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Spark to Flame Online Student Showcase

March 13 @ 7:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Join us for one of the VCM’s most important and special annual events, the Spark to Flame Online Student Showcase, streamed live this year for the first time! The concert will be livestreamed on the Victoria Conservatory YouTube Channel on Saturday, March 13, 2021 at 7:30PM (PST).


Click here to watch! https://www.youtube.com/user/victoriaconservatory


The Victoria Conservatory of Music’s Spark to Flame program supports emerging artist’s development and is open to all students of the VCM. Selected through audition, students are given the opportunity to work with VCM faculty in the weeks leading up to the performance to develop their professional and artistic skills. The final concert is a magical evening featuring these students performing with faculty artists, with works by Bach, Mozart, Tchaikovsky, Chopin, and Messager.


Congratulations to the students, featured below, who have been selected to be featured in this year’s online event!


Spark to Flame Student Performers


Spark to FlameCamilo Aybar (clarinet)

Camilo began studying clarinet at the VCM 3 years ago under Dr. Jack Edwards’ instruction, after picking up the instrument in middle school band because of the encouragement from the band director, Jennifer Kelly. Today, he dedicates most of his time to music as it is one of the few things in life that truly makes him happy; he is currently studying under the instruction of Dr. Patricia Kostek.

This is his second year in the Young Artist’s Collegium Program, where he finds performing in a chamber group to be highly rewarding and satisfying; a mutual passion for music has helped to strengthen his social connections, which he had lacked previously. Camilo also enjoys composing in his free time, as he loves to express his emotions and depict his experiences through music, all without the need for words. He has composed for the High Notes Flute Choir, the Greater Victoria Concert Band, members of the Victoria Symphony, and himself—though he will not be performing his unfinished concerto this year (see www.camilocomposition.com for more).


Spark to Flame Online Student ShowcaseGalen Boulanger (voice)

Having recently completed a double degree in classical voice performance and honours biology at the University of Ottawa, Galen Boulanger is a baritone who is currently studying with Nancy Argenta at the Victoria Conservatory of Music. Originally from Nelson, BC, Galen grew up performing classical, musical theatre, and jazz voice and has been featured at both a provincial and national level. Most recently, Galen was seen on stage as El Dancairo in Carmen and as the title character in Don Giovanni through the University of Ottawa. More than ever, Galen is excited to get back onto the stage and perform publically for the first time since the onset of the pandemic.


Spark to FlameAlex Chen (voice)

Alex Chen is a singer, collaborative pianist, and vocal coach whose curiosity brings fresh perspectives on a diverse body of musical works. He is currently studying voice with Nancy Argenta at the Victoria Conservatory of Music and has been involved in the Conservatory’s Advanced Voice Workshop, Opera Studio, Baroque Summer Academy, and Song Competitions. In the latter, Alex most recently placed second in the Lieder Competition and third in the English Song Competition. As a faculty member in the VCM’s Piano Department, Alex frequently works with singers in competitions, juries, and recitals, using his training in both voice and piano to explore technical and interpretive possibilities of musical texts. Singing highlights outside of the VCM include several seasons with the Pacific Opera Victoria Chorus, singing in the Luminato Festival’s production of R. Murray Schafer’s Apocalypsis, and choral work with Victoria Baroque, the Victoria Philharmonic Choir, the Western Singers, the University of Guelph Chamber Singers, and Ontario Youth Choir.


Spark to FlameCharlie Dutton (piano)

Charlie Dutton is a first year postsecondary student studying music performance at Camosun College. He began studying piano in Edmonton at age 7, then moved to Victoria in 2013 and began studying piano with Roger Buksa at the Victoria Conservatory of Music. Charlie has performed in the Greater Victoria Performing Arts Festival several times in previous years and has received substantial awards and scholarship from both GVPAF and the Victoria Conservatory of Music. After two years at Camosun, he plans to transfer to another postsecondary institution and spend two more years finishing his degree in music performance. Other than music, Charlie likes to travel, play soccer, run, rock climb, and spend time with his friends and family.


Spark to FlameLexie Krakowski (cello)

Lexie Jana Krakowski has been a student at the VCM for eleven years. Studying the cello, she is currently a student of Brian Yoon, having previously worked with Paula Kiffner and Karen Whyte. Lexie has been a member of the Collegium program for 7 years, as well as the GVYO for 3 years. She has received awards and scholarships from the VCM, and the GVPAF – winning at the provincial level in solo and chamber music – additionally placing first in the Don Chrysler, Louis Sherman, and Roberto and Mary Wood Scholarship Competitions. Lexie is honoured for the opportunity to be able to perform in the Spark to Flame Showcase.


Support the VCM

We are so fortunate to be able to live stream this spectacular event. We are suggesting to everyone who enjoys Spark to Flame and the joy of music, to make a $15 donation, or more, in lieu of purchasing a ticket. Your generous support ensures the VCM can continue to bring concerts to our community and keep music education as affordable as possible and accessible to all. Thank you!


Ways to give

Online: Canada Helps 

Phone: 250.386.5311

Monday – Thursday 8:30am – 8:00pm
Friday 8:30am-7:00pm
Saturday 9:00am – 4:00pm

Donation By e-transfer:
1. Log into your own bank and use the INTERAC or EMAIL MONEY TRANSFER capabilities within your online banking. You can send the Email Money Transfer to accountsreceivable@vcm.bc.ca
2. Please send an email to info@vcm.bc.ca to let us know you have sent it, how much it is and that it is a donation. In order to get a tax receipt for your donation please provide your address.

Please type the following into the memo/message field when doing the Email Money Transfer: “Donation to Spark to Flame concert“.

NOTE:We are on AUTODEPOSIT, so we do not need the Password/Challenge answer.


March 13
7:30 pm - 8:30 pm
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