Edmonton - Guest Performances

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A printed program will be available closer to the event.

Sunday April 15th at the Winspear 8PM

RCA Band
Chris Embree, Director

“Skyline”, Symphony No. 2 The Big Apple, de Meij
Midway March Williams/Lavender
“Riffs for Lenny” 3rd Mvt. Ticheli Clarinet Concerto
O Magnum Mysterium Morten Lauridsen arr. H. Robert Reynolds
Exultate Samuel Hazo
Lads of Whamphray Grainger
Scherzo for X-Wings Williams/Lavender

U of A Madrigal Singers
Dr. Leonard Ratzlaff, Director
Katherine Tilbury, accompanist

Program to be chosen from:

Ave MariaAnton Bruckner
Ubi caritasMaurice Duruflé
O sacrum conviviumJosep Vilas
Unicornis captivatorOla Gjeilo
O salutarisEriks Ešenvalds
Long RoadEriks Ešenvalds
My Love Dwelt in a Northern LandEdward Elgar
Sure on This Shining NightMorten Lauridsen
Irish song arrangements:
O Danny Boyarr Allan Bevan
My Lagan Love arr David Mooney
The Salley Gardensarr David Mooney
Rakes of Mallowarr David Mooney
The Parting Glassarr Desmond Earley


Artistic Director, Jeremy Brown

Program for the Edmonton Cantando Festival
(to be selected from the following)

with guest artists Liz Tremblay, v’cello and the Midnight Taiko Kai drummers

GloriosaYasuhide Ito 
Kingfishers Catch FireJohn Mackey
Give Us This DayDavid Maslanka
Prelude, Op. 34, no. 14 in Eb minor Dmitri Shostakovich, arranged by Robert Reynolds
Yiddish DancesAdam Gorb
Overture to CandideLeonard Bernstein, arranged by Clare Grundman 
Third SymphonyJames Barnes, Liz Trembley, Cello
National Emblem MarchEdwin Eugene Bagley


Monday April 16th at the Winspear 8PM

MacEwan University Big Band
Ray Baril, Conductor

Program to be chosen from:

Facinating Rhythmcomp. by George Gershwin, arr. by Sammy Nestico
Muevete Con Prisa comp. and arr. by Aaron Lington
Big Yellow Taxi comp. by Joni Mitchell, arr. by Tommy Banks
Ho Humcomp. and arr. by Bob Brookmeyer
Oddly Enoughcomp. and arr. by Fred Stride
Gumba Bluecomp. and arr. by Maria Schneider
Latelycomp. and arr. by Maria Schneider
Bodysnatcherscomp. by Radiohead, arr. by Fred Sturm
Brecker-Braccomp. and arr. by Tom Kubis
Abstract Image comp. and arr. by Fred Sturm
Decoupagecomp. and arr. by Hank Levy
Sunset Glowcomp. and arr. by Benny Carter
Straight, No Chasercomp. by Thelonius Monk, arr. by Ron Newman
Leavingcomp. by Richie Beirach, arr. by Jim McNeely
Get Happycomp. by Harold Arlen, arr. by Billy May
Darn That Dreamcomp. by James Van Heusen, arr. by Matt Harris
San Juan Sketchcomp. and arr. by Kim Salkeld

Kokopelli and Mass Choir
Scott Leithead, Director

A Te Tarakihito be directed by Dr. Andrew Withington
Blood on the Saddle arr. Trent Worthington, to be conducted by Elise Bradley


Media Vita arr. McGlynn 
Skycalling Bryan LeGrow
Frögda tight u Christi Brudh Steven Hansen
Water Fountain arr. Chris Fulton
Kanaval Sydney Guillaume
We Are Us Jen McMillan
North Arr. Chung

River City Big Band

Now in its  21st year, the River City Big Band is one of the premier jazz organizations in Canada. Our members all share a common enthusiasm for big band jazz.  We perform music that spans from the classics of the big band era through to the modern repertoire of today.

In addition to getting together to play for the sheer exhilaration of making music, we perform in a variety of settings throughout the community including jazz festivals, featured concerts and with guest artists, private functions and school events.

The band’s repertoire is extremely diverse, ranging from early Ellington, through Goodman, Shaw, Basie, and Kenton, to the many great arrangers and composers of today such as Gordon Goodwin and Tom Kubis.  The band also regularly features original compositions and arrangements by Larry Schrum, and Allan Gilliland, Chair of the Music Department and Head of Composition at Grant MacEwan University, who is also a member of the band’s trumpet section.  Most of RCBB’s shows program three or four of these great charts, making each concert a unique musical experience.

The band has released two CDs: “Just Friends” (2010) and “River” (2012) both of which largely feature the work of Allan and Larry.

Tuesday, April 17 at the Winspear 8 pm

MacEwan University Percussion Ensemble
Brian Thurgood, Conductor

Windows of the MalocaJim Casella
Minor Infraction Rick Dior
Breakdown Bradley Slayter
Graveyard Blues Clarence Woods
Persistence Brian Blume
Five on Five Stephen Primatic
Truth or Consequence Jim Casella
Progress Brandi Bailey
Cop Drama Jim Casella

University of Alberta Symphony Orchestra
Petar Dundjerski, Conductor

Excerpts from Symphonic DancesRachmaninov
Excerpts from the First Act of Magic Flute
(with U of Alberta Voice Area Students)


Performer Bios


RCA Band

The historical roots of The Royal Canadian Artillery Band (RCA) you see today are traced primarily from The RCA Band formed in Montreal in 1968. The complete history, however, dates much further back, as there were many artillery bands existing simultaneously from as early as 1879. The RCA Band traces its earliest roots to Quebec City. The ‘B’ Battery band of the Royal Canadian Artillery was formed in 1879. It was comprised of volunteer militia and professionaly trained musicians from England and France, and eventually became the first permanent military band in Canada. In 1899 it became The Royal Canadian Garrison Artillery Band (RCGA).

The RCGA Band was formed under Joseph Vézina, a prominent Quebec musician whose achievements are noteworthy. Vézina not only formed and directed numerous military and amateur bands, but was the first director of the Orchestre Symphonique de Québec. Vézina also led over 100 musicians for the historical first performance of O Canada, which took place June 24, 1880 at a Saint-Jean-Batiste Day banquet in Quebec City. A second artillery band, The Royal Canadian Horse Artillery, was formed in Kingston in 1905 and directed by Major Alfred Light.

The RCA Band was active in both World Wars and the Korean conflict, and has seen service in many parts of the world as well as throughout Canada. During the First World War The RCGA Band was stationed in Quebec City. The caliber of the band at this time is mentioned in an article for the Montreal Star of August 16, 1916: The band of the Royal Canadian Garrison Artillery, stationed at the Citadel in Quebec City, is justly known as one of the best bands in North America. Its repertoire is remarkable and it is doubtful if a more diversified series of programs is given by any other band in the country. The RCGA and The RCHA were the only two bands still operational in Canada in the fall of 1918.

Throughout the Second World War bands were stationed in Canada and overseas. In 1941, Captain Streeter, Coordinator and Director of Music for Canadian-based units, organized three bands to go overseas. One was The Royal Canadian Artillery (Overseas) Band. The caliber of the bands was high and they became immensely popular. Much like today, The RCA band was versatile, and included a dance band, an old-time band, a salon orchestra, a choir, and instrumental and vocal soloists. By 1944 there were ten full-time bands stationed overseas. At the end of the war, all regular force bands were disbanded, and three were reformed. One of the three was the Royal Canadian Horse Artillery, stationed in Shilo, Manitoba, and then Winnipeg.

During the Korean War there was a large expansion of the army, and the size and number of bands increased. In 1952 the Royal Canadian Artillery Band was formed in Halifax under NS/Capt E.R. Wragg, and in 1953 travelled overseas to entertain troops in Korea. In 1955 Captain Kenneth Elloway became the new bandmaster and was vital in highlighting The RCA Band on an international stage. He arranged appearances on BBC radio, invited guest performers, and led The RCA Band in the 1957 Bermuda Tattoo. Back in Canada, they regularly appeared on CBC and were a very successful public relations tool for the army in Halifax.

After The Unification of the Canadian Forces (CF) in 1968 The RCA Band in Halifax was dissolved and reformed in Montreal. The popularity of The RCA Band in the late 1980’s is astounding. In 1988 they performed for over 100,000 spectators in Canada and Europe, and in 1989 was the central feature in a cross-Canada tour of CF musicians. In 1994-95, The RCA Band participated in the Canada Remembers program which commemorated Canada’s contribution to the Second World War. This took the band to Asia, England, Holland and Belgium.

The RCA Band officially moved from Montreal to Edmonton on December 4th 1997 (St. Barbara’s Day - the Patron Saint of the Artillery), and continues to represent the CF locally, across Canada, and abroad. In total they perform approximately 250 engagements every year. These include military parades, ceremonies and occasions, civilian parades such as the Calgary Stampede and the Edmonton Capital Exhibition Parade, Spruce Meadows, educational concerts, royal visits, entertainment at military and government functions, and formal concerts.

Since arriving in Edmonton, The CF Band has travelled extensively. In 2000 The RCA Band was chosen as Canada’s representative by the Directorate of History and Heritage for the Kangwon International Tattoo. This Tattoo commemorated the 50th anniversary of the start of the Korean War. It took place in Wonju, Korea, and included bands from eighteen countries. In 2004 The RCA Band participated in a week long tour of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Central to the tour was The RCA Band’s participation in Brigadier General Beare’s Transfer of Authority Ceremony, held in Banja Luka. A second tour of South Korea was held in 2004, where The RCA Band performed in a number of concerts and Tattoo performances. In 2006 The RCA Band travelled to Sweden, where they performed at Kungstradgarden and Strägnäs to capacity crowds and glowing reviews. The tour culminated with The RCA Band’s participation in the 20th Swedish Military Tattoo, where they marched to the Royal Palace playing Voice of the Guns, Glorious Victory and Barren Rocks.

The RCA Band made two trips to the Netherlands in 2009 and 2010. The first was for the Nijmegen Marches. This is the largest marching event in the world, with thousands of participants and over a million spectators. The RCA Band performed at various points along the route, and led the entire Canadian contingent for the final 5km of the march. The second and most recent overseas trip was in 2010, when The RCA Band travelled as part of the Canadian Forces Contingent commemorating the 65th Anniversary of the Liberation of The Netherlands.

Today The RCA Band employs 35 full-time musicians. Candidates for the position go through a competitive audition process, and selected musicians often have multiple music degrees and extensive professional experience. Each musician completes all the basic military standards, such as Basic Military Qualification, the Battle Fitness Test, rifle range qualification, and first aid.

In addition to the Symphonic Concert Band, musicians of The RCA Band perform in a wide variety of smaller ensembles, offering a range of styles for different engagements, including country, pop, jazz, rock, Pipes and Drums, and Celtic music.

In 2008, for the first time in its history, a Regular Force piper was posted to The RCA Band: Corporal Jim Douglas. The RCA Pipes & Drums, comprised of four members as of 2010, now play an integral role in many of the concerts and ceremonies. In November 2012 The RCA Pipes & Drums presented Hail to My Country, a public concert in support of the Soldier On Fund. It featured, for the first time, the historic collaboration of many of the Regular Force CF Pipes and Drums from across Canada.

The regimental colours of The RCA Band are crimson and >midnight blue, as displayed on their unit flag, and proudly worn on historical uniforms for special ceremonial occasions, along with a sable Busby. These colours are also worn on the concert dress uniform, along with bow tie and cummerbund, for evening concerts. The Royal Canadian Artillery Band mottos are UBIQUE(Everywhere) and QUO FAS ET GLORIA DUCUNT (Whither Right And Glory Lead), worn on the cap badge along with the image of a gun, to represent the artillery.

By: Sergeant Robert Spady

U of A Madrigal Singers

The University of Alberta Madrigal Singers, begun in 1974 by Professor Larry Cook, have been under the direction of Dr. Leonard Ratzlaff since 1983.Initially formed to explore the repertoire of the Renaissance and Baroque periods, the Madrigal Singers have emerged in the past 30 years as one of Canada’s premier university chamber choirs, drawing on music from all periods and styles for their repertoire.

With their membership drawn principally from students in the Department of Music, the Madrigal Singers have also attracted qualified singers from across campus. Membership is determined through annual auditions each September. The Madrigal Singers ensemble is available for a half-course credit, either as a required course in some music degree programs, or as a Fine Arts option for non-music majors.

The Madrigal Singers have a student-elected executive which is responsible for helping to manage the affairs of the choir, including tour preparation, financial management, costuming, media and communications, and relations within the choir and between choirs.The Madrigal Singers perform in Convocation Hall on campus and at other venues in Edmonton, including the Francis Winspear Centre for Music and various churches.

The Madrigal Singers have sung as guest artists with the Alberta Baroque Ensemble, Edmonton Symphony Orchestra and Pro Coro Canada, performing a wide range of repertoire, including Handel's Messiah and other Baroque masterpieces, as well as contemporary works, including Esenvalds Passion and Resurrection, Poulenc Gloria, Raminsh Magnificat and Ravel Daphnis et Chloe. In past years CBC frequently recorded the choir's concerts for regional and national broadcast.

Beyond Edmonton, the "Mads" tour Alberta and British Columbia, and in recent years they participated in University Voices, a festival of Canadian university choirs sponsored by Soundstreams Canada, held in Toronto. In 2005 the Madrigal Singers were invited to perform at the National Convention of the American Choral Directors Association in Los Angeles, and they have performed at several Podium conferences of Choral Canada..

The Madrigal Singers have won first prize in the CBC Choral Competition for Amateur Choirs (1992, 1996, 2004), as well as in international choral competitions, including the Robert Schumann International Choir Competition in Zwickau, Germany (1995) and the Cork International Choral Festival in Cork, Ireland (1999 and 2008).

Each member brings his or her personal medley of vocal and musical abilities to the choir. We believe in encouraging each member to contribute his or her unique vocal quality to create a unified, choral sound.One of the goals of our practice is to bring our diverse abilities into focus in our study and performance of a wide variety of music.

Our further objectives include:
• enhancing our members’ appreciation of and skill in performing choral music through exposure to and instruction in a wide variety of choral styles
• fostering and maintaining amongst our membership a high standard of choral performance
• promoting of concerts and tours which are deemed stimulating to choral achievement
• making capital expenditures with the end of enhancing the performance of the Madrigal Singers

The Madrigal Singers have always strived for excellence both musically and as a choir. We believe it to be an honour and our duty to promote choral music through our role as representatives of the University of Alberta and the city, province and country to which we belong.

MacEwan University Big Band

The MacEwan University Big Band, now in its 44 th year, is the flagship ensemble of the Music Department. It provides students with curricular opportunity to gain experience in the contemporary big band music. For 33 seasons it has been under the directorship of Raymond Baril.

The band has had the distinct opportunity of working with internationally renowned musicians such as Maria Schneider, Bob Mintzer, Wayne Bergeron, Eddie Daniels, Jack Wilkins, Jens Lindemann, Ernie Watts, Sunny Wilkinson, Phil Woods, Dizzy Gillespie, Bobby Shew, Christine Jensen, as well as Edmonton’s own PJ Perry and the late Tommy Banks. They have been a featured ensemble at the Edmonton International Jazz Festival, Cantando Music Festival, MusicFest Canada in Vancouver B.C., Alberta International Band Festival in Edmonton, International Association of Jazz Educators Conference in Washington D.C., and Rocky Mountain Festival in Banff.

In addition to performing its own annual concert series, it has performed at numerous educational functions, a variety of civic and community events including a performance for the Duke and Duchess of York. In 1990, they recorded a one hour music special for the CBC-FM national network. The students have also traveled to many national music festivals, receiving both Gold and Most Outstanding Band awards in their class. In 2005, the MacEwan Big Band released its first CD, “First Time Out” which received praise from both local and national media. 

Kokopelli choir

Kokopelli Choirs is a community choir family based in Edmonton, Alberta. We offer musical growth and performance opportunities through six choirs for singers aged 5 to adult. Known for innovative performances, wide-ranging repertoire, and musical excellence, Kokopelli Choirs believes in the power of music to create diverse, inclusive, and strong communities.

Kokopelli has received several honours, including the YMCA Peace Medal, the Edmonton Salute to Excellence, and the Syncrude award for Innovative Artistic Direction. Kokopelli's ensembles have placed first in competitions both provincially and nationally. However, our focus remains not on winning awards, but on reaching singers and audience members through our performances.

Founded in 1996 by artistic director Scott Leithead, Kokopelli continues to grow and evolve, but our core values are unchanged:

  • we are a community
  • we are learners
  • we strive to be artists
  • we explore music's meaning
  • we cultivate gratitude
  • we exercise self-discipline
  • we celebrate vulnerability
  • we seek diversity
  • we sing with open hearts because our music is both important and beautiful


Artistic Director, Jeremy Brown

Program for the Edmonton Cantando Festival
(to be selected from the following)

with guest artists Liz Tremblay, v’cello and the Midnight Taiko Kai drummers

Gloriosa Yasuhide Ito 
Kingfishers Catch Fire John Mackey
Give Us This Day David Maslanka
Prelude, Op. 34, no. 14 in Eb minor Dmitri Shostakovich, arranged by Robert Reynolds
Yiddish Dances Adam Gorb
Overture to Candide Leonard Bernstein, arranged by Clare Grundman 
Third Symphony James Barnes, Liz Trembley, Cello
National Emblem March Edwin Eugene Bagley


MacEwan University Percussion Ensemble


For over 30 years, the MacEwan University Percussion Ensemble directed by Brian Thurgood has become an institution for MacEwan’s drum set students. The ensemble features students who usually focus on playing drum kits, not the types of percussion instruments that audiences can expect to see at the concert. The ensemble provides the students a valuable opportunity to explore the wide variety of techniques and timbres of percussion instruments from around the world. The repertoire is very eclectic and audiences can expect to see and hear over 30 performers and over 50 pieces of equipment on stage.

University of Alberta Symphony Orchestra


The University of Alberta Symphony Orchestra (USO) was established in 1945 as a student orchestra which presented at least two major concerts a year.

Decades of stellar performances, memorable collaborations, and fearless directors have seen the ensemble grow into Edmonton's premier community orchestra. Although membership is based around the music department at the University of Alberta, students from other faculties in the University and members of Edmonton's musical community also perform in the USO.

The University Symphony Orchestra regularly gives up to six concerts a year and often participates in choral and operatic presentations. The repertoire performed ranges from the Classical period to present day. Although most concerts are held in the University's Convocation Hall, the USO also performs in Edmonton's renowned Winspear Centre for Music.

The USO's mandate is to prepare the music students thoroughly for professional symphony orchestra life, by providing study and performance of the main symphony repertoire and preparation for the professional audition process through judicious choice of repertoire and individual and sectional excerpt coaching. Members also receive training in orchestral etiquette.

Past conductors of the orchestra include G.T. Lindskoog, Arthur Crighton, Normal Nelson, Malcolm Forsyth, and Tanya Prochazka.

Recent years have seen the USO grow consistently in size, as well as technical capabilities. We continue to draw talented musicians from the Edmonton area and are excited to showcase improvement with each performance.

The USO is currently directed by Petar Dundjerski, a fierce advocate for music education. Petar was the Assistant Conductor in Residence of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra 2006-2008, under the mentorship of Music Director William Eddins.