Simon MacDonald began playing the violin at age seven, here in Victoria, British Columbia. Following studies with Frona Colquhoun and Sydney Humphreys, Simon earned his AVCM Teacher and Performance Diploma from the VCM, Bachelor’s degree from New England Conservatory in Boston, and Master’s degree from the Schulich School of Music, at the University of McGill, in Montreal. Simon’s musical education also included performing at music festivals in Europe and North America, including Schleswig Holstein Music Festival (Germany), The Festival of Two Worlds (Italy), the Spoleto Festival (Charleston, South Carolina), Tanglewood Music Festival and Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival (Massachusetts), and at ArtSpring Festival on Salt Spring Island. […]
Hailed as ‘a singer with uncommon theatrical sensibility and musical intelligence’, soprano Ingrid Attrot has appeared with the London Symphony Orchestra, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Montreal Symphony, and the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra with conductors such as Dutoit, Marriner, Willcocks, Pinnok and Hickox. Her work with conductor Richard Hickox has included performances of the Britten War Requiem, Peter Grimes (Ellen Orford), and Beethoven’s Fidelio (Leonora). Opera companies with which she has worked include the English National Opera (as Miss Jessel in Turn of the Screw), Opera Northern Ireland (as Donna Anna in Don Giovanni), and Pacific Opera (…)
Kyron Basu, baritone, has taught at the Victoria Conservatory of Music since September, 2016. He earned his Diploma in Music and AVCM in Vocal Pedagogy earlier that year, studying with Ingrid Attrot (voice) and Nancy Argenta (pedagogy). As a teacher, Kyron strives to provide a supportive and encouraging lesson atmosphere to help students unlock their musical potential, regardless of experience level. He emphasizes the development of a free, healthy vocal technique capable of expressing a diverse range of music. An enthusiastic performer, Kyron sings regularly in the Victoria area. As a soloist, he has appeared with groups such as Fretwork, […]
Martin Bonham is well known for his expertise in early music and sensitivity as a chamber musician. Over the last 30 years, he has directed the Pachelbel Players, the Island Chamber Players, Chamber Music Victoria and Eine Kleine Summer Music as well as served on the faculty of the University of Victoria and the Victoria Conservatory of Music and is currently a member of the Victoria Baroque Players. He has given many radio performances and recitals in the Pacific Northwest and has been a member of the Victoria Symphony since 1978.
Based on Vancouver Island, Cari Burdett (2016 VIMA Vocalist of the Year) actively performs, tours self-produced works including her own songs, and produces shows. As Director of Lila Music Centre located in Duncan, Cari brings over 20 years of accumulated education and experience in both the Classical and Popular-Contemporary Genres, and since October 2017 teaches voice/vocals for the Victoria Conservatory of Music, as a faculty member in the Chwyl Family School of Contemporary Music, the Ann & George Nation Conservatory of Classical Music (Voice Dept), and the Department of Postsecondary Studies. […]
Müge Büyükçelen was born in 1975 in Istanbul, Turkey, where she began playing music at the age of nine. She studied at the Istanbul State Conservatory, where her natural talent was quickly recaognized and she was awarded the “Best Young Musician” Award. She studied privately with Nicolai Chumacenko, Sandra Goldberg, Ayla Erduran, and Burkhard Godhoff. Müge holds a Masters degree in music performance from Bilkent University in Ankara, Turkey, and an Associate Teaching Diploma from the Victoria Conservatory of Music. She has taught and performed at the Toulouse National Conservatory and is a former member of both the Bilkent Symphony (…)
One of the active and energetic musicians in Victoria’s artistic community, Dr. Mary Byrne _DSC1043 Low Res Colour_webhas devoted much of her professional life to performing, studying, and teaching the flute. She received a B.Mus. in Flute Performance and Music Education (1985) and a M.Mus. in Flute Performance (1986) at the University of Michigan, and a Ph.D. in Musicology from the University of Victoria, where her field of specialization is the pedagogy and performance practice of the flute performer/teachers at the Paris Conservatoire during the 19th and early 20th centuries. An active teacher, adjudicator, lecturer, recorded artist, and published author (…)
ANNA CAL is trained in the famous tradition of Russian piano schools. She studied at the Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory in St. Petersburg with well-known Russian performers and professors including Vitaly Berzon, Pavel Yegorov and the late Helen Shishko. She holds Master degrees with high distinction in three fields: piano performance, piano pedagogy and collaborative piano. After studying in Russia, Anna spent two years in Rome, Italy where she worked as a soloist and a voice coach. Anna is a senior teacher at the Victoria Conservatory of Music where she teaches piano, piano pedagogy and collaborative piano. She is Director of Collaborative piano and Interpretation in German Lieder Projects. Anna is a frequent performer in Victoria as a soloist and in collaboration with vocalists and instrumentalists.
Allyn has been enjoying teaching and making music for over 35 years. Allyn’s students learn the joy and discipline of playing the violin. Many of her students have won festival prizes, exam medals and have gone on to professional music careers. However, Allyn believes that life long learning, enrichment and love of music is the most important goal.
Award-winning pianist Rosabel Choi completed her Doctorate of Musical Arts in Piano Performance at Arizona State University (ASU). An adventurous musician, she collaborates with diverse artists and curates projects that find connections between music of all eras, from traditional to contemporary. Rosabel’s work is constantly in search of creating original and unexpected ways to communicate to audiences as a performer, teacher and arts administrator. During studies in Oberlin and Calgary, she received numerous top awards, including the Dean’s Talent award, Rudolph Serkin scholarship, Austrian-Canadian Mozart Competition, Kiwanis Rose Bowl, University of Calgary Open Scholarship, and the Roslyn McCowan Award. Performing […]
Tzenka Dianova is an internationally acclaimed concert artist. She completed her musical education in Europe, Canada, and New Zealand, working with reknown pianists such as Dmitri Bashkirov and Tamas Vesmas. She has won numerous prizes, collaborated with leading composers of today, recorded solo and concerto albums, and published a book on John Cage’s piano music. Dr. Dianova has taught piano in schools around the world; today she teaches at the VCM, and is principal pianist with the Victoria Symphony. […]
Erin Frances Fisher’s teaches piano at the Victoria Conservatory of Music. Her students have received scholarships, attended Piano Academy and participated in RCM exams and masterclasses. She teaches ages four and up, offering Kelly Kirby Method lessons for young beginners. Erin holds an MFA from the University of Victoria, Diplomas in both Piano Performance, Pedagogy, and Composition from Camosun College, and an AVCM in Piano Pedagogy and Performance. She has received music and teaching awards such as the Woods International Piano Scholarship, and Teacher Training Excellence Award. In addition to her music studio, Erin is a sessional instructor in the (…)
ON LEAVE FOR 2019-2020 ACADEMIC YEAR
Violinist Victoria (Tori) Gould (née Lindsay) has consistently distinguished herself as an exuberant and varied performer and instructor. In 2006 Tori joined the Victoria Symphony Orchestra in British Columbia, Canada, in the position of Principal Second Violin. She has also held the Assistant Principal Second Violin chair with the Kitchener Waterloo Symphony and can frequently be seen performing with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Past orchestral experiences include acting guest Concertmaster of Symphony Nova Scotia and numerous performances with the Houston Symphony and Houston Grand Opera orchestras. A widely hailed solo performance with the National Repertory Orchestra and with the Victoria Symphony […]
Robert Holliston studied at the Victoria Conservatory of Music under Robin Wood and Winifred Scott Wood, and at the University of British Columbia under Robert Rogers. As an accompanist and chamber player he has performed throughout Canada and the USA, England and New Zealand, and has been heard frequently on CBC-Radio. He has recorded CDs with the popular salon ensemble Viveza, trombonist Ian McDougall, tenor Ken Lavigne, his brother Tom Holliston, Show Business Giants, and members of the Hornby Island Ensemble. Robert has collaborated with many of Canada’s leading singers, including Richard Margison, Benjamin Butterfield, Judith Forst, Nathalie Paulin, Susan (…)
Cellist Paula Kiffner earned music performance degrees from Ohio State University and the Peabody Conservatory. While at Peabody she was principal cellist of the Annapolis Symphony and a member of the Washington Theater Chamber Players. A former member of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Ms. Kiffner has also performed as guest principal cellist of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, and appears frequently as a recitalist and concerto soloist throughout the Pacific Northwest. Her performances are heard on CBC Radio and KING FM (Seattle). Ms. (…)
Pianist, conductor, and composer Yoomi Kim received the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Piano Performance at the University of Cincinnati where she also completed her Master of Music degree in Conducting with choral emphasis. In addition, she had the privilege of working with Dr. Joel Hoffman, composition faculty chair at the University of Cincinnati, for her cognate degree in Composition. Dr. Kim holds her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in Piano Performance from the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University and the University of Montreal respectively. She has studied piano intensively under the tutelage of Dr. Robert McDonald, (…)
Ms. Tatiana Kostour, Moscow born, is a violinist from The Ukraine. In 1991 she graduated from Kiev Conservatory of Music and in 1993 immigrated to Canada. Besides performance, studying pedagogy, method of teaching and practical teaching courses under supervisions of very fine Ukrainian teachers, Tatiana always stood out with the highest marks in performance and teaching. Many years of polishing her teaching techniques brought to Ms. Kostour very successful results. Number of Tatiana’s students received Gold and Silver medals from The Royal Conservatory of Music and first places from The National Canadian Music Competitions. In addition to these awards her (…)
May Ling Kwok
May Ling Kwok studied with Robin Wood at the University of Victoria where she received her Bachelor of Music. She continued on to doctoral studies with Gyorgy Sebok at Indiana University, and was awarded the Distinguished Performer’s Certificate. Presently teaching at the Victoria Conservatory of Music and the University of Victoria, she is active as a teacher, adjudicator, and concert pianist. Concert tours have taken her to the United States, Mexico, Russia, Western Europe, and Russia. She has appeared as a soloist with the Victoria Symphony, L’Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal, the National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico, the Moscow Philharmonic, the (…)
Guyonne Le Louarn
Born in France in 1975, Guyonne Le Louarn began to study violin at the age of five in Rennes, then Nantes. She switched for the viola in 1993 and went on to study chamber music, theory and history of music, orchestral work and conducting in Nantes and Paris. In 1998, while doing a degree in early music in violin with Daniel Cuiller in Nantes, she won the Paris Interschool competition with outstanding grade in viola and placed fifth in the national viola competition in Epernay in 1999. In 2000, Guyonne moved to Toulouse in the CEMS’ soloist program, receiving the (…)
Cathy Fern Lewis
Catherine Fern Lewis is renowned as a highly versatile soprano and sound artist. An ambassador and active exponent of Canada’s new music and art scene, Lewis has premiered over one hundred pieces by prominent composers and created her own multi-media works that push the boundaries of performance. Lewis earned a BMus from the University of Victoria, BC; and devoted three subsequent years to vocal training in Europe and Canada, studying under luminaries Frances James Adaskin, Selena James, Mary Morrison and Pierre Bernac. She appears as soloist with symphony orchestras and in recitals of new and traditional music. Her improvisations have (…)
Linda. Low has achieved the Victoria Conservatory of Music/Camosun College Diploma in Music Instruction – Piano Pedagogy and Literature, Keyboard Skills. She studied with Dr. Robin Wood at the University of Victoria and the Victoria Conservatory of Music. Ms. Low is a Silver Medalist with the Royal Conservatory of Music. She has twice been a National Finalist in the Canadian Music Competition. She was a Guest Soloist with the Victoria Symphony on their West Coast Tour. She is an active adjudicator, examiner, and clinician, as well as a qualified Kelly Kirby piano method instructor.
With a repertoire spanning several centuries, from renaissance polyphony to modern opera, Nathan McDonald, baritone, is often lauded for his vocal versatility. With a diverse musical background including a degree in trumpet (UVic) and seven years as a church Music Director, Nathan brings a wealth of experience and musicianship to his craft. In his teaching, Nathan emphasizes the exploration of resonance through body awareness, and the importance of an emotional connection to both music and text, regardless of style or genre. Nathan’s approach to pedagogy stems from his extensive work as a student of soprano, Nancy Argenta, combined with his […]
For Kiiri Michelsen, music is a passion to be shared, whether on stage or in the teaching studio. She is active in performance, teaching (voice/piano/lyric diction), coaching (lyric diction) and research. Since 1998 (piano) and 2002 (voice), Kiiri has taught both privately and on faculty at various music schools, including the Sidney Community Music School, Brentwood College School, and Con Brio Music School. She has taught in both Victoria and Montreal, and is now pleased to be part of the VCM faculty. Kiiri’s teaching approach focuses on the development of healthy technique through the elimination of tension patterns and mental (…)
Jennifer Mitchell learned piano, violin, and pipe organ while growing up. She studied piano with May Ling Kwok at the Victoria Conservatory of Music and was a student in the founding class of the Collegium Program. She received her Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance from the University of Victoria, and received a Master of Music degree in Collaborative Piano from the University of Western Ontario under John Hess and Mark Payne. A teacher, church organist, and collaborative pianist, she enjoys performing with like-minded musicians.
Emily Nagelbach, Faculty Department Head, Winds and Brass, Conservatory School of Classical Music. Emily plays second flute/piccolo with the Vancouver Island Symphony, is a member of Pedagogy Committee of the National Flute Association. As a freelance musician, she frequently performs with many orchestras, including the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and Victoria Symphony Orchestra. She served as the Artistic Director of the Summer Music Discovery Camp at the VCM for many years. Emily holds an AVCM from the Royal Conservatory of Music (Toronto), a B.Mus. in Performance and Theory from Wilfrid Laurier University and a M.Mus. in Performance from the University of (…)
As an active chamber musician and recitalist, violist Christine Prince has participated in festivals including Academia Chigianna (Italy), the International Musicians’ Seminar (Cornwall, U.K.), and the Hornby Island Festival (Canada). She performs regularly in several local chamber music series, including West Coast Chamber Music (Vancouver) and the Victoria Conservatory of Music’s Faculty Concert series, which she founded and directed for 13 years. Her eclectic musical interests include historically informed performance on period instruments and works by women composers. Christine has commissioned and premiered a number of works for the viola, including those of Canadian composers Steve Tittle, Sylvia Rickard, Stephen (…)
Coming from a musical family, Kathryn Appleby Ranger started her musical studies at an early age. By age thirteen, she had premiered sonatas written for her, soloed with symphony orchestras (Houston Symphony and Interlochen Arts Center Orchestra), and given solo recitals. Kathryn Ranger had the privilege of studying with the foremost teachers of the twentieth century: Dorothy DeLay, Josef Gingold, Ivan Galamian, Oscar Shumsky, and Sidney Harth. She has her undergraduate degree from Indiana University and Masters degree in chamber music from Sarah Lawrence College. She has also studied Suzuki pedagogy at the School for Strings in New York (…)
Silvina Samuel was born and raised in Victoria, British Columbia. In 2008, Silvina moved Silvinato Maui and from 2008-2012 she was principle cellist of the Maui Pop’s Orchestra. She played with the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra and Hawaii Opera Theater on Oahu. She is a member of Cellano, with Lotus Dancer, pianist, performing annual recitals on Maui. Her acoustic rock collaboration with singer-songwriter, Jim Major, brought her to the stage opening for such bands as Santana, Mick Fleetwood & Island Rumours, Smashmouth, Train, Huey Lewis and Henry Kapono. While in Hawaii, Silvina recorded for a number of albums including Grammy nominated (…)
Classical Theory Program Coordinator
Crystal is a theory and musicianship instructor through the School of Music Technology and Creativity for the Ann & George Nation Conservatory of Classical Music. Crystal teaches group classes as well as individual lessons at the VCM, and has taught theory and musicianship classes for the VCM/Camosun College Diploma program. She is the co-author of three publications for the Royal Conservatory of Music, and also leads the Music Theory programming for the VCM’s Summer Academy. Crystal is a Royal Conservatory certified theory teacher and long-time member […]
Cellist Brian Yoon has been described by the CBC (Canadian Broadasting Corporation) as “Canada’s next cello superstar”. Currently the Principal Cello of the Victoria Symphony, he has also been a guest principal of the Kingston Symphony and National Arts Centre Orchestra. Since winning First Prize at the 35th Eckhardt-Gramatté Competition, he has been presented in recital from coast to coast, impressing audiences with intelligent and passionate performances of repertoire ranging from Bach and Beethoven to Shostakovich and Metallica. As a soloist, he regularly performs with orchestras across Canada: his performance of Shostakovich’s Concerto No. 1 at the National Arts Centre (…)