Pianorama set to swing at the Dave Dunnet theatre

Seven-perfomer fundraiser supports campaign to raise money for a concert piano

Louise Rose performs as part of Pianorama

Louise Rose performs as part of Pianorama

Seven of the region’s best pianists will perform on the Dave Dunnet Community Theatre stage Sunday for a special concert to help outfit the theatre with a grand piano.

Pianorama is part of Keys to Our Success, a $100,000 fundraising campaign to purchase the concert piano for the community theatre at Oak Bay High.

“It’s an important new venue for the whole community, and it deserves a world-class piano,” notes volunteer organizer Joseph Blake, who has “lined up a handful of great, local pianists to perform on a nine-foot Steinway concert grand piano that Tom Lee Music is donating for the event.”

Toni Blodgett, Brent Jarvis, Karel Roessingh, Louise Rose, Arthur Rowe, Jan Stirling and Julia Zhu are all donating their time and talents, offering a diverse and entertaining line-up for the Sept. 11 performance, with musical styles running the gamut from classical and jazz to ragtime and gospel, Blake says.

“We are really thrilled to present this celebration of piano and community.”

Performances begin at 1 p.m., with doors opening at 12:30 p.m. Tickets for Pianorama are $30 in advance from the Scotiabank on Oak Bay Avenue or Oak Bay Recreation Centre, or $35 at the door.

Toni Blodgett – Ragtime

A cornerstone of Victoria’s traditional jazz scene for 35 years, the Saskatchewan-born Blodgett took music lessons with Toronto’s Royal Conservatory but started her professional career playing for the Cherry Bank Rib House sing-along in Victoria. After playing and recording with the Dixieland Express for a decade, she founded the CanUs Hot Jazz Band in 1991. The popular band’s Boswell Sisters-inspired vocals have been a hit with audiences locally at Hermann’s Jazz Club and across North America for more than two decades – including a performance at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Blodgett has also released a pair of critically acclaimed recordings of her ragtime piano playing.

Brent Jarvis – Ballad

Jazz pianist, producer, teacher and recording engineer, Jarvis was formally trained at the University of Toronto, and performs across Canada and the U.S.

Jarvis has released five albums, including his debut recording, Sequences, named best jazz album of 2005 by CJAM-FM in Windsor/Detroit and his most recent, The Medium, draws equally from be-bop, European classical music and Cuban rhythms.

His CDs Daedalus-Poetry of Dorothy Livesay and This One feature Jarvis’s original compositions and fresh approach to modern jazz.

His CD Solo Piano showcases the local pianist’s deft touch and lyrical, soulful improvisations.

Karel Roessingh – Medley

Composer, arranger, producer and musician, Roessingh has written or co-written music for more than 500 television episodes and many award-winning films, documentaries and promotional videos. In addition to performing on many recordings for other artists, he’s produced 16 of his own recordings, including several for the NatureScapes series, two jazz trio CDs and many solo CDs.

Roessingh produced Valdy’s latest CD and toured with the Canadian folk music legend across Canada, co-produced a Christmas album with Maureen Washington and is currently recording a new album with the local vocalist.

Roessingh has performed with symphony orchestras and rock, jazz, folk and country groups around the world. Outside his music life, Roessingh served two terms as mayor of the Highlands and is in his fourth term as a councillor.

Louise Rose – Gospel

Pianist, composer, vocalist, and choir director, Rose has been a central figure in Victoria’s cultural life for decades.

An ordained Baptist minister and ex-policewoman, Rose received an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from the University of Victoria in 2001 for her service to the community. She teaches, arranges and performs across North America and hosted Vision Television’s Let’s Sing Again. Rose has studied and worked with Aretha Franklin, Oscar Peterson, Ray Charles, Leonard Bernstein and Duke Ellington. In addition to her performance and recording career, Rose mentors and ministers to widely diverse groups of people in long-term care facilities, churches and schools.

Arthur Rowe – Classical

Internationally acclaimed classical pianist, professor of piano at University of Victoria since 1992 and artistic director of the Victoria Summer Music Festival, Rowe also regularly performs and records with chamber ensembles around the world. He has recorded with various artists and in 2007 released a critically acclaimed all-Schubert recording on the Centaur label.

Jan Stirling – Swing

Born in Brantford, Ont., Stirling studied classical piano from age six. Since moving to Victoria in 1980 after graduating from University of Western Ontario and Jazz Studies at Humber College, she has performed and taught piano for more than 35 years. She’s also continued to study piano with Dr. Tony Genge, Don Thompson, Alan Broadbent, Kenny Werner and George Cables. Stirling recorded her debut CD, Prisms of Light, in Toronto with Kieran Overs and Davide DiRenzo. She played every weekend for five years at the Park Pacific Hotel in Vancouver with bassist Patty Hervey-Gannon and a revolving crew of the city’s finest jazz musicians, while in Victoria, she plays solo, duo and trio combinations with Dick Smith, Joey Smith, Ross MacDonald and Al Vance.

Julia Zhu – Classical

A talented Grade 12 student at Oak Bay Secondary, Zhu started playing piano in 2005 and studied classical music through the Royal Conservatory of Music. Zhu obtained her Grade 10 Practical Piano in 2013 and throughout middle school and high school she’s played in a variety of choirs, bands and jazz ensembles, including a jazz combo that performed in last year’s Victoria JazzFest. Outside school, Zhu volunteers with the Victoria Symphony and Symphony Splash.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cindy Foggit plays the lead role of Eliza in Passion and Performance’s film production Eliza: An Adaption of a Christmas Carol. (Courtesy of Rachel Paish)
Victoria adult dance studio releases modern adaption of A Christmas Carol

Instead of usual stage performance, dance studio turns to film

Willow, a kitten belonging to a Victoria family, was rescued by firefighters on Thursday after she got stuck in a basement drain pipe. (City of Victoria/Twitter)
Victoria kitten stuck in basement drain pipe rescued by firefighters

Willow the cat on the mend, owner feeling ‘enormous gratitude’

(Black Press Media file photo)
Blue-green algae bloom confirmed in Elk Lake, water-based activities not recommended

Blue-green algae can be lethal to dogs, cause health issues for humans

Victoria police arrested a man Jan. 15 after he rammed his minivan into an occupied police vehicle. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria man arrested for ramming minivan into occupied police vehicle

Man caught after fleeing, crashing into cement retaining wall

Mayor Rob Martin and Costa Canna president Phil Floucault cut the ribbon on Colwood’s first cannabis retail store. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
Cowichan Tribes’ Costa Canna cannabis store opens in Colwood

Cowichan Tribes has one-year deal to grow, sell cannabis

Keith the curious kitten is seen on Nov. 4, 2020 at the Chilliwack SPCA. Friday, Jan. 22, 2021 is Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Jan. 17 to 23

Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day, Pie Day and International Sweatpants Day are all coming up this week

(Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
‘Targeted’ shooting in Coquitlam leaves woman in hospital

The woman suffered non-life threatening injuries in what police believe to be a targeted shooting Saturday morning

JaHyung Lee, “Canada’s oldest senior” at 110 years old, received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. He lives at Amenida Seniors Community in Newton. (Submitted photo: Amenida Seniors Community)
A unique-looking deer has been visiting a Nanoose Bay property with its mother. (Frieda Van der Ree photo)
A deer with 3 ears? Unique animal routinely visits B.C. property

Experts say interesting look may be result of an injury rather than an odd birth defect

Terry David Mulligan. (Submitted photo)
Podcast: Interview with longtime actor/broadcaster and B.C. resident Terry David Mulligan

Podcast: Talk includes TDM’s RCMP career, radio, TV, wine, Janis Joplin and much more

Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam provides an update on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa on Friday, Jan. 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada’s top doctor says to avoid non-essential travel as B.C. explores legal options

Premier John Horgan says he is seeking legal advice on whether it can limit interprovincial travel

Seasonal influenza vaccine is administered starting each fall in B.C. and around the world. (Langley Advance Times)
After 30,000 tests, influenza virtually nowhere to be found in B.C.

COVID-19 precautions have eliminated seasonal infection

Lilly and Poppy, two cats owned by Kalmar Cat Hotel ownder Donna Goodenough, both have cerebellAr hypoplasia, a genetic neurological condition that affects their ability to control their muscles and bones. Photo by Alistair Taylor – Campbell River Mirror
VIDEO: Wobbly Cats a riot of flailing legs and paws but bundles of love and joy to their owner

Woman urges others to not fear adopting cats with disabilities

Martin Luther King Jr. addresses the crowd during the march on Washington, D.C., in August of 1963. Courtesy photo
Government reinforces importance of anti-racism act on Black Shirt Day

B.C. Ministers say education “a powerful tool” in the fight for equity and equality

Most Read