Sunday October 17 2021, 3:00 PM
Dinuk Wijeratne Trio
Described by the Toronto Star as ‘a positive vision of our cultural future’, the Sri Lankan-born Dinuk Wijeratne is an award-winning artist who has established himself as one of Canada’s most performed contemporary Classical composers. A favourite for Musique Royale audiences, Wijeratne’s globally-inspired music defies categorization and seamlessly fuses incredibly wide-ranging influences. He is joined by the incredibly versatile multi-percussionist Nick Halley, a frequent collaborator of American icon James Taylor, and jazz bassist Tom Easley, a two-time ECMA award-winner. Join Musique Royale for an evening of Dinuk’s original music that is brimming with beautiful colours and charged rhythms, live at Central United Church in Lunenburg!
Proof of full vaccination (second dose at least 14 days ago) is mandatory to enter the venue, except for those ages 11 years and under who may enter with a fully vaccinated adult, or those who have a valid medical exemption. Vaccine proof, or proof of age for those ages 11 and under, or proof of exemption, as provided by the provincial government, must be presented and verified at the door. Physical distancing and mask wearing at the concert is required in adherance of Musique Royale’s COVID-19 Prevention Plan.
Sri Lankan-born Canadian Dinuk Wijeratne is a JUNO and multi-award-winning composer, conductor, and pianist 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.” His 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 Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center (Washington DC), Opera Bastille (Paris), Lincoln Center (New York), Teatro Colón (Buenos Aires), Sri Lanka, Japan, and across the Middle East. He was featured as a main character in “What would Beethoven do?” – the documentary about innovation in Classical music featuring Eric Whitacre, Bobby McFerrin and Ben Zander.
Dinuk has shared the stage and/or composed for: Yo-Yo Ma & the Silk Road Ensemble, James Ehnes, Zakir Hussain, Sandeep Das, Kinan Azmeh, Ed Thigpen, Eric Vloeimans, the Gryphon Trio, TorQ Percussion, the Afiara, Danel, and Cecilia String Quartets; and the symphony orchestras of Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Halifax, Winnipeg, Fresno, Buffalo, Illinois, and KwaZulu Natal (South Africa).
Dinuk holds a doctorate from the University of Toronto, having also studied at the Juilliard School, Mannes College (US), and the Royal Northern College of Music (UK). He was recently appointed Assistant Professor to the Faculty of Music at the University of Ottawa. His music and collaborative work embrace the great diversity of his international background and influences.
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 American icon 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.
Bassist, composer, and educator Tom Easley has earned a reputation as one of Eastern Canada’s finest jazz bassists. A two-time East Coast Music Award winner, Maple Blues winner, and Music Nova Scotia winner, Tom has co-lead the music group Hot Toddy for a decade, co-producing seven CDs and performing at many major jazz and blues festivals across Canada, Europe, and the United States.
Over the past 30 years, Tom has toured throughout Europe, Asia, and South America as part of numerous diverse musical projects. He has performed with several internationally recognized artists, including Mike Murley, Juan Martin, Ed Thigpen, Jeff Hamilton, John Abercrombie, Hal Galper, Mike Stern, Peter Erskine, Adam Rogers, Randy Brecker, and Los Lobos. Tom’s CD “The Starting Point VS The Steep Decline,” released in 2018, won the 2019 Best Jazz Recording of the Year from Music Nova Scotia.
Tom is originally from Fredericton, New Brunswick, and holds a degree from St. Francis Xavier University with a B.A. Honours in Jazz Performance. Currently, he is Halifax-based and is on faculty at the Nova Scotia Community College’s Music Arts Program.