Arts briefs: Langley musical talent is on display

Brookswood Summerfest has a photo contest for the public.

It starts with a passport. Pick one up at participating merchants in Brookswood and once it’s filled with stamps from those participating in Summerfest, enter it to win gift baskets.

Emma Stewart, of RBC, is on the organizing committee of the Brookswood Village Merchants Association which hosts the event.

At the 17th annual Summerfest from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, people can also try samples and participate in the Summerfest Photo Contest.

“If they get a great shot, they upload it to our Facebook page,” she said.

Up for grabs are a roadside safety kit from Westland Insurance, a gift basket from Rustic Roots, a gift certificate to Cedarbrook Bakery for gelato. A winner will be chosen over the weekend.

The Township has activities in Brookswood Park.

There’s a wheel spin to win groceries, bouncy castles, tours, a clown and face painting. About four businesses have barbecues by donation and are donating the proceeds to various causes.

Cedarbrook Bakery is donating 50 per cent of the day’s sales to Cops for Cancer, Stewart said.

She recommends people park in the Shoppers Drug Mart lot. There’s also a bit of parking in the Super Save lot.

Lauding instruction

Works by a Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) music instructor have been nominated for two prestigious Western Canadian Music Awards.

Paolo Bortolussi is a renowned floutist who has premiered more than 150 solo and chamber works, performed across North America and abroad, and has been sharing his talent with music students at KPU Langley since 2006.

He is nominated in the classical artist/ensemble of the year category for his CD, Israfel, which was produced with the help of a professional development grant from KPU. Birds of Paradise Lost by John Oliver, one of the songs on the CD, is also nominated for classical composition of the year.

“I’m honoured to have been nominated for my CD, Israfel, and I’m also very pleased that the recording of John Oliver’s fantastic piece “Birds of Paradise Lost” from the same album has been nominated for composition of the year,” said Bortolussi.

“This CD was made possible by a KPU grant – I’m deeply appreciative for this support, and grateful to my fellow faculty members and the students at KPU for making the music department such a great place to work, he added.

“KPU’s department of music has a truly remarkable faculty, and I hope this album is one of many more to come from Kwantlen Polytechnic University.”

Bortolussi’s KPU colleague Jane Hayes is also nominated in the classical artist/ensemble of the year category as a member of Turning Point Ensemble. Her nomination in the category follows the one she received last year for the album Sassicaia.

She was also nominated in the classical composition of the year category for a piece called Duotone, written by Owen Underhill.

“I think this type of recognition is important for current and future KPU music students,” said Don Hlus, chair of the music department at KPU.

“What they realize is that KPU music instructors are not just academics sitting in ivory towers but practising musicians who have street savvy, and are involved in the current music industry,” he said.

“KPU music instructors, like Paolo and Jane, are top-notch professional musicians who also enjoy teaching and helping others develop their art, and guiding students so that they can realize their own musical goals,” he added.

Israfel, released by Redshift Records and recorded in the KPU Langley auditorium, features four recordings that highlight flute, and some of the incredible developments that have taken place in the world of electronic music. Listen and learn more here.

The 2016 Western Canadian Music Awards are part of BreakOut West, a four-day multi-genre music festival hosted in Regina this October.

More information on KPU’s department of music, can be found at kpu.ca/music.

Showcasing talent

Some of Langley’s top young musical talents are performing a concert this Saturday night.

Langley Community Music School is bringing out its “music stars” – including a harp prodigy – to dazzle audiences at the year-end Showcase Concert, happening June 11, at 7 p.m., explained principal Susan Magnusson.

“We are constantly impressed with the calibre of talent that we see developed in our school,” she said.

“Many of these young students are destined for careers on the concert stage. We invite everyone in the community to come and celebrate the accomplishments of these young artists.”

Soak up the sounds of Beethoven, Elgar, Lalo, Weber and more, explained principal Susan Magnusson.

The concert will include a performance of Weber’s Der Freischutz Overture by the LCMS Concert Orchestra, as well as a rousing arrangement of Korobeiniki, the traditional Russian folk song, performed by the LCMS Cello Ensemble.

Featured performers will include violinist Nicole Schmidt, performing Lalo’s Symphonie Espagnole, as well as the winners of the 2016 LCMS concerto competition: pianists Golden Kang and Charmaine Yang playing the Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 1; Kelly Chan, playing Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No. 2; and Liam MacIntosh, performing Elgar’s famous cello concerto.

The concert will also include a special performance by 11-year old harp prodigy Ida Yang, winner of multiple awards, including the IV International Harp Competition, 2016 Junior Division, in Mexico City.

The evening will also feature the talents of young composer and pianist Ella Yu, who will perform her award-winning composition One Day, a work for violin and piano.

Admission is by donation.

The Rose Gellert Hall is located at 4899 207th St., Langley. And for more information, call the box office at 604-534-2848 or visit langleymusic.com.

CAPTION: Me and Mae features Langley’s Shawn Meehan.

Votes needed

A little serendipity mixed with an abundance of talent has apparently played a significant role in the rapid rise of Vancouver-based country recording artists, Me and Mae, a group that has been chosen by the British Columbia Country Music Association (BCCMA) to represent the province in a nation-wide competition in Ontario this fall.

Langley’s own Shawn Meehan, along with band mates Colette Trudeau, Adam Reid, Ben Parker and Joe Fazio, are hoping they’ll be off to compete in the “highly coveted” Canadian Country Music Association Spotlight Contest held during Country Music Week 2016 in London, Ont. between Sept. 8 and 11.

But that trip is dependent on online voting, explained Meehan, the band’s lead singer and founder.

Fans from across Canada can vote (just once) online for one of the nine provincial finalists at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CCMASpotlightPerformanceContest. Voting closes Friday, June 17.

“It is such a thrill to be representing British Columbia this year” Meehan said.

“Winning this contest and being able to playing to the heart of the Canadian Country Music Industry at the CCMA’s would be a great honour for the band.”

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