Two concerts this week with Guy Few for the Kawartha Concerts (March 27 in Peterborough and March 28 in Lindsay), with a program called Intercontinental Café. So wonderful to be rehearsing again with Guy, one of those intoxicating and rare musicians who feel the music in so many dimensions. And instruments... he will be playing mostly piano, but also piccolo trumpet and corno da caccia.
Our first BASSOONAPALOOZA, at Walter Hall of the University of Toronto on Saturday, February 28, 2015 was a huge success. Co-hosted by the Council of Canadian Bassoonists and the University of Toronto, we had over a hundred people throughout the day, many of them young bassoonists along with professionals, adult a matures and the general interested pubic. Our featured guest artist was the charismatic and superbly lyrical Lecolion Washington. Leader of the massive new initiative, Memphis Is Music, to bring music into the schools of Memphis, bassoon prof at University of Memphis and the charismatic founder of PRIZM, the first non-string recipient of the Sphynx Competition and a 2014 recipient of the Top 40 Under 40 business award in the city of Memphis, Lecolion brought a real rush of energy and positivity to our event. The focus of Bassoonapalooza 2015 was new sounds, new music, improvisation, and performance and inspiration for rich lives in music at all levels and we had fantastic introductions to the world of electric pop bassoon with Krista Wodelet of Sydney York and Das Fagott Mannschaft. Other stars included Michael Sweeney, principal bassoon of the Toronto Symphony playing the exquisite concerto written for him by Marjan Mozetich, Fraser Jackson of the Toronto Symphony playing Deep for electroacoustic solo contra and, Shane Wieler of Marcus Wieler Bassoon Workshop and Guy Légère, jazz and indie artist Jeff Burke and me. We were joined by talented string students of the University of Toronto, led by Eric Paetkau (leader of g27 and Saskatoon Symphony). I am so grateful to Susan Durnin and Eric Macarios who put such incredible thought and care into launching this first Bassoonapalooza. I will write a big ol’ blog soon; meanwhile, check out the photos on FaceBook!
My tour with Valdy and Karel to Northern B. C. (Prince George, Burns Lake, Terrace, Kitimat, Smithers, Quesnel), then to Pender Island and Almonte, Ontario was one of the most wonderful experiences of my career. Revisiting the wild landscapes of my childhood when my parents were cattle ranchers while playing concerts with two incredibly vibrant and musical people. Bassist Joe Phillips joined us in Almonte, switching to guitar on the tunes where Valdy played bass.
Composer Constantine Caravassilis has won a full Ontario Arts Council commissioning grant to write my next bassoon concerto (working title: Silver Angel) which I will premiere on June 12, 2015 with Thirteen Strings in Ottawa, led by Kevin Mallon. The concert is called Message in a Bottle after a string work by Constatine Caravassilis.
Here are some of our treasured audience comments from the spring tour Raffle Guest Book. Reviews and articles – Winnipeg Free Press (review), La Liberté (Winnipeg) (blog review), Kelowna Daily Courier (review), The Morning Star – Vernon (review), The News Review (Yorkton), High River Times, Daily Courier (advance article), Pender Harbour, Art Seen Okanagan, High River Times (article about masterclass,) the Melfort Journal.. and our interview with the delightful Bill Richardson for Golden West Radio.
First review for the Canadian Concerto Project, Volume One... thanks to the American Record Guide for noticing both our music, our composers and our hair!
Booking Vivaldi Tour – Canada – USA – Japan | 2015 (view postcard)
RECENT REVIEWS & PHOTOS:
Vivaldi Basson Concerti (CD Review): MSR Music | Audio Society of Atlanta | March 2014 | Phil Muse
André Laplante Concert: André Laplante and Friends Make Beautiful Music (Toronto Summer Music Festival)
Concert Photos: Nadina with the Prince George Symphony
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Vivaldi - Concerto #14 in C Minor RV 480 - second movement - Andantino
Vivaldi - Concerto #12 in A Minor RV 499 - third movement - Allegro
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