Musicians of the 2019 Festival
Philip Hansen, Festival Artistic Director and C0-Founder
Called “a master cellist” by the Calgary Herald, Philip Hansen's commitment to diverse musical genres, education, and community have earned him distinction as a performer and innovator in the arts. His intensely personal and colourful playing is showcased in performances from baroque to jazz and in every major work written for solo cello with orchestra. As a USA Department of State Cultural Ambassador to Russia, Phil was featured in concert halls from Moscow to the Far East. He has been guest artist-in-residence at both the Beijing and Shanghai Central Conservatories and was a longtime faculty member of the Académie Internationale Musicale in Provence, France. Phil has also performed extensively throughout Brazil, where he is principal cellist of the Orquestra Filarmônica de Minas Gerais in Belo Horizonte.
Founder and Artistic Director of the Quadra Island Festival of Chamber Music, Phil oversees innovative programs of classical, contemporary, and Canadian music. With a keen interest in leading other musicians toward a path of musical growth, Phil's Cello Zen retreat programs are held in international locations, integrating an approach to cello playing suited to the advanced professional as well as the avid amateur. His teaching coalesces the influences of his cello mentors Steven Doane, Jürgen deLemos, Lynn Harrell, and Patricia Pinkston.
In 2017 Phil recorded the six unaccompanied Suites by J. S. Bach on baroque cellos. His CD of tango music, Bragatissimo, was researched and performed in Argentina and broadcast coast to coast on the CBC and NPR. For many years Phil hosted Phil's Café, a Calgary-based concert series he founded with a mission of philanthropy. He collaborated on and composed the theme music to Charlie the Cello, a children's book and stage production by author Deborah Nicholson which Phil performed with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra.
Konstantin R. Bozhinov, PhD, is a lute, guitar, and accordion player, specializing in improvisation, composition, and arranging. Based in Vancouver since 2006, he enjoys a busy concert schedule as soloist, educator, writer and entertainer. He holds a Performance Diploma in Classical guitar from Douglas College and a Bachelor of Music degree in guitar and lute performance from the University of British Columbia, where he studied with Michael Strutt and his mentor Ray Nurse. Graduate studies include a Master of Music degree in lute performance from McGill University, where he studied basso continuo with Hank Knox and French baroque lute, baroque guitar and archlute, under Sylvain Bergeron.
Possessing a PhD in historical musicology from the University of Victoria, Konstantin is an active researcher of Baroque performance practice, French opera, improvisation, and compositional technique in the 18th century. As part of the chamber group Stile Moderno, Konstantin has given numerous recitals with violinist Arthur Neele and gambist Natalie Mackie. Konstantin is the accordion instructor at Vancouver Community College and has recently appeared with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, on frequent tours of the Discovery Islands in BC (playing accordion and lute), with the Pacific Baroque Orchestra, and with renowned baroque violinist Marc Destrubé. As a specialist in improvisation, Konstantin gives frequent recitals of his own compositions.
Catherine Carignan was born and raised in Québec. As a child, she played a bit of recorder, piano and violin before she chose the bassoon at the age of twelve. At fifteen, she entered the Conservatoire de musique du Québec and became a pupil of Michel Bettez, Principal Bassoon of the Orchestre Métropolitain du Grand Montréal and Nouvel Ensemble Moderne.
From 1999 on, Catherine participated in several masterclasses and festivals in Canada, the United States, Germany and Brazil. From 2003 to 2005, she studied with Nadina Mackie Jackson at The Glenn Gould School of the Royal Academy of Music, in Toronto, before going back to Montreal in the fall of 2006 to finish her BA in Music at Conservatoire de musique du Québec with Mathieu Harel, Associate Principal Bassoon of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. In August 2007, she moved across Canada to become Second Bassoon of the Victoria Symphony Orchestra, where she worked for a year before changing hemispheres in October 2008, to join the Minas Gerais Philharmonic Orchestra as Principal Bassoon.
Since then, aside from her Principal Bassoon position in the Minas Gerais Philharmonic, Catherine is a regular soloist with the orchestra. She gives masterclasses in various events across Brazil every year, taught at the Minas Gerais Federal University as substitute bassoon teacher from 2013 to 2014, and also teaches privately. She has been a member of the Brazilian Double Reeds Association since its foundation in 2017. Having made Belo Horizonte her home, Catherine has developed a passion for Brazilian culture, coffee and cuisine. She loves to dance forro, is an avid reader of anything printed on paper, a terrible photographer, a rock climbing and yoga enthusiast and the lucky mother of two wonderful girls.
Brenda Fedoruk is currently Principal Flute of the Vancouver Opera Orchestra, a position she has held for more than 20 years, and a core member of Vancouver's esteemed Turning Point Ensemble. As a long time member (Flute and Piccolo) of the CBC Radio Orchestra, she was also the Musicians' Contractor until the orchestra's disbanding in 2008. A busy free-lance player, she has performed often with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, has been Guest Principal Flutist with the Victoria Symphony Orchestra, and has played with the touring orchestras of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet and the National Ballet. Ms. Fedoruk has performed in many major musical productions including the Vancouver productions of
Les Miserables, Showboat, Sunset Boulevard, Ragtime, Phantom of the Opera and Mary Poppins. In addition to her performing career, Ms. Fedoruk is a dedicated and busy teacher. She is currently a member of the faculty of the School of Music at the University of BC where she teaches flute and chamber music.
Sarah Fryer has appeared on concert platforms throughout Europe and in Canada, the United States, Mexico, and Singapore. She made her professional debut as mezzo soloist in Mozart's Requiem Mass in Wells Cathedral, aged sixteen. Major career highlights include six years as a soloist at the Bayreuth Festival, and roles in opera productions in Nantes, Turin, Dublin, and at La Scala, Milan (Riccardo Muti). Sarah has recorded for BBC and CBC radio, and for the Naxos and Nimbus record labels. She has been a soloist at many prestigious festivals including the Three Choirs Festival, Taormina Arte, and The Aldeburgh Festival. Concert highlights include
Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Mahler’s Eighth Symphony with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, directed by Bramwell Tovey, Mozart’s Requiem with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, directed by David Hill, and R. Strauss’s opera Elektra (Dritte Magd) with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra, directed by Kent Nagano. In May 2017, Sarah was the mezzo soloist in the first performance of Francis Pott’s powerful oratorio Cantus Maris at the Royal Festival Hall, London with the Philharmonia Orchestra. Her most recent engagements include performances of Bach’s Mass in B minor and St. Matthew Passion, and Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis.
Canadian-born violinist Kai Gleusteen started at the age of five years old in his native city, Calgary. Early on, he met with success in national music competitions in addition to receiving top academic awards. Already at a young age, he had the opportunity to study with the most renowned violinists and teachers of his time, including Nathan Milstein, Ivan Galamian, Josef Gingold, Dorothy Delay, and Zakhar Bron. By the age of seventeen, Kai was awarded the top prize in the Commonwealth Concerto Competition in Australia, he had received the prestigious Skene Award in Scotland and had formed his first chamber orchestra: The Group of Twelve.
A strong believer in the musician as a multi-dimensional human being, Kai chose to combine his musical studies with academic pursuits. At the University of Michigan, he studied anthropology, geophysics, and philosophy. He received a Master’s Degree from Rice University under the tutelage of the person who would become his greatest inspiration on both a personal and musical level, the violinist Camilla Wicks.
In 1991, Kai moved to Europe to live in the heart of Western Culture. Paris and Prague were his bases for nine years, allowing him to develop and perform both as a soloist and leader of numerous orchestras. In the year 2000, he won the concertmaster position of the Orchestra ‘del Gran Teatre del Liceu’ and subsequently moved to Barcelona. In 2003, he created the Gran Teatre del Liceu Chamber Orchestra and was appointed professor at the Escuela Superior de Musica de Catalunya. He continues to perform extensively as a soloist and a recitalist throughout Europe and North America and has released numerous critically acclaimed recordings.
Canadian violinist Natasha Hall has performed as soloist, chamber and orchestral musician in North America, Europe and Asia. She has appeared as soloist with the Oxford Sinfonia, City Chamber Ensemble (London UK), Battersea Ensemble (London UK), Calgary
Civic Symphony, Symphony of the Kootenays, Carnegie Mellon University Baroque Ensemble and the Selkirk Youth Orchestra. Currently based in London England, Natasha performs regularly with the English Chamber and BBC Symphony Orchestras. She has also performed with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Aurora Orchestra and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. Natasha has received numerous awards for her violin performances and is a winner of the Calgary Concerto and Morningside Music Bridge Chamber Music Competitions. She has collaborated in performance with artists such as Rohan de Silva and Andres Cardenes and has appeared on CBC TV ‘The Nature of Things’ with David Suzuki. Her interest in humanitarian work has led her to raise over $25,000 through solo benefit performances for charities in Canada, the United States, Georgia and Russia. Natasha’s teachers include William van der Sloot (Mount Royal University, Calgary AB), Andres Cardenes (Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh PA), Patinka Kopec (Manhattan School of Music, New York NY), Pinchas Zukerman (Ottawa ON), Rodney Friend (London UK) and SoOck Kim (London UK).
In her spare time, Natasha particularly enjoys spending time in nature, practicing yoga, studying psychology and living a minimalist and zerowaste lifestyle as much as possible. Always passionate about learning, she is especially fascinated by the connections between
music, nature, movement and mindfulness. Natasha gratefully acknowledges Jumpstart Jr. Foundation of the Netherlands for the
generous loan of the 1680 Ruggieri violin she currently plays.
“Une pianiste pas comme les autres.” These were the words of Pierre Petit, the well-known critique of the Figaro, after a performance by Catherine Ordronneau. Although she performed her first solo concert at age 12, it is only when she turned 18 that she decided to devote herself entirely to music, receiving guidance from French pianist François-René Duchâble and the pedagogue Monique Deschaussées, herself a student of the great Alfred Cortot. After receiving the highest distinction in academics, and the prize of the Foundation Lefébure, she chose to avoid international competitions in order to develop an eclectic repertoire and grow as a thoughtful and well-rounded musician. Being a lover of literature and nature, she delivers “mesmerizing interpretation allied to a total musical integrity.” (The Times) She performs extensively in North America, Europe and China. She was invited to play as a soloist with the Saint Louis Symphony, the Bay Atlantic Symphony, the Toronto Sinfonietta, the Orchestra of the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, the Lublin Philharmonic in Poland, and the Lebanon Philharmonic Orchestra. Since 2008, she regularly goes to China and has played in the most prestigious halls, including the Oriental Art Center in Shanghai and the Performing Arts Center in Tianjin. She recorded live for CBC Radio, Bravo, TV2 in Spain, and Radio France. She also loves chamber music and takes part in many chamber music festivals. She has worked and performed with Canadian violinist Kai Gleusteen for more than 15 years and their discography includes award winning recordings. They recently were invited for a 22 concerts tour in China. Catherine is professor of piano and chamber music in the Liceu Conservatorio Superior de Música in Barcelona.
Born and raised in London, Ontario, Leana Rutt has been the assistant principal cellist of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra since 2013. A diverse and compelling performer, Leana has played in halls across North America and Europe from Carnegie to the Concertgebouw. She is a graduate of McGill University and the Juilliard School. Leana has devoted much of her musical career to chamber music. She has performed across Canada as a member of the Rosebud Quartet and of the Iris Ensemble, and has appeared with series such as the Winnipeg Chamber Music Society, Music By the Sea, the Agassiz Festival, the Virtuosi Concerts Winnipeg, and Pocket Concerts Toronto. Leana has been a participant in the festivals of Lucerne, Aldeburgh, Sarasota, Banff, and Domaine Forget, as well as the Piatigorsky International Cello Festival. Leana started on cello at the age of six with Terry Sefton, then furthered her studies with Paul Pulford, Matt Haimovitz and Timothy Eddy.
Originally from Regina, Daniel Scholz studied at the University of Regina, McGill University and at the University of British Columbia. He was a prizewinner at the Lionel Tertis Viola Competition, the most prestigious event of its kind, held on the Isle of Mann. Mr. Scholz is the Principal Viola of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra and the Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, and is a member of the Winnipeg Chamber Music Society, and the Rembrandt String Quartet. As a solo artist, Daniel has performed with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, Musickbarock, the Okanagan Symphony and the Vancouver Chamber Players. Daniel has also toured Europe with the Nordic Symphony of Tallinn, Estonia as Guest Principal Viola. Highly sought after as a teacher, Mr. Scholz is an instructor at the Marcel A. Desautels Faculty of Music at the University of Manitoba as well as the conductor of the Winnipeg Youth Symphony Orchestra. He has performed and taught at many of Canada’s major festivals and is a faculty member of the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, the Rosamunde Summer Academy in Winnipeg and the Amici Summer Strings in Calgary. He has also been invited to teach at Mount Royal University in Calgary, University of Regina, Conservatory of Music, University of Western Ontario, Ottawa University, and the Université de Montréal. Mr. Scholz was also invited to perform and teach in Perth, Australia by the Australian String Teachers Association and the West Australian and New Zealand Viola Society. Mr. Scholz has commissioned new works by Bramwell Tovey, David Scott, T. Patrick Carrabre, Jim Hiscott, and Michael Matthews. Mr. Scholz plays on a contemporary viola made by the luthier, Garth Lee of Winnipeg, MB.
Featured Young Artist
Towa Stewart has won numerous awards and scholarships including the $2000 Virginia Graczak Piano Scholarship, and the Ruth Scott Memorial Chopin Competition. In 2013, Towa won 1st place for Junior Canadian Piano at the BC Festival of the Performing Arts, then in 2014 won the Junior B Category at the Provincials. In 2014 he made his orchestral debut with the North Island Choral Society performing a Mozart concerto. Towa has attended the Victoria Piano Summer Academy for the past 8 years. Towa has been awarded the Gold Certificate from the BC Registered Music Teachers Association for volunteering over 100 hours of musical service for his community of Courtenay. In 2017 Stewart won a bronze medal at the International Music Competition in Vancouver. In 2018 he won 1st place at the BC Provincials for both Senior Piano and Senior Canadian Piano. That year he received his ARCT diploma in piano performance from the Royal Conservatory of Music. Recently Towa received Honorable Mention in the National Class at the Provincials. A Grade 12 French Immersion student, Towa is fluent in English, Japanese and French. Towa studies piano with Shelley Roberts and will be continuing his musical studies at UBC this fall.