cello / viol

Alison McGillivray

Alison lives in Glasgow and plays and teaches baroque cello and viola da gamba (aka viol). In order to study Early Music, Alison lived in London and worked there for many years as a principal cellist and soloist with many of the leading Early Music groups. Her main musical partnerships now are with Brecon Baroque and the violinist Rachel Podger, and Glasgow’s Concerto Caledonia and David McGuinness. She’s a guest director of projects with baroque orchestras in Poland and Austria. As a teacher, she has links with many of the British music colleges, and also teaches intensive courses in Lodz, Poland and Wales. In other capacities, she runs Katherine McGillivray’s ‘Get a Life Fund’, a charity which funds sabbaticals for musicians, and has trained as a Feldenkrais Method® practitioner to explore how the way we move can influence the music we make.

mezzo soprano

Andrea Ludwig

Born and raised in Regina, Saskatchewan, Juno-nominated mezzo soprano Andrea Ludwig is an artist of tremendous depth, musicality and scope. Her charm, warmth and easy sense of humour are perfect for the stage and her vibrant musicality makes her a favourite to all her audiences. Her versatility and ability to interpret many styles are impeccable.


Bogdan Dulu

Bogdan Dulu is an extraordinary musician able to open the world of music to even the most non-musical audience, combining mastery of the piano with the ability to educate and entertain with his engaging speaking style, intelligence, compassion, and humour. Dulu received a rigorous foundation in the fundamentals of music through specialized education in his native Romania. This led to his orchestral debut at age 12 in a concert broadcast nationally by the Romanian Radio Corporation. It was this institution that significantly contributed to making his name recognized across the country, through multiple live broadcasts of solo and orchestral performances, interviews, and several studio recordings. His recordings represented the Romanian Radio at the Concertino Prague (1997) and EURORADIO New Talent Bratislava (2006) competitions.


Canadian Chamber Choir

Founded in 1999 with a mandate to bring Canadian choral music to every corner of Canada, the Canadian Chamber Choir has succeeded in becoming Canada’s coast-to-coast chamber choir.  The Canadian Chamber Choir is returning to Nova Scotia after 4 years to collaborate with the Nova Scotia Choral Federation’s Adult Choir Camp as the artists in residence, as well as participate in this summers Musique Royale line up.

Under the artistic direction of renowned conductor and music educator Julia Davids, the Juno-nominated Canadian Chamber Choir remains true to its core mission: building community through choral singing. Join the Canadian Chamber Choir for an unforgettable made-in-Canada choral adventure entitled Seasons of Life and Landscapefeaturing a variety of music by established and emerging Canadian composers on a musical journey which will evoke the forces of nature, the passages of life, the liturgical calendar and reflections form various Canadian cultures.

An eclectic selection of music from folksongs to original works by Cy Giacomin, Tim Corlis, Kathleen Allen, Peter Tongi, Gordon Lightfoot, Robert Ingari, Tobin Stokes, Imant Raminish, Jocelyn Morelock, Jeffry Ryan and Composer-in-residence Jeff Enns. Also featured will be pieces from the Canadian Chamber Choir’s Juno-nominated recording Sacred Reflections of Canada - A Canadian Mass.


Capella Regalis

Capella Regalis Men and Boys Choir was founded in Halifax, Nova Scotia, by Director Nick Halley in 2010. The choir comprises ten men and twelve boys (ages 7–14) and is modeled on the great Anglican tradition of men and boys church choirs. While Canada was once rich with such choirs, Capella Regalis is one of only a handful of men and boys choirs in Canada today.

The choir sings Choral Evensong every Tuesday of the academic term at 5:00 p.m. in the University of King’s College Chapel, 6350 Coburg Road, Halifax. The choir also performs concerts throughout Nova Scotia and beyond in a busy September – July season. Past concerts range from Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with the King’s College Chapel Choir to Carmina Burana with the Nova Scotia Youth Orchestra and King’s Chorus to the ever-popular annual Christmas concert, To Bethlehem with Kings. In addition to services and concerts, the boys of Capella Regalis enjoy a summer choir camp in the last week of August and other musically- and socially-enriching outings and experiences. The choir is a free programme open to any boy who passes an audition.


Cecilia Osmond

The Canadian-born soprano Cecilia Osmond is heard frequently as a soloist and as a member of elite vocal ensembles, such as The Cardinall’s Musick and The Tallis Scholars. She was educated at St Paul’s Girls’ School and Trinity College, Cambridge. During her postgraduate study at the Royal Academy of Music she was awarded the Silver Medal of the Worshipful Company of Musicians.

Notable solo performances include the title role in Handel’s Theodora with Nicholas McGegan at the Spitalfields Festival, Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with the Gabrieli Consort and Paul McCreesh, Bach’s Matthew Passion with the Sixteen and Harry Christophers, Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem with the London Mozart Players, Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610 in the City of London Festival with St Paul’s Cathedral Choir and Buxtehude’s Membra Jesu Nostri with The English Concert and Harry Bicket at the Wigmore Hall. Earlier this year Cecilia made her operatic debut with New Chamber Opera, as Cintia in Cimarosa’s The Parisian Painter.

Cecilia can be heard on over fifty recordings, including solo appearances on award-winning discs with Polyphony and The King’s Consort. Her recent recordings include the critically acclaimed Bach Matthew Passion and Bach Mass in B Minor, performed with solo voices by the Dunedin Consort and Players under John Butt.

Cecilia has recently been elected an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music.

English Tenor

Charles Daniels

Born in Salisbury, Charles Daniels attended the choir school at King’s College, Cambridge where he was a chorister, then Winchester College for his secondary education. He returned to King’s College, Cambridge for his university education, where he was a Choral scholar, reading Natural Sciences and Music. After taking his degree, he studied under Edward Brooks at the Royal College of Music in London where he was awarded a Foundation Scholarship.

cello / piano

Cheng² Duo

Committed to bringing classical music to 21st-century audiences through innovative programming and engaging presentations, Canadian classical pianist and cellist Silvie and Bryan Cheng have been making music together for the past 13 years. In 2011, when they were called upon to replace an injured musician for a scheduled recital in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, they officially became known as Cheng² Duo, pronounced Cheng Squared Duo. The duo’s New York debut was met with an enthusiastic full-house audience, as well as critical acclaim. Following that concert, the Cheng² Duo was invited back to Weill Hall for a return recital in 2013, which included the world premiere of a pair of new Canadian works written by the Juno award-winning composer Alexina Louie to another full house. 


Chris Norman

Hailed by The New Yorker as “a flute player of spectacular and imaginative virtuosity”, Chris Norman’s brilliant and warm-toned flute playing has contributed to groups as diverse as The Baltimore Consort, Skyedance, Helicon, Chatham Baroque, and Concerto Caledonia. His influential work for the past 30 years as performer, composer, recording artist, educator, and director of the Boxwood Festival & Workshop has played a significant role in reviving the flute in traditional Scottish and Canadian music. His playing has appeared on more than 40 award winning recordings, and can be heard featured on the Oscar winning soundtrack of Titanic and other Hollywood films including, Soldier, and Stone of Destiny. Norman also brings a wealth of technical knowledge in the craftsmanship of wooden flute making.


David Braid

Hailed in the Canadian press as “A jazz genius to call our own” (Macleans Magazine), multi-Juno Award winner and Steinway Piano Artist David Braid has performed concerts of his original music and improvisations across The United States, Europe, Scandinavia, Asia, Australia, Brazil and Canada.

Combining harmonies fundamental to European classical music and the spontaneity of American jazz, Braid’s fusion of art music engages audiences with a style that has been described as “refreshingly uncategorizable” (Paris Transatlantic), ‘brilliant’ (Montreal Gazette), “wide-ranging, exploratory” (South China Morning Post), “une force poétique” (Le Soleil) and “hauntingly beautiful” (The Globe & Mail.)

Recent coverage of Braid’s work was profiled on The BBC with Sally Fairfax, ABC with Andrew Ford, CCTV (China Central Television), and at home in Canada on CBC’s The Signal, and Q.

“Braid’s tone, touch, chord voicings and imagination make him one of the most interesting new pianists I’ve encountered in a long time.” - Doug Ramsey, recipient of Jazz Journalists Association’s Lifetime achievement Award.

Recently awarded Jazz Pianist of the Year in Canada, Braid is also a recipient of SOCAN Composer of the Year, recognizing his output of over one hundred works including compositions for solo piano, jazz ensembles chamber groups, and symphony orchestras. He has released nine recordings, garnering six Juno nominations and two Juno awards; he is also a multi-National Jazz Award Winner and a recipient of the Canada Council for the Arts’ “JazzID Award”.

David Braid is an artist-in-residence at the University of Toronto, Faculty of Music.

voilin / fiddle

David Greenberg

David Greenberg’s double career as both a baroque violinist and traditional fiddler began at an early age. He studied baroque violin with Stanley Ritchie at Indiana University’s Early Music Institute, and moved to Canada in 1988 to join the Toronto-based baroque orchestra Tafelmusik. With Tafelmusik for ten years, David performed orchestral, chamber, and solo roles in North America, Europe, and the Far East, and on more than forty recordings. David also plays the vielle (medieval fiddle). He won first prize at the Erwin Bodky International Early Music Competition in 1988 with the Medieval Quintet, and recorded vielle soundtracks for Atom Egoyan’s film The Sweet Hereafter. David has gained the reputation in Cape Breton music circles as being one of the few people from outside the Nova Scotia island to have achieved a fluent command of the Cape Breton music idiom. With his wife, Kate Dunlay, he published Traditional Celtic Violin Music of Cape Breton, The DunGreen Collection.

David Macfarlane and Douglas Cameron

Drawn from stories in The Danger Tree by David Macfarlane and performed by the writer with award-winning composer Douglas Cameron, The Door You Came In is a unique blend of spoken word and music tells the funny and moving story of a Newfoundland family and the war that changed it forever.

Dinuk Wijeratne

The Sri Lankan-born Dinuk Wijeratne is a JUNO, ECMA, and SOCAN award winning composer who has been described by the New York Times as ‘exuberantly creative’ and by the Toronto Star as ‘an artist who reflects a positive vision of our cultural future’. Active also as a conductor and pianist, Dinuk’s boundary-crossing work sees him equally at home in collaborations with symphony orchestras and string quartets, Tabla players and DJs, and takes him to international venues as poles apart as the Berlin Philharmonie and the North Sea Jazz Festival. Dinuk has also appeared at the Lincoln Center, Kennedy Center, Opera Bastille, Teatro Colón, and across Sri Lanka, Japan, the UK, and the Middle East. Season highlights include Dinuk’s appointment as Composer-in-Residence of Symphony Nova Scotia, and his role in ‘What would Beethoven do?’ - the recent documentary about innovation in Classical music featuring Eric Whitacre, Bobby McFerrin and Ben Zander. Dinuk grew up in Dubai and took up initial composition studies at the Royal Northern College of Music (UK), later studying with Oscar-winning composer John Corigliano at the Juilliard School. His music and collaborative work embrace the great diversity of his international background and influences.


Doug MacPhee

New Waterford native Doug MacPhee has performed with all the great fiddlers of Cape Breton over the years. Although he prides himself in his ability as an accompanist, Doug is also known as Cape Breton’s foremost piano soloist. Doug’s music can be heard on more than fifty recordings in addition to his five solo albums and a compilation CD as well. He has toured throughout Canada and internationally and has been recognized with the Order of Canada for his contribution to Cape Breton traditional culture.

English tenor

Edmund Brownless

The English tenor, Edmund Philip Brownless, sang as chorister in the choir of Hereford Cathedral. After emigrating to Nova Scotia he studied music at McGill University in Montréal, where he received B. Mus. and M. Mus. degrees in voice. Later, he studied at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis in Switzerland and had lessons with Cornelius L. Reid in New York.

As a soloist Edmund Brownless has performed throughout Europe and North America and sings on many recordings, notably with the Bach Ensemble (Joshua Rifkin), Sequentia Köln, Ensemble Gilles Binchois (Dominique Vellard), and the Clemencic Consort (René Clemencic).

Epoque String Quartet

The Prague string quartet Epoque Quartet was founded at the beginning of the year 1999. Four excellent soloists and chamber musicians with abundant stage experiences brang not only their unanimity in musical opinions and the relationship in their artistic nature together, but even their extraordinary interest in musical genres, which do not belong under the title „classical music“ – jazz, rock and funk. As compositions of the classical quartet literature stay an integral part of the programmes of this ensemble, the sensitive approach to unconventional arrangements brings him new possibilities in using the string instruments and at the same time it enables them to widen the repertoire, which on our and on stages abroad is unique.

The members of the quartet are laureates of several international competitions (for two times the first place in the competition of Liezen in Austria, the first price in the international competition Ludwig van Beethoven for string quartets, the price Jeunesse Musicale) and the ensemble took part in some other competitions (for example the competition Paolo Borciani), too. Abroad the quartet gave among others concerts in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Italy, England, Israel, Japan, Greece, in the Netherlands, Poland, Bosnia and so on. Regularly the Epoque Quartet performs in the subscription cycles of the Symphonic Orchestra of the Czech Broadcasting, the Czech Nonet, plays for the association for chamber music, cooperates with the Czech television and the Czech Broadcasting and is guest on prestigious music festivals for example the Schleswig-Holstein Musikfestival, Concentus Moraviae, the Music Festival of České Krumlov, Chamber music Cycle of the Stuttgarter Philharmoniker, Metamorphoses (Switzerland), Music Festival Ludwig van Beethoven, Moravský podzim (Moravian autumn) an so on.

In the year 2000 the members of the Epoque Quartet led a master class in jazz interpretation at the Music Academy of Jerusalem.

In the field of jazz the Epoque quartet came together with personalities like George Mraz, Benny Beailey, Yoshiko Kishino.

Digestedly the ensemble works together with the Trio Robert Balzar.

Vladimír Klánský – violin

He is a graduate from the Prague conservatory in the class of prof. N. Grumlíková and in the years 1998/99 he studied at the conservatory of Luzern (G. Larsens). Like a member of chamber music ensembles he took part in master classes of S. Givens (Canada), W. Levin, H.W. Meyer (LaSalle Quartet) and H. Beyerle (A. Berg Quartet). As a soloist he performs in the Czech Republic and abroad. From the year 2005 he is a member of the Symphonic Orchestra of the Czech Broadcasting. Like a member of orchestras and chamber music ensembles he performed with Mischa Majsky (České Krumlov 2005) or Herbie Hancock (Prague Spring 2005).

Vladimír Kroupa – viola

Vladimír Kroupa finished The Prague Conservatory with J Ruis (Dvořák Quartet), then read viola with L Malý at The Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. He was a member of the Talich Chamber Orchestra and of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra (for two years). From 1991, he played in the Apollon String Quartet, who won the first prize at the L van Beethoven international competition. In 1996, he participated in master classes with the Alban Berg Quartet, and in 2000 with H.W.Meyer (LaSalle Quartet).In 1999 he was one of the founding members of the Epoque String Quartet which performed in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Italy, Britain, Israel, Japan, Greece, the Netherlands etc, and which was successful at many competitions (e.g. the Paolo Borciani Competition) and festivals (e.g. Schleswig-Holstein Festival (Germany), Stuttgarter Philharmoniker Zyklus, Metamorphosen (Switzerland), České sny (the Czech Republic)). In 2000 he led master classes at The Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance. Since 2003, he has been a member of The Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra (SOČR) where he is leading viola player at present. He has been a member of the Czech Nonet since 2007.

Vít Petrášek– violoncello

He studied at the conservatory of Prague in the class of prof. F. Pišinger. In the year 2005 he finished his studies at the Musikhochschule Luzern (prof. M. Jerie) and received the pretigious evaluation Edwin Fischer Preis. He is for two times winner of the violoncello competition in the Austrian Liezen (1994, 1996). In the year 1995 he played a recital in the cycle of the Czech Philharmonic and like a soloists he cooperates with the Luzerner Sinfonie Orchester, the Symphonic Orchestra of the Czech Broadcasting, the Philharmonic Zlín and the State Philharmonic Košice. Like a member of chamber music ensembles he took part in the International Kyoto Music Festival 1997 and worked together with H.W. Meyer, W. Levin and H. Beyerle.

percussion / piano

Erin Donovan

Mahone Bay percussionist, pianist, educator and composer Erin Donovan has performed as a freelance percussionist with the Calgary Philharmonic, Symphony Nova Scotia, the Canadian Opera Company, Continuum New Music, The Banff Centre, Gamelan Toronto, Evergreen Club Gamelan, the Glass Orchestra and Array Music. She presents multi-media events for alternative spaces with her organization, Hear Here Productions. Her most recent production was Burnwater, a site-specific work in East Dover with Mocean Dance and the iron sound-sculptures of blacksmith John Little in Sept 2013. In a co-production with the Banff Centre and Parks Canada, Hear Here presented Two Jack Wish at Two Jack Lake in Banff and The Bankhead Project, a large-scale site-specific event at Lower Bankhead, a ghost town just outside of Banff. Erin is also a private teacher in piano, percussion, guitar and singing and loves working with children and young people.

Fifth Wind

Jack Chen Having shared the stage and camera with Amy Grant, Sir James Galway, Michael Giacchino, Bobby McFerrin and Doc Severinsen, Canadian flutist Jack Chen appeared in 13 PBS television music specials and toured with Tim Janis, Finnouala Gill, EMI artist Giorgia Fumanti, Ryland Angel and “Siren.” Having earned his masters degree in flute and early music performance from Indiana University, Jack has studied with flutists Jeanne Baxtresser, William Bennet, Robert Dick, Patrick Gallois, Sarah Jackson, Bart Kuijken, Robert Langevin and Emmanuel Pahud. Jack can be heard on the recent orchestral and cinematic albums “Horizons,” “Awakening” and “Unconditional.”  Appointed Instructor of Flute and Flute Methods at Acadia University, Jack also coaches several high-energy flute ensembles and teaches flute throughout the Maritime.

Suzanne Lemieux became Principal Oboe of Symphony Nova Scotia in 1986, following three years in the same capacity with the Victoria Symphony. She has performed as soloist with SNS on more than twenty programmes. She has premiered and commissioned works by many Canadian composers including Christos Hatzis, Marjan Mozetich, Steve Tittle, Bob Bauer, Dennis Farrell, Jerome Blais. She also performed the Canadian premieres of pieces for oboe by British composers H.Birtwhistle, S. North and O.Knusssen among others. Suzanne has recorded Hatzis’ Telluric Dances for Oboe and Orchestra for CBC records and gave the US premiere of this work at Avery Fisher Hall. Suzanne returns to Scotia Festival of Music annually, and has been invited to most of the Atlantic Canada summer festivals where she has played with the Penderecki Quartet and the Quatuor Arthur Leblanc. She has performed chamber music at the National Arts Centre’s Salon and Fourth Stage and was a guest at the Picton County Chamber Music Festival.  (photo by Perry Jackson)

Clarinetist Eileen Walsh has been Second Clarinet and Bass Clarinet with Symphony Nova Scotia since October 2007. Formerly the Associate Principal and E-flat Clarinet with the South Bend Symphony, Eileen earned her master of music degree and performer diploma from Indiana University in the studio of Eli Eban. Eileen completed her Bachelor’s degree in Vancouver, Canada at UBC in the studio of Wesley Foster, and she was the recipient of the Aspen Music Scholarship and Mathilda Heck Woodwind Award at the WAMSO Young Artist Competition in 2006. She has been a semifinalist at the International Clarinet Association’s Young Artist Competition twice.  Eileen has attended many festivals and masterclasses, including summers at the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, Aspen Music Festival, National Academy Orchestra of Canada, Orford Arts Centre, and Domaine Forget Academy of Music and Dance. Her solo performances with orchestra include the Nielsen and Copland Clarinet Concertos.  (photo by Perry Jackson)

Ivor Rothwell is a Canadian bassoonist. For the last 28 years, he has been Principal Bassoonist of Symphony Nova Scotia. Before this, he had been a member of the Calgary Philharmonic, the KW Symphony. He is an active teacher and chamber musician in Nova Scotia, founding member, recorder player and baroque bassoonist of the period-instrument early music ensemble Rejouissance and Fifth Wind quintet.

Hornist Mary Lee is originally from Toronto, and completed her musical training at the University of Toronto, and the Utrecht Conservatory in the Netherlands. During her undergraduate years she spent two summers at the Banff Centre and participated in masterclasses in Freiburg, Germany.  Mary’s first orchestral job took her to Israel to play with the Israel Sinfonietta. Shortly after that, in 1989, she won the position of second horn with Symphony Nova Scotia, and has been there ever since.  Mary is active as a chamber musician, horn instructor, coach and adjudicator and is on the faculty at Acadia University and the Maritime Conservatory of the Performing Arts. She greatly enjoys her work with horn students of all ages and abilities and continues her learning through teaching.

Halifax Camerata Singers

The Halifax Camerata Singers is Atlantic Canada’s premier chamber choir. Founded in 1986 by Artistic Director Jeff Joudrey, the Nova Scotia ensemble has distinguished itself by performing exciting choral repertoire that covers all periods and styles, with special attention to Canadian music. To learn more about the biography of the Halifax Camerata Singers click here.


Hélène Brunet

Canadian soprano Hélène Brunet is hailed by the critics as “a singer of tremendous quality” with “a voice of perfect beauty” and “sincere expression” that is “vocally alluring”, “passionate and reverent”. She is particularly reputed for her interpretations of the works of Bach, Handel and Mozart.

Janina Fialkowska

Born in Canada, Janina began her piano studies with her mother at age 4 continuing on in her native Montreal with Yvonne Hubert. In Paris she studied with Yvonne Lefébure and in New York at the Juilliard School with Sascha Gorodnitzki, experiencing the best of both French and Russian piano traditions. Her career was launched in 1974, when the legendary Arthur Rubinstein became her mentor after her prize-winning performance at his inaugural Master Piano Competition, calling her a “born Chopin interpreter” laying the foundation for her lifelong identification with this composer.

Since then she has performed with the foremost orchestras worldwide under the baton of such conductors as Zubin Mehta, Bernard Haitink, Lorin Maazel, Sir Georg Solti, Sir Roger Norrington and Yannick Nézet-Séguin, to name one of the younger generation. She has won special recognition for a series of important premieres, notably Liszt’s newly discovered Third Piano Concerto with the Chicago Symphony and several contemporary piano concertos. Ms Fialkowska’s discography includes many award-winning discs, e.g. the BBC Music Magazine’s 2013 “Instrumental CD of the Year” award.

Jean-Luc Therrien

Jean-Luc Therrien, a young pianist in his early twenties and third-prize winner at the Canadian Music Competition’s Stepping St one 2014, will present audiences with a diverse array of preludes. With a range of styles and sounds – from preludes of bygone days, such as those of Rameau and Debussy, to those of more contemporary composers, such as Nino Rota – these brief pieces are sure to delight. Perfor med with skill and sensitivity by one of Canada’s most promising young pianists, this concert presents a cavalcade of concise yet expres sive works.

2014 was a successful year for pianist Jean-Luc Therrien. In March 2013, he was one of the finalists of the Maria Canals International Piano Com-petition, in Spain. In April, he won the grand prize of the 52 nd Festival-Concours de musique de Lanaudière as well as the special jury prize at the 29 th OSTR Competition. Over the years, Jean-Luc Therrien has distin-guished himself on various provincial, national and international competitions. At the Cana-dian Music Competition, where he has always reached the national final, he won the 2nd prize in 2007 and 2011. He also won the Soloists Com-petition of the Trois-Rivières’ Music Conservatory three times. He also stood as finalist in major competitions such as the OSM Standard Life Competition, the Julia Crane International Piano Competition, the Ferruccio Busoni International Piano Competition, the Hélène-Roberge Compe-tition and the Trois-Rivières’ Symphony Orchestra Competition. Furthermore, in 2011 and 2013, he went to the Boston University Tanglewood Institute and the Orford Arts Center in order to follow trainings with renowned professors. For the 2013-2014 season, Jean-Luc Therrien will play with the Symphony Orchestra of the Trois-Rivières and Saguenay’s Music Conservatories and with the String Quartet Claudel-Canimex.

Jeff Reilly

“Reilly’s performance is gripping: his use of extended techniques add moments of sudden rawness to a beautifully full tone that masterfully conveys the image of the lone prophet Jeremiah”. The Classical Review, UK (re: ECM release of Lamentations of Jeremiah)

“Jeff Reilly is an undisputed master of the Bass Clarinet who has gone to the end to explore its sonic universe.” Halifax Chronicle Herald

“The virtuoso clarinetist Jeff Reilly extends his cadenzas across the history of sound, from monotony to modernism, in a performance that is dominant and often hypnotic.” Norman Lebrecht

Jeff Reilly leads a multifaceted life as a bass clarinetist, composer, conductor, a CBC radio music producer, and as a radio documentary maker. A recording artist for the prestigious German label ECM, he has performed with choirs, orchestras and chamber groups, in music festivals, cathedrals and concert halls around the world – with his trio Sanctuary he has performed in Shanghai, Paris, London, New York, St Petersburg, Moscow, Riga, Sochi, Toronto, Montreal and more.

The pure emotional accessibility of his rich, lyrical performance and compositional style reminds us that extended techniques, avant-guard sonorities and complex forms of notation can be executed within the service of musicality and sensitivity. Receiving 4 Juno nominations, an ECMA award as well as 4 ECMA nominations, his approach to music blurs any simple distinctions between improvisation and composition, and does so with a musicality and sensitivity that reminds us that such distinctions are moot. Jeff has commissioned many large-scale works that feature bass clarinet, including Eriks Esenvalds, Christos Hatzis, David Mott, Peter-Anthony Togni, and Barry Guy.

Jeff Reilly lives in Halifax with his wife and twin daughters, and is the CBC senior producer of music production for the Atlantic Region.


John Potter

John Potter’s musical collaborators include lutenist Ariel Abramovich, the Dowland Project, Red Byrd, the Gavin Bryars Ensemble and the composer Ambrose Field. With fellow tenors Christopher O’Gorman and Rogers Covey-Crump he is a part of the Hyperion/University of Southampton Conductus Project. A writer and scholar as well as a singer, he has published four books on singing and is a former British Library Edison Fellow. He is Reader Emeritus in Music at the University of York, having left the university in 2010 to focus on his portfolio of freelance projects. His non-performing activities have included publishing articles and research papers, examining doctoral theses in Europe and the UK and coaching ensembles in Europe and the USA.

King's Chapel Choir

Paul Halley was made an associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto at 16 and was an organ scholar at Trinity College, Cambridge, from which he received his MA with prizes in composition and performance. He won first prize in the College examinations and was made a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists. Halley was the organist and choirmaster at The Cathedral of St John the Divine in New York City (1977-1989) while also acting as principal composer and keyboardist for The Paul Winter Consort, earning five Grammy Awards for his work with the Consort.

Halley founded the children’s choir, Chorus Angelicus, and the chamber choir, Gaudeamus, in Connecticut and became director of music at Trinity Episcopal Church, Torrington, where he established a choral and organ scholars program with nearby Yale University.

Since 2007, Halley has served as the university musician at Atlantic School of Theology and as director of music for the University of King’s College chapel. His compositions have been performed and licensed by many artists and groups, including the New Jersey Symphony, John Williams and the Boston Pops Orchestra, and professional choirs around the world. He is the recipient of many composer awards and is a guest artist throughout North America. His recordings and performances are frequently aired on National Public Radio and the CBC.


Modeled after the chapel choirs of Cambridge and Oxford, the choir at the University of King’s College comprises 24 talented choristers and is directed by Grammy winning musician Paul Halley. The choir sings for the Chapel’s weekly services of Evensong and Eucharist and gives concerts throughout Eastern Canada and the United States. This is the final concert of the second annual three-part concert series at the Cathedral Church of All Saints entitled “King’s At The Cathedral.” Next season, the choir will be performing the Rachmaninov Vespers on 6 November 2011, A King’s Christmas, 9-11 December 2011, and Bach’s B Minor Mass, 20 and 22 April 2012.The Chapel Choir of the University of King’s College, modeled on the Chapel Choirs of Cambridge and Oxford, comprises twenty choristers selected through annual auditions held in September, which are open to all students at King’s College and Dalhousie University. The choir’s primary function is to sing at the weekly Evensongs and Eucharists, as well as other major services throughout the academic year. The choir had its beginnings in the early 1970s when Dr. Robert Crouse put together a group of singers to lead the worship at the Thursday Eucharists at King’s. Since that time the choir has expanded its role, having sung under the direction of several notable conductors including Helen Roby, David Buley, and most recently Dr. Walter Kemp.

In July 2007, Paul Halley was appointed Director of Music of the Chapel and since then has built the group into a fine ensemble which now includes touring and recording amongst its activities. Halley says of the choir: “It is my hope that over time, prospective students will view the Chapel Choir as one of the reasons to attend university in Halifax. There’s really nothing quite like the training a fine collegiate chapel choir can offer. You get through so much first-rate music, just in one week - all the anthems, motets, mass settings, canticles, psalms and hymns - that your musical literacy increases at a phenomenal rate.”

La Tour Baroque

Based in the province of New Brunswick on the east coast of Canada, the La Tour Baroque Duo has received accolades such as “exquisitely played” and “spellbinding” from critics and audiences alike. Their three CDs Les caractères de la danse (2011), The Last Time I Came O’er the Moor (2012) and Music at the Time of Louisbourg (2013) have been broadcast throughout Canada and in the USA and were all nominated for East Coast Music Awards. The Duo has performed throughout eastern Canada and in major centres such as Toronto, Montreal, New York, Paris and London. In 2013 the members of the La Tour Baroque Duo were Musicians-in-Residence at the Fortress of Louisbourg in Nova Scotia as part of the special activities for the 300th anniversary of its foundation.

Tim Blackmore is a graduate of the Montreal Conservatoire, the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and the Guildhall School of Music in London. He is the founder and Artistic Director of the Early Music Studio of Saint John and the Saint John Early Music Festival.

Michel Cardin has gained international recognition as a teacher, performer, musicologist and producer and has received numerous awards for his artistic accomplishments. A graduate of the Montreal Conservatoire, he is Professor of Guitar and Lute at the University of Moncton.


Magnus Holstrom

Magnus Holmström is a three time world champion on Nyckelharpa. He started to play the instrument when he was 12 years old. At that time he lived in Bullmark, a small village outside of Umeå, in the north of Sweden. After one year of study at the “Eric Sahlström Institute” (2000) ,he decided to take the music to a higher level, and got accepted at Royal College of Music in 2003. After five years of studying he now works with music full time, both as musician, teacher, project manager and runs the recordcompany “Dimma Sweden” with two friends… You can hear him in both “Storis & Limpan Band”, Fomp and “Face The Bear”.


Marcel d'Entremont

The Canadian tenor, Marcel d’Entremont, graduated from Acadia University in Nova Scotia after studying with Dr. Christianne Rushton. He was the recipient of the Portia White Award, the highest achievement in voice, for the Nova Scotia Talent Trust. Accepted on full scholarship, he is currently completing a Master of Music degree at the University of Toronto as a student of Darryl Edwards. He received 2nd place in the Art Song category of the Hal Leonard international voice competition and performed for over 50,000 people at the Royal Nova Scotia International Tattoo in 2013.

Maritime Brass Quintet

The Maritime Brass Quintet brings the highest caliber chamber music to concert halls, churches, festivals and schools across the Maritimes. The group is comprised of five of Canada’s finest brass players: Curtis Dietz and Richard Simoneau (trumpet), Gina Patterson (horn), Eric Mathis (trombone) and Bob Nicholson (tuba & bass trombone).

Maritime Brass Quintet members have studied throughout North America and performed or held positions with many of the world’s leading ensembles, including the Chicago Symphony, Toronto Symphony, l’Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, National Arts Centre Orchestra, Honolulu Symphony and the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra. They also have experience playing in numerous smaller groups and ensembles, including Foothills Brass, Northumberland Brass, Honolulu Brass Quintet, the Jive Kings and the Canadian Brass.

Since forming in the spring of 2011, the Maritime Brass Quintet embarked on a busy concert schedule and have been featured guests at many of the regions’ well-known concert series and performance venues: including the Scotia Festival of Music, the Music Room, Acadia University, University of Prince Edward Island, Universite de Moncton, and First Baptist Church, Halifax. They frequently collaborate with some of the regions finest musicians including Paul Halley and the King’s College Choir, Nick Halley and Capella Regalis, Jeff Joudrey and the Halifax Camerata, and in recital with Mark Duggan at the Scotia Festival of Music.

Recent performances include concerts with the Musique Royale Concert Series, Music at Three Churches, Mahone Bay, collaborations with Kings Chapel Choir and Capella Regalis and recent tour with jazz pianist/composer David Braid.

All MBQ members are dedicated educators as well as players, and are committed to working with brass players of all ages.


Maxim Bernard

Maxim Bernard discovered his passion at the age of 13. His development has been phenomenal; by age 18 he was invited to perform Beethoven’s magnificent Fourth Piano Concerto with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra!

In 2004, he met the legendary pianist Menahem Pressler at the Orford Arts Centre and the chemistry between them was immediate. After hearing Maxim play, Pressler declared “I believe in your future!” A few months later, Maxim was on his way to the University of Indiana to study with his new mentor, where he earned both his Master’s and Doctoral degrees in Piano Performance. He developed his unique style, and music has become for him a spiritual experience. His sensitivity, his personal touch, and the contagious spontaneity he brings to his interpretations combine to make him an exceptional pianist.

He has been a prize winner at the CBC Young Artists Competition, the Indianapolis Matinee Musicale Competition and at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music Concerto Competition. In 2006, his career was launched after he won the prestigious International Stepping Stone of the Canadian Music Competition.

He taught for five years at Indiana University and his qualifications led him to serve on juries of many music competitions throughout Canada.

Maxim Bernard is a polyvalent musician who adores challenges. That is probably why conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin asked him to learn Ginastera’s challenging Second Piano Concerto in order to perform the Canadian premiere of the work with the Orchestre Métropolitain of Montreal at the Maison Symphonique de Montréal. The critic Claude Gingras from La Presse wrote: “The pianist was entirely up to the onerous task, both in power and in introspection. The conductor and orchestra were in perfect synchronisation with him and the spectacular result inspired a long and enthusiastic ovation from the hall.”

He looks forward to his debut in Brussels in 2016 where he will perform a recital in the great hall of the Centre for Fine Arts.

Naming the Twins

Naming the Twins is the Nova Scotia based, harmony rich guy-gal duo of Robbie Smith and Kath Glauser whose vocal blendings sound a bit like Simon & Garfunkel, if Art was a girl, a bit like Peter, Paul & Mary, if one of the boys was taking the night off. Their original material maintains the tradition of Ian & Sylvia, Gordon Lightfoot and Stan Rogers.

Their energy, casual banter, wide variety of song styles and remarkably well matched voices captivate audiences wherever they perform. Their presentations are well balanced with thoughtful ballads and toe-tappin’ numbers, transporting the listener with lyrical imagery and sweet harmonies.

“Naming the Twin is bright, breezy and delightful. Their sound is wonderful…reminiscent of the best folk duos of the 60’s and 70’s.” Bob Sherman, host of the long-running ” WOODYS CHILDREN, now in its 45th consecutive year on the air, heard on WFUV (in NYC) and via the internet

Robbie Smith grew up in a very musical family. His first instrument was the violin but he soon began honing his craft as a songwriter at an early age. He is now the songwriter and arranger for the duo, plays guitars and other stringed instruments with a style all his own. Kathleen Glauser discovered her voice later in life, along with a natural ability to harmonize. She is the organizer, the manager, the “gig-getter” of the duo with a very busy day job running her own restaurant. Robbie and Kath together form a surprisingly tight vocal match to the delight of all their followers.

composer / piano

Nick Halley

Nick Halley is a drummer/percussionist, keyboardist, composer, and conductor. As a drummer and world percussionist, Nick has performed and recorded internationally with a wide range of musicians including James Taylor, Oscar Castro-Neves, Maucha Adnet, David McGuinness & Revenge of the Folk Singers, Concerto Caledonia, Jefferson Hamer & Eamon O’Leary, Old Man Luedecke & Tim O’Brien, the Chris Norman Ensemble, various Paul Halley ensembles, Suzie LeBlanc, Theresa Thomason, Diomira with Dinuk Wijeratne & Joseph Petric, and occasionally the Nick Halley Band.  The recording Barnum Hill (2008) features Nick and his ensemble performing some of Nick’s original compositions.

Nick is the founder and Artistic Director of the Capella Regalis Men and Boys Choir in Halifax, Nova Scotia.  He is the founder and Director of The King’s Chorus, a choir for members of the King’s and Dalhousie University communities in Halifax.  Nick is also the Assistant Director of the acclaimed University of King’s College Chapel Choir directed by his father, Paul Halley.  He is Cantor and Director for the chapel’s male Compline choir.  He is also Assistant Director of Music at the Cathedral Church of All Saints, Halifax. In 2012, Nick was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in recognition of his contribution to Canada and Nova Scotia through the arts, particularly for his work with Capella Regalis Men and Boys Choir.  Nick was the Host of CBC’s Choral Concert for the 2013-14 season.

Nova Scotia Youth Choir

A project of the Nova Scotia Choral Federation, the Nova Scotia Youth Choir is now in its 25th year. The objective of the choir is to provide talented singers aged 16 to 25 with a challenging opportunity to work, develop and perform choral music together under the leadership of talented local educators and accomplished Canadian conductors. 30 to 40 auditioned singers from around the province have been chosen to work with a team of fine musicians.

Guest Conductor Kellie Walsh: A native of Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, Kellie Walsh is the Artistic Director of Shallaway: Newfoundland and Labrador Youth in Chorus, Founder and Artistic Director of Lady Cove Women’s Choir, and Artistic Director Emeritus of Newman Sound Men’s Choir.

Shallaway is an internationally award winning and celebrated youth choir. Most recently, the senior ensemble won the title of “Children’s Choir of the World” at the Llangollen Eisteddfodd in Wales. They have also received highest marks in the treble youth choir category at the Béla Bartók International Competition, Hungry, and the more than 250-members performed with the National Arts Centre Orchestra of Ottawa. Lady Cove Women’s Choir is a two-time winner of the CBC Radio National Competition for Amateur Choirs, in 2008 won first place in the prestigious Béla Bartók Contemporary Choir Competition, in Debrecen, Hungary, and was one of 25 choirs chosen to participate in the 9th World Symposium on Choral Music in Puerto Madryn, Argentina. In 2014 the choir won two gold medals at the World Choir Games in Riga, Latvia.

Kellie also enjoys a busy schedule as a workshop clinician, guest conductor, and adjudicator, regularly traveling to work with choirs of all genres. Kellie holds Bachelor degrees in both Music and Music Education from Memorial University, in addition to a Masters degree in conducting. In 2013 Kellie received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, an award honouring significant contributions and achievements by Canadians. Most recently she has been invited to work as a choral specialist at the Stratford Festival in Stratford, Ontario.

Nova Scotia Youth Orchestra

The Nova Scotia Youth Orchestra is a non-profit organization that was founded in 1976. The NSYO has provided students with educational opportunities not available at any university, public school, or conservatory in the province. The Orchestra has been described by renowned professional conductors and musicians as one of the finest in Canada. Many of our alumni have gone on to careers in music-related fields. The NSYO now boasts over 800 alumni. Past Music Directors include: Robert Raines, Stan Fisher, Georg Tintner, Gregory Burton, and our present Music Director is Dinuk Wijeratne.

The NSYO’s season runs from the end of August until the end of April, and includes a 10-day Summer Workshop. The Orchestra usually performs 6 – 8 concerts in a typical season.

Ottawa Cathedral Choir

Formed in 1891, the Choir of Men and Boys is one of the few remaining choirs of men and boys in North America, and the only such resident choir in a Canadian Anglican cathedral.

The Choir is made up of twenty boys between the ages of eight and fourteen. Very few of the boys join the Choir with any previous knowledge of choral music. It is by virtue of their regular attendance and willingness to learn that they are exposed to different languages and benefit from a high-standard of musical training and vocal technique. In addition to regularly singing at Cathedral and Diocesan liturgies, the Choir offers concerts of sacred and secular works. Most recently:

In 2009, the Choir made its first visit to England, where it sang in Cambridge University colleges, took up a one-week residency at Ely Cathedral, and also sang at Great St Mary’s Church (Cambridge) and St Paul’s Cathedral (London). In 2010, the Choir visited New York City, where it sang at St Thomas Fifth Avenue, the Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine, and the Church of Saint Mary the Virgin. In 2011, the Choir visited France and England, where it sang at Vimy Ridge, église Saint Pierre (Barlin, France), Notre-Dame Cathedrals in Paris and Chartres, Salisbury Cathedral, Bath Abbey, and St Paul’s Cathedral (London). In 2012, the Choir visited the Boston area, where it sang at Trinity Church (Boston) and at St Peter’s by-the-Sea (Cape Neddick, Maine). In the summer of 2013, the Choir returned to the United Kingdom, where it sang at St. Mary’s and St. Giles’ Cathedrals in Edinburgh, and St. Bride’s Church, Fleet Street and St. Paul’s Cathedral, London. In June 2014, the Choir returned to New York City to sing at St. Thomas’ Fifth Avenue, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, St. Mary the Virgin and Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church. On June 21, 2015, the Choir sang “A Sacred Concert” at Christ Church Cathedral Ottawa to mark National Aboriginal Day and the transition period following the Indian Residential School’s Truth & Reconciliation Commission. In July 2015, the Choir sang services at Washington National Cathedral, St. Paul’s Church on K Street, and offered recitals in Alexandria VA, Annapolis MD, and St. Michael’s MD.

Paul Halley

Paul Halley was born in England in 1952 and sang in the choir of St. Matthew’s Church, Ottawa, when his family immigrated there. At age 16 he became an Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto and won an organ scholarship to Trinity College, Cambridge. While organist and choirmaster at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, 1977 to 1989, he collaborated with Paul Winter to create the Missa gaia/earth mass, Halley became a member of the Paul Winter Consort, and earned five Grammy Awards for his contributions as a composer and performer with the group. He left the Consort in 1999 after recording Journey with the Sun to pursue a solo career. Paul Halley’s compositions have been performed and recorded by the New Jersey Symphony and John Williams and the Boston Pops Orchestra.


Philippe Gagné

Philippe Gagné has been praised for his expressiveness, refined musical sensitivity and vocal agility, as well as the beauty and lightness of his tone quality. He embraces all periods of music, but has a predilection for the baroque repertoire.

This particular affinity, combined with an innate talent for the music of this period, has led him to perform in numerous countries and with many well-known groups, including Les Violons du Roy, Arion Baroque Orchestra, Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre symphonique de Québec, Le Studio de musique ancienne de Montréal, I Musici de Montréal, La Bande Montréal Baroque and Le Palais Royal, Les Boréades, Les Idées heureuses, Ensemble Caprice and L’Harmonie des Saisons. He has worked under several acclaimed conductors and artistic directors, including Bernard Labadie, Ivars Taurins, Eric Milnes, Fabien Gabel, Christopher Jackson, Francis Colpron, Geneviève Soly, Florian Heyerick, Hervé Niquet and Christophe Rousset.

Quartetto Gelato

Colin Maier

Born and raised in Calgary (Go Flames Go!), Colin graduated from the University of Calgary in 1997 with a Bachelor’s degree in oboe performance studying with David Sussman. Colin achieved a lifelong dream by joining Quartetto Gelato in 2009. “It is the greatest honor to follow in Cynthia’s footsteps and to share a stage (and while on tour, a carpool and hotel room) with these world class musicians”. In addition to being a musician, Colin has also worked for over 20 years as a dancer, actor, stuntman, singer, choreographer, acrobat and martial-artist. This combination of high level music and theatre is quite unique and he continues to find new, exciting and ground breaking ways to combine his two passions. For more information on Colin, please visit his website at www.colinmaier.com

Colin’s two solo albums, “Advice From a Misguided Man” in 2012 and “The Fabulist – Oboe and Other Things” in 2014 have been heard on radio stations in 17 countries and received fantastic reviews from Wholenote, Fanfare and American Record Guide. The albums feature the oboe and Colin’s multi-instrumentalism and are comprised of original Canadian commissions, Canadian arrangements, Canadian/World premieres and virtuosic showpieces that span many musical genres.

As an oboist he has played with groups such as; The Calgary very diverse Philharmonic, National Ballet, Symphony of the Kootenays, Soundstreams, Toronto Concert Orchestra, Scarborough Philharmonic, Niagara International Chamber Music Festival, The Jive Mommas, High Strung, The Fabulous Doo-Wop Boy and The Plaid Tongued Devils. In 2002, he was a featured Jazz oboist at the International Double Reed Festival where he performed and conducted a jazz master class with legendary jazz bassoonist Michael Rabinowitz.

In addition to oboe, Colin also plays clarinet, english horn, violin, 5-string banjo, acoustic/electric bass, piano, saxophone, flute, guitar, mandolin and musical saw. He has yet to master the kitchen sink despite years of training…much respect to the members of STOMP.

Colin had the honor of playing the devil fiddler in the flying blue canoe for the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremonies.” Some highlights from Colin’s theatre career where he appeared as an actor include; “Lord of the Rings” (Mirvish), Fire (CanStage), “Forbidden Phoenix” (LKTYP), “KA” (Cirque du Soleil), “Amadeus” (Alberta Theatre Projects), “That Dance Show” (Saltance Productions), “Cats” (Neptune Theatre), Joseph’s Dreamcoat (StageWest/Drayton), “A Chorus Line” (StageWest), Sarah Brightman’s World Tour, and TV’s “Honey I Shrunk the Kids!”.

Lydia Munchinsky

Cellist Lydia Munchinsky, nee Helsdon, is a freelance performer and teacher currently residing in Toronto. Originally from Aylmer Ontario, she came to Toronto in 2000 to study cello with Simon Fryer and piano with Peter Longworth at The Glenn Gould School. Since completing the Performance Diploma Program, Lydia has enjoyed many of the diverse musical opportunities this city has to offer. Some of those include playing for music theatre companies Stage West and Theatre Aquarius, the new music ensemble Array, electric violinist Dr. Draw, and chamber folk group Ozere. 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. Before having a baby in July 2013, (born the same day as Prince George), Lydia also taught for Sistema Toronto in Parkdale.

Before moving to Toronto, Lydia studied piano with Dorothy Jones and Karen Rowell, and cello with Tim Halliday, Amanda Keesmaat and Julia MacGregor. She performed in Australia, Korea and Chicago at the ages of ten, twelve and fourteen and completed her ARCT (Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto) in performance for both piano and cello before attending her post secondary studies. The year after she finished high school she also traveled to Europe for five months. While there she spent one term at l’Abri, an International Christian Study and Philosophy Centre, and backpacked across Europe for two months with her cello. While in Switzerland, she also met her husband, Marty. Since January of 2014, Lydia has toured the continent with Quartetto Gelato, an experience for which she is extremely grateful. After all, her daughter Arya, who often joins them on tour, is their biggest fan!

Peter De Sotto

Peter is a remarkable talent who’s chameleon like abilities allow him to perform on the violin not only as a seasoned classical violinist but also as a dazzling gypsy virtuoso. If that is not enough the real surprise is his fabulous tenor voice, which ranges from South America, to authentic Irish folk, to the great romantic Italian songs and arias including Turandots “Nessun Dorma”. DeSotto has been referred to as “a credible Pavarotti stand-in (Stereo Review). Peter has appeared in leading roles in numerous opera and theatre productions and was a member of The Toronto Symphony Orchestra for 11 years, and was voted Musician Of The Year in 1999 by the Toronto Musicians Association.

“Whenever Peter De Sotto (tenor, violin, mandolin) released his natural, Italianate tenor – usually in Sicilian and Neapolitan folk Songs – I found tears springing to my eyes. It hardly seems fair that he’s also a violin wiz who tossed off a gypsy number at dizzying speed.” (National Post)

Not only is Peter “an amazing violinist capable of playing any style of music convincingly” but he has “one of the most gorgeous voices I have ever heard. I couldn’t believe any one person could possess that much talent.” (Glenn Dicterow, concert master, New York Philharmonic)

Alexander Sevastian

Alexander Sevastian joined Quartetto Gelato in 2002. Alex (accordion, piano, bandoneon) has won four International Accordion Competitions including the Oslofjord in Norway (1998), The Cup of the North in Russia (2000), the Anthony Galla-Rini Accordion Competition in the U.S.A. (2001) and The Coupe Mondiale in the U.S.A. (2007).

Alex was born in Minsk, Belarus and began his studies on the accordion at the age of seven. In 1991 he attended the Glinka Musical College in Minsk. His advanced studies took him to the Gnessin Academy of Music in Moscow where he received his Masters in Performance degree in 2002, studying with renowned performer and pedagogue, Friedrich Lips.

Alex began his professional career in Moscow in 1996, performing with the Russian Radio Orchestra, which he toured with as a soloist throughout Russia, Ukraine, Germany, Italy, and Japan. Alex also was a very active recitalist and chamber musician. Highlights of his career include appearances in the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall, Glinka Capella Hall (St.Petersburg), Suntory Hall (Tokyo), Minato Mirai Hall (Yokohama), Roy Thomson Hall (Toronto), Jack Singer Hall (Calgary) and Metropolitan Museum (New York). Recent solo engagements include recitals in Mexico, Italy, Portugal, Serbia, U.S.A. and Canada as well as appearances with several symphony orchestras.

Alex and his family moved to Canada in April 2001. In May 2003 he completed the Advanced Certificate in Performance program at the University of Toronto where he studied with Joseph Macerollo.

Alex made his debut with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra under a baton of Peter Oundjian in April 2008 playing the Malcolm Forsyth Accordion Concerto at the New Creations Festival and toured with the orchestra on their Atlantic tour in Eastern Canada in 2009.

Alex lives in Toronto with his wife Anna and son Vladimir. In the fall of 2005 he became a Canadian Citizen.

Ragged Robin

Erin Dempsey has been immersed in Irish Traditional music since childhood when she learned Tin Whistle from her father. She was also trained in Irish Traditional dancing, traveling across Canada competing in dance, whistle and Irish song. She began playing wooden flute after her first trip to Ireland in 2003, and now plays flutes constructed by her father, Sean Dempsey. In 2009 she moved to Ireland to refine her flute playing skills. She attended and hosted musical sessions across Ireland, studying with celebrated local performers in Cork, where she lived for four years. Her “piping style” flute playing is reminiscent of the traditional flute and fiddle players of Counties Clare, Galway, and Roscommon.

Ellen Gibling is a classically-trained harpist with a bachelor’s degree in Harp Performance from McGill University. She is the harp instructor at Acadia University and has performed with Symphony Nova Scotia and the National Youth Orchestra of Canada. She is a also member of the pop band The Heavy Blinkers, and has performed and recorded with Jenn Grant. Irish music has been very important to Ellen since her first lessons on the harp, and she has continued to seek it out alongside her work in the classical and pop worlds. Ellen’s interest in Irish music has led her to sessions and festivals in Quebec, Newfoundland, Scotland, and Ireland, as well as at home in Nova Scotia.


Robert Kortgaard

Pianist Robert Kortgaard was born in Regina, Saskatchewan and grew up in Calgary, Alberta. He completed his Bachelor and Master’s degrees at the Juilliard School in New York City. As a recipient of arts awards from the Canada Council, he furthered his musical studies in Italy and England.

Mr. Kortgaard has performed as a soloist with major Canadian orchestras and has given recitals throughout Canada and the United States, as well as in England, Finland, Portugal, Italy, Indonesia, the Czech Republic, China and Japan. He is a favorite collaborator of many of Canada’s finest instrumental soloists, vocalists and chamber groups. His performances are frequently heard on CBC Radio, and he has recorded for the Centrediscs, Marquis Classics/EMI, CBC Records, Teldec and ATMA Classique labels.

Mr. Kortgaard is Artistic Director of the Indian River Festival on Prince Edward Island (recently nominated “Event of the Year” by the East Coast Music Awards), and the Leith Summer Music Festival in Ontario. He was musician-in-residence at the University of New Brunswick from l993-l998, and has given piano masterclasses at Universities and festivals in Canada, Indonesia and China. He is pleased to act as a board member of Debut Atlantic, Canada’s unique and distinguished provider of classical music concerts and educational opportunities.

Mr. Kortgaard has performed with sopranos Isabel Bayrakdarian, Sumi Jo, Jane Archibald, Adrianne Pieczonka and Measha Brueggergosman, mezzo soprano Susan Platts, violinist Joshua Bell, and with Peter Tiefenbach and prima ballerina Veronica Tennant on a production entitled “Invitation to the Dance”. He has recorded French and German Cabaret programmes with mezzo-soprano Jean Stilwell for CBC Records. His CD with soprano Wendy Nielsen was nominated for both Juno and East Coast Music Awards. Recent engagements include tours with flutist Susan Hoeppner, cabaret artist Patricia O’Callaghan. baritone Brett Polegato, renowned music theatre actress/singer Rebecca Caine and several performances of duo piano repertoire with Peter Tiefenbach. A CD of the music of Olivier Messiaen, recorded with soprano Suzie LeBlanc, was released on the ATMA Classiques label and has received an Opus Award for best recording of contemporary music.


Robert Quinney

Robert Quinney is Organist and Tutorial Fellow in Music at New College, Oxford, and an Associate Professor at the University Faculty of Music. His work comprises the daily direction and training of New College’s world famous choir; teaching and supervision of college students; and lecturing and examining at the Faculty. He moved with his family to Oxford in September 2014, after sixteen months as Director of Music at Peterborough Cathedral.

Robert Quinney was Organ Scholar of King’s College, Cambridge, and subsequently a postgraduate student under John Butt. Since embarking on a full-time performing career in 2000 he has maintained a keen interest in academic music, with a particular research interest in J. S. Bach. This has combined with his performing work in a series of Bach recordings on the Coro label, of which Gramophone wrote ‘Quinney’s Bach gets to the heart of the music with refreshing clarity and a communication born of genuine understanding’.

Before moving to Peterborough in April 2013, Robert Quinney was for nine years Sub-Organist of Westminster Abbey, following four years as Assistant Master of Music at Westminster Cathedral. He accompanied those famous choirs in daily choral liturgies and on many recordings, international tours and broadcasts on radio and television. In April 2011 he played for the Marriage of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, to an estimated television audience of two billion worldwide; the following year he was featured in the BBC2 documentary Westminster Abbey.

In addition to his Bach series, Robert Quinney has made critically acclaimed solo recordings of music by Elgar, Wagner, Brahms and Dupré, and appears as accompanist on a wide variety of choral CDs, principally with the choirs of Westminster Abbey and Westminster Cathedral and The Sixteen. His recordings with New College Choir are available on the choir’s in-house label, Novum: the first of these, released in June 2016, features symphony anthems by John Blow, and includes much hitherto unrecorded music.

Robert Uchida

One of Canada’s leading violinists, Robert Uchida has been hailed for his “ravishing sound, eloquence and hypnotic intensity” (Strings Magazine). He has been heard throughout North America and Europe as a soloist, chamber musician and concertmaster to great critical acclaim.

mezzo soprano

Sarah Myatt

Sarah Myatt is a lyric mezzo soprano from Bedford, NS. After completing her bachelor of music degree from Dalhousie University, and her master of music degree and artist diploma from McGill University, she worked for two years as a young artist in the Atelier Lyrique de l’Opéra de Montréal.

Stanislav Pronin

Violinist and composer Stanislav Pronin was born in Moscow, Russia and began his violin studies upon his immigration to Israel at the age of 8. His first teacher was his grandfather, Veniamin Pronin, a student of Pyotr Stoliarskiy and former Professor at the Odessa Conservatoire. Stanislav continued his studies at Indiana University with Nelli Shkolnikova and Jaime Laredo, and later at the Hochschule für Musik Köln, Germany, with Professor Zakhar Bron. Stanislav’s professional career began following his solo debut in Israel at the age of 10. He has performed as soloist and chamber musician at many festivals including Verbier Festival and Interlaken Classics in Switzerland, Banff Festival and Stratford Festival in Canada, Kronberg Festival in Germany, etc. He performs regularly in USA, Canada, Europe and Scandinavia, and in such venues as Carnegie Hall, Miller Theatre, Musikhuset Aarhus, National Arts Centre Ottawa, Perlman Theatre in Philadelphia, and so on. He has collaborated with numerous conductors including Leonard Slatkin, Herbert Blomstedt, Antonio Mendez, Sigiswald Kuijken, Andrew Constantine and Joshua Weilerstein. As chamber musician, he has collaborated with Jan Lisiecki, Jaime Laredo, James Campbell, Mark Kaplan, Bion Tsang, Orion String Quartet, Victor Danchenko, Julian Milkis, Anton Nel, Emille Naoumoff and Lera Auerbach. An avid performer of new music, Stanislav has worked with and premiered works of such composers as John Adams, Fabian Panisello, Ned Rorem, Toivo Tulev, Hans Abrahamsen and Lera Auerbach.

Stanislav’s recordings, including his solo CD debut on Naxos/Sono Luminus labels, have been broadcast on numerous radio and television channels including WDR Köln, RTS-1 Belgrade, CBC Canada, Radio Klassisk Denmark, Interlochen Public Radio, WFMT Chicago Classical, etc.

Stanislav is a recipient of multiple awards from such organization as the American String Teachers Association, America-Israel Cultural Foundation, Canada Council for the Arts and Classical Artists Development Foundation. He performs on a Nicola Bergonzi violin from 1785, and the ex-Ysaye, ex-Flesch Voirin bow, generously on loan from a private donor.

Suzie Leblanc

Born in Acadia, Suzie LeBlanc fell in love with the Baroque early in life. Now an international star, the charismatic soprano provides convincing evidence for the popularity of Early Music while exploring French mélodies, lieder, Acadian folk music, contemporary music and, with Ensemble Mélosphère, the art of improvisation.

Recently appointed to the Order of Canada for her contribution to Acadian culture and to the performance of Early Music, she has also earned four honorary doctorates and a career grant from the Conseil des Arts du Québec.

Suzie’s recordings have recieved several prestigious awards, including a Grammy award for a recording of Lully’s Thésée with the Boston Early Music Festival, an Opus awards for best world music recording - “Tempi con Variazioni” - and best contemporary album, for a disc of early songs by Olivier Messiaen. In 2014, she was awarded ECMA’s Best Classical Album (2014) for “I am in need of music”, which was also a finalist for the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia Masterworks Award.

2015 is a busy year for Suzie, including the songs on poems by Elizabeth Bishop from her CD “I am in need of Music” with the Victoria, P.E.I. and New-Brunswick symphony orchestras, Mozart arias with Symphony New-Brunswick, a duet concert with Emma Kirkby and Les Idées Heureuses and multiple appearances at the Montreal Baroque Festival. She also teaches at the Orford Arts Centre Academy in June and at the Lunenburg Academy of Music Performance (LAMP) in the fall.

Suzie is the founder and artistic director of Montreal’s Le Nouvel Opéra and the honorary patron of the Elizabeth Bishop Society of Nova Scotia.

Born in Acadia, Suzie LeBlanc fell in love with the Baroque early in life. Now an international star, the charismatic soprano provides convincing evidence for the popularity of Early Music while exploring French mélodies, lieder, Acadian folk music, contemporary music and, with Ensemble Mélosphère, the art of improvisation.

Recently appointed to the Order of Canada for her contribution to Acadian culture and to the performance of Early Music, she has also earned four honorary doctorates and a career grant from the Conseil des Arts du Québec.

Suzie’s recordings have recieved several prestigious awards, including a Grammy award for a recording of Lully’s Thésée with the Boston Early Music Festival, an Opus awards for best world music recording - “Tempi con Variazioni” - and best contemporary album, for a disc of early songs by Olivier Messiaen. In 2014, she was awarded ECMA’s Best Classical Album (2014) for “I am in need of music”, which was also a finalist for the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia Masterworks Award.

2015 is a busy year for Suzie, including the songs on poems by Elizabeth Bishop from her CD “I am in need of Music” with the Victoria, P.E.I. and New-Brunswick symphony orchestras, Mozart arias with Symphony New-Brunswick, a duet concert with Emma Kirkby and Les Idées Heureuses and multiple appearances at the Montreal Baroque Festival. She also teaches at the Orford Arts Centre Academy in June and at the Lunenburg Academy of Music Performance (LAMP) in the fall.

Suzie is the founder and artistic director of Montreal’s Le Nouvel Opéra and the honorary patron of the Elizabeth Bishop Society of Nova Scotia.

Symphony Nova Scotia

Symphony Nova Scotia is truly Nova Scotia’s orchestra. With a home base in Halifax and performances across the province, Symphony Nova Scotia reaches more than 50,000 Nova Scotians of all ages each year with some of the most innovative concerts and educational offerings in the country.

Today, under the thoughtful and dynamic leadership of Music Director Bernhard Gueller, it is the largest employer in Nova Scotia’s cultural community, employing 37 musicians and ten administrative staff, along with over 150 contracted artistic, production and technical personnel. Its talented team has won many awards, including four East Coast Music Awards for classical music.


Walter Delahunt

Pianist Walter Delahunt is a native Nova Scotian and an artist of broad and distinguished experience. His career has taken him throughout Europe, the Middle East, North America and Asia. His musicianship is characterized by tremendous technical command of the instrument, unique sound quality, ease in chamber music, solo playing and accompanying and by a power of communication which immediately involves the listener. He has played with some of the world’s greatest musicians, including Zara Nelsova, Gidon Kremer, Martha Argerich and the legendary violinist Ida Haendel, with whom he has toured regularly in Japan, Korea, Israel, the United States and Canada. He was professor at the Vienna Academy of Music between 1984 and 1997 and has recorded for Panton (Prague) and BMG Japan. A live recording of Dvorak chamber music, performed at the “Progetto Martha Argerich” in Lugano in June 2002 has been released on EMI Classics. Mr Delahunt currently resides in Canada and Germany.


Yann Flaquet

Yann Falquet is a very active and creative acoustic guitar player on the Québécois music scene. He has explored many styles of music and completed a Bachelors degree in Jazz. Since then, he has developed a personal guitar style for Québec folk music, inspired by the playing of the accompanists of different cultures (Brittany, Scandinavia, Ireland, North America). His involvement in the province’s traditional music scene has brought Yann to perform on numerous recordings, and to tour regularly throughout Canada, the U.S., Europe and Australia with his main project Genticorum. He also toured for three years with the award winning Celtic and world group The McDades.

Yann has taught his guitar style at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance in Limerick, at the Goderich Celtic College as well as for Alasdair Fraser’s Fiddle Train and Sierra Fiddle Camp.