Join in on our annual Beckett School at Laurier Festival, BeckettFest, on April 6 and 7, 2019. This non-competitive festival provides our students the opportunity to perform and receive expert feedback from professional adjudicators.
Looking to compete in an upcoming Kiwanis competition? BeckettFest will give you the advice you need to feel prepared.
Strings (violin, fiddle, cello):
Friday, March 8, 2019.
Please return a printed copy of your registration form and payment to:
The Beckett School at Laurier
75 University Ave. W.
Cheques payable to Wilfrid Laurier University.
Canadian pianist, teacher, presenter and writer, Penny Johnson is best known for her performances of the music of J. S. Bach. Solo recitals have included the complete Inventions & Sinfonias, the Goldberg Variations and Art of Fugue, for which she composed an ending to the unfinished final movement. Penny has also completed an edition of the composer’s Fifteen Two-Part Inventions arranged for inverted voices, a project inspired by Rosalyn Tureck.
In 2016, Penny released a recording of the Inventions & Sinfonias and, prior to that, was a semi-finalist at the 8th International J. S. Bach Piano Competition in Würzburg, Germany. She has also attended residencies at The Banff Centre where she was a recipient of grants from the Canada Council for the Arts.
Originally from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario and currently residing in Mississauga, Penny holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Manhattan School of Music, where, as a student of Constance Keene, she was a recipient of the Helen Cohn Award given to an outstanding graduate of the doctoral program. She also holds a Master of Music degree and a Bachelor of Music degree with High Distinction from the Eastman School of Music where she was a student of Barry Snyder. In France, Penny has studied privately with Jean Paul Sevilla. Early studies were with Margaret Hart and Dale Innes. Written under the guidance of the noted author and radio host, David Dubal, Penny's doctoral dissertation deals with Ignacy Jan Paderewski and the Golden Age of pianism.
A former member of the College of Examiners at The Royal Conservatory, Penny has held teaching positions at the Eastman School of Music, the Manhattan School of Music and the University of Regina Conservatory for the Performing Arts in addition to various community music schools in the greater New York City and Toronto areas. From 2014-16, she served as a Product Manager and Teacher Liaison for Steinway Piano Gallery Toronto and has also worked at Steinway Hall in New York City.
A former contributing author for The Glenn Gould Foundation and the creator of Glenn Gould 905: A Triple Birthday Multi-Media Celebration for the Chamber Music Society of Mississauga, Penny is deeply influenced by Glenn Gould, in particular his radio documentaries and the moral fibre of his pursuit of ecstatic experiences through sound. In her blog, Further North, Penny has written a series of articles that seek to humanize Gould by way of amusing references to various aspects of media, story-telling and pop culture.
Active as a teacher, adjudicator, coach and clinician, Penny’s latest workshop, titled "From the Pianist’s Toolbox: Techniques for Effectively Practicing the Music of J.S. Bach," has been presented at various locations around the GTA, including several branches of ORMTA and Steinway Piano Gallery Toronto. Previous adjudication and master class engagements have included the Peel Music Festival, Brantford Kiwanis Music Festival, various branches of ORMTA, The Beckett School at Laurier, The Royal Conservatory and the Regina Musical Club Competition. Penny is also the creator of Piano Listening for Kids as well as The Great Pianists: Stories, Music & More, currently being presented at various public libraries.
Penny has transcribed archived audio footage for the International Piano Archives at the University of Maryland (IPAM) and has recently begun composing pieces for piano four-hands. Additionally, she is working on a book about her teacher, the late American pianist, Constance Keene. Penny is also a member of the board of directors for The Chamber Music Society of Mississauga.
Eleanor Gummer has been teaching children of all ages for over 40 years. She holds a Master of Music degree in Piano Performance from McGill University, as well as a Bachelor of Music degree (U of Manitoba), Fellowship and Licentiate diplomas from Trinity College of Music, London and an ARCT.
In addition, Eleanor studied in Europe, New York and has performed across Canada. She is an examiner for Conservatory Canada, a former senior examiner for the Royal Conservatory of Music and a former National Course Supervisor for Yamaha Canada. She is also the author of Pianokids®, Violinkids®, and Guitarkids®, methods for young children, published by One Eye Publications and available at Long & McQuade across the country as well as Cosmo Music, Remenyi Music and a number of other music stores/schools across Canada and the U.S.
Eleanor is the founder and director of Whitby School of Music is active as an adjudicator, clinician and composer.
Known for his virtuoso energy on stage as well as an easy and entertaining way of speaking with the audience, Peter Stoll teaches clarinet, chamber music, woodwind performance and the Business of Music at the University of Toronto's Faculty of Music, and is a frequent performer with orchestral and chamber ensembles in southern Ontario. Also a very popular adjudicator up to the national level, he has worked across Canada and in the United States. Peter is particularly known for his enthusiastic, positive comments and detailed suggestions to young musicians.
Tours as soloist and with various ensembles have taken him across Europe, to Russia and to the United States. Recent performance highlights have included chamber concerts in Japan and a tour of three Chinese cities, as well as at the International Clarinet Association’s conference in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. In 2016 Peter was featured on a recording with members of the Canadian Brass, and in May 2018 he was the soloist in noted American wind ensemble composer Brian Balmages' concerto "Escapades," with the composer conducting.
Over the past 25 years Peter has been invited to adjudicate at over 130 local festivals across Canada. Fluent in both official languages, he has heard countless bands, orchestras, and woodwind, brass and percussion solos and ensembles coast-to-coast.
Above the local level, he has judged at the finals of fifteen provincial competitions, and has twice been asked to serve as the woodwind adjudicator for the national finals of the Federation of Canadian Music Festivals.
Peter is also a member of the Royal Conservatory of Music's National College of Examiners, where he is the area Specialist for Winds, and was the Chief Compiler of the 2014 edition of the clarinet examination syllabus. His website is www.peterstoll.ca.
Described as possessing “a bright, round and supple sound,” (Kitchener Waterloo Record) Bethany Hörst is quickly establishing herself on the stage in both opera and concert. Hörst has appeared in numerous productions with opera companies across Canada, France and the Netherlands. Her roles include multiple Baroque operas, many Classical works and 20th century repertoire. Equally comfortable in concert, Hörst has sung oratorio works with orchestras and major choirs across Canada and the USA.
Hörst has won several international competitions including the Lyndon Woodside Oratorio Solo Competition at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Hörst was twice honoured as a District Winner and Regional Finalist at the Metropolitan Opera National Auditions. She has received the Encouragement Award at the Met Regional Finals and also at the Palm Beach International Opera Competition.
Hörst is also a recipient of the prestigious Canadian Opera Grant, the Jacqueline Desmarais Award. Horst has placed first in the Advanced Singer’s category at NATS and NATSAA (Chicago and Indianapolis), the NYCO Mozart Competition, the International Aria Competition, the Opera Lyra Ottawa Studio Competition and Conservatory Canada’s Vocal Competition.
Hörst recently placed second at the Brian Law Competition in Ottawa. She has been honoured with Western University’s Board of Governor’s Award, the A. E. Rose Award, the Doris E. Tanton Award and the Abner Martin Music Scholarship.
Hörst holds a Masters of Music in Literature and Performance from Western, where she currently teaches voice. She is a frequent guest instructor at Singers Theatre, Eastwood Collegiate and Rockway Mennonite Collegiate, and is in high demand for masterclasses and adjudicating throughout Ontario.
Lukas was born and raised in Waterloo, but has spent his adult life playing, teaching and composing all over the world. After studying composition and guitar performance at Wilfrid Laurier University, he graduated with a master's degree from University of Toronto.
Although his formal education focussed on classical repertoire and performance, Lukas draws inspiration from various other musical genres and traditions, including: Top 40, Flamenco, Hindustani/Karnatic music, Fado, Klezmer, South American, and Japanese music.
In addition to performing in various jazz ensembles, his professional career has seen him playing for the Stratford Festival Theatre (Canada), as musical director and arranger for CS Productions Theatrical Events (England), band leader for Holland America/Seabourn cruise lines (Worldwide), and composer for Little Cat Theatre Company (England).
Annette-Barbara Vogel’s rich international performing career has featured her as a soloist, recitalist and chamber musician in over thirty countries across six continents. Considered one of the finest German violinists of her generation, she is renowned for her “authoritative and highly sensitive performances,” and “formidable technique, stunning musicality, and stage presence that transmits to orchestra and audience alike.” In 2010, Gramophone Magazine lauded “Vogel’s perfect intonation” and Classical CD Review, in citing her premiere recordings of the complete works for violin by Hans Gál, exclaimed that she was “about the most ideal exponent a composer could hope for.”
Vogel's exceptional talent and musicianship is recognized by numerous prestigious solo prizes and scholarships: first prize in the Folkwang Competition (Essen), the Bund der Industrie Competition (Frankfurt), and the Deutscher Musikwettbewerb in Bonn. She also won a Gold Medal in the International Competition Caltanissetta in Italy, was a finalist in the International Carl Maria von Weber Competition in Munich, and a recipient of the Starling Scholarship.She has shared concert stages with notable artists such as C. Altenburger, L. Vogt, J. Levine, D. Sitkovetsky, S. Rivers, M. Kliegel, Vladimir Mendelssohn, E. Moser, P. Zazofsky and J. Lagerspetz. Vogel has performed at the international festivals Aspen, Gstaad, Graz, Seoul, Schleswig-Holstein, Kuhmo, Ravinia, and Nova Scotia, and collaborated musically with P. Amoyal, R. Gothoni, B. Greenhouse, A. Grumiaux, Lord Y. Menuhin, V. Pikaisen and the Tokyo String Quartet.
Vogel’s prolific recording career as soloist and chamber musician has produced more than 15 commercial albums. The much anticipated release of her two-volume recordings of the complete violin repertoire by Hans Gál was met with high praise as critics lauded her “committed performances... [and the] winning presence [of] her tone and delivery.” Her February 2011 CD release “Französische Komponistinnen,” which includes works by French women composers Farrenc, Boulanger, and Viardot, received the British IRR Outstanding Recording Award. American Record Guide April 2014 wrote, concerning her newest CD release with Daniel Sweaney “Through the Centuries” (June 2013), “This is an exceptional recital of violin-and-viola duos for three reasons: the very worthwhile unusual repertoire, the superior playing, and Blue Griffin’s clear, detailed, immediate, airy, natural sonics.” Her recording of violin sonatas by European Women Composers Ethel Smyth, Elfrieda Andrée and Mel Bonis will be released in 2018. Vogel has recorded for Avie Records, Bluegriffin Recordings, Cybele Records, Eroica Classical Records, and Harmonia Mundi Germany.
Vogel’s precocious talent lead her to receive a multifaceted and international musical education of the highest order. At 11 years old, she was the youngest student ever accepted to the Folkwang-Hochschule Essen, where she later completed her solo and chamber music diplomas “summa cum laude.” Her early training as a violinist simultaneously included several years of lessons under the legendary Dutch violinist, Herman Krebbers, at Amsterdam’s Sweelinck Konservatorium. At age sixteen, Vogel was selected to study for one month at the Menuhin Academy in Gstaad under Sir Yehudi Menuhin. By then already touring professionally as a soloist and with piano trio, Trio Alani, Vogel studied chamber music under Walter Levin (LaSalle Quartet) at the Musik-Akademie Basel, before enrolling in the Artist Diploma program at Los Angeles’ University of Southern California. In addition to her two German degrees (Performance and Chamber Music) and her “Konzertexamen” which she completed with highest possible honours, Vogel holds an Artist Diploma, “summa cum laude,” under Dorothy Delay from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory. Vogel’s performance studies also include violin pedagogy courses under Alice Schoenfeld at USC. Vogel was chosen to perform the Brahms Violin Concerto under the baton of Keith Lockhart at a Gala concert honouring Dorothy Delay’s 75th birthday.
A full professor, Vogel accepted her appointment at Western University in 2004, where she continues to serve as the area coordinator for the string area and is in high demand as a pedagogue and chamber music coach. She was artist-in-residence with the “Monticello Trio” at the University of Virginia at Charlottesville, and was later violin professor at both the Folkwang-Hochschule Essen and at the University of Iowa, Iowa City. Her students have gone on to win seats in many important professional orchestras including the Frankfurt Opera, the Duisburg-Düsseldorf Oper am Rhein, the Seattle Symphony, the Portland Symphony Orchestra (OR), the Mozart Players London (UK), the Stockholm Opera, the Canadian Opera Company, London Symphonia, the Thunder Bay Symphony and the Victoria Symphony Orchestra. Several former students have also gone on to successful careers as professors throughout the US and Canada.
Prior to the foundation of Magisterra Soloists in 2015 as Artistic Director, Annette-Barbara Vogel was founder and artistic director of the highly successful “MAGISTERRA! International Chamber Music Festival and Academy” at the University of Iowa, Iowa City.
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