Nearly 20 School of Music faculty will converge on the Phillip T. Young Recital Hall stage on Saturday, January 12, for an extraordinary Faculty Chamber Music concert, Music For and In the Moment.

Music for and in the MomentThis program to commemorate UVic’s 50th Anniversary will feature music composed by UVic’s renowned faculty composers. Recognized nationally and internationally for their work, John Celona, Dániel Péter Biró, alumnus Rudolf Komorous and Christopher Butterfield will present compositions that were either written for the occasion, or dedicated to this celebration.

“UVic has much to celebrate in its support and educational influence in the arts and music,” says performance faculty member Pamela Highbaugh Aloni. “For 50 years the School of Music has contributed significantly to music in Canada and beyond. This is one way to highlight this distinction and share it with our greater university community.” Highbaugh Aloni, resident cellist and member of the Lafayette String Quartet, is spearheading the event, which she thinks is a unique way to commemorate this milestone for posterity. “Long after the event is finished, there will be a continued association of this music to the 50th Anniversary.”

John Celona’s Networks

John Celona’s Networks

The pieces range from solo performances such as Biró’s Palimpsests, for solo piano and Salvim (Quails), for solo viola, to Celona’s Networks (seen on the right)— his homage to John Cage—featuring the majority of the School of Music’s performance faculty. The faculty will also give the world premiere of Christopher Butterfield’s Omar Khayyam in Belfast – Six Postcards for Chamber Ensemble.

Local classical music writer Kevin Bazzana also featured the concert in the Times Colonist, noting that, “Butterfield will contribute two recent major works: Pastorale, for the unusual quartet of accordion, violin, double bass and piano; and Omar Khayyam in Belfast, a song cycle for tenor, harmonium, guitar and seven assorted brass, woodwind and string instruments. The latter, receiving its première, will be sung by the composer’s brother, Benjamin. Butterfield devised his texts by combining verses from The Rubaiyyat of Omar Khayyam, as printed on six old postcards, with the messages scribbled on those postcards by a man in Belfast writing to his wife in England in 1920.”

Organizer Highbaugh Aloni is definitely looking forward to the event. “Our full-time and sessional faculty are well-respected in their fields and it is very rare that we can combine so many of us in one event,” she says. “It is great fun for us as well!”

The concert is at 8pm Saturday, January 12, in the Phillip T. Young Recital Hall. Tickets are $17.50 & $13.50 and available through the UVic Ticket Centre and at the door.

—Kristy Farkas