Music Adjudicators – 2022

Special thank you to all for your devotion to young people!

The Kiwanis Music Festival reserves the right to substitute or appoint other adjudicators.

GILLIAN MACKAY
Brass and Bands

Gillian MacKay is Professor at the University of Toronto, where she conducts the Wind Ensemble and teaches conducting.  She serves as Associate Conductor of the Denis Wick Canadian Wind Orchestra. Dr. MacKay has adjudicated and guest conducted in Canada, the USA, Asia and in the UK.  

Known for her research on the relationship between conducting and mime, Gillian’s current research involves the application of the Michael Chekhov acting technique to expressivity in conducting gesture. She leads the University of Toronto Wind Conducting Symposium each July.

Gillian studied at the University of Lethbridge, University of Calgary, McGill University, and Northwestern University. 

 

 

CATHERINE COSBEY
Chamber

Catherine Cosbey of the Cavani String Quartet, leads an adventurous career as a vibrant performer and presenter of chamber music. Ms. Cosbery’s  international performing career has taken her throughout the US and abroad. She has made appearances at the Honens Festival in Calgary, Alberta, Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in Germany, Esterhazy String Quartet Festival in Hungary, Festival de Febrero in Mexico, Xenia Concerts in Toronto, the Ottawa Chamber Music Festival, the Detroit Chamber Music Society, the Kennedy Center, Severance  and Carnegie Hall, amongst others. She has served as guest violinist with with the Afiara, Attacca, Cecilia, Tokai, and Verona Quartets, and has enjoyed collaborations with A Far Cry, Julian Rachlin, Sarah McElravy, Boris Andrianov, Richard Stoltzman, Donald Weilerstein, Peter Salaff, and James Dunham.

A founding member of the award winning Linden String Quartet, hailed as “polished, radiant and incisive” (The Strad Magazine), she has toured extensively throughout North America and Europe. She has served in the Fellowship Quartet at Yale University and the Apprentice Quartet at the Cleveland Institute of Music and performed residencies for the University of Iowa, and the University of Idaho. As a member of the Linden Quartet, Ms. Cosbey received the Gold Medal and Grand Prize at the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, Coleman Barstow Prize at the 2009 Coleman National Chamber Ensemble Competition, the 2010 Hugo Kauder Competition, and the ProQuartet Prize at the 9th Borciani String Quartet Competition.

Ms. Cosbey, along with musical soulmate Katherine Dowling, is proudly co-Artistic Director of the Regina Chamber Music Festival, a week-long chamber music festival that works to bring inspiring concerts and instruction to her hometown community in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, and co-Artistic Director of Bach From The Heart, a concert experience that explores the emotional journeys of Bach’s Solo Sonatas and Partitas for Violin through music and poetry. As a member of a musical family, she often performs as part of the Cosbey Piano Quintet. Ms. Cosbey holds degrees from the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, the Cleveland Institute of Music, and Yale University’s School of Music. Her principal mentors are Eduard Minevich, Erika Raum, Paul Kantor, Peter Salaff, and the Tokyo and Cavani Quartets.

At home Ms. Cosbey enjoys serenading her many plant pets with Bach and depicting their leaves on loaves of sourdough bread.

 

ZIMFIRA POLOZ
Choirs

Zimfira Poloz is a passionate musician, educator, award-winning conductor, and internationally respected adjudicator and clinician.

Ms. Poloz has been decorated with numerous awards, including Honoured Representative of Education of the Republic of Kazakhstan, the city of Hamilton’s VIP Award, and the Leslie Bell Prize for Choral Conducting (Ontario Arts Council).  Recent adjudication and guest conductor highlights include: Choralies- International Choral Festival, France; National Choral Competition (Japan); Europa Cantat (France); 1st International Choral Alberto Grau Composition Competition (Venezuela); Children’s Choir of Philharmonic Paris Orchestra (France); AmericaCantat 8 (Bahamas); World Choir Games- China, USA, Latvia, Russia, South Korea, National Choral Competition (Canada). Conductor in residence for Corfu Ionian University – Summer Academy in Choral Conducting Course (Greece), Orebro University (Sweden), International Choral Conductor’s Seminar (South Africa), Ministry of Education and Culture in collaboration with Pedagogical Institute, Nicosia (Cyprus); Ministry of Culture and Sports of the Republic of Kazakhstan – International Scientific and Practical conference “Musical VUCA World”; World Piece Festival (Austria); World Choir Festival (Hong Kong).

Zimfira established her musical credentials in Kazakhstan, where she served as founder and principal of the nation’s first choir school. Upon her arrival in Canada, Zimfira’s skill and passion found a home with Toronto Children’s Chorus, St. Michael’s Choir School, and eventually as Artistic Director of Hamilton Children’s Choir and Young Voices Toronto.

Under Zimfira’s direction, the Hamilton Children’s Choir has won innumerable international and national contests and has transformed into one of the most widely acclaimed youth choral programs in the world, including several appearances at “Podium” Choral Canada Conference. HCC was invited World Symposium on Choral Music IFCM, Auckland ( New Zealand),  sharing stage with King Singers as a children’s choir in residence at the International Festival for Children and Youth Choirs (Hong Kong), ACDA National Conference (Minnesota), America Cantat 8 (Bahamas), Polyfollia, World Showcase on Choral Music (France), and IFCM World Symposium (South Korea), 1st Xinghai Prize International Choral Competition (China), “Let the People Sing” Euroradio Choral Competition (Norway), Let the Future Sing, 70th International Festival, Adolf Frederik’s Music School (Sweden), Songbridge Choral Festival, Szczecin (Poland), and Tolosa Choral Competition (Spain).

From 2004-2011 – Zimfira Poloz led Young Voices Toronto (formerly High Park Choirs) as Artistic Director expanding the program from 3 to 5 choirs. Under Zimfira’s leadership YVT became Children’s Choir-in-residence at U of T. YVT was invited as a showcase choir to Germany for the 1125th anniversary celebrations for the town of Bodersweier; France, and to the World Choir Games (27,000 singers) in Latvia as a showcase choir & workshop choir for conductors.  Unforgettable highlights were the Great Celebration Concert of the 8th WCG that took place in the Mežaparks – the Song Celebration grounds – where 10,000 Latvian and 5,000 international singers united in song, as well as the emotional Closing Concert in the Arena Riga.

In addition to her performance season with HCC and her travels as clinician and guest conductor, Zimfira teaches in the Faculty of Music at the University of Toronto. She is a Faculty Member & Canadian Representative for International Choral Space as well for the World Choral Council, Interkultur, ACDA International Activities, Mentor.  In addition, she is a Board Member for the World Alliance of Children’s Choirs (A Global Network of Children’s Choirs and Conductors) and curator/editor for choral music publisher, Cypress Choral Music.

 

ALAN TOROK
Composition

Composer and guitarist Alan Torok has been a concerto soloist, chamber musician, recitalist, theatrical musician and musical lecturer in Canada, United Kingdom, Yugoslavia, Hungary, Romania and Netherlands. He has performed at the Toronto International Guitar Festivals (1975, 78, 81), the Amsterdam International Guitar Festival (1997), the Zagreb Biennale (1980), London’s Wigmore Hall, Toronto‘s St. Lawrence Centre, the Stratford Shakespearean Festival, Ottawa’s National Art Centre, Halifax‘s Neptune Theatre, the CBC’s Glenn Gould Studio and many other events and venues. He has performed with some of Canada’s premier classical musicians including: Robert Aitken, Nexus, Erica Goodman, Rivka Golani, Douglas Perry, Joe Macerollo and many others. He was a featured performer on CBC national radio on many occasions. In 1990 he performed Czek composer Stepan Rak’s 3rd Guitar Concerto—a work written for him—to great acclaim, on CBC national radio. From 1986 to 1999 he was Professor of Guitar at the University of Western Ontario’s Faculty of Music.

His compositional output includes concerti, symphonic works, dance-scores, music for wind ensembles, string orchestras and ensembles, mixed-instrumentation chamber-ensembles, solo-instrumental music, songs, choral works, guitar-sonatas, sinfonias for guitar-ensembles, incidental music for plays, and a great deal of pedagogic music. His guitar music has been performed in Canada, USA, South America and Europe by various artists, and is published by Canadian and American publishers. He has won commissions and grants from the Canada, Ontario and Toronto Arts Councils, the Guitar Society of Toronto, the Canadian Music Centre, private individuals and corporations. His compositions have been awarded prizes in Japan, Malta and Greece.

From 2005 to 2016 he was the head of the music department at Toronto’s Claude Watson Arts Program, Earl Haig Secondary School, where he directed an experimental composition project initiated by the Gryphon-Trio. He developed this project into a unique composition program in which auditioned music students, aged 15 to 18, learned to compose for solo instruments, chamber ensembles and orchestra. Students analyzed contemporary scores and studied score preparation, enabling them to write for the professional groups who acted as their resident ensembles. Each year 50 to 60 student compositions were read and recorded by the Gryphon-Trio, the Amici Ensemble and the Esprit Orchestra. In addition, select student scores were performed annually in public concerts by these ensembles. During his 15 years with the Claude Watson Arts Program, composition graduates of won scholarships to post-secondary composition programs at the UofT, McGill, UBC, Eastman, Juilliard, Indiana, NEC and Curtis. In 2008 one of Torok’s students in this program, Eugene Astapov, while still in Grade 12, was commissioned by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra to write an orchestral work for the 2010 Winter Olympics. The orchestra premiered it the following year under the baton of Bramwell Tovey.

TREVOR COOPER
Guitar

The guitar has become a passport to Trevor Cooper, and it travels with him wherever he goes. It has taken him from his upbringing in the cold western Canadian Prairies to the heat of southern Spain. Large urban centers like Toronto (U of T, BMusPerf ‘13) lead to mountain towns like Salzburg (Mozarteum, MA ‘19). In Spanish Vistas, he realized a life-long dream and made his orchestral debut performing the Concierto de Aranjuez with the Concordia Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Danielle Lisboa. In 2018 he toured western Canada and Norway with Henry Reitan. He has performed recitals with the Guitar Societies of Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver and has recently given masterclasses at Mount Royal University, the University of British Columbia, and Concordia University of Edmonton. 

In 2015 Trevor Cooper was one of 14 internationally selected guitarists to study in the III Master de la Interpretación de la Guitarra Clásica at the Universidad de Alicante in Alicante, Spain. There he studied with Grammy award-winning artists David Russell, Manuel Barrueco (guitar), Paul O’Dette (lute/early music), Jose de Eusebio (conducting) as well as Paul Galbraith, Pepe Romero, Fabio Zanon and others. This followed travels to Seville, Spain, where he was invited to study with guitarist Francisco Bernier. 

At 17 Trevor was accepted into the University of Toronto Faculty of Music Performance program. There he studied guitar with Dr. Jeffrey McFadden and Performance Practice with Dr. Kevin Komisaruk (Palliative Care/Keyboard). During this time, he gained local success and won the Guitar Trophy at the 2012 Greater Toronto Kiwanis Music Festival. He received national recognition with 1st Place in Guitar at the 2013 FCMF National Music Festival in Waterloo. 

Born and raised in Edmonton, he started playing guitar at a young age studying locally with Michel Forestier. He currently plays on an Alector guitar (Thessaloniki, Greece) with Knobloch strings. 

Trevor would like to thank the Edmonton Community Foundation and the Friends of Ann Burrows Foundation for their faithful and generous support during his studies 

 

LUCILE BRAIS HILDESHEIM
Harp

Harpist Lucile Brais Hildesheim began harp studies at age eight in her native Montreal, culminating in a BMus (Performance) at McGill University. Finalist in the 1981 CBC Radio Talent Competition, she spent that summer as harpist in residence at the Banff Centre. Solo, chamber and concerto performances have taken her across Canada, to the USA and Europe. She has collaborated with many Canadian composers. Lucile parallels art and music: colour, shape, lines, rhythm… these elements meld into the rich and subtle sound she is known for. She has recorded with several choirs and orchestras, and has produced three solo albums which include some of her own arrangements & compositions. She is also one half of the flute and harp duo sheila&lucile, with flutist Sheila White. Bridging traditional and classical music, they create a rich and intimate sound with their inspired arrangements. They have recorded two albums of original and traditional tunes. Lucile performs on three types of harps: classical, Celtic and electric.She teaches harp to students of all ages and a is member of the Royal College of Examiners. Find out more at www.83strings.ca and at sheilalucile.com.

BRIAN YOON
Cello & Double Bass 

Brian Yoon enjoys a multifaceted career as soloist, chamber musician, teacher and Principal Cello of the Victoria Symphony. He has performed as guest principal with the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, and the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra in New Zealand. Since winning First Prize at the 35th Eckhardt-Gramatté Competition, Brian has been presented in recital from coast to coast, with performances of repertoire ranging from Bach and Beethoven to Shostakovich and Metallica. He maintains a strong commitment to contemporary music, often programming works from the 21st century. In 2012, CBC Music featured Brian as “Canada’s next cello superstar” with a national broadcast of a recital recorded at the Glenn Gould Studio in Toronto.

In addition to teaching at the Victoria Conservatory of Music, Brian regularly leads master classes and appears on faculty at summer festivals. His students have been accepted into cello performance programs at the University of Victoria, the University of Ottawa, McGill University, the Glenn Gould School, and the New England Conservatory.

Born in South Korea, Brian started music lessons at the age of six. After immigrating to Canada, he continued cello studies with Judith Fraser at the Vancouver Academy of Music, where he was awarded the Certificate in Music Performance. He began post-secondary studies in the Faculty of Science at UBC, but later completed a Bachelor of Music at the University of Ottawa studying with Paul Marleyn, and a Master of Music at Rice University studying with Desmond Hoebig. Brian has been generously supported by the BC Arts Council, the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Sylva Gelber Music Foundation.

IRENE ILIC
Musical Theatre 

Soprano Irene Ilic received her Master’s Degree in Music from the Cleveland Institute of Music and has performed a variety of operatic and musical theatre roles in the U.S. and Canada.  She has also been a guest soloist with many Canadian choirs and orchestras, performing as soprano soloist in works such as Orff’s CARMINA BURANA, Purcell’s KING ARTHUR, Haydn’s THE CREATION, Handel’s THE MESSIAH, Bach’s ST. JOHN PASSION, and the REQUIEMs of Faure, Durufle, Brahms and Rutter.

Ms. Ilic has a thriving private teaching practice in Newmarket and is a member of NATS, ORMTA and the CMFAA.  She is also currently a board member of both NATS Ontario and the OMFA.  She has adjudicated many music festivals throughout Canada. She is the founder and director of the Newmarket Voice Festival, an annual event since 1996.  She was selected to join the repertoire selection committee for both the 2012 edition and 2019 edition of the Royal Conservatory of Music Songbook Series.

Many of her students have won Silver and Gold Medals for the highest mark in Ontario for an RCM Voice Exam.  Her students have starred in Opera Atelier productions and the Toronto casts and touring productions of THE LION KING, THE SOUND OF MUSIC, BILLY ELIOT, MARY POPPINS, and more.  Her student, John-Michael Scapin, won the $150,000 scholarship in the CBC show Triple Sensation.  Her annual “Tea & Tunes” student concerts have been held for over twenty-five years and have raised thousands of dollars for Sick Kids Hospital.

Irene is very proud that many of her students have gone on to pursue music at the university level and as a career path.

 

 

 

ROBIN NORMAN
Musical Theatre

Robin is an active voice teacher, performer and director. She has been teaching voice for over 25 years and has performed in or been the musical director of over 30 different musical productions including Les Miserables, Nunsense and Legally Blonde. She is an active member of the Prince George Arts community, often volunteering her performance and professional services.

Robin has served on several boards, she was the president of Performing Arts BC, the Vice President of The Federation of Canadian Music Festivals, and a board member to both Theatre BC, and the Prince George Music Festival. Robin is also an adjudicator throughout the Canadian festival system.

Her choir Nove Voce has been recognized provincially and nationally. They have won the BC provincial festival several times most recently in 2016, 2019 and 2020 and in 2019 they were the first place winners of their category in the  National Festival.

 

 

 

DENIS MASTROMONACO
Orchestras

Maestro Mastromonaco is currently the Music Director for the Mississauga Symphony Orchestra, Burlington Symphony Orchestra, York Symphony Orchestra, Opera York, and Mississauga Symphony Youth Orchestra. He is engaged in both symphonic and operatic conducting, having held posts with organizations including Royal Opera Canada, the National Academy Orchestra and the State University of New York, where he taught conducting and worked with the College Symphony, the Hillman Opera, Sinfonia and the Chamber Orchestra. He has been a regular guest conductor for the West Bohemian Symphony Orchestra, Czech Republic and has had the pleasure to conduct various international ensembles which include the Camerata Strumentale di Prato, Orchestra dell’Accademia di San Giorgio, Sofia Philharmonic Orchestra, members of the Pittsburgh Symphony and Bethany College Choir.

A graduate of the University of Toronto, Maestro Mastromonaco went on to obtain a Master of Music Degree in Orchestral Conducting from the State University of New York, attaining summa cum laude honours. With extensive international training, he also holds diplomas in conducting from the Wiener Konservatorium, the Salzburg Mozarteum and from the Accademia Musicale Chigiana in Siena, Italy. His work with distinguished conductors and orchestras include Salvador mas Conde, Jorma Panula, Gustav Meier, Hans Zender, Lothar Zagrosek, the Vancouver Symphony, Cleveland Institute of Music Orchestra, Windsor Symphony, Thunder Bay Symphony and the Vidin State Philharmonic.

Maestro Mastromonaco is equally at home with both the symphony and the opera. Having conducted an immense amount of orchestral programs and opera productions, as well as having directed every aspect of productions from stage director, to sound and lighting, supertitles, his involvement is paramount from beginning to end. His unique respect for the music is balanced with his management from the podium by giving respect to musicians of all abilities, from his work with international artists and world-renowned orchestras to college and community performers.

As an advocate for music in the community, Maestro Mastromonaco has been Music Director for numerous ensembles and has taught, adjudicated and served as clinician for schools, arts festivals and competitions all while promoting the importance of music in local communities. He has been the recipient of prestigious awards including the Emme Contestabile Prize in Orchestral Conducting from Accademia Musicale Chigiana, the City of Vaughan 2005 Outstanding Citizen Award and in 2013 the Ontario Service Medal for contribution to the arts.

 

DR. MICHAEL KIM
Senior Piano: Open, Advanced & Concertos

Dean and Professor of Piano at the Don Wright Faculty of Music at Western University in London, Ontario, Canada, Dr. Michael Kim enjoys a distinguished, multi-faceted career as an academic administrator, professor, and concert artist.  Formerly Director and Professor of the School of Music at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities, he also previously served as Dean of the School of Music and Vice-President External at Brandon University, Canada, where he led BU’s advancement programs (overseeing its integrated offices of fundraising, alumni relations, marketing, communications, and web design), and as Chair of the Keyboard Department and Faculty Associate to the President at Lawrence University (Appleton, WI).

A veteran of the concert circuit with a wide-ranging concerto repertoire, Dr. Kim has performed repeatedly as soloist with numerous orchestras (including the Boston and Cincinnati Pops, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony, Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra London, the Florida Orchestra, the Calgary Philharmonic, and the symphonies of Toronto, Vancouver, CBC Vancouver, Vancouver Island, Victoria, Winnipeg, Edmonton, Regina, Saskatoon, Milwaukee, Green Bay, Oklahoma City) under the baton of such distinguished conductors as Yannick Nezet Seguin, Hans Graf, Jerzy Maksymiuk, Sian Edwards, Mario Bernardi, and Georg Tintner.  He also performed extensively under the baton of pop icons as Mitch Miller (Sing Along with Mitch), Skitch Henderson of the Tonight Show, and Richard Kaufmann. 

He has toured extensively as solo recitalist throughout Canada, the U.S., the U.K., and South Korea, and with the Music as Theatre productions The Schumann Letters and Nadia.  As a chamber musician and collaborative artist, he performs frequently with his wife pianist Dr. Kyung Kim and sister violinist Helen Kim, also collaborating with the Bakken Trio, James Ehnes, Edgar Meyer, James Campbell, members of the Canadian Brass, and the Ceclia, New Orford, Fine Arts, New Zealand String Quartets.  Summer festival performances have included Ottawa’s Chamber fest, Festival of the Sound, Colors of Music, Agassiz, Brevard, Aspen, Banff, Clear Lake, Huntsville, Heifetz (Annapolis, MD), and Niagara.  While in Minnesota, Michael appeared regularly in subscription performances with the members of the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, also performing with legendary clarinetist Martin Frost. 

He holds the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Juilliard School, and was silver medalist in the 1992 Scottish International Competition in Glasgow, a prizewinner in the Leeds and Ivo Pogorelich International Piano Competitions, and grand prizewinner of the Canadian Music and Canadian Broadcasting Corporation National Radio Competitions.  Dr. Kim can be heard on critically acclaimed recordings for Arktos, CRI, Summit, and Orpheum Masters.

 

 

 

YVETTE ROWLEDGE
Intermediate Piano – Levels 9-10

Yvette Rowledge graduated with distinction from the University of Victoria School of Music and holds diplomas from the Royal Conservatory of Music (ARCT, Performance) and the Victoria Conservatory of Music (AVCM, Performance and Pedagogy).

She is a former faculty member of the Langley Community Music School, the Victoria Conservatory and the Douglas College Community Music School. Her tutors have included Dr. Robin Wood, Winifred Scott Wood, Dr. Gordana Lazarevich and Bruce Vogt.

Yvette adjudicates at many music Festivals throughout Canada and is a member of the Canadian Music Festival Adjudicators’ Association. She has taught all levels of music for over 40 years and is a member of the BC Registered Music Teachers’ Association.

She is an examiner of senior piano levels for The London College of Music and Media (England). Yvette enjoys both leading and participating in Master Classes.

CARTER JOHNSON
Junior Piano (Levels 7 and 8)

Praised for his sensitivity and artistic depth, Carter Johnson has established himself as one of Canada’s most exciting pianists. Most recently, he was the first prize winner in the 2021 International Stanislaw Moniuszko International Competition of Polish Music as well as the first prize winner of the 2020 Valsesia International Competition. In 2018, Johnson won the top prize in two of Canada”s most important competitions, winning both Grand Prize in the OSM Manulife Competition as well as first prize in the CMC Stepping Stone competition. He has performed with orchestras including l’Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, l’Orchestre Métropolitain, the Rzeszów Philharmonic Orchestra, the Orchestra of the Americas, and the Victoria Symphony Orchestra, and his playing has been broadcasted by Medici TV and Radio-Canada.

Johnson holds a BMus from the University of British Columbia under Mark Anderson and an MM from the Juilliard School under Matti Raekallio and Joseph Kalichstein. Johnson is currently an MMA candidate at the Yale School of Music with Wei-Yi Yang. He lives with his wife Hannah and their sons Preston and Ambrose in New Haven, Connecticut where he is active as a performing artist and teacher.

 

 

KATHERINE DOWLING
Junior Piano – Levels 4-6

Praised by the New York Times for her “crystalline performances, gestural expressiveness, and careful attention to color”, and by the Boston Globe for her “effortless incisiveness”, award-winning pianist Dr. Katherine Dowling performs across North America and Europe as a soloist and chamber musician.

Katherine is familiar to audiences as a multi-year fellow of the Tanglewood Music Center, a New Fromm Fellow, a Britten-Pears Young Artist, an International Musicians’ Seminar at Prussia Cove artist; through extensive involvement and numerous positions at The Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, the Orlando Festival, the Aldeburgh Festival, and the Avaloch Farm Music Institute; and through multiple national tours under the auspices of the Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition. She endeavours to perform in the prairie region as much as possible, and has appeared on the Regina Musical Club, Gustin House, New Music Edmonton, Cecilian Chamber, and Brandon Pro series, as well as the Agassiz and Ritornello Chamber Music festivals. She treasures her many collaborative relationships, most especially violinist Catherine Cosbey (Cavani String Quartet), with whom she is co-director of the Regina Chamber Music Festival. As a soloist, and as a member of the chamber ensemble Gruppo Montebello, Katherine appears on eight critically-acclaimed recordings on the Etcetera label. Her performances have been broadcast on the CBC (Canada), Radio-Canada, BBC (United Kingdom), and National Radio 4 (Holland). These musical endeavours have been graciously and generously supported by the Saskatchewan Arts Board, the Leverhulme Trust, and the Canada Council for the Arts.

In addition to her performing activities, Katherine is Assistant Professor of Piano at the University of Regina. She is also on faculty at the duo526 Sonata Seminar (Brandon University) and the Orlando European Summer Course for Chamber Music. She has served on the jury for the National Finals of the Canadian Music Competition, enjoys adjudicating at both the regional and provincial levels, and teaches masterclasses and workshops across Canada every season. She credits her own teacher, celebrated American pianist Gilbert Kalish, and conductors Henk Guittart and Oliver Knussen, as the major influences in her musical life. She holds a Doctor of Musical Arts (Performance) degree from Stony Brook University.

Under the realities of the global pandemic, and their profound effect on the world of music performance, Katherine wishes to express gratitude for the following projects: the National Arts Centre/Facebook #CanadaPerforms series (featured soloist), the weekly Youtube series Made at Avaloch (host and soloist), and GoCompose North America, through which she has presented over twenty-five premieres by wonderful young composers. Upcoming projects include a residency at the Arnold Schoenberg Centre in Vienna, a recital tour with violinist Kerry DuWors under Prairie Debut Inc., and a recording of new works on the Leaf Music label. www.katherinedowling.com. 

 

DAISY LEUNG
Elementary Piano (Introductory to Level 3)

For over 20 years, pianist Daisy Leung has taught piano, history, and theory, and feels fortunate to be able to pass on her knowledge and love of music to the next generation through teaching and adjudicating festivals across Ontario.

Daisy is also an accomplished collaborative artist whose love for chamber music and collaboration is apparent in her approach. She has performed as a collaborative pianist, orchestral musician, and soloist across North America and has had performances broadcast on CBC Music. She currently resides in Toronto, Ontario, where she is employed as a collaborative pianist at the University of Toronto and the Royal Conservatory of Music’s Phil and Eli Taylor Performance Academy for Young Artists and the Glenn Gould School.

After beginning her music studies in Edmonton, Alberta (under the tutelage of Betty Wong, Wolfram Linnebach, and Thelma O’Neill), Daisy moved to Toronto where she earned her Bachelor of Music degree at the University of Toronto with renowned piano pedagogue Marietta Orlov. She also completed further studies with Steven Philcox and Lydia Wong in collaborative piano, at The Banff Centre (under the baton of Jorge Parodi), Algonquin Summer Institute (with Helmut Brauss), Aria Summer Music Festival (with Marietta Orlov), and Scotia Festival of Music (with Marc-André Hamelin, Jamie Summerville, and Andrew Dawes).

Daisy has been privileged to perform for many of today’s leading classical musicians, including Steven Isserlis, Pamela Frank, Pinchas Zukerman, Jon Kimura Parker, Steven Philcox, Mary Morrison, Laurence Lesser, and Sylvia Rosenburg.

Adding to her ongoing list of accomplishments as a teacher and pianist, she has recently been elected to the Board of Directors as a Director at Large for the Women’s Musical Club of Toronto. She hopes that experiences from the performance and administrative sides of her career will bring about a positive change to classical music presentation and help future generations of musicians blossom through performance experiences and financial aid.

LIZ CRAIG
Popular Piano 

Liz Craig (B.Mus, ARCT, RMT) is an award winning, Toronto-based pianist with a passion for making every event special through live music. She has performed for over 500 weddings & events in southern Ontario as well as teaching music full time since 2006. While classically trained, Liz performs a wide variety of styles of music including her own arrangements of jazz and the newest popular songs. Liz has been interviewed on both the Top Music and Full Voice podcasts due to her unique perspective as an entrepreneur in both the wedding and teaching industries. She has been known to put her passions into words for the CMT Magazine, Notes Magazine and the topmusic.co blog.

Liz keeps her finger on the pulse of current music education and business trends by attending and presenting at conferences throughout North America. Since 2015, Liz has adjudicated at ten different music festivals and became a member of both the CFMAA and the RCM College of Examiners. She is an active member of ORMTA where she serves as Past President of the Central Toronto Branch. Learn more by following @lizcraigpianist or visiting www.lizcraig.ca

 

PEGGY COFFEY
Speech Arts

Theatre:  Stratford Festival, Shaw Festival, CanStage, The Grand Theatre, Blyth Festival, Essential Collective Theatre, Lighthouse Theatre, Neptune Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Blue Water Festival, Factory Lab, National Arts Centre, Chekhov Collective, Here For Now Theatre, Alternative Theatre Works.    

Teaching: The Birmingham Conservatory Stratford Festival, Director/Shakespeare Summer School Stratford Festival, Instructor/ St. Clair College Musical Theatre and Performance, Sheridan College, Dalhousie University, Foundation for Enriching Education Huron/Perth.

Peggy received her Certificate of Completion in Chekhov Technique in 2011 with MICHA. Peggy is a founding member of Alternative Theatre Works and Springworks Indie Theatre and Arts Festival.  She is the recipient of 4 Guthrie Awards from the Stratford Festival, and was honoured to be named Woman of the Year in Arts in Culture in her community 2012. 

Peggy has adjudicated for:  Alberta Provincial Finals, Alberta Kiwanis both Calgary and Edmonton, Stratford Kiwanis, London Kiwanis, Ontario Provincial Finals, Stratford Festival Teaching Intensives, and for the Sears Drama Festival. 
Peggy is thrilled to be invited to adjudicate for Toronto Kiwanis Music Festival.

 

 

MARTHA JOHNSON
Visual Arts

Martha Johnson graduated from the University of Guelph with an Honours Bachelor of Fine Arts, attended Arts Sake in Toronto, and was mentored by Tom Hodgson (Painter’s Eleven). She has been instructing all skill levels of painting and drawing over 25 years at Avenue Road Arts School in Toronto and leads outdoor painting workshops at various locations including Algonquin Park, Grand Manan NB, Provence France, and Union Island in the Caribbean. She has her own teaching platform specializing in museum based workshops and a mentoring program titled Mastering for students with an existing art practice.

Her work is held in public, corporate and private collections worldwide and has sold in Waddington’s Concrete Sale. Martha’s work investigates the strata in subject matter, and her practice is profoundly affected by local environment, history and legend. Current figurative imagery references transition, transformation, androgyny and perception. She is known for painting on unusual surfaces, a result of having spent many years designing sets and costumes for theatre and film. Her 2017 solo exhibition, SHADOW RED, included works crafted on vintage and antique woollen blankets illustrating a deep family connection to the Tom Thomson mystery. Important ongoing bodies of work, Survey The Valley and Kent Island and the Albatross, encounter cohabitation of urban and rural wildlife with human encroachment. Martha is currently represented by Art Interiors in Toronto. marthajohnson.ca  #highpinespainter

 

 

OLEG POKHANOVSKI
Upper Strings: Open and Advanced – Violin and Viola

Oleg Pokhanovski is an accomplished virtuosic violinist, pianist, and music educator currently holding the position of Professor of Violin at the University of Manitoba’s Desautels Faculty of Music. He has performed over 2000 concerts as a soloist nationally and internationally on both violin and piano in symphonic, recital and chamber music performances. Oleg Pokhanovski is a top prizewinner of eight prestigious international violin competitions including the Paganini in Genova, Sarasate in Pamplona and CIEM in Geneva among others. The First Prize Winner of the 1990 Scheveningen International Violin Competition in Netherlands, he twice received the prestigious Canada Council National Career Development Grant, and multiple Conceil des Arts du Quebec and Manitoba Arts Council Grants.

Dr. Pokhanovski is in much demand as a pedagogue and previously held a professorial position at the Lake State Superior University in Michigan. He is frequently invited and has adjudicated both strings and piano at music festivals all across Canada. Dr. Pokhanovski is also renowned for creating over 200 virtuosic transcriptions for violin and piano, as well as other instruments, and has produced professional CD recordings of many of these. He has recently formed the Desautels Piano Trio with colleagues Judy Kehler-Siebert (piano) and Minna Rose Chung (cello). The Trio has to date already performed in Canada and abroad.

Dr. Pokhanovski began his career as a violinist at the age of 6, giving his first performance with the Kuybyshev Symphony in Russia. At 10, he was accepted into the renowned Special Music School for Gifted Children in Moscow and later studied at the Moscow State Conservatory with professor Valery Klimov, the grand prizewinner of the Tchaikovsky International Violin Competition. Dr. Pokhanovski cites his most influential teachers to be his uncle violinist Lev Zaides, and piano instructor Svetlana Vorobyova. Invited to move to the United States, he received full scholarships at The Juilliard School and the Manhattan School of Music studying with Dorothy DeLay, Pinchas Zukerman and Ani Kavafian, and took part in the “Solisti dal Mondo” program at the St. Louis Conservatory under violin professor Taras Gabora. He received a doctorate degree at the Université de Montreal in violin performance, with a focus on Paganini.

Dr. Pokhanovski has performed as a violinist in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Israel and Russia. He has been presented in Carnegie Recital Hall, the Grand Hall in Moscow, the Concertgebouw, Knight Hall in Prague, Place des Arts in Montréal and others. His solo appearances with orchestra included the Moscow Philharmonic, Moscow Virtuosi, The Hague Symphony, Toronto Symphony, Montréal Symphony and Winnipeg Symphony orchestras. His concerts brought rave reviews calling him a “Russian Paganini” and describing his playing as “brilliant”, “phenomenal”, “outstanding”, and “extraordinary”. He has been invited to perform on national television and radio in Russia, Serbia, Poland, Canada and The Netherlands.

Dr. Pokhanovski is active as a chamber musician and has appeared in the International Virtuosi Series in Germany, International Music Academy in Kiev, Ukraine, Domaine Forget in Quebec, Centara New Music, Agassiz Summer Chamber Music, Orford and Pender Harbour Music festivals in Canada. He is a Founder and Artistic Director of the “Oleg and Friends” concert series in Winnipeg.

Dr. Pokhanovski has recorded several CDs including The Mirror Image and La Valse, and in live performances on Youtube. Other CDs he has recorded include solo violin works, and the complete works for violin and piano by Sophia C. Eckhardt-Gramatté in collaboration with pianist Megumi Masaki. The Mirror Image and La Valse are comprised of his transcriptions for violin and piano, of which he continues to give concerts regularly including performances as part of his concert series “Oleg and Friends” and at recitals with international prize-winning pianist Scott Meek. His numerous transcriptions can be found and purchased at: https://www.sheetmusicplus.com/publishers/oleg-pokhanovski-sheet-music/3017043?isPLP=1

Dr. Pokhanovski’s deep admiration for the great musicians of the past, including Heifetz, Hofmann, Rubinstein, Milstein, Kreisler and others is evident in his sensitive, passionate style of playing. “Pokhanovski’s high energy performances are characterized by an unmistakably genuine passion for the music. Urgent, serious and heartfelt – all words that aptly describe Oleg Pokhanovski’s playing” (Gwenda Nemerofsky, Winnipeg Free Press.)

 

SARAH VELASCO
Upper Strings: Junior and Intermediate – Violin and Viola

Canadian born violinist Sarah Velasco has performed across North America, Asia, and Europe and is currently residing in Switzerland where she is an active soloist and chamber musician.

As a soloist, Sarah has performed with orchestras including The Georgia Philharmonic, The Toronto Sinfionetta, Orchestra London, The Kindred Spirits Orchestra, L’Orchestre de L’HEMU and L’Orchestre OS-M.

This past summer, Sarah went on tour for the third year with Renaud Capuçon, with whom she has performed in some of Europe’s most prestigious festivals including Le Festival de musique de Menton, Festival de Rocamadour, Le Festival du Piano de la Roque d’Antheron, and Variations Musical de Tannay. Sarah also performed in venues including Les Arènes d’Arles, La Grange Au Lac, Evian, MC2 Grenoble, Grand Théâtre, Aix-en-Provence, Scène 55, Mougins, Dôme Théâtre, Albertville, France Schloss Elmau, Krün, Graffenegg Auditorium, Germany, Beau- Rivage Palace, Lausanne and Sommets Musicaux de Gstaad, Switzerland. 

December 2021 Sarah performed Brahms’ Violin Concerto with L’Orchestre OS-M. She recently performed in collaboration with The Verbier Festival, and Zermatt Festival with her string quartet, as well as The Crans Montana Classics Series, The Concordia Festival, and The Sion Festival with her violin- guitar duo. 

2021-2022 Sarah took on the concertmaster role for a number of projects including ArtInitiative Switzerland Ciné-Concert Series, Le Carnaval des Planètes at the Rolex Learning Center, and L’Orchestre des Concerts du Cœur with whom she will be soloing June 2022 under the direction of conductor Michel Barras. 

Sarah Velasco has worked with world renowned artists including Shmuel Ashkenazi, Dmitri Berlinsky, Jan, Dobrzelewski, Patrice Fontanarosa, Ilya Gringolts, Scott St. John, Ilya Kaler, David Kim, Soovin Kim, Mikhail Kopelman, Igor Volochine, Krzysztof Wegrzyn, and Pinchas Zukerman.

Her professors included Victor Danchenko, Erika Raum, Aaron Rosand, Sergiu Schwartz, Mark Skazinetsky, and Yuuki Wong.

Sarah graduated with her Bachelor of Music Degree (USA) Magna Cum Laude, her Master de Concert with the Domaine Musique et Arts de la Scène de la HES-SO prize and Master de Soloist at the Haute École de Musique de Lausanne.

 

TRACY DAHL
Senior Voice 

Throughout the span of her 40 year performance career, Tracy Dahl C.M., has appeared with such esteemed opera companies as the Metropolitan, San Francisco, Houston Grand, Santa Fe and Calgary operas; the Canadian Opera Company, Pacific Opera Victoria, Teatro alla Scala (Milan) and the Th  tre du Ch telet (Paris). The “incredible Canadian soprano,” known for her agility and vocal range, values education alongside her impressive performing career as a Professor of Voice at the University of Manitoba.

Born in Winnipeg, Tracy Dahl began her vocal training at age 12, and had her heart set on a career in musical theatre. Her earliest career days saw her on stages of the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and the Citadel in Edmonton, performing in both plays and musicals. Ms. Dahl’s training continued at the Banff Centre, then San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program, and from there career took flight. Her operatic performances ranged from the comedic — Adele in Die Fledermaus — to the tragic — Lucia in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor. Her acclaimed performances have always been driven by her theatrical training. Ms. Dahl sang many bel canto roles, becoming a specialist in the style. She also sang many roles in Mozart operas and in works by Richard Strauss. She has been in demand for concerts, singing works by Adams, Bach, Barber, Brahms, Bernstein, Britten, De Tredici, Finzi, Gershwin, Gilbert and Sullivan, Handel, Mahler, Mozart, Orff, Poulenc, J. Strauss and R.Strauss. Ms Dahl has sung recitals in Europe, the United States and Canada.

Most recently, she performed with the Manitoba Chamber Orchestra in a duet concert with her former student, soprano Andriana Chuchman. In a 2021, she collaborated with and was guided by knowledgekeeper Niigaan Sinclair in a recital where the content focussed on contextualizing European poetry to our time and space for Virtuosi Concerts. February, 2022 will see Pacific Opera will release the film of The Garden of Alice, in which Ms Dahl reprised the role of Alice, a role she premiered for the Globe Theatre.

Ms Dahl is a full time voice instructor at the University of Manitoba Desautels faculty of Music. She is sought after as a guest instructor for training programs and as a masterclass clinician. She is frequently asked to adjudicate for the Metropolitan Opera National Council auditions. She is resident voice instructor for the McPhee Young Artists Program with Calgary Opera, guest instructor for the Canadian Opera company and for l’Atelier with Op ra de Montreal. She has been a guest instructor for St Louis and Santa Fe operas, and most recently in Rochester, New York.

Ms Dahl has received numerous awards over the years, most notably being named one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada. She was truly humbled to be named as a member of the Order of Canada in 2017 in acknowledgement of her International performance career and for teaching and mentoring of the next generation of singers.


LISA COSENS BRILLON
Introductory to Grade 9 Voice, Folk Songs

Lisa Cosens Brillon began singing professionally at the age of 17 on the national television show, CBC Hymn Sing. Lisa studied at the Universities of Manitoba and Arizona where she earned her Bachelor and two Masters of Music degrees in Voice Performance and Music Education.  She began her doctoral studies in voice performance, pedagogy and choral conducting at the University of Cincinnati.  Lisa also studied in New York City with the Assistant Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera and at the Mannes College of Music.  For close to seven years Lisa sang with the Toronto production of The Phantom of the Opera in the role of Madame Firmin.  She has performed in concert, musicals and on the opera stage in North America, Europe and Israel and notably at Avery Fisher Hall in New York City in the lead role of Elena in I Vespri Siciliani with Opera Orchestra of New York.   She has received various awards and scholarships at the regional Metropolitan Opera auditions, American Jenny Lind Competition, American Teachers of Singing competition and was a finalist in the prestigious Washington International competition. Ms. Brillon founded and directs the Queenston Women’s Chorus, is the organist and choir director for St. David’s United Church, is the artistic director of the Niagara’s premiere show choir, The Niagara Star Singers and for 18 years directed the summer Queenston Musical Theatre Camp.  She is the voice/choral instructor for Music Niagara’s Summer Music Academy and as well, she is the founder and festival director of the Niagara Musical Theatre and Voice Festival,  ison the provincial executive for NATS (National Association Teachers of Singing), a board member for the Yellow Door Theatre Project and is currently the President of the Ontario Music Festivals Association (OMFA).  Lisa was just elected as Great Lake Regional Governor for NATS International.   She was the ‘host’ for the OMFA Provincial finals held in Niagara 2019 to over 1200 competitors. Lisa is sought out as a voice, musical theatre and commercial music adjudicator and choral clinician and is a former RCM voice examiner. She resides in Queenston where she loves teaching singing in her home studio. Her students have graduated from universities in Canada and the USA in music programs in classical voice, musical theatre, opera, and music education. Many students perform in professional and community musical theatre shows, Disneyworld, cruise ships, with symphony orchestras, in opera, have won the RCM Silver/Gold Medals and excel at festivals and competitions.  Ms. Brillon is proud to educate musicians and singers of all ages in the art of singing.

TRACY DAHL
Senior Voice 

Throughout the span of her 40 year performance career, Tracy Dahl C.M., has appeared with such esteemed opera companies as the Metropolitan, San Francisco, Houston Grand, Santa Fe and Calgary operas; the Canadian Opera Company, Pacific Opera Victoria, Teatro alla Scala (Milan) and the Th  tre du Ch telet (Paris). The “incredible Canadian soprano,” known for her agility and vocal range, values education alongside her impressive performing career as a Professor of Voice at the University of Manitoba.

Born in Winnipeg, Tracy Dahl began her vocal training at age 12, and had her heart set on a career in musical theatre. Her earliest career days saw her on stages of the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and the Citadel in Edmonton, performing in both plays and musicals. Ms. Dahl’s training continued at the Banff Centre, then San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program, and from there career took flight. Her operatic performances ranged from the comedic — Adele in Die Fledermaus — to the tragic — Lucia in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor. Her acclaimed performances have always been driven by her theatrical training. Ms. Dahl sang many bel canto roles, becoming a specialist in the style. She also sang many roles in Mozart operas and in works by Richard Strauss. She has been in demand for concerts, singing works by Adams, Bach, Barber, Brahms, Bernstein, Britten, De Tredici, Finzi, Gershwin, Gilbert and Sullivan, Handel, Mahler, Mozart, Orff, Poulenc, J. Strauss and R.Strauss. Ms Dahl has sung recitals in Europe, the United States and Canada.

Most recently, she performed with the Manitoba Chamber Orchestra in a duet concert with her former student, soprano Andriana Chuchman. In a 2021, she collaborated with and was guided by knowledgekeeper Niigaan Sinclair in a recital where the content focussed on contextualizing European poetry to our time and space for Virtuosi Concerts. February, 2022 will see Pacific Opera will release the film of The Garden of Alice, in which Ms Dahl reprised the role of Alice, a role she premiered for the Globe Theatre.

Ms Dahl is a full time voice instructor at the University of Manitoba Desautels faculty of Music. She is sought after as a guest instructor for training programs and as a masterclass clinician. She is frequently asked to adjudicate for the Metropolitan Opera National Council auditions. She is resident voice instructor for the McPhee Young Artists Program with Calgary Opera, guest instructor for the Canadian Opera company and for l’Atelier with Op ra de Montreal. She has been a guest instructor for St Louis and Santa Fe operas, and most recently in Rochester, New York.

Ms Dahl has received numerous awards over the years, most notably being named one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada. She was truly humbled to be named as a member of the Order of Canada in 2017 in acknowledgement of her International performance career and for teaching and mentoring of the next generation of singers.

KRISTINE GRAY
Woodwinds

Kristine Gray began her musical studies at an early age studying classical guitar and saxophone.  She obtained her Bachelor of Music degree at the University of Calgary, under the direction of Dr. Jeremy Brown. Kristine also received her Bachelor of Education from UofC and her Masters of Music in Saxophone Performance from The Boston Conservatory. An active performer and advocate of new music, Kristine has performed throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, Thailand and Scotland. In 2015 she completed her Doctorate of Musical Arts in Saxophone Performance through Boston University, under the direction of Kenneth Radnofsky.

Kristine has adjudicated music festivals across Canada and co-compiled the most recent RCM saxophone exam syllabus. Kristine has been the saxophone instructor at the University of Lethbridge and currently she is on faculty at Mount Royal Conservatory, the Calgary Board of Education and is a Royal Conservatory of Music Winds, Brass and Percussion examiner.

 

 

Accordion – TBA

 

Bagpipes – TBA

 

Bandura – TBA

 

Steel Pans – TBA

 

HUI (DAISY) YOU
Non-Western Strings

Hui (Daisy) You is a distinguished Zheng (Gu-zheng, Chinese Zither) soloist and an acclaimed Chinese music educator. Since 2004, she has been on the faculty of the Department of Music at Stanford University. She lectures Gu-zheng courses of all levels and artistic director and conductor the Stanford Gu-zheng Ensemble and Stanford Chinese Music Ensemble which she founded in (2004). 

From 1978 to 1983, You studied Zheng at the Secondary School affiliated with the Shanghai Conservatory. She then furthered her study in Zheng and Chinese music at the Shanghai Conservatory, where she studied rigorously under Baoquan He and Wenyan Sun, the two Zheng masters in the school of Nan-Bei (South-North). She also received training from Zheng masters of other important schools, including Zheng Cao, Ying Guo, Boling Ding, Yanjia Zhou and Yuzhai Zhao. In 1987, You graduated summa cum laude with a BA degree in Zheng and performed a solo recital sponsored by the conservatory. 

You joined Shanghai Opera as a Zheng soloist upon commencement. While in China, You has won many prestigious awards in Zheng. Among them are First Place in the Shanghai Spring Music Festival in 1986 and Awards of Excellence in both the Chinese Instruments Contest held in Beijing in 1989 and the Zheng contest sponsored by Chinese Central TV Station (CCTV) in the same year. She released several popular solo albums featuring traditional and modern pieces like “Xiang Shan She Gu (Temple Bells at Mount Fragrance)”, “Gao Shan Liu Shui (High Mountains and Flowing Brooks)”, “Zhan Tai Feng (Fight Against the Hurricane)”. 

Since her immigration to the U.S. in 1991, You continued to be an active and popular Zheng soloist. She performed in the annual “Bridge and Gate” show in the San Francisco Bay Area. She joined the China Cultural Goodwill Tour of the Hunan Arts Group and played at the Majestic Theater in Dallas, Texas. She has also appeared as a soloist in the Ohlone Symphonic Pops Orchestra, the New Music Works, the San Jose Chamber Orchestra, and the San Francisco World Music Festival. You’s performances are quintessentially Chinese with a modern twist. Effortlessly skillful and extremely engaging, her playing style is ferociously passionate with a touch of feminine melancholy. Drawing upon her mosaic of backgrounds, You is an expert in Zheng fusion composure, creatively incorporating music elements from different cultures into this classic Chinese music instrument. Her unique and daring style brings a whimsical fresh breeze to Zheng and attracts a global audience. 

In addition to performances, You dedicates most of her time to teaching students. Many of her students are rising Zheng stars. Some of them have had successful performances with the North American Elite Youth Orchestra and received many domestic and international awards. You is also an enthusiastic advocate for Chinese traditional music in general. Apart from teaching at Stanford, she holds workshops and seminars around the world to promote Zheng and Chinese music to the general public.