Violin - Brock University
Vera Alekseeva first studied violin at the Perm Music School in Perm Russia, then at Moscow Gnessin High State College and finally at the M. Glinka Nizhny Novgorod State Conservatory where she received a Diploma of Orchestra Artist, Artist of Chamber Ensemble and Teacher, as well as Diploma of Quartet Performance Artist. She was assistant concertmaster of the State Academic Symphony Orchestra of Nizhny Novgorod Philharmonic and both principal second violin and resident soloist in the Moscow Chamber Orchestra, “The Seasons.” Vera has toured extensively throughout Europe as a soloist and chamber musician, was a member of the State Bolshoi Theatre of Russia Orchestra, and is currently a member of the Niagara Symphony Orchestra.
Tom Allen hails from Montreal. He started playing trombone in high school and decided not to stop. He spent six years at three universities and got two degrees. He lived in New York City when there were still places you just didn’t go and stayed long enough to play a couple of gigs he still brags about. His brass quintet was getting hired where the snow was clean and the concert hall was downstairs from the bowling alley, so he moved to Toronto and eventually found work at the CBC. Now he is an occasional trombonist, author, host of Shift, storyteller and pitchman for something called The Classical Goodtime Variety Show. He can’t imagine there’s anything else you’d like to know, but if there is you could visit his website, tomallen.com
After being schooled in theatre, dance and musical theory Jeffery Arthur, a Toronto native has found his niche as a seasoned jazz vocalist. He started his professional career as an actor and professional dancer performing in musicals and shows across Canada, then later in the United States and Great Britain singing with small jazz combos and larger ensembles, big bands and occasionally with symphony orchestras in their pops presentations. Over the last 15 years has been involved in the corporate musical scene in Toronto and performs with his trio in the Western New York areas as well. Now a recording artist and member of Canadian Actors Equity and The American Federation of Musicians, Jeffery resides in Stevensville, a location which keeps this Niagara based artist close to the Toronto and New York music circuits.
øystein Baadsvik is the only tuba virtuoso to have carved out a career exclusively as a soloist, rather than becoming a member of an orchestra or accepting a teaching post. His multi-faceted musical career as a soloist, chamber musician, lecturer and recording artist has taken him all over the world. The unique virtuosity and musicality Mr. Baadsvik brings to the tuba has established him as the exemplar of the instrument. He works constantly to expand the musical aspects of the tuba and has premiered some forty solo works by composers from the USA, Russia, Sweden, Norway and Switzerland. He has developed new tuba-playing techniques that have been used in a number of more recent works for the instrument. www.baadsvik.com
Guido Basso, trumpeter, flugelhornist, harmonica-player, arranger, composer and conductor, was born September 27, 1937 in Montreal. He was only nine years old when he began playing the trumpet, becoming recognized as a prodigy while studying at Montreal’s Conservatoire de musique du Québec. As a teenager he became prominent on the Montreal club scene, where singer Vic Damone first heard him and took him on a two year international tour. In 1958 after a three year tour with singer Pearl Bailey and famed drummer Louis Bellson, he moved to Toronto to join the busy studio and television scene there. His playing career as a stand-out sideman and leader soared and he became one of the biggest jazz names in the country. Guido Basso was a charter member of Rob McConnell’s stellar Boss Brass, and the Rob McConnell Tentet, playing with the Boss Brass as a featured soloist throughout their lifetime, and appearing on thirty Boss Brass recordings.. He was awarded the Order of Canada in 1994.
Described as a “gifted guitarist and composer” (Whole Note), Graham Campbell is a versatile musician wearing many hats. He performs in jazz clubs, composes concert music for chamber ensembles, and plays with Brazilian psychedelic rock band Os Tropies. He earned his degree in Music at Humber College after studying with jazz great David Baker in his hometown of Bloomington, Indiana. He has performed at many festivals throughout North America with notable artists such as jazz pianist Gene DiNovi, genre-bending violinist Mark Fewer, and jazz vocalist and pianist Laila Biali. He has composed and arranged for big band, symphony orchestra, and various chamber ensembles. In 2013 he released the album As You Near Me, a collaboration with clarinetist and father James Campbell. He is an artistic producer with Spectrum Music, a group of Canadian composers who create and present a contemporary hybrid of jazz and classical music.
James Campbell has been called “Canada’s pre-eminent clarinetist and wind soloist” by the Toronto Star. He has performed as soloist and chamber musician in over 35 countries with more than 65 orchestras including the Boston Pops, the Montreal Symphony and the London Symphony. He has collaborated with Glenn Gould and Aaron Copland and toured with over 35 string quartets, including the Guarneri, Amadeus (when he replaced an ailing Benny Goodman on a tour of California) and Vermeer. The BBC and The Times of London rated his recording of the Brahms Clarinet Quintet as the best available and his CD “Stolen Gems”(Marquis Records) won a Juno. He has been named Canada’s Artist of the Year, awarded the Queen’s Gold and Diamond Jubilee Medal, an Honorary Doctor of Laws, and the Order of Canada. James Campbell has been Artistic Director of the Festival of the Sound since 1985.
Beyond his technical mastery and musical abilities, pianist Philip Chiu has become one of CanadaÍs leading musicians through his infectious love of music and his passion for communication and collaboration. Lauded for the brilliance, colour and sensitivity of his playing, he is particularly noted for his ability to connect with audiences on and offstage, Philip is one of Canada’s most sought-after chamber musicians. He has appeared in recitals with leading musicians of the world stage. Dedicated to elevating the standard and art of collaborative piano, Philip is the creator and director of the new Collaborative Piano Program at the Domaine Forget International Festival and Academy. Philip was the inaugural recipient of the Prix Goyer (2015) one of CanadaÍs largest classical music prizes, in recognition of his artistic achievements and contribution to Canadian classical music.
Drummer Terry Clarke was born on August 20, 1944 in Vancouver. He was just twelve years old when he began studying formally with noted drum teacher and author, Jim Blackley, who remain a primary figure in Clarke’s continuing development as a musician. Clarke began building his reputation for versatility by joining the world-famous pop vocal group, The Fifth Dimension at the height of their popularity, travelling and performing extensively with them throughout the U.S.A., Canada and Europe. Clarke left The Fifth Dimension in 1970, subsequently re-locating to Toronto where, for the next 15 years, he played an abundance of jazz in all styles, and established himself as a major figure in Toronto’s studio scene. In 1985 Clarke moved to New York City to pursue an exclusively jazz-oriented career and in 1999 he returned to Toronto. He is an enthusiastic jazz educator, and for the past several years has been a member of the Faculty of Music at the University of Toronto.
Alana and Leigh Cline are a Toronto based Celtic fiddle/guitar duo who combine Irish, Cape Breton and Scottish styles to create their own sound. In 2008 Alana became the first Canadian to be accepted to the auditioned Meitheal School of Irish Traditional Music in Limerick. She has also studied fiddle at the Gaelic College of Celtic Arts in St. Ann’s, Cape Breton. Alana and Leigh have performed together at Toronto’s Canada Day Celebrations and as a soloist, Alana has played at events for Tourism Ireland, Fredericton Tourism, the Toronto Irish Film Festival, Golf Newfoundland and Labrador and the Distillery District East Coast Festival. Leigh was sound engineer for performers including The Chieftains, Joni Mitchell, Judy Collins, John Allan Cameron, Fleetwood Mac, Aly Bain and the Boys of the Lough, Procol Harum, Bruce Cockburn, Rod Stewart, and he has toured with Ian and Sylvia and The Great Speckled Bird.