Cultivating creativity: intimate and electric concerts at the PEC Chamber Music Festival
Cultivating creativity: intimate and electric concerts at the PEC Chamber Music Festival

True North Brass kick off the Prince Edward County Chamber Music Festival this Saturday at Macaulay Heritage Park with a free outdoor performance.

jpg, BI



Three Juno Award winners. One International Chopin Piano Competition medallist. A popular CBC personality. And two dozen classical musicians who have performed in premier orchestras around the world. The accolades and accomplishments are impressive in this line-up of musicians for the 2019 Prince Edward County (PEC) Chamber Music Festival.

Over the course of three weekends in September, The County will be treated to the intimate, electrifying experience of world-class chamber music during the 15th annual PEC Chamber Music Festival.

Chamber music is a popular style of classical music performed by a small group of musicians in smaller spaces. Its popularity comes from its intimacy: you hear the technical skill and emotional depth of each individual player. The audience is party to the conversation, the closeness and camaraderie between musicians. Because there is rarely a conductor involved, the musicians’ interpretation of the music is unmediated and on full display.

The Prince Edward County festival is led by a group of artistic directors: the four members of the New Orford String Quartet collaborate on artistic programming.

“The quartet’s vision for this festival has been to continue the tradition of bringing our dear friends to play music they feel connected to,” says Andrew Wan, violinist and quartet member. “This year’s programming obviously highlights the piano (Jon Kimura Parker, Charles Richard-Hamelin, Robert Kortgaard, and the Gryphon Trio) and the works of the fantastic composer Uriel Vanchestein, but also features the always dynamic Julie Nesrallah, les Violons du Roy and your very own New Orford Quartet.”

Everything kicks off on September 7 at Macaulay Heritage Park with a free outdoor performance by True North Brass, featuring the big sound of trumpet, horn, trombone and tuba on the beautiful grounds of the Macaulay Museum. Everyone is invited to enjoy the concert, which is a fun and casual introduction to classical music.

The next two weekends, from September 13 to 21 feature six concerts at St. Mary Magdalene Church on Main Street Picton — an intimate and acoustically beautiful venue for classical music. Highlights include the opening concert with The New Orford String Quartet and acclaimed violinist Aloysia Friedmann, Two Brothers, Four Hands featuring accomplished pianists and brothers Jon Kimura Parker and Jamie Parker, an evening of song with soprano and CBC personality Julie Nesrallah, and the closing concert with Chopin Piano Competition silver medallist Charles Richard-Hamelin.

Information about the Festival, the full line-up and tickets can be found at

Originally published in the Fall 2019 issue of Umbrellla, a quarterly publication of the Quinte Arts Council.

Also this weekend:

Sept 6: Daniel Champagne in Concert, Signal Brewing Company; Sept 7: Po’Boy Jeffreys, The Old Church Theatre; Sept 7: Sue Foley, Live At The Empire.