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Students from the Academy and Advanced Performance Program from Mount Royal University Conservatory

16 Nov Posted by in Schedule | Comments
Students from the Academy and Advanced Performance Program from Mount Royal University Conservatory
The Academy and Advanced Performance trio featuring
Agata Skulimowska, piano; Jonathan Kennedy, horn; Robert Mulchrone, violin

Students from the Academy and Advanced Performance Program from Mount Royal University Conservatory will be playing a potpourri of music written by some of the greatest masters of our time.  Included in the program will be Beethoven’s inspired and energetic “ Waldstein Piano Sonata”,  Paganini Variations on One String (playing Paganini is challenging enough to play,  let alone on one string), and ending with “Pantheon”, a Trio for Horn, Violin and Piano by Canadian Composer Elizabeth Raum.

The Academy and Advanced Performance trio (featuring Agata Skulimowska, piano; Jonathan Kennedy, horn; Robert Mulchrone, violin) were formed in September of 2022 as part of their Chamber Music Course.  Students in the program are coached on a weekly basis by the Conservatory’s distinguished faculty, and also have the opportunity to perform and play for visiting guest artists.  Ensembles are always looking for performance and outreach opportunities and are very excited to be playing for the ProArts Concert this afternoon!”

Isaac Willocks, violin

Isaac Willocks is in his third year of studies in the Bachelor of Music  Performance degree at the University of Calgary, School of Creative and Performing Arts, where he studies violin with Edmond Agopian. He is also studying at the Mount Royal University Conservatory in the Advanced Performance Program, under the direction of William Van Der Sloot. Previous violin teachers include Laurel Tym, Cristian Neacsu and Jeremy Van Dieman, and Joan Barrett. He has also had masterclasses with guests such as Gwen Hoebig, and Andres Cardenes. Isaac is currently the rotating concertmaster of both the University of Calgary Orchestra as well as the Calgary Youth Orchestra, as well as being awarded the second violin spot in the faculty quartet alongside Edmond Agopian, Beth Root Sandvoss and Dean O’Brian. He has played with many different orchestras in the past, including the Rosedale Valley Strings, the Burman University Orchestra and more recently, the Calgary Youth Orchestra. Isaac has also played in multiple performances highlighting black composers, alongside Edmond Agopian, Micheal Coburn, Laura Hynes, Jasmine Long, Jeremy Brown, and Michele Moss. Isaac has taught at the United Conservatory of Music and Music makers as both a substitute teacher and on-staff violinist. He has also been an adjudicator for small festivals at the United Conservatory of Music. He has his RCM level 10 certification, and is striving for ARCT certification after graduation from his Bachelor of Music Program. Isaac is planning on going on to pursue a graduate degree in music as well as a doctorate degree. Isaac has also worked with non-profits like A Better WorldCanada to help raise money for more musical and educational opportunities for more underprivileged students and communities so that anyone who wants the opportunity to pursue music is given the chance.

Sixteen year old Tessa Nysetvold began her musical studies at age four. She is a member of the Advanced Performance Program at Mount Royal University Conservatory where she studies with celebrated cellist Beth Root Sandvoss. Additionally, she studies under the tutelage of John Kadz and Johanne Perron. With a passion for orchestral performance, Tessa serves as the principal cellist for the Calgary Youth Orchestra. In addition to cello, Tessa studied piano for ten years with Allen Reiser. Tessa made her solo debut at age fifteen with the Calgary Civic Symphony as a winner of the Rotary Calgary Concerto Competition. Most recently in June 2022, she was accepted into the prestigious Meadowmount School of Music where she studied with acclaimed cellist Hans Jorgen Jensen for seven weeks. Tessa has been a three-time winner of the Canadian Music Competition, receiving second place in Strings Sixteen years, First place in Strings Fifteen years, and Third place in Strings Thirteen Years. She was awarded second place in the Frank Simpson Concerto Competition in 2022, and third place in the Frank Simpson Concerto Competition in 2021. Tessa has received numerous awards and scholarships as a soloist from local, provincial, and national levels. In addition to performing as a soloist, Tessa has competed as a chamber musician, winning first prize at the Alberta Provincial Music Festival. 

In addition to attending the Meadowmount School of Music in 2022, Tessa has attended the Orford Musique Academy and participated in the Sitka Online Cello Seminar with distinguished cellists Melissa Kraut and Zuill Bailey. Tessa has had the opportunity to work with esteemed artists such as Laurence Lesser, Hans Jorgen Jensen, Johannes Moser, Estelle Choi, Gustav Raivinius, Timothy Eddy, Melissa Kraut, Julia Lichten, David Heatherington, Horacio Contreras, Thomas Landschoot, Zuill Bailey, Joe Johnson, Paul Marleyn, Thomas Wiebe, Arnold Choi, and the New Orford String Quartet. 

 Karen Neary (collaborative pianist)

 Karen Neary (collaborative pianist) has distinguished herself internationally as a savvy and intuitive pianist, a versatile and sensitive interpreter of piano and chamber music literature. “A stylish performer who plays with robust assurance”, she is “intense and involved with her music” – The Leader Post. “She plays with an element of daring” – Nelson Regional News. Karen holds a Master of Music degree in Piano Performance, Accompaniment, and Literature from Brandon University. She has performed with numerous world-class concert artists including Moshe Hammer, Amanda Forsyth, Gwen Hoebig, Edmond Agopian, Ni Tao, Ingemar Ohlsson, Arnold Choi, Martin Chalifour, and Yu Wei. 

A faculty member at Mount Royal University Conservatory, Karen serves as a senior collaborative pianist in both the Advanced Performance Program and the Academy Program for Young Artists. In addition to her freelance work and piano instruction in Calgary, she has performed across Canada, Mexico, and parts of the U.S. She has recorded collaboratively for countless recitals, competitions, and auditions and has appeared as a soloist and chamber pianist on CBC television and CBC Radio 2. 

This concert is the fifth in a series of five Emerging Artist concerts during 2022 generously sponsored by: