My teachers include the renowned American cellist and pedagogue George Neikrug and Scottish cellists Peggie Sampson (University of Manitoba) and Joan Dickson (Royal Scottish Academy of Music). I have played in the BBC Scottish Symphony, Toronto Symphony, Austin (Texas) Symphony, and was principal cellist of the Toronto Chamber Players and Irish Pro Musica Ensemble.
As a soloist, I have performed with the National Arts Centre Orchestra, the Banff Festival Orchestra, Symphony Nova Scotia, Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, RTE (Ireland) Symphony, and the Irish Pro Musica Ensemble. I have performed extensively as a recitalist and have recorded the complete cello works of Beethoven and the Brahms Sonatas with fortepianist Boyd McDonald. Throughout much of my career, I have worked with chamber music ensembles, including the Penderecki, Orford, Brunswick and University of Alberta String Quartets; the Galliard Ensemble; new music groups Blue Rider Ensemble, ARRAY New Music and NUMUS Ensemble. I have recorded over 30 CDs of chamber music and cello repertoire.
As a conductor, I have appeared as a guest with the Symphony New Brunswick, Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, Mississauga and Georgian Symphonies and am currently resident conductor of the NUMUS Ensemble. I have also been conductor of the New Brunswick and KW Symphony Youth Orchestras and conducted the premiere of Tim Brady’s opera, The Salome Dancer as well as the recent workshop presentation of his new opera, The Record Player.
For a performer, recording is the equivalent of publishing in the academic world, and I have been fortunate to have wonderful colleagues (Blue Rider, Penderecki Quartet, Boyd McDonald) to work with on numerous projects. My current interest (passion) is recording the Bach Cello Suites. Volume I (Suites 1, 2 and 3) was released in January and Volume II is in progress.
Over the past few years, I have been a jury member for the Juno Awards and the Orford String Quartet (OAC) Scholarship. Blue Rider Ensemble was awarded a major Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council grant (3 years) to research and create a chamber music/theatre work based on Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein called Frankenstein’s Ghosts. I have received 2 KW Arts Awards (Dennys).
I have had students win recent awards such as the Michael Measures Award (Canada Council), which selects the soloist with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada. I enjoy mentoring interested students and have placed young conductors in post-graduated programs in Canada, the U.S. and Austria and cellists in programs across Canada, the U.S., France (Paris Conservatoire) and England.
With Penderecki String Quartet
With Blue Rider Ensemble
With NUMUS Ensemble
Laurier is an ideal environment for the study of music performance, and I feel very fortunate to be a part of the faculty here. My colleagues are highly skilled players and dedicated teachers who contribute to a creative and exciting environment where a serious student can develop into an advanced young musician with exceptional experience in his or her preferred area. The Laurier String Faculty is like a big family, and all students are mentored and encouraged according to their individual abilities and needs.