ALMSG May 2022 newsletter greeting
All Things Music
I have been very busy this past month but I did manage to attend three music events in past weekend - one was a jazz doublebill concert on April 30th (1) featuring Marie -Veronique Bourque, a flautist from Regina and her quartet -the pianist was Michelle Gregoire who I had stated in the previous newsletter was a jazz pianist that I took some lessons with and the (2) Derrick E. Gardner quartet. These two concerts could not have been more different. The Bourque quartet played French jazz that is a more soft, muted and ethereal sounding than what we are used to. Many of the pieces played were original compositions of Ms. Bourque's. Ms. Bourque is a very accomplished flautist - she trained classically. The quartet delivered a dreamy and "genre bending" French jazz concert with Ms. Gregoire on piano, Tyler Hornby on drums and Jeremy Coates on bass. These same musicians played on her debut album 'Une Porte s'ouvre' released in 2018. The Derrick E. Gardner quartet played American jazz which we are more familiar with and featured Mr. Gardner on the trumpet with special guest, Andre Wickenheiser on trumpet as well. Kristian Alexandrov on piano, Rob Hutchinson on bass and Sanah Kadoura on drums rounded out the quartet. This was an electrifying high energy concert with Ms. Kadoura framing the sessions with her effervescent percussion playing. I have been meaning to hear Ms. Kadoura for some time as she has a reputation as an up and coming rising star in percussion and she did not disappoint! As a pianist, I was also really interested in the jazz pianist and Mr. Alexandrov was amazing in his improvisations. The interplay between him and Ms. Kadoura was so fun to listen to. The quartet playing was very tight and Derrick Gardner was fabulous as the headline artist. It was a treat to hear Mr. Wickenhauser as well. All audience members were on their feet for a standing ovation at the end of their set. For me, the Derrick Gardner quartet concert was a real standout! (For anyone that is interested, Ms. Kadoura leads a Round Midnight Jam session with Calgary's elite musicians at Asylum for Art on Saturday nights @ 11 pm - 12 am). The third concert that I attended was on May 1st at 7:30 pm and it was organized and presented by Mountainview International Festival of Song and Chamber Music. The artistic director is Kathleen van Mourik who was also the teacher of our fifth ALMSG piano masterclass event that we organized for our members on November 20th, 2021. (I have come to know Kathleen personally as she is currently also my daughter's piano teacher.) This concert featured Charles Foreman playing Schubert's Impromptu in B flat Major and Impromptu in F minor. Kathleen and Olena Kilchyk played a program consisting of compositions by Arno Babjanian, Joaquin Nin, Frank Bridge and Astor Piazzola. It was a wonderful evening concert with these fabulous classical musicians. I especially love the concerts that Kathleen arranges at this venue which was at the Southern Alberta Pioneers Memorial Building. I previously attended a winter concert a few years ago at this same building and the Christmas tree was up and I was blown away by its rustic charm. This beautiful venue adds so much to the ambiance and is such a visually charming backdrop for the beautiful music played by the outstanding musicians. For this upcoming month, my husband and I already have tickets to Pink Martini featuring China Forbes on May 19. I hope to support Eri at one of her concerts, probably the one at Koi on the evening of May 14th. And I hope to attend the King Eddy classical brunch performance by Honen's pro-am winners Ian Robertson (piano consultant at Calgary Steinway Piano Gallery) and Lachlin MacKinnon on May 29th. You will find out more details of these concerts and many others in this newsletter. I hope to see you at our next in-person meeting at Steinway and perhaps at one of the profiled concerts! Enjoy the wonderful Spring weather! Sandra PS I want to thank Eri for taking the time to come over to my house this morning to fine-tune the design of this newsletter. Please join me in applauding her for the wonderful new look of our monthly newsletter.