Laureate of the Prix d’Europe in 1975, and of the CBC Radio Talent Competition in 1978, Denis Bédard leads a very active career as a recitalist. He has given concerts throughout Canada, and has recorded frequently for Radio-Canada. In July 1991 he performed at the 8th international convention of the Fédération francophone des Amis de l’Orgue. In November of that year he gave the inaugural recital on the Wilhelm organ at the First Congregational Church in Hudson, Ohio. In June 1992 he was a member of the jury of the first Quebec Organ Competition. In November 1996 he recorded a CD of his organ compositions. In 1999 he was a featured performer at the Royal Canadian College of Organists National Convention in Hamilton as well as at the Organ Historical Society Convention in Montreal. He also played at the RCCO National Convention in Toronto in July 2001, and for the Sao Bento Organ Festival in Sao Paulo, Brazil, in October 2002.
A professor at the Conservatoire de musique de Québec from 1981 until 1989, Denis Bédard was organist at St-Coeur-de-Marie church in Quebec City for 19 years and then became organist at St-Roch church, also in Quebec City, in September 1997. In 1993, with his wife Rachel Alflatt, he founded Éditions Cheldar, which publish his organ and choral compositions. Since September 2001 he has been organist and music director of Holy Rosary Cathedral in Vancouver, B.C.
Denis Bédard’s compositions include more than twenty chamber music works as well as orchestral and vocal music and many organ works, over ninety compositions in all. He has received commissions from Radio-Canada, the CBC, the Quebec Symphony Orchestra, Holy Rosary Cathedral in Vancouver and various professional musicians in Canada, Great Britain and the U.S.A. Many of his works have been performed internationally (U.S.A., France, England, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Holland, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Poland, Estonia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Greece, South Africa, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Brazil, Ecuador), particularly at international organ and saxophone conventions; many have been published and recorded on CD. His Concerto for organ and orchestra was premiered in July 2000 at the FQAO-RCCO joint Convention in Quebec City and has been played since in Calgary, Baltimore, Toulouse and Ottawa.
Gavin Bryars, born 1943, studied philosophy but became a jazz bassist and pioneer of free improvisation with Derek Bailey and Tony Oxley. Early iconic pieces The Sinking of the Titanic and Jesus’ Blood Never Failed Me Yet achieved great popular success. Works include five operas, a large body of chamber music, several concertos and much vocal music including 6 books of madrigals – performers include The Hilliard Ensemble, Trio Mediaeval, Red Byrd, Latvian Radio Choir, Estonian National Male Choir, Iarla O’Lionaird, Singer Pur and The Crossing, whose recording of The Fifth Century was awarded a Grammy. He has collaborated widely with visual artists (Juan Muñoz, Bruce McLean), choreographers (William Forsythe, Merce Cunningham, Edouard Lock, David Dawson, Carolyn Carlson), theatre directors (Robert Wilson, Atom Egoyan), as well as writing music for the films of his wife Anna Tchernakova. He has also worked with non-classical performers such as Charlie Haden, Bill Frisell, Natalie Merchant, Gavin Friday, Father John Misty. Since 1986 he has performed internationally and recorded with the Gavin Bryars Ensemble, his preferred performers. Two books on his work are due for publication in 2020. He lives in a Leicestershire village and on Vancouver Island. He is a Transcendent Satrap and a Regent of the Collège de ’Pataphysique and has made many recordings – for ECM, Point, Philips, Naxos, Decca, and his own label GB Records. www.gavinbryars.com
Choir of Jesus College Cambridge
Regularly performing with world-renowned orchestras and soloists, they are proud of their ongoing educational projects both in the UK and in Sri Lanka and India.
Jesus College, founded out of the ancient nunnery of St Radegund in 1496, has a long and rich tradition of church music. It is distinctive in maintaining two choirs: the Chapel Choir, with its centuries of tradition, which is made up of boy choristers and adult male singers; and the College Choir, formed in 1982, which has female undergraduates for its top line. The adult male singers form the ‘back row’ for both choirs. Each choir has developed a distinctive reputation and repertoire, whilst combining for key events and large-scale projects. In addition to the weekly schedule of choral services, members of the Choirs enjoy concerts, recordings, broadcasts and foreign tours.
Edmund’s professional experience includes a decade singing for UK opera companies in more than 25 principal roles and understudies, including the roles of Don Giovanni, Eugene Onegin, Count Almaviva (Le Nozze di Figaro), and Danilo (Die Lustige Witwe).
As an oratorio soloist, he has performed Bach’s St. John and St. Matthew Passions, B minor Mass and numerous cantatas; Mozart’s Requiem, Solemn Vespers and various masses; Henry Mollicone’s Beatitudes: Mass for the Homeless; Brahms’, Duruflé’s and Fauré’s Requiems; Puccini’s Messa di Gloria; Rossini’s Petite Messe Solonnelle; Beethoven’s Symphony no. 9; Mendelssohn’s Elijah; Handel’s Messiah; and Haydn’s Creation.
In recital Edmund has performed a wide variety of song repertoire, including song cycles by Schubert, Schumann, Ravel, Finzi and Vaughan Williams. As Air & Hammers, he and Maxine Thévenot continue to explore both new and established music for voice and piano/organ.
Michael is a native of Kelowna and has played and studied extensively in B.C. and Europe. Michael trained under Ed Norman as well as studies at the cathedral choir schools of the UK in the spring of 2015. He is an executive member of the Royal Canadian College of Organists and is very involved in local music. He is married to Annabelle, who is a percussionist and music director of St Mark’s Ocean Park. MIchael is currently Director of Music at St John’s, Shaugnessy.
Cheryl Duerr, MM, AAGO is Minister of Music at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church, Harwich, MA, where she oversees a diverse music program with 2 varied weekly services. She is a former AGO Northeast Regional Councillor and co-chaired the Montreal Organ Festival in 2017. She is a personal/professional coach with Duerr Consulting, coaching privately and leading group workshops for small businesses, churches and nonprofits. She has been using iPad and forScore exclusively to play music of all kinds for four years.
Nicholas Fairbank is a Canadian composer, conductor and organist currently living in Victoria BC where he directs three adult choirs and teaches at the Victoria Conservatory of Music. After early studies in Vancouver he pursued further training in London, England and Paris, France. His composition teachers have included Stephen Chatman and John Celona. He holds Master’s degrees from the Université de Paris (Musicology & French literature) and the University of Victoria (Music Composition), as well as Associateship diplomas from the Royal Conservatory of Music and the Royal Canadian College of Organists. For many years he was active in the RCCO at the national level, and held the position of National President from 2012 to 2014. Appointed an Associate Composer of the Canadian Music Centre in 2007, his catalogue of compositions includes over 80 works in many genres, which have been performed across North America, in Europe and in Mexico.
Bio and photo forthcoming
Debbie is the Minister of Music at Trinity United Church in Cobourg, Ontario, where she accompanies weekly services and conducts two children’s choirs, the Chancel Choir and the Jubilate Handbell Choir. In addition to her church work, Debbie enjoys being involved with local community music groups, including being the Associate Director for La Jeunesse Choirs.
An experienced organist, pianist, choral director, singer and flautist, Debbie has performed in numerous concerts and recitals throughout southern Ontario. In 2014, she toured the Canadian Maritime provinces as Conductor for the North Lakeshore Massed Chorus on their tour “‘Til the Boys Come Home”, commemorating the start of WW I. She conducts workshops in handbell ringing and has been faculty for the Ontario Guild of English Handbell Ringers Festival and the Summer Institute of Church Music. In addition, she is part of the National Executive for Music United and a Past President of the Northumberland Centre of the Royal Canadian College of Organists.
Debbie graduated from the University of Toronto with a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education and has received her Associate diploma from the Royal Canadian College of Organists. She also holds a Master of Arts in Church Music from Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, Ohio. In 2017, Debbie graduated with a Doctorate of Ministry at Emmanuel College at the Toronto School of Theology, University of Toronto. Her thesis is a qualitative study examining how participating in church choir or handbell choir nurtures a participant’s spiritual life.
Dr. Garry Froese is an educator and pedagogue to the core, having been involved in education for more than four decades! He has degrees in voice performance, choral conducting and music education and has also studied arts administration. He has studied at Brandon University, Southern Methodist University (Meadows School of the Arts), and the College Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati. He has worked with choirs at all ages: children and youth choirs, elementary, junior high – middle school and senior high school music courses, musical theatre, vocal jazz, college and university chamber choirs – having taught at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, community choirs of various descriptions, church choirs, as well as symphonic choirs and choral orchestral performances.
He now operates a private voice studio, which includes working with mature and aging voices. He is currently the Music Director at Cordova Bay United Church, carrying responsibilities for congregational and choir leadership and musical development, vocal soloist, as well as work as a pianist and organist. He also conducts the Harmony Choir, Victoria’s German choir.
What does he enjoy doing? Making music in a variety of forms, teaching people to sing, helping to build community through choral activity and assisting people to understand more about the communicative role of music in our society.
From highlands of Glengarry County in Eastern Ontario, Andrew studied chemistry and math at Queen’s University in Kingston, earning a BSc and BEd. During graduate degree work in Kingston, he began organ studies with Dr. David Cameron and harmony with Michael Capon, and completed the CRCCO diploma of the RCCO. After serving as choir director at Bay Park Baptist Church, Kingston, he became an organ scholar at St. George’s Anglican Cathedral, Kingston. Currently, Andrew is organist and director of music at the Cathedral Church of St. Michael and All Angels, Kelowna, BC. In addition to the position at the church, he works as a teacher on call for School District 23 (Central Okanagan).
Currently, he divides his time between Antigonish, Nova Scotia on the East Coast of Canada, where he is Professor of Music at St. Francis Xavier University, and Victoria, B.C., on the Canadian West Coast. In addition to his work as a composer, Genge continues to perform and record as a jazz pianist and can be heard on his critically acclaimed jazz trio recording Blues Walk.
Photo credit: Nick Kozak
Sherman Hesselgrave has been the Chaplain to the College since 2013. He recently retired as the Incumbent of the Church of the Holy Trinity, Trinity Square, Toronto. Before being called to Holy Orders, he worked as a music librarian. His journey as a church musician began at age 12, after his Lutheran missionary father was tasked with assembling a Walcker tracker organ that had been sent to the church in Moshi, Tanzania, at the foot of Mt Kilimanjaro, by the Leipzig Mission Society.
Photo credit: John Cooper
Donald was born and raised in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He went on to study music at McGill University in Montreal, where he received Bachelor and Masters degrees in organ performance and composition, studying principally with John Grew. During his time in Montreal, he was assistant organist at Christ Church Cathedral, Montreal. He has also held organist posts in the UK, including at Truro Cathedral, St Paul’s Cathedral, and St Mary’s Cathedral, Edinburgh. Donald is a first prize laureate of the Concours d’orgue de Québec and has been a finalist in the Concours Prix d’Europe and the RCCO National Organ Playing Competition. In 2017, he took up the post of Director of Music at Christ Church Cathedral, Victoria, where he plans the liturgical music for three Sunday services, and directs a number of choirs, including a newly-formed treble treble choir in partnership with the Cathedral School. He has broadcast live on BBC radios 3 and 4, including playing for the Scottish celebration of Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee. Donald is an Associate of the Royal Canadian College of Organists and a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists.
He was also co-host and star of the 13-part Bravo/Vision television series “Come into the Parlour”. Featuring co-host and star Carolyn Sinclair, soprano, and their original 1857 Chickering square grand, the series featured as guest artistes some of Canada’s finest musicians. Michael was also featured on two national Canadian television specials “A Baroque Christmas” and “A Baroque Easter” on Vision and Bravo-tv.
His CD on the Marquis Classics label of J.N. Hummel’s Sonatas for Fortepiano and Violin/Viola, Op. 5, with violinist Paul Luchkow, and performed on an original Viennese fortepiano from c.1800 was finalist in the Western Canadian Music Awards Classical Album of the Year. His and Paul’s newest CD for Marquis, features Michel Corrette’s opus 25 Sonatas for Harpsichord and Violin on mythological themes.
Drawn to the power of choral music from her early years, composer Stephanie Martin’s music is performed regularly by choirs around the world.
Her opera ‘Llandovery Castle’ features the untold story of Canadian nurses in World War One. ‘The Sun, the Wind, and the Man with the Cloak’ offers an inter-generational oratorio on Aesop’s classic fable. Her choral symphony ‘BABEL’ for orchestra, choir and soloists offers a meditation on the artist’s role, and communication.
At York University’s School of the Arts, Media, Performance and Design, Martin teaches history, composition, harpsichord, organ, historical ensembles and serves as graduate program director.
In Toronto Martin directs the women’s ensemble ‘Schola Magdalena,’ specializing in medieval polyphony and chant. She is conductor Emeritus of Pax Christi Chorale, and was director of music at the historic church of Saint Mary Magdalene in Toronto, following in the choral lineage of Healey Willan.
Martin’s music is published through Cypress Choral Music (Vancouver) Renforth Music (Halifax) Biretta Books (Chicago) Kelman Hall (Waterloo) CMC (Canadian Music Centre, Toronto) and most recently Selah (USA).
Recent performances include her cantata Winter Nights with the Grand Philharmonic of Kitchener-Waterloo, The Portinari Nativity commissioned by Ex Cathedra, UK, three new choral works for, Christ Church Cathedral Victoria B.C., a string quartet “From a distant island” and works performed by Voces Capituli, Antwerp; Canadian Men’s Chorus; St. John’s Cathedral, Albuquerque; and Ely Cathedral, UK. Please visit her website at: www.stephaniemartinmusic.com
Peter Nikiforuk is a native of Brantford, Ontario. The recipient of numerous prizes and scholarships, in 1993 Peter was awarded the degree of Doctor of Musical Arts in organ from Yale University. Peter also studied at the University of Toronto and the Royal Academy of Music in London, England. He is also an Associate of the American Guild of Organists. His teachers have included Nan and Markwell Perry, John Tuttle, William Wright, Robert Baker, Thomas Murray and John Scott. From 1989-2000, Peter was Executive Director of the RCCO. Since leaving that position, Peter has remained active in the College locally as a member of the Waterloo-Wellington Executive and nationally as a Trustee, a member of the Publications Committee and of the RCCO College of Examiners. In 2018, he was elected National Vice-President for Centre Support of the RCCO. He also examines for the Royal Conservatory. Dr. Nikiforuk has been Director of Music at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church, Kitchener since 1989 and an instructor of piano and music theory at the Beckett School since 2000. Equally prominent as a choral conductor, Peter won the prestigious Leslie Bell Prize in Choral Conducting in 1996 and conducted Menno Singers from 1998-2017. An active recitalist and clinician, including many workshops for the RCCO, Peter is also co-owner and editor for Kelman Hall Publishing, which specializes in sacred music. In June 2009, Dr. Nikiforuk was honoured for his contributions to Kitchener-Waterloo by the Laurier Centre for Music in the Community.
As a print journalist, McDonald has authored four science books and contributed to numerous science textbooks, newspapers and magazines including The Globe and Mail, Owl Magazine and many others. His latest book is Canadian Spacewalkers: Hadfield, MacLean and Williams Remember The Ultimate High Adventure. He wrote the introduction to The Quirks & Quarks Question Book and the Guide to Space: 42 Questions (and Answers) About Life, the Universe, and Everything.
Beyond his work in media, McDonald sits on the board of Friends of the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory, and is in demand as a public speaker across the country.
McDonald has been honoured for his outstanding contribution to the promotion of science in Canada as the recipient of the Michael Smith Award from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, the Sir Sandford Fleming Medal from the Royal Canadian Institute and the McNeil Medal from The Royal Society of Canada. McDonald was also the recipient of a 2008 Gemini Award for Best Host in a Pre-School, Children’s or Youth Program or Series.
He has received twelve honourary Doctorates, and two honourary college degrees. In 2011 he was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada, and in 2014, asteroid 2006 XN67 was officially named bobmcdonald in his honour.
She is the Assistant Concertmaster of the Victoria Symphony, a founding member of Victoria Baroque and the Odyssey String Quartet. She performs frequently with the Vancouver Symphony, Pacific Baroque Orchestra, Early Music Vancouver and has been been a leader or member of Sinfonia Rotterdam (NL), European Camerata (UK), and the Vancouver Opera Orchestra.
A dedicated educator, Christi was for several years on faculty at UVic. She currently maintains a small private studio, is on faculty at the Victoria Conservatory and coaches the violins of the Greater Victoria Youth Orchestra.
Christ has recorded chamber music for CBC television and radio and can be heard on several discs for ATMA and Marquis.
Born in Montreal and raised in Grande Prairie, Alberta, Christi studied at McGill, Western, UVic and the Vancouver Academy of Music under the tutelage of Gwen Thompson, Sonia Jelinkova and Paul Kling.
Steve Miller has been the western Canada representative for Casavant Frères LLC since 1987, and has installed and rebuilt numerous organs throughout North America. Steve worked on his first pipe organ in 1970 (while still in highschool), and later learned the pipe organ technician trade in Toronto, working for Alan T. Jackson and Company. In 2006 Steve started working for Solid State Organ Systems developing their organ control system software. Later, he designed both hardware and software for SSOS to develop the MSII line of products and the CapLite combination system. In addition to his work with SSOS, Steve is the creator of Hoffler Systems – a compact custom-built control system for pipe organs.
After many years of tuning, troubleshooting, and repairing, Steve has probably seen most, if not all of the problems a pipe organ can have – but would be happily surprised if something new showed up. The most enjoyable aspect of his career is working with organists to make the organ and their performance sound their best.
Jonathan Oldengarm is a versatile organist, harpsichordist and pianist, specializing in collaborative music and early 20th-century transcriptions. A prizewinner at several national and international competitions, he concertizes in Europe, Asia and North America. Recent performance credits include the Maison symphonique and St. Joseph Oratory (Montreal), Ensemble Caprice, McGill Chamber Orchestra and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. He has been broadcast on the CBC, Radio Canada, Sirius Satellite Radio, NPR, RTÉ, and the European Broadcasting Union. He holds a doctorate in organ performance from McGill University; the Fellowship diploma of the Royal Canadian College of Organists; and studied at the Hochschule für Musik in Stuttgart, Germany. He teaches Liturgical Improvisation at the Schulich School of Music of McGill University, and is Director of Music at the Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul, Montreal.
Tim Pyper studied the Alexander Technique at the Balance Arts Center with Ann Rodiger, qualifying as an AmSAT-certified instructor in 2018. He also holds the Certificate in Injury-Preventive Keyboard Technique from Salem College, following extensive piano studies with Barbara Lister-Sink. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music (BM, MM) and Cornell University (DMA), he has won first-prize in numerous national and international organ competitions, including the RCCO National Competition and the Arthur Poister Memorial Competition.
Tim maintains private teaching practices in New York City and in Albany. He is particularly interested in helping musicians unlock their virtuosity using the Alexander Technique as well as the Lister-Sink Method of keyboard pedagogy. He has given workshops for the Royal Canadian College of Organists, the American Guild of Organists and at Freedom to Make Music conferences in New York City. Active as an organist, pianist and choral conductor, Tim is Director of Music at the Church of the Holy Apostles in Manhattan. From 2010 to 2015 he was Director of Music at the Cathedral Church of the Redeemer in Calgary.
The Very Rev’d M. Ansley Tucker came to Victoria in July, 2015, having spent the previous 10 years in the Diocese of Calgary, where she served latterly as an Archdeacon and the Rector of Christ Church.
Dean Tucker turned to the study of Divinity after completing a degree in Nursing at the University of Ottawa. She attended Trinity College in Toronto in the mid to late 70s, at a time when the Anglican Church was undergoing a seismic shift in almost all aspects of its life. Along with much of the Anglican Communion, we were in the period of the trial liturgies (which led in Canada to a Book of Alternative Services); altars were being pulled off the east wall of most churches, so that priest and people could face each other, as if gathered around the Table. Our baptismal discipline was being strengthened, with baptism returning to its rightful place in the Sunday liturgy, and children being admitted to Communion on the basis of their baptism. Perhaps the hottest debate of the day, however, concerned the ordination of women. And the issue just creeping onto the horizon was whether or not the Church could ordain gay men (even celibate gays). These were heady and exhilarating times to be studying theology. In fact, it was so much fun, that Dean Tucker stayed on to complete a Master’s degree in Systematic Theology, whilst coordinating children’s and youth ministry for 10 parishes, and serving as the Tutor in Theology for first year Master of Divinity students!
Throughout her 35 years’ ordained ministry, the Dean has held leadership roles at the diocesan and national levels. She has served on numerous committees whose brief was “Doctrine & Worship,” and she chaired D&W in the Diocese of Toronto during the time the Book of Alternative Services was being introduced. Dean Tucker is currently a member of our national Faith, Worship & Ministry Coordinating Committee, and has been cross-appointed as the Anglican representative to the Evangelical Lutheran Church’s Faith, Order and Doctrine Committee. She also spent 10 years in the Diocese of Toronto assessing candidates for ordination, three of them as the Chief Examining Chaplain.
Dean Tucker brought experience and skill to Christ Church Cathedral. For example, three of the parishes she served have experienced significant growth not only in such quantifiable indicators as attendance and revenue, but also in such immeasurables as a developing heart for service to the world, a commitment to spiritual practice, an openness to experimentation, and a longing for an expression of faith that is intellectually honest. She believes that the immeasurables are what drive the measurables. If we are clear about a compelling vision for what it means to be Christian – and a Cathedral community of Christians—the rest will follow.
Playing on the instruments of the 18th century Victoria Baroque brings audiences closer to the soundworld of the period, embracing the dance-driven rhythmic vitality, as well as the lyrical aspects and conversational aspects of baroque music. The mellower tones of the baroque instruments – gut strings on string instruments, shorter bows, mellifluous wooden flutes, oboes and bassoon with fewer keys, natural horns without valves, etc. – respond in a more intimate, conversational manner than their modern equivalents.
Victoria Baroque brings together early music specialists from Vancouver Island and beyond for explorations of chamber, orchestral, vocal and choral works. Victoria Baroque enjoys ongoing collaborations with the St John’s Chamber Singers and many visiting guest artists. Victoria Baroque’s guest directors have included Pacific Opera Victoria’s Timothy Vernon; Tafelmusik’s Jeanne Lamon; the leader of the English Baroque Soloists, Kati Debretzeni; and British harpsichordist Steven Devine. Guest soloists have included internationally acclaimed singers soprano Nancy Argenta and tenor Benjamin Butterfield in vocal works by Bach, Purcell and Handel.
Nurturing emerging talent is close to Victoria Baroque’s heart. The choral collaborations with St John Chamber Singers give emerging young singers invaluable opportunities to perform with a professional period instrument orchestra, including works such as Bach’s St. John Passion and Cantatas, and choral and solo works by Handel, Vivaldi, Telemann and Buxtehude. Victoria Baroque’s educational workshops with the Greater Victoria Youth Orchestra and Baroque Instrument Summer Program at the Victoria Conservatory of Music have exposed and immersed local music students in Baroque performance in a hands-on manner.
The Young Choristers of Christ Church Cathedral
The Young Choristers of Christ Church Cathedral have been singing together since January, 2018. They rehearse four mornings a week before attending classes at the Cathedral School, for which they receive generous chorister scholarships. The Choristers sing regular weekday services in the cathedral and give occasional concert performances. In their short existence, they have already toured to Seattle, Washington, recorded Shawnigan Lake School, met composer Jonathan Dove, and performed twice with the Pacific Baroque Orchestra. In 2021, they will embark on their first trip to the United Kingdom.
Modeled on the British Choral Tradition, this immersive program teaches children great classical music, sight-singing, team building, and leadership skills, all while having fun and making music together. They are conducted by Donald Hunt and accompanied by Mark McDonald.