From May 26-28, the Saint John Arts Centre will welcome the Saint John Early Music Festival for a weekend of Italian and German baroque music. Centered on works by Telemann and Vivaldi, many performances in the “Boundless Invention” series will feature period instruments, making this festival a truly immersive musical experience. Saint John Early Music ensembles will be joined by guest artists Jonathan Addleman on harpsichord, violinist Danielle Sametz of the Saint John String Quartet and oboist Joel Verkaik.
Chamber works are set to include contentious Vivaldi sonatas, a Telemann overture, concertos from both composers and more (see the studio’s website for the full schedule). Tickets range from free to $25, and depending on the performance, can be purchased in advance at the Saint John Arts Centre or at the door.
Ensemble 18c., formed in 2015 as an outreach project of the Saint John Early Music Festival, is made up of Tim Blackmore (recorder), Katherine Moller (baroque violin) and Robert Lewis (baroque bassoon). Its mission is to bring 18th century music to the community, presenting programs performed on period instruments in any location suitable for three musicians to set up and be heard. The Ensemble’s repertoire covers the entire 18th century from Baroque composers such as Bach, Handel and Vivaldi to Classical masters like Haydn and Mozart. The Ensemble has given numerous performances in Moncton, Fredericton and Saint John as well as other locations throughout New Brunswick.
Award-winning oboist Joel Verkaik
has performed with some of Canada’s most esteemed ensembles, both symphony orchestras (such as the National Arts Centre Orchestra and the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony) and baroque period orchestras, such as Ensemble Aradia (Toronto), Ensemble Caprice, Société de musique ancienne de Montréal, and Montréal Baroque, among others. Joel is also the artistic director of Ensemble Énigme, and is currently pursuing doctoral studies in baroque oboe at McGill University, with a focus on the instrumental music of Georg Philipp Telemann.
began his university studies at McGill University, playing the saxophone. He quickly discovered his affinity for the harpsichord, and completed undergraduate degrees in both instruments as well as a Masters in harpsichord. Since then, Jonathan has been in demand as an accompanist and soloist, performing with ensembles such as the Laval Symphony Orchestra, Ensemble Da Capo, Atlantic Sinfonia, and Toronto’s Aradia Ensemble and I Furiosi. He is the harpsichord technician at Concordia University, and tunes and maintains instruments for organizations such as CAMMAC, the Montreal Baroque Festival and Ensemble Arion.
Founder and Artistic Director of the Early Music Studio of Saint John and the Saint John Early Music Festival, recorder player and harpsichordist Tim Blackmore
is a graduate of the Montreal Conservatoire, the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and the Guildhall School of Music in London. He directs and performs with the Festival’s Collegium Musicum, Ensemble 18c., Carleton Quartet and La Tour Baroque Duo as well as with other leading New Brunswick musicians and organizations such as Symphony NB (for whom he has been an advisor on Baroque performance practice) and the Saint John String Quartet. As a member of the La Tour Baroque Duo he has given concerts in Toronto, Montreal, New York, Paris and London and his recordings with the Duo have received critical acclaim in Canada, the US and Europe. In 2013 he was Musician-in-Residence at the Fortress of Louisbourg for Louisbourg’s 300th anniversary and in 2014 he received the Originals Award for his contributions to the cultural life of Saint John.
The Early Music Festival’s Collegium Musicum ensemble was formed in 2009 to perform Baroque chamber music for two violins, recorder and continuo on period instruments. The group has since given regular concerts throughout southern New Brunswick. It members are Hok Kwan and Katherine Moller (baroque violins), Katie Bestvater (baroque violoncello) and Tim Blackmore (harpsichord & recorder).
The Academy of Saint John
, a string ensemble of local performers playing modern instruments with baroque bows, was formed in 2014 to act as a chamber orchestra for the Saint John Early Music Festival. Led by Tim Blackmore, the ensemble’s other members are Katherine Moller and Ali Leonard (violins), Stephen Mott (viola), Michael De Pasquale (violoncello) and Wai-chung Kwan (harpsichord).
Danielle Sametz grew up in Regina, Saskatchewan where she began her musical studies on both violin and piano. During her time in Regina Danielle was a member of the Regina Symphony Orchestra and also completed her Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto certification studying with Dr.Jamie Syer. She received her Bachelor of Music from Brandon University (BU) in 2009. After and completed her Masters degree at the Aaron Copland school in New York City. Danielle is currently second violinist with the Saint John String Quartet and Principal second violin with Symphony New Brunswick.