a wandering minstrel, with six solo albums and many interesting collaborations along the way. A speaker of French, Spanish, and German, her early recordings focused on European cabaret, but one of Patricia's most unique talents is the ability to blend a variety of languages and musical genres seamlessly together in her concerts, and completely embody whatever style she is singing at any given moment. “This Toronto soprano can sing a 100-year-old German tune so lustily that you almost don't need a translation to know that someone's about to get his throat cut or get laid or both." (The National Post) "O'Callaghan sings her diverse material as if it was always meant to go side-by-side and by the end of the evening, it's easy to believe her." (Chart Attack)

Genre defying pianist/improviser Marilyn Lerner performs to acclaim internationally, from her native Montreal to Havana, from Jerusalem to Amsterdam and the Ukraine. Her groundbreaking recordings have garnered much recognition, including her 2 solo recordings Luminance and Romanian Fantasy and Special Angel with Sonny Greenwich. Her intimate knowledge of the piano, combined with a fearless experimental and passionate spirit render her a true original. Lerner’s work spans the worlds of jazz, creative improvisation, klezmer, and 20th century classical music. In 2016, Lerner/Filiano/Grassi- Live at Edgefest, was released on vinyl by NoBusiness Records, and in 2017 her trio, Ugly Beauties (Matt Brubeck, cello and Nick Fraser, drums) released its second CD, Strange Attractors.

Andrew Downing is a Toronto based double bass player, cellist, composer and bandleader. He plays primarily in the creative jazz scene in Canada, but also performs classical chamber music, improvised music, folk and roots music, and world music. His projects include MELODEON, a 7-piece chamber ensemble that performs live music to silent films and ANAHTAR, a Turkish-Canadian project inspired by his yearly visits to İstanbul, Turkey and OTTERVILLE, a quiet jazz ensemble. He has composed music for The Vancouver Bach Choir, the Prince George Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra London, and he has arranged music for The Gryphon Trio, the Art of Time Ensemble and Patricia O’Callaghan. He has won two Juno awards for work with his group The Great Uncles of the Revolution and Zubot and Dawson and performs regularly with David Occhipinti, The Lina Allemano Four, Jayme Stone and Patricia O’Callaghan.

The Art of the Piano: Cathy Yang & Benyamin Nuss
FABLES: piano music from Debussy to Uematsu

Wednesday April 4, 2018 at 8 pm 
Tickets: $20 (Cash at the door)
Reserve tickets at or online at Eventbrite

"Fables" combines the diverse colours an​​d dream worlds of classical French piano music and video game scores. Come and explore the worlds full  of fantasy and imagination found in piano works of the French Impressionism and in the gaming and virtual worlds of Final Fantasy and Saga Frontier.  Hear the pictures created by the sounds and the sounds inspired by the imagination. 


At the age of 7 Cathy Yang  started her musical career with Prof. Zhaoyi Dan in China. Soon after she immigrated to Canada and continued her musical journey with Vladimir Niurenberg in Toronto. Her professional musical studies were completed with Prof. Ilja Scheps at the Universityof Music and Dance Cologne (Germany) with a Masters degree in piano performance. While in Canada, she participated and received prizes in many regional piano festivals and also in the nation-wide Canadian Music Competition. In 2006, she won two first prizes at the solo and concerto competition at Ithaca College in New York, USA.

In May 2006, she was invited by the Vladimir Spivakov International Foundation as one of two representatives from Canada to participate in their music festival Moscow Meets Friends. Performing in the Central Music School in Moscow, Russia, she shared the stage with some of the most talented young musicians from around the world.

In 2010, Cathy won the third prize in her age category at the International Piano Competition Vila de Capdepera in Spain.

While in Aachen, Germany she was invited multiple times by the Collegium Musicum orchestra of the RWTH Aachen to perform as the soloist in the piano concertos of Mozart, Beethoven  and Chopin. She also performed in Poland  with various orchestras. As a member of Aix Alma Trio she toured several times  in Germany.

Cathy lives in Toronto, Canada and is currently working on some innovative piano projects.

Benyamin Nuss was born in Bergisch-Gladbach on the twentieth of June 1989. At the age of six he began piano lessons. He was inspired and encouraged by his father, the trombonist Ludwig Nuss, an internationally renowned jazz musicians. Not only did Benyamin grow up with music from different genres, he really made classical music and jazz his passion. Inspired by “Doctor Gradus ad Parnassum” from “Children’s Corner,” he began at the age of ten to study the composer Claude Debussy, and soon after the works of Maurice Ravel.

How elegantly and emotionally he internalizes the music is demonstrated by his first prizes at the 2005 national Steinway Competition “Young Musicians”, and the 2006 international competition “Prix d’Amadeo de Piano” as well as his grant from the Hochbegabtenstiftung (Foundation for the Gifted) ”Best of NRW”. Benyamin Nuss has been studying at the Cologne/Aachen conservatoire with Prof. Ilya Scheps since 2008. Besides his love for classical music and jazz, he had always a passion for Videogames and Videogame music. He was the featured soloist in the award winning “Symphonic Fantasies” recording and his first CD released by “Deutsche Grammophon” is a tribute to the legendary composer Nobuo Uematsu, who scored the music for the most famous Role Play Game of all times, “Final Fantasy”. In 2010 Benyamin did a well-received tour through Germany, where he played in most of the major concert halls, like Berlin “Philharmonie”, Frankfurt “Alte Oper”, Hamburg “Laeiz Halle”, Stuttgart “Liederhalle” and many more. Besides he appeared as a major soloist of the “Symphonic Fantasies” and “Distand World” concerts in Tokio, Chicago, Cologne and Stockholm. Since then Nuss has played Solo performances on TV, like in “Stars von Morgen” with Rolando Villazon and performed in front of German Chancellor, Angela Merkel. In 2012, he recorded his second CD for “Deutsche Grammophon” -”Exotica”, which was equally successful and was followed by celebrated concerts in Tokyo and Singapore. Recently, he did recordings and concerts for radio, performing Gershwins “Concert For Piano in F” with the “Deutsche Radio Philharmonie – Saarbrücken” and Gershwins “Rhapsody In Blue” and Ravels “Piano Concert Nr.2″ with the “WDR Rundfunk Orchester”.

Besides his outstanding abilities as a classical performer, Benyamin is a gifted composer, two of his composition can be heard in “Exotica”. Apart from classical concerts, he also performs his music with his own Jazz Quartet or in a Trio together with his father Ludwig Nuss and the great bass player, John Goldsby.

Payadora Tango Ensemble presents
The Death/Rebirth of Tango

Thursday, March 29, 2018 at 8 pm
Reserve tickets at (cash at the door)
In advance at

Payadora Tango Ensemble 
Rebekah Wolkstein, violin
Robert Horvath, piano 
Chris Gao, accordion
Drew Jurecka, bandoneon
Joseph Phillips, double bass

Founded in 2013, Payadora Tango Ensemble has quickly become one of Toronto’s most vibrant and sought-after acts. Payadora performs an expansive repertoire that draws from the height of Buenos Aires’ Tango tradition, including compositions and arrangements by De Caro, Pugliese, Troilo, and Salgan, to the masterful, contemporary sounds of Astor Piazzolla and beyond. 

Drawing from eclectic backgrounds in Classical, Jazz, Latin, Eastern European folk music, and improvisation, Payadora’s performances exude technical virtuosity, playful spontaneity, and rhythmic vitality.

Highlights from Payadora’s past performances include sold-out shows at the St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto Music Festival at Heliconion Hall, the Lula Lounge, the Jazz Bistro, the Rex Hotel Jazz and Blues Bar, the TD Toronto Jazz Festival, The Toronto Botanical Gardens Concert Series, the Kingston Road Village Concert Series, the Knox United Church concert Series, the Group of 27 Concert Series at Heliconion Hall, and for the Canadian Opera Company's World Music Series at the Four Seasons Centre. 

“With influences from Argentina to Eastern Europe to the great Astor Piazzolla, Payadora plays the tango like it’s meant to be: sultry, steamy, but with grace and precision. You will be entertained!” 
— Howard Druckman, Editor, Words + Music magazine

The coup in 1955 that ousted General Perón had profound consequences for Argentina as a whole, and for the Tango in particular, launching the country into a kind of modern Dark Age. The new military government was made up of members of the upper classes, for whom the culture of the mass of the population was alien and dangerous. They did not understand the Tango. They did not dance it.

Also they had a knee-jerk reaction that anything Perón had said was good must be bad. Perón was a nationalist and a populist, and Tango was both national and popular. Perón had used Tango and Tango artists for his political purposes, and many famous Tango artists were involved with the Peronist movement. As a consequence many artists were either imprisoned or blacklisted by the new regime.
from The Dark Age of Tango
Christine Denniston is author of The Meaning of Tango, Dancing Tango - Unlocking the Mysteries and Secrets of the Tango - 1914

Brahms for Three! 
Jelena Cingara, piano 
Emily Hiemstra, viola, 
Erika Nielsen, cello

Friday March 23, 2018 at 7:30 pm
$20/$10  Students


Dr. Jelena Cingara is an experienced pedagogue and performer with over twenty years experience in USA and Canada. She has taught piano minors at The University level at The University of Utah School of Music, and served as the main accompanist for the String Division for The University of Utah Preparatory Division.

Jelena is currently a piano instructor at York University. She is also a winner of festivals, competitions, and teaching assistantships in both USA and Canada, such as: Kiwanis Peel and Davenport, as well as a third prize winner in both the piano concerto and small ensemble competition at The University of Toledo, Ohio.

As a performer, Jelena has recently performed solo recitals for: The Davis Arts Council, Mundi Project, and has completed a chamber music recital at The World Piano Teacher’s Conference in Novi Sad, Serbia, amongst many others. She has also attended music festivals across Europe such as: Interharmony, and Prague Piano Institute, and will attend La Balie Summer workshop in France. Recently her and Zoltan Csikos have won second place at the American Protege Competition, and will make their debut in Carnegie Hall in May, 2018. Her CD: Marko Tajcevic Seven Balkan Dances and Josip Slavenski Piano Sonata Op.4 can be found on amazon, spotify, and itunes. Jelena has a DMA in piano performance from The University of Utah, where she studied with Dr. Vedrana Subotic.

Emily Hiemstra (nee Walker) holds a Bachelor of Music in viola performance with Christine Vlajk and composition with Peter Hatch from Wilfrid Laurier University and an artist diploma in viola performance with Steven Dann at the Glenn Gould School in the Royal Conservatory, Toronto.

She has participated in festivals around the world including the German-Scandinavian Youth Orchestra in Berlin, Germany and the Canada India Youth Orchestra Project in Bangalore, India. She is also an alumna of the National Youth Orchestra of Canada (2012, 2013) on violin and viola respectively. As an orchestral musician, she has performed with orchestras such as the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra, National Academy Orchestra (Hamilton) and the London Symphonia.

In 2017 Ms Hiemstra performed the Stamitz Viola Concerto with the Charis Collective ensemble in Toronto, ON. She has also played in masterclasses for such world renowned violists Kim Kashkashian and Atar Arad and has performed in venues such as the Canadian Music Centre and Koerner Hall.

As a composer, Ms Hiemstra has had her works heard on Chorale Concert (CBC Radio), and performed by ensembles such as the Maureen Forrester Singers, Laurier Concert Choir, Laurier Wind Orchestra, Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, Schola Magdalena, the Renaissance Singers, the Canadian Chamber Choir, Amabile Youth Singers(London), Halifax Camerata Singers, Podium 2014(Halifax), Corriolis Brass and the NYOC’s brass quintet. She is a featured Canadian composer on the Canadian Chamber Choir’s JUNO nominated album A Canadian Mass: Sacred Reflections of Canada. Works can be found through Cypress Choral Music Publishing.

Cellist Erika Nielsen enjoys a multifaceted career as a chamber musician, collaborative artist, orchestral player, and educator. She has performed with Grammy-winning artist Kanye West, and Juno-winning artist Johnny Reid, and was recently on tour with The Musical Stage Company’s Onegin: The Musical on tour at the National Arts Centre, Ottawa. Recent international performances include Charlotte at the World Stage Design Festival in Taipei, Taiwan, 2017.

Erika was principal cellist of the Sudbury Symphony Orchestra from 2011-13, and on faculty of the ArtsAhimsa Chamber Music Festival in 2016. She has performed frequently with Westwood Concerts chamber series, and New Music series’ such as Soundstreams, Spectrum Music, The Thin Edge New Music Collective, and Bicycle Opera Project.

Erika holds an Artist Diploma in cello performance from the Glenn Gould School, where she studied with David Hetherington, and a B.Mus (hon.) from Queen’s University, with Wolf Tormann. Erika recently joined the 2018 cello faculty at National Music Camp, and performs on a JB Collin-Mézin cello from 1885.

Jazz at the Gallery: Waltz Musette
Jessica Lalonde, vocals
John MacMurchy, reeds
Tom Szczesniak, accordion/piano
George Koller, bass
Dan Ionescu, guitar

Saturday March 10, 2018 at 8 pm
$25; $10 Student

Waltz Musette: Waltzes, Javas and Swing. Sounds of the Latin Quarter

Jessica Lalonde has spent her life exploring music in all it’s shades and facets. Raised on Country and Rock & Roll, she fell for jazz during her formative years. Lalonde began singing around her hometown of Midland in small jazz duos and trios, and as the singer for her local Big Band. Eventually the clarity and strength of her voice led her into serious vocal study and she obtained an Honours Bachelor of Music Degree in Performance from Wilfrid Laurier University. She excelled in her studies, winning a performance scholarship, several prestigious concerto competitions, and holding the title roles in the University’s opera productions.

After graduating she recorded a solo album of jazz and big ­band hits produced by jazz veteran Bill King. The album Spinning Daydreams, features some of Canada’s finest and most sought after musicians including Kevin Breit (Norah Jones, kd lang, Cassandra Wilson), Davide DiRenzo (Jacksoul, Sophie Milman, Tomi Swick), Duncan Hopkins (Diana Krall, Mark Murphy, Rob McConnell and the Boss Brass) and Ann Lindsay (Blue Rodeo, Dionne Warwick, The Chieftans).

Following the production and touring of this project, Lalonde continued to explore and hone her instrument by delving into Bel canto singing under the guidance of Metropolitan soprano Aprile Millo, and in 2015 she had the privilege of performing in Italy alongside Ms. Millo for a series of concerts benefitting the Museo and Comittato Renata Tebaldi, the Amici delle case di Puccini, and Villa Verdi. While there, she was also honoured to work with legendary Conductor Maestro Richard Bonynge.

Jessica enjoys a diverse array of performing opportunities including recent collaborations with Juno award winner Chris Gestrin for a headlining performance of “From Heaven to The Centre of The Earth,” a multi­media performance art piece at the Vancouver Art Gallery’s FUSE Festival. She has also performed backing vocals on three Born Ruffians albums, and is featured on Will Currie and the Country French’s album,They Killed Us, Jaymze Bee’s soon to be released collaborative project, Muse and jazz giant, John MacMurchy’s latest Art of Breath recording project. Looking to expand into new markets Jessica signed with Folkstar Productions and re-released her Christmas single “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” to overwhelming support. With these appreciations she is now headed back into the recording studio with the talented John MacMurchy to record her second album. Look for her new album to drop late 2018.

Ultimately the connecting thread between these various musical genres and adventures, has been an ability to express the core emotion of whatever composition she is singing, whether by Puccini, Gershwin or a local folk rock band. This expression is filtered through an open heart and depth of understanding; channelled through a voice that feels as though it may unleash at any moment, but chooses rather to remain grounded; an unaffected purity of tone conveying shadow and light.

John MacMurchy is a performer, composer and recording artist based in Toronto. A woodwind player, John concentrates on clarinet, tenor saxophone and baritone saxophone and is fluent in jazz and classical repertoire. He has released four full length records to critical acclaim and international airplay. John has worked with international artists as varied as Warren Vache, Howard Alden, Guido Basso, Henry Mancini, Cleo Laine, Linda Ronstadt, Carol Channing, Peter Appleyard, John Dankworth as well as being in demand as a sideman on the Toronto scene.

"It's an honest sound that John uses to converse with the listener. Nothing is hidden. It's all there on the table. Heart. Experience. Pleasure. Life." - Sheldon Zandboer

"John MacMurchy is a fleet, accomplished reedman with a knack for writing and arranging. John's got everything together and balanced out when it comes to: Tone, Technique extraordinaire, and seemingly unending ideas."

Tom Szczesniak first arrived in Toronto in 1973, following a stint with the U.S. Air Force Band in Washington, D.C. Since that time, he has performed as a musician on the scores of over 100 feature films, numerous television shows (such as “Earth: Final Conflict”, “Street Legal”, “The Road to Avonlea”, “Side Effects”, “SCTV”, “The Woflman Jack Show and “The Jim Henson Hour”) and over 1,000 commercials. As a player, he has also been much in demand by some of the finest international performing artists, such as Gordon Lightfoot, Anne Murray, Esthero (arrangements – Gold Album), Brian Adams, Little Richard, K.D. Lang, Lenny Breau, Joe Williams, Marc Jordan, Marvin Hamlisch, Dan Hill, The Rankin Family, Dionne Warwick, Bruce Guthrow, Smokey Robinson, Bobby McFerrin, Diahann Carole and Susan Aglukark, as well as jazz greats “The Boss Brass”, Gil Evans, Thad Jones, The Cape Breton Symphony, Nimmons and 9, Bruce Cassidy’s Hotfoot Band, The Canadian Pops Orchestra as well as performances for former U.S. Presidents Richard M. Nixon and Lyndon B. Johnson.

As a composer and arranger, Tom has used his writing skills to enhance a wide variety of cinematic, televised, commercial and theatrical productions, and has been an integral part of several highly-regarded music production houses, including Acrobat Music, Pursuit Communications and Trudel Productions. Music is an essential element of any “visual” art form, and Tom’s compositions have enhanced and illuminated over 100 feature films, as well as animated and “live action” productions such as “Ruby Gloom”, “Franklin the Turtle” (syndicated series and four full-length features), “Gerald McBoing Boing”, “Fraggle Rock”, “Sesame Street”, “Beetlejuice” (the ABC/Fox animated series), “The Care Bears”, “The Adventures of Tin-Tin”, “An American Tale”, “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” and the animated CBS series, “Ace Ventura”. In 1993, Tom formed a company (along with the formidable musical multi-threat, Ray Parker), “ParkerSzczmith Music Inc”, and since that time, has been composing, conducting, playing and arranging under the auspices of this successful and award-winning company.

Tom has been honoured to be a multiple recipient of the Socan Award for “Film and Television Music” (1994/95/97/98/99 and 2000-2006), the Emmy Award for “Beetlejuice” 1991. In 1986, The International Film Festival of New York presented him with an award for his work on Ontario Lottery Commercials (“Together”).

Bassist, Composer and Producer George Koller has accumulated hundreds of wildly diverse performing and recording credits in his expansive musical career. A prolific composer and producer, yet recognized primarily as a bass player, George plays a variety of instruments, notably Indian stringed Instruments. He has performed professionally and extensively within most genres, best known for his work in jazz, free jazz, folk, world and world fusion. For over three decades, he has performed and/or producer over 600 cds, and his playing of Indian stringed instruments has been featured in several films. In the last decade, he has produced music for Yoga and Indian Classical music artists. George was presented with the 2007 national jazz award for "bassist of the year”.

Born in Romania, Toronto-based Jazz guitarist and composer, Dan Ionescu debuted as a banjo player in a traditional Dixieland band. Four years later he won first prize at the national competition of the "Sibiu '82 Jazz Festival" and was immediately established on the Romanian jazz scene. Dan Ionescu was acclaimed by jazz critics as the top Romanian jazz guitarist for 12 consecutive years. During that period, he recorded frequently at the National Radio Studios and for Romanian Television. Since arriving in Toronto in 1996, Dan has been very active in the jazz community performing at a variety of venues and festivals with some of Toronto's top musicians. As a sideman, he recorded eight CD's with different Canadian jazz artists. In 2007, he completed a successful tour of Japan for the promotion of Ken G Shimitzu's "Last Winter" album. As of 2009, Dan has turned to the eight-string guitar (that he designed and build himself) almost exclusively.

Austrian Sounds of Spring
Elena Denisova, violin
Alexi Kornienko, piano

Thursday March 8, 2018 at 8 pm
Tickets: $25/$10 (st) (Cash only at the door)
Reserve tickets at


Wolfgang A. Mozart – Sonata G major KV 379 for violin and piano
I.Adagio sostenuto
III. Andante con variazioni

Maximilian Kreuz (born 1953, in Vienna) -
Free Variations Wv.89 about "Let us ever walk with Jesus”
for violin and piano, commissioned for 2018

Friedegung Rainer (* 1964 Kapfenberg / Steiermark) – #Bach#Frau#Mann
inspired by the Ingeborg Bachmann’s poem „Fogland“
for violin and piano commissioned for 2018 by Elena Denisova, world premiere

Alexander Zemlinsky (1872-1942) - Serenade A major
for violin and piano from the posthumous work
II. Langsam, mit großem Ausdruck
III. Sehr schnell und leicht
IV. Mäßiges Walzer-Tempo
V. Schnell

Elena Denisova is an Austrian violinist and festival director of Russian descent. Her musical career started at age of four. She attended the music school at the Moscow Conservatory and followed as a soloist engagement at the Moscow State Philharmonic. She moved to Austria in the year 1990 where she worked at the Stadttheater Klagenfurt and the festival "Carinthian Summer". Together with the conductor and pianist Alexei Kornienko she founded the Gustav-Mahler-Ensemble, which among others performs at the annual "Woerthersee Classic Festival". Elena Denisova represents this festival as a director. Simultaneously to these commitments Denisova performs in many concerts, festivals and international tours as a soloist. Among others she performed at the "Flanders Festival", the Viennese festivals "Hoergaenge" and "Klangbogen", the "Ljubljana Festival", the "Russian Winter Festival" in Moscow, the Beethovenfest in Bonn, the "Austrian Musical Weeks" in Bulgaria as well as the "Concerti di Primavere" in Parma. The German composer Franz Hummel certified Denisova a great affluence of nuances, easiness and expressive power.

Eventually Denisova engaged in the promotion of young artists, for example at the Austro- American Institute in Vienna as well as a jury member at international competitions.

Her husband Alexei Kornienko is also an outstanding musician whose work is characterized both by an unconditional and joyful attention to text and a boldness in interpretation. His work as a pianist of the Russian school, with his extraordinary wide Classical and Romantic repertoire, is combined profoundly with his work as a conductor, which he has steadily expanded in recent years. He was born in Moscow an began music lessons at the age of five, studied at the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow and in Charkow. He was a prize- winner at the International Rachmaninov Piano Competition in Moscow. He is co-founder of the Gustav Mahler Ensemble and a member of the Bösendorfer Artistic Club.

Together with his wife Elena Denisova, he is active in the rediscovery of forgotten treasures of Classical-Romantic period chamber music.

Elena Denisova Website | Youtube
Alexei Kornienko | Spotify | Youtube

The Art of the Piano: Viktor Lazarov
Rhythm and Colours of the Balkans

Saturday March 3, 2018 at 7 pm
Tickets: $25/$10 (st) (Cash only at the door)

Reserve tickets at



Viktor Lazarov is a young Canadian-Serbian pianist whose wide musical interests have lead him to perform a solo and chamber repertoire from the Baroque to the 21st century.

He is the recipient of several prizes including the Silver and Bronze medals at the Concours de Musique du Royaume (2017 & 2016), a graduate award from the OICRM (Observatoire interdisciplinaire de création et de recherche en musique) in 2017, and the prestigious SSHRC CGS Master’s award in 2014 for his research and performance of keyboard works by J.S. Bach.

Viktor has performed internationally in the New York City International Keyboard Institute and Festival, the University of Florida International Piano Festival and the Burgos Music Festival in Spain. His recordings have been broadcast in the USA and Serbia.

Continuously engaged in collaborations with contemporary composers, he has performed national and world premieres of solo and chamber works by Miodrag Lazarov Pashu, David Clay Mettens, and David Hier, among others.

In the 2017-2018 season, Viktor will present his most recent solo recital program, Sounds and Colours of the Balkans, in four different cities - Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Orford (Magog). He benefits from the advice and mentorship of Ana Sokolovic and Miodrag Lazarov Pashu in preparation for these recitals.

Viktor completed his B.Mus. studying with Prof. Marina Lomazov at the University of South Carolina. He pursued graduate studies at the Schulich School of Music of McGill University, earning a M.Mus. and a Graduate Diploma in Performance with Prof. Ilya Poletaev. Presently, he is pursuing a Phd in Musicology at the University of Montreal, studying in the Laboratoire de recherche sur le geste musicien under the supervision of Dr. Caroline Traube.

Trio Arkel

Sunday February 25, 2018 at 8 pm
Special Screening at 6:30 
My War Years: Arnold Schoenberg schoenberg
$35/$25 Seniors & Arts Workers/ $10 Students
Purchase Tickets at 

Kaija Saariaho (Finland b.1952) – Cloud Trio (2009)
Krzysztof Penderecki (Poland b.1933) – String Trio (1990-91)
James Rolfe (Canada b.1961) – And Then Grace (2000)
Arnold Schoenberg (Austria/USA 1874-1951) – String Trio, Op.45 (1946)

Arnold Schoenberg - Self Portrait (1910)

Image result for trio arkel

Trio Arkel is the collaboration of three women at the top of the classical music world in Canada, each a soloist and leader in her own right: Marie Berard is Concertmaster of the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra; Teng Li is the Principal Violist of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra; Winona Zelenka is the Assistant Principal Cellist of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Since 2008 they have joined forces to bring a wide variety of classical chamber music to the Toronto public, enlisting internationally renowned guest artists for a truly stimulating and eclectic musical experience.

Marie Bérard, violin, is best known as the Concertmaster of the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra. She is also a sought-after chamber musician, soloist recording artist and teacher. She is on the faculty of the Glenn Gould School in Toronto and member of the acclaimed ARC ensemble; she also holds the position of Associate Concertmaster of the Mainly Mozart festival orchestra in San Diego, California. Marie is highly regarded as an interpreter of contemporary music; she has recorded concerti by Schnittke and Kucharzyk, and recently performed major works as soloist with Esprit Orchestra, such as “Offertorium” by Sofia Gubaidulina and “Dedication” by Valentin Silvestrov.

Teng Li is establishing herself as one of the world’s leading violists. She appears regularly as soloist throughout Canada, China, Europe and the USA. Ms. Li is also sought after as a chamber musician and collaborator, appearing in major international festivals. She has won top prizes at the Primrose International Viola Competition and the ARD International Music Competition (Munich, Germany). Ms Li is the principal violist of the Toronto Symphony
Winona Zelenka, cello, is Associate Principal cellist of the Toronto Symphony; she has also served as Acting Principal Cellist of that orchestra for five seasons, and for the Santa Fe Opera Orchestra. She is a dedicated recitalist, chamber musician and recording artist; her set of Bach Suites released on Marquis Classics in 2009 was nominated for a Juno award, and her second CD, Connections- of French works for cello and piano with Connie Shih, was critically acclaimed. Her performances on video of Bach and Cassado have garnered thousands of views on Youtube.

The Art of the Piano: Danae Olano
Special Guests: Jane Bunnett (sax, flute)
Joanna Majoko (vocals)
Elizabeth Rodriguez (violin)

Saturday February 24, 2018 at 8 pm
$20; $10 Student

“Cuban Piano from the XIX centuries to the future!!! Part 2”

Dánae Olano this time is doing a different kind of concert. It will be divided in two parts: the first one is a Solo Performance, playing original compositions along with valuable gems from the Cuban history of piano; a world Olano has been exploring.

The second part is a new project, “The Art of the Trio” Focusing on the various Cuban styles that have been influenced by Jazz. Magdelis Savigne on percussion and Roberto Riveron Mederos on bass are amazing Cuban musicians who have impacted the Canadian scene with their own projects and collaborating with others.

Dana will be joined by special guests Jane Bunnett(sax/flute), Joanna Majoko(singer), Elizabeth Rodriguez(violin) and others.

Dánae Olano García (pianist and composer), has won several awards at festivals and piano contests and is a member of the band Maqueque, directed by Canadian saxophonist and composer Jane Bunnett.

Danae was born on May 6th, 1992 in Havana, Cuba. She began her early musical training in piano at elementary music school Alejandro García Caturla at the age of seven. In 2008 she continued her studies on piano at the Conservatory of Music Amadeo Roldán in Havana, Cuba. She graduated with Best Bachelor of Arts instrumentalist (piano) and ensemble practitioner in 2011. She then entered the Superior Institute of Arts faculty of music, finalising her studies in 2016 and graduated cum laude.

At the elementary level of music, she participated in four editions of the contest “Alejandro García Caturla”, where she won the Grand Prix, two first prizes and one second prize, as well as acknowledgements for the performance of Cuban music. She participated in five editions of the contest “Amadeo Roldán” winning the Grand Prix on three occasions, as well as acknowledgements for the performance of Cuban music. As a university student she participated at the International Contest Musicalia 2013 and National Contest UNEAC 2014 (Union of writers and artists of Cuba) where she was awarded second place in both contests. Performing with the band Maqueque, the group won the Juno Prize 2015 in the category of Best Jazz Album.

In 2012 she made inroads in music for the theatre, arranging and playing music for El Ingenio Theater Company.

She has performed as a soloist in important concert halls of Cuba playing music by Ernesto Lecuona in the García Lorca Theater; Amadeo Roldan Concert Hall; Caturla Concert Hall of the Amadeo Roldan Theater; in the San Felipe Neri Chapel; and Basílica Menor of San Francisco de Asís Convent. In March 2014 she made her debut with the symphonic orchestra of Havana Mozart Lyceum directed by Professor Jorge Rotter. In 2016, was invited to participate in the First Piano Festival held in Eastern University, Philadelphia, PA. With Jane Bunnett and Maqueque she has performed on important stages such as Koerner Hall, Blue Note, Birdland, Shenkman Arts Centre, Burlington Performing Arts Centre, Markham Flato Theatre, Kennedy Centre and La Zorra y el Cuervo Club.

GYRE Ensemble

Friday February 23, 2018 at 8 pm
Tickets: $25/$10 (Cash only at the door)

Reserve tickets at

Gyre Ensemble, a Swiss-based trio, consisting of Stefanie Mirwald (accordion), Alejandro Oliván Lopez (saxophone) and Christian Smith (percussion), was founded in 2016 during a joint study time at the University of Music in Basel.

Coming from different parts of the world - Germany, Spain, USA - they play free and try to collaborate with composers across borders to reach the most diverse audience with their music. Gyre Ensemble has performed new compositions by Bethany Younge, Sam Scranton, Santiago Díez-Fischer, Ruud Roelofsen, Nadir Vassena and Tobias Krebs.


Lost Islands
The Cygnus Trio

Thursday, February 22, 2018 at 8pm
$25; $10 Students

Lost Islands
a reflection on personal geography and memory presented by the Cygnus Trio

Sound, music, images, geography: all these concepts influence our memory. Think of a place from your childhood. What do you hear, what do you see? How can you describe this feeling of remembering the past? In a sense, the places we have made our homes and have now left are lost to us; we may be able to physically return, but our memories preserve it in a different way. Stories of islands which disappear after a first discovery or even after being inhabited for a time permeate Canadian folklore, from the Thousand Islands in the St. Lawrence to more isolated islands in the Great Lakes and beyond. The prevalence of these stories suggests a deep collective sorrow for remembered times and places which, once gone, are gone forever.

The Cygnus Trio, in collaboration with composers with deep geographical ties, offers a program of music and poetry reflecting on this loss and the relationship between memory and location. The program features works by four Canadian composers, folk tunes and poetry. Anita Perry and Selwyn Redivo offer musical meditations upon the landscape of the Okanagan Valley, past home of brothers Ben (flute) and Jonathan (guitar), and the trio will premiere Ontario native Arie Van de ven’s Algoma Miniatures. The musical components of the program are tied together with poetry by W. B. Yeats, Nancy Holmes, and Harold Rhenisch, tying a deep sense of place to the remembrance of the past.


The Cygnus Trio appeals to the emotions of each audience member in presenting an engaging, challenging, and interactive programming experience. Bringing “classical” music into the everyday is central to their choices, both conventional and unconventional.

Flautist Benjamin Stuchbery, guitarist Jonathan Stuchbery, and violinist Jasper Meiklejohn first came together in Penticton, BC in 2013 to create a group that explored a myriad of musical styles in intimate settings. This group became known as the Cygnus Trio. In 2015, the threesome re-formed in Montreal with Erica Jacobs-Perkins as the violinist. The inaugural recital of the resurrected trio took place at Resonance Café in Montreal in February 2015, which was followed shortly by a performance for revelers during the Nuit Blanche festivities at Christ Church Cathedral Montreal.

Cygnus is dedicated to breathing new life into classical music through a diversity of musical choices and venues. Selections include everything from German baroque, to folk songs and dances, to new commissions, which can be heard in churches, cafes, metro stations, private homes, and women’s shelters. Another of their quests is to collaborate in the creation of new music. During their 2016 season, Cygnus gave the world premiere of Charles Zoll’s AMALGAM and in 2017 the trio participated in the Fresh Inc. Festival in Kenosha, WI. As part of this festival, the trio premiered works by participating composers Patrick Walker and Karalyn Schubring. Other composer collaborations include Arie Van de Ven’s Algoma Miniatures, which will be premiered in the trio’s 2017/18 season, and Anita Perry’s Okanagan Vignettes.

The Art of the Piano: Bruce Vogt
"Hurling a Lance into the Future” -
The Late Vision of Franz Liszt (1811-1886)

Saturday February 17, 2018 at 3 PM
$25; $20 Seniors and Art Workers; $10 Students


I. Religious Iconography
from Deux Légendes (c.1863): St. Francis d’Assise. La prédication aux oiseaux

II. Aspects of Love

  1. from Années de Pèlerinage, Deuxième Année: Italie (1858) Sonetto 47 del Petrarca (Sonnet by Petrarch)
  2. Widmung (Dedication -song by R. Schumann) (1848)
  3. from Études d’exécution transcendante (1851) Ricordanza (Remembrance)

III. Hungarian Resonances


Spiritual Visions

IV. Darker Visions of Eternity:

Valses oubliée #1 (Forgotten Waltz (c. 1881) Mephisto Waltz #4: Bagatelle sans tonalité (1883-85) Schlaflos! Frage und Antwort (1883)
from Années de Pèlerinage, Troisième Année (c. 1877)
A ux Cyprès de la Villa d'Este No 1: Thrénodie

V. Transcendental Vision

from Harmonies poétiques et religieuses (1847-52)
Bénédiction de Dieu dans la Solitude (Blessing of God in Solitude)

VI. Postlude

Elegie: Die Zelle in Nonnenwerth (1880)

Liszt’s last years were spent teaching and composing. He did nothing to make his compositions known and even discouraged his students from playing them. “Yet there still remain several things for me to say, irrespective as to whether they may be quickly understood or recognized. Sometime when I am no longer of this earth, the rest will find itself. I can calmly await the event while I go on working, and meanwhile composedly expiate my virtuoso reputation with the disapproval my compositions have excited.” And so it was. It was not until the enthusiastic endorsement of Bartók and Busoni that these late works were recognized for what they are – a most astounding anticipation of major new paths which music was to follow. In their radical simplicity, obsessive rhythms and strange harmonies, they take the listener to the very brink of tonality.

But if their anticipation of the future was their only distinction, I don’t think they would deserve so much attention. They would be curiosities, nothing more. With art and artists, it’s not who does things first that matters but who does them best.

What is important is the uniqueness of their vision. Liszt’s biographer Alan Walker writes of their expression of depression and despair. I think more truly they are an extension of his life- long spiritual strivings. A courageous and unrelenting gaze at the abyss. He finds much terror there but also much beauty.

Liszt’s greatest religious composition is his Benediction de Dieu: Blessing of God in Solitude. To me, this is one of his most moving masterpieces, but also one of the few religious works of the 19th century that is not suffused with a kind of stained-glass sentimentality. And what it describes is truly universal. We live our lives in full knowledge of our mortality. We know we must die and everything that we value will disappear, often painfully and in a protracted way. And the preciousness of what we value will not change this reality. We know somehow that people and things are precious, those we love, things that resonate throughout our lives. And we are reminded all the more of their ephemeral nature, when their preciousness comes home to us in particular moments in time. And this gap between the meaningfulness, the preciousness of life and its fleeting grain-of-sand nature – this gap cannot be closed by thought, by argument. This gap remains with us all our lives and it cannot be closed by what D. H. Lawrence refers to as: “the dead vanity of knowing better ...the blank - cold comfort of superiority, [the] silly - conceit of being immune.“

It is the privilege perhaps of great art, that it can hint at a way of closing – or at least lessening – the gap.

Canadian pianist Bruce Vogt was born in Southern Ontario but for the past 37 years has lived and worked in Victoria, BC and taught at the University of Victoria as Professor of Piano. As a soloist he has appeared regularly in concerts within Canada and he tours yearly in many countries throughout Europe and Asia. His repertoire encompasses music from the sixteenth century to the present. In addition to having a special affinity for the music of Franz Liszt, he has both performed on period instruments and commissioned and premiered a number of new works. 

"And then I knew ’twas wind"
Katherine Watson flute
Kristan Toczko, harp
Giulia Pozzi, viola

Friday February 16, 2018 at 8 pm.
$25 / $10 Students
Reserve tickets at



Katherine Watson is an acclaimed Canadian emerging musician that currently resides in Toronto. For the past half-decade, Katherine has established herself as one of Toronto’s emerging classical/contemporary flutists. She has premiered dozens of new compositions written for flute, has recorded live for CBC radio, as well as recorded for and appeared in films such as Pompeii (2014) and Brad’s Status (2017). Most recently, Katherine was invited on full scholarship to attend the Lunenburg Academy of Music and Performance in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, to study privately with Douglas Stewart (Canadian Opera Company Orchestra) as well as the Legendary Robert Aitken, working with the composition studio to workshop and premier several new Canadian compositions along with TORQ percussion quartet and the Iris string ensemble.

In the past year, Katherine has been performing with the Toronto Winds and is the newest member of Charm of Finches, Toronto’s own professional flute quintet. She also regularly plays for the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario’s events, as a soloist with the Bach Children's Chorus, and Fawn Opera. This winter, Katherine performed with Continuum Ensemble’s Continuum in the Classroom project with the Toronto District School Board, as well as performing as a soloist for Soundstreams for a Salon 21 event at the Gardiner Museum. She also presented a concert featuring the music of Montreal composer Jason Noble and premiered her own composition for solo flute, Supermoon 2015, at Array Space.

In May 2016 Katherine participated in the Montreal Contemporary Lab’s New improvisation clinic, and performed in chamber and orchestral concerts in the Bathurst Music Festival in New Brunswick.

She recently obtained her Masters in Music performance from McGill University in Montreal, studying with Timothy Hutchins (Montreal Symphony Orchestra). Over the last couple of years in Montreal, Katherine has performed with several new and exciting orchestras in the community, including Pronto Musica, L’Orchestre Symphonic de L’Agora, and L’Orchestre Point D’arrête, as well as appearing in many chamber recitals ranging from outdoor concerts, to Canadian music concerts at McGill University which have included performing along with legendary flutist Robert Aitken.

As one of Canada’s premier young harpists, Kristan Toczko is recognized for her radiant tone, expressive music making and scintillating virtuosity. A first place winner of the prestigious OSM Standard Life Competition, Kristan was recently named a CBC Radio-Canada Young Artist, and featured as a soloist in a nation-wide broadcast.

Performing numerous concerti, Kristan has been featured as a soloist with the Vancouver Symphony, l'Orchestre Francophonie and Bathurst Chamber Music Festival. Kristan has also performed as part of the Ottawa ChamberFest, Toronto Summer Music Festival, Kincardine Summer Music Festival, Indian River Festival and has been an invited guest artist at the Banff Centre for the Arts numerous summers. She has also performed as principal harpist with several orchestras nationally and internationally, including the National Arts Centre Orchestra, Thunder Bay Symphony, Windsor Symphony, Symphony New Brunswick, Jalisco Philharmonia and Beijing Symphony.

Italian violist Giulia Pozzi is a keen contemporary and chamber music performer.

As former member of Milton String Quartet, she advanced to the final round of Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition; moreover, she participated twice to the Domaine Forget Chamber Music Summer masterclass.

Giulia also commissioned works to composers such as Chris Hossfeld, Jason Noble, and James O’ Callaghan for Ideas of North, a SOCAN grant winner project whose aim is to spread new music and scientific research about climate change in the Canadian Arctic.

She was awarded a two-years scholarship by the Italian association De Sono and the Swiss Foundation Fabio Schaub. She has also been the recipient of both the prestigious Max Stern Fellowship in Music and the McGill Graduate Excellence Award at McGill University.

Giulia has performed in Canada and Europe along with Agora Symphony Orchestra, Pronto Musica Chamber Orchestra, Ensemble Contemporain de Montreal, Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana, Orchestra Nazionale della Rai, Trio Debussy, Orchestra del Teatro Regio di Torino, and Orchestra Filarmonica di Torino.

Friends Before Facebook
Lydia Munchinsky, cello
Leslie Ting, violin
Kathryn Tremills, piano

Sunday, February 11, 2018 at 3 pm
$25/$10 Snrs, Students, Art Workers/$5 Kids under 12 (cash at the door)


The trio is pleased to present this concert as a "relaxed performance" where movement as needed to during the performance is allowed. We're also excited to have Seth Taylor Coffee by Design ( to provide refreshment during the concert. 

Cellist Lydia Munchinsky completed her ARCT in performance for both piano and cello before coming to Toronto in 2000 to study cello with Simon Fryer and piano with Peter Longworth at The Glenn Gould School of Music. At the ages of 10 and 12 she performed at the International Suzuki Conventions in Australia and Korea, and spent 3 months as an exchange student in France when she was 16. When she was 19, Lydia traveled across Europe with her cello and spent 3 months in Switzerland at the International Christian Study and Philosophy Centre l'Abri. Since completing the Performance Diploma Program at the GGS, Lydia's eclectic performance experience has included playing for Stage West and Theatre Aquarius, Dr. Draw, the Array Ensemble, Sarah Slean, the Venuti String Quartet and chamber folk group Ozere. Lydia also toured extensively with Quartetto Gelato, usually with her baby daughter in tow, and is featured on their most recent recording. She has premiered solo cello and chamber music works by a number of Toronto and Austrian composers and gives recitals regularly, some of which have been recorded by CBC and CIUT radio. Lydia taught for two years with Sistema Toronto in Parkdale and currently teaches at the Toronto School for Strings. She now has two children, Arya (4) and William (2).

Leslie Ting is a Toronto-based violinist and multi-disciplinary artist. Her live performances, which have been described as creating ”fire without smoke” (Strad Magazine), strive for honesty and authenticity. A diverse performer, she held a principal position with the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony while creating an immersive multi-disciplinary work, Speculation, lauded as “the most unique theatre experience I have ever encountered” (EyeGo). Formerly a practicing optometrist, Leslie brings to the stage her vast depth of knowledge of sight and our relationship to it. Her work as been supported by the Region of Waterloo Arts Fund, the Ontario Arts Council, and Canada Council for the Arts. She has appeared with the Canadian Opera Company, the National Ballet of Canada, Music in the Barns, Pocket Concerts, and Bicycle Opera Project. To further explore her art practice, Leslie attended the Art of Stillness Residency at the Banff Centre for the Arts, the centre’s first major multi-disciplinary residency. Photo credit: Bo Huang

Pianist Kathryn Tremills is a virtuoso and versatile musician who is in great demand as a performer, coach, teacher and adjudicator. She holds a doctorate from the University of Michigan and is an alumnus of the Eastman School of Music, University of Colorado at Boulder and University of Toronto. In addition to performing on numerous concert series including the Ottawa Chamber Music Festival, Off Centre Music Salon, Canadian Art Song Project, Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre Thursday Noon Concerts and Pro Musica Detroit, Kathryn has been on the musical staff at the Canadian Opera Company. She is a member of Women on the Verge with sopranos Elizabeth McDonald and Emily Martin with upcoming engagements in the US, Canada, France and England. Twice a Canada Council Grant recipient, she has also appeared as a soloist with numerous orchestras in North America. Kathryn holds an appointment to the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto and in summers, is a faculty member of the Centre for Opera in Sulmona, Italy (COSI) and Canadian Operatic Arts Academy (COAA). She recently released her latest chamber music album, Piano Centric.
Kathryn lives in Toronto with her husband, bass-baritone Giles Tomkins, and enjoys life with their three-year- old son, Benjamin.

Preludes & Rhapsodies
Buzz Brass Quintet with special guests
Kara Huber, piano,
Antoine Malette-Chenier, harp

Saturday February 10, 2018 at 8 pm
Tickets: $25/$10 (Cash only at the door)

Reserve tickets at

Preludes & Rhapsodies - Program

Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 ----- Brass Quintet Franz Liszt (1811-1886)
Arr. Sylvain Lapointe, Julien Proulx & Louis Babin

Beige Nocture & Harpicide at Midnight, from Around the Clock --- Harp Pearl Chertok

3 Preludes ----- Brass Quintet & Piano George Gershwin (1898-1937)
Arr. Louis Babin

Preludes Op. 32 ---- Piano Sergueï Rachmaninov
-- No. 1 in C Major
-- No. 9 in A Major

An American in Paris ----- Brass Quintet George Gershwin
Arr. Christopher B.J. Smith

------ Intermission ------

Danse macabre ----- Brass Quintet & Harp Camille Saint-Saëns (1853-1921)
Arr. François Valière

Preludes Op. 32 ---- Piano Sergueï Rachmaninov
-- No. 5 in G Major
-- No. 12 in G-sharp Minor

Milonga del Ãngel ----- Brass Quintet Astor Piazzola
Arr. Javier Sebastián Asencio

Rhapsody in Blue ----- Brass Quintet & Piano George Gershwin
Arr. Louis Babin

Buzz Brass

Since its foundation in September 2002 and its subsequent officialization in 2003, Buzz Brass has been performing all across Quebec and Canada as well as in the United States, Europe and China. The ensemble has thus given over 1,400 performances on three continents, in primary and secondary schools as well as in famous halls, reaching more than 275,000 spectators, not counting a vast radio, television and Internet audience. Journalists and spectators alike continuously acclaim the ensemble’s performances while the quintet’s obtaining of the 2014 OPUS Award for “Concert of the Year—Multiple Repertoire” is added to the numerous other prizes and distinctions that the quintet is regularly awarded and confirms Buzz’s place of choice among the best concert- music ensembles in Quebec.

Sylvain Lapointe – founder / trumpet
Frédéric Gagnon – principal trumpet
Pascal Lafrenière – horn
Jason De Carufel – trombone
Sylvain Arseneau – bass trombone

An innovative and creative harpist, Antoine Malette-Chénier plays a repertoire ranging from the Renaissance to contemporary creations. He has won many awards, including the Jury's Award at the Concours du Prix d'Europe 2017, a first prize at the 2013 OSM Standard Life Competition, and the 2014 Michael Measures prize from the Canada Council for the Arts. Principal harp of the Orchestre symphonique de Trois-Rivières, Antoine has performed as a soloist, chamber, basso continuo and orchestral player in Canada, France, and the United States with ensembles such as the Nouvel Ensemble Moderne, the Orchestre Métropolitain and the Studio de Musique ancienne de Montréal. Antoine holds degrees from the Yale School of Music, McGill University, the Université de Montréal and the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Lyon.

The 2016-2017 season featured Kara Huber’s Carnegie Hall debut in Weill Recital Hall and the Steinway Series at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Ms. Huber has made numerous solo appearances at the Kennedy Center, the Piano Virtuoso Series at the Canadian Opera Company, and the Rising Stars Piano Series in Southampton, New York. Often hired as a recitalist for her inventive and creative programming that all audiences can enjoy, Ms. Huber has performed across North America, Europe, and Australia. She was featured with the York Symphony Orchestra as well as conducted and performed with the Canadian Chamber Orchestra in Toronto. Ms. Huber has received numerous prizes and awards for her performances, including the Audience Favorite Award in the Cincinnati World Piano Competition, Bradshaw and Buono International Piano Competition, The Stetcher and Horowitz Foundation’s New York Piano Competition, and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition. Quickly gaining an international reputation for her extraordinary prowess and flair for contemporary music, Kara works closely with living composers and recorded with the ARC Ensemble for Chandos Records, which was nominated for a 2017 Grammy Award for Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance.

The Art of the Clarinet:
Dominic Desautels with Ben Smith, piano

Thursday, February 8, 2018 at 8 pm
$25 /$10 Student


Charles-Marie WIDOR (1844 — 1937)
Introduction et Rondo op. 72 (1898)

Paul HINDEMITH (1895 — 1963)
Sonata (1939)

  1. Mäßig bewegt
  2. Lebhaft
  3. Sehr Langsam
  4. Kleines Rondo, gemächlich


Alban BERG (1885 — 1935)
4 Pieces, op. 5 (1913)

Johannes BRAHMS (1833 — 1897)
Sonata op. 120 no. 2 in Eb Maj. (1894)

  1. Allegro amabile
  2. Allegro appassionato
  3. Andante con moto

Dominic Desautels has been the principal clarinetist at Symphony Nova Scotia in Canada since 2012. He has quickly earned acclaim and recognition since his debut as soloist at age 21 with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. He is currently the principal clarinet with the Canadian Opera Company.

Known for his singing approach to clarinet playing, Dominic is the winner of several competitions and awards in Canada, including Radio-Canada’s Auditions Jeunes Artistes, and the concerto competitions of the Université de Montréal and Orchestre de la Francophonie.

More recently he won the 3rd prize at the 33rd edition of the International Stepping Stone competition, the only clarinetist to have been awarded a prize in the prestigious Canadian competition since 1978. His awards even cross over to jazz, being the Stingray Rising Star Award winner at the 2015 Halifax Jazz Festival with his sextet called The New Bridge.

Dominic is in increasing demand as a chamber musician and soloist in Canada and internationally with regular appearances on public radio and television. He was a featured soloist with various orchestras, including the Orquestra Filarmônica de Minas Gerais, Orchestre de l’Université de Montréal, Orchestre de la Francophonie, Sinfonia Lanaudière, Symphony Nova Scotia and Toronto Symphony Orchestra.

Dominic has studied primarily with Jean-François Normand, Robert Riseling, and Joaquin Valdepeñas; after studies at the Conservatoire de Montréal and the Glenn Gould School, he earned a Bachelors degree from the Université de Montréal in 2007. Upon graduation, he was hired as the principal clarinetist of the Orquestra Filarmônica de Minas Gerais in Brazil, a position he held until coming back to Canada in 2012. Dominic has served as acting principal clarinetist with ensembles such as the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and the Canadian Opera Company.

Beyond his duties as principal clarinetist with Symphony Nova Scotia and being a member of its board of directors, he is a member of Rhapsody Quintet, a faculty member at Dalhousie University and guest artist/faculty at Scotia Festival of Music. He is the co-artistic director of the Montreal-based chamber ensemble The Parcival Project and can be heard online on YouTube with this ensemble.

Dominic Desautels has recently been named a Backun Artist and plays MoBa clarinets made with cocobolo wood, crafted in Canada.

Described as a “thoughtful and immensely exciting performer” with “scintillating technique” (Barrie Examiner), Chatham, Ontario native Ben Smith has performed as soloist and chamber musician across both Canada and the United States. He has been a laureate of numerous competitions, including the Virginia Waring International Piano Competition and the CMC Stepping Stone Competition. Solo appearances include the Stony Brook Symphony Orchestra, the New Juilliard Ensemble, the Ontario Philharmonic, Orchestra London, the Clairion Symphony, and the University of Toronto Hart House Orchestra. Festival appearances include Toronto Summer Music, Banff Summer Arts, the Guelph Spring Festival, the Long Leaf Opera Festival in Raleigh, NC, and Colours of Music in Barrie. Recent highlights include recitals in Chicago, Corpus Christi, and Carnegie’s Weill Hall with Canadian cellist Dongkyun An, with whom he will soon be releasing a recording.

Devoting considerable time to chamber music, Ben has been heard on CBC Radio 2 and Classical 96.3, and has partnered in recital with renowned artists such as Colin Carr, Martin Beaver, Jacques Israelievitch, Wolfgang Redik (Vienna Piano Trio), Bonnie Hampton, William VerMeulen, and Mark Fewer, and with ensembles including the Annex and Cecilia string quartets. For the past two seasons he has performed as part of the Israelievitch-Smith-Ahn (ISA) piano trio. Involved with music of our time as well, he is a regular member of the Esprit Orchestra in Toronto, and has worked with prominent conductors Steven Schick, Joel Sachs, and Werner Herbers, as well as composers John Corigliano, Reinaldo Moya, and Chandler Carter.

Dr. Smith currently serves as a coach and collaborator for the Glenn Gould School (GGS) and the Taylor Young Artist Academy at the RCM. Previously, he taught on the faculty of the University of Western Ontario, and has also taught undergraduate piano for the Department of Music at Stony Brook University. His principal teachers have been Andrea Battista, James Anagnoson, Julian Martin, and Christina Dahl. Along with a DMA from Stony Brook University, he holds a Bachelors degree from the University of Toronto, an Artist Diploma from the GGS, and a Masters from The Juilliard School.

Land’s End Ensemble
An Evening with Robert Aitken, flute

Sunday February 4, 2018 at 8 pm. Introduction at 7:15
$35/$25 Seniors & Arts Workers/ $10 Students
Purchase Tickets at

Land’s End Ensemble
John Lowry, violin
Beth Root Sandvoss, cello
Susanne Ruberg-Gordon, piano
Robert Aitken, flute

Max Oppenheimer – Portrait of Anton Webern (1909)

Hope Lee (China/Canada b.1953) – New Work (2017)
Sean Clarke (Canada b.1983) – New Work (2017)
Matthew Ricketts (Canada b.1986) – Graffiti Songs (2010)
Arnold Schoenberg (Austria/USA 1874-1951) – Kammersymphonie Op. 9* (1906)
* 1922 chamber arrangement by Anton Webern (Austria 1883-1945)

“If you want to see a contemporary music ensemble perform provocative, brilliant and relevant work, with an eye for the narrative, then look no further than this bold ensemble that does it all” – Calgary Herald

Quoted by the Chronicle Herald as “A superb musician”, Swedish-born pianist Susanne Ruberg-Gordon’s is a highly regarded chamber-musician and collaborative artist. She has performed with artists such as Andres Cardenes, Andras Diaz, Ron Leonard, James Campbell, Desmond Hoebig, Ian Swensen, Alain Trudel, Jens Lindemann, Ning Feng, Catherine Monoukian, Ni Tao, Arnold Choi and Nikki Chooi.

John Lowry has been Associate Concertmaster of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra since 1987. He was Concertmaster of the Edmonton Symphony for the 2002-2003 season, and has served as Guest Concertmaster of orchestras in Halifax, Winnipeg, Kitchener-Waterloo, Red Deer, and the Adelaide Symphony of South Australia.

Cellist Beth Root Sandvoss has a notably varied career as a recitalist, chamber musician and pedagogue. Beth’s early professional activities took her to Hong Kong, where she became a member of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra as well as the Victoria String Quartet, performing throughout Asia.

Vincent Ho is widely recognized as one of the most exciting composers of his generation. His works have been hailed for their profound expressiveness and textural beauty, leaving audiences talking about them with great enthusiasm. His many awards have included Harvard University’s Fromm Music Commission, The Canada Council for the Arts’ “Robert Fleming Prize,” ASCAP’s “Morton Gould Young Composer Award,” four SOCAN Young Composers Awards, and CBC Radio’s Audience Choice Award (2009 Young Composers’ Competition).

Image result for robert aitken fluteRobert Morris Aitken, CM,  is a Canadian composer and flautist. He began his career as a teenager playing in a number of orchestras, notably becoming the youngest principal flautist in the history of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra in 1958 at the age of 19. In 1971, he abandoned ensemble performance to pursue a highly successful solo career. He has appeared as a soloist with major symphony orchestras throughout North America, Europe and Asia and has made more than 40 commercial recordings.

Born in Kentville, Nova Scotia, Aitken has played with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, CBC Symphony Orchestra, and Toronto Symphony Orchestra. He is Artistic Director of New Music Concerts in Toronto. He has also done classical and contemporary music (along with eminent harpist Erica Goodman) on BIS Records. He studied flute wirh Nicolas Fiore, Marcel Moyse, Jean-Pierre Rampal, Andre Jaunet, Severino Gazzelloni, and Hubert Barwahser.

From 1988 to 2004, Aitken was a member of the music faculty at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik in Freiburg, Germany. He is also a former faculty member of the University of Toronto(1960–1975) and the Shawnigan Summer School of Arts (1972–1982) and was director of advanced studies in music at the Banff Centre from 1985 to 1989.


The Art of the Piano: Max Midroit
Special Guest: Mike Angell, tenor

Friday February 2, 2018 at 7 pm
Tickets: $20/$15 (st) (Cash only at the door)

Reserve tickets at


Pianist Max Midroit's active career as a soloist, chamber musician, and vocal accompanist has led him to perform at many of New York City's most important venues, including Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Merkin Hall, and the Museum of Modern Art. He has also appeared at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, Denver's Boettcher Concert Hall, as well as in Germany, the Netherlands, and his native France.

In collaboration with other artists, he participated in many world premieres, performed for dance for the NYU distinguished choreographers series, the Juilliard Dance Ensemble, the American Repertory Ballet. His expertise as a studio musician lead him to work for many years with the NYU Scoring for Film and Multimedia program, performing live music for animation and silent films at the Walter Reade Theater at Lincoln Center and the Museum of Modern Art in NYC as well as at the National Gallery of Washington DC.

He has recorded for the CRI label as well as for independent film, documentaries, and pop music.

At home in many styles and mediums, his versatility as a musician has been hailed by critics; the Denver Post noted his "ravishing tone" in a "scintillating" performance of Shostakovich's Second Piano Concerto with the Colorado Symphony, described by NBC's Channel 4 as "on all accounts brilliant," and after his performance of rag-style music by Willie (the Lion) Smith, the New York Times commented that Mr. Midroit "played with ferocious speed and sweetness.”

He has collaborated with many international opera stars as well as Grammy, TONY, and Academy Award winners, and most recently had the immense privilege to spend a few months at the piano for Meryl Streep as she prepared for her Academy Award nominated performance as Florence Foster Jenkins.

Dr. Midroit holds degrees from the Juilliard School, Rice University, and obtained a PhD from New York University, focusing on the analysis of stratification and symmetry in Benjamin Britten's music. He has been on faculty at Queens College (City University of New York), New York University, and at the Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts.

The Art of the Piano: Victoria Korchinskaya-Kogan

Thursday February 1, 2018 at 8 pm 
Tickets: $25/$10 (Student) (Cash only at the door) 
Reserve tickets at


Andante with Variations in F Minor, Hob.XVII:6

Variations on the theme by Robert Schumann Op. 9

Desperate Measures (Paganini Variations)


The Lark

Concert Suite from the Ballet “The Sleeping Beauty”
1. Prologue
2. Dance of Pages
3. Vision
4. Andante
5. Fairy of Silver
6. The Booted Tom-Cat and the White Cat
7. Gavotte
8. The Singing Canary
9. Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf
10. Adagio
11. Finale

Victoria Korchinskaya-Kogan

Praised as “an admirably gifted performer’’ by Yuri Temirkanov, “a pianist of great talent, having extraordinary skills and boundless musicality” by Mikhail Pletnev and a “true artist” by Yefim Bronfman, Victoria is the winner of The Stravinsky Piano Competition at the age of 13, Andorra Piano Competition, E-Piano Competition in Minneapolis and I International Piano Competition In Korea among others.

As a soloist, Victoria has performed with major orchestras in concert halls such as the Big Hall of the Moscow Conservatory, Concertgebouw, Koeln Philharmonic, Nuernberg Meistersinger Hall, Teatro di San Carlo in Naples, Salle Pleyel in Paris and concertized throughout Russia, USA, Canada, Germany, Italy, Austria, Spain, Netherlands, Turkey, Egypt, France, Azerbaijan and Korea under the baton of Mikhail Pletnev, Mark Gorenstein, Pavel Kogan, Arnold Katz, Nikolai Alekseev, Maxim Shostakovich, Vladimir Ziva, Alexander Vedernikov, Mark Russell Smith, Charles Ansbacher and Laurent Petitgirard.

Two recent recordings featuring Beethoven Piano Concertos by Victoria Korchinskaya-Kogan were released under Art Classic Company label and received critical acclaim for its distinguished imagination and stylistic precision.

Born in Moscow, 1978, the granddaughter of the famous violinists Leonid Kogan and Elizaveta Gilels, Victoria started to play the piano at the age of 5. One year later she debuted at the Small Hall of the Moscow Conservatory. Her mother Prof. Dr. Nina Kogan works at the Moscow Conservatory. Her uncle Pavel Kogan is a Russian violinist and conductor who currently leads the Moscow State Symphony Orchestra. 

Victoria received her M.M. and D.M.A. from the Moscow Conservatory where she studied with Lev Vlassenko, Sergei Dorensky and Pavel Nersessian. Her masterclasses include study with Andreas Stayer, Dmitry Bashkirov, Claude Frank, William Nabore and Jose Feghali.

Victoria has been on the faculty of Moscow Conservatory since 2007 and Seokyeong University in Seoul since 2014. Victoria is also a frequent guest of famous international music festivals such as The Corinthian Summer Music Festival in Austria, Summit Music Festival, Mannes Keyboard Festival in the USA, the Musiktage Koblenz in Germany, Nuit Classiques de Ramatuelle and Nuits du Piano d’Erbalunga in France.

Her past performances include concerts in Moscow, St.Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Yekaterinburg, Odessa, Baku, South Korea, Israel, USA, Japan and Argentina. After her 2017 arrival in Canada, Victoria performed the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No.1 at Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto with the Ontario Symphony Orchestra conducted by Maestro Sabatino Vacca. 


Five for Five

Wednesday, January 31, 2017 at 8 pm
$30/$25 (cash at the door); online at

Michael Westwood, clarinet
Yosef Tamir, viola
Megumi Okamoto, piano
Rebekah Wolkstein, violin
Amy Laing, cello


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