Barrie Concerts & Georgian Music


Sublime Dvořák

March 23, 2019, 7:30pm - Hiway Pentecostal Church

Penderecki String Quartet & Pianist Benjamin Smith

Penderecki String Quartet

Penderecki String Quartet

Celebrating their 31st anniversary, the Penderecki String Quartet began their career as winners of the Penderecki Prize at the National Chamber Music Competition in Łódz, Poland in 1986. Now based in Waterloo, Ontario where they have been Quartet-in-Residence at Wilfrid Laurier University since 1991, The Penderecki String Quartet has become one of the most celebrated chamber ensembles of their generation. The four Penderecki musicians (now originating from Poland, Canada, and USA) bring their varied yet collective experience to create performances that demonstrate their “remarkable range of technical excellence and emotional sweep” (Toronto, Globe and Mail).

The PSQ’s international performing schedule has included appearances in New York (Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall), Amsterdam (Concertgebouw), Hong Kong (Academy for the Arts), Los Angeles (REDCAT Hall at Disney Center), St. Petersburg (Sheremetev Palace), the Adam Festival in New Zealand, and throughout Europe in Rome, Madrid, Paris, Belgrade, Prague, Krakow, Vilnius, and Zagreb. The PSQ has also toured extensively in Mexico, Australia, Venezuela and Brazil and from coast to coast in Canada.

Dedicated educators, the PSQ have been recent guests at Bloomington Indiana University’s String Academy, the Beijing Conservatory, University of Southern California (Los Angeles), University of British Columbia in Vancouver, and with their partner universities in Osnabrück, Germany and Lyon, France.

To this day the PSQ is a devoted champion of the music of our time, having premiered over 100 new works from composers in Canada and abroad. Penderecki Quartet’s large discography includes over three dozen recordings including the chamber music repertoire of Beethoven and Brahms on both the Marquis and Eclectra labels, as well as the first Canadian release of the six Béla Bartók quartets. Their disc of Marjan Mozetich’s “Lament in the Trampled Garden” won the 2010 JUNO Award for Best Composition. In October 2013, the PSQ worked with Maestro Krzysztof Penderecki on his Third Quartet (2008) and performed it at Symphony Space in New York City on the occasion of his 80th birthday. This followed with the recording of Penderecki’s Third Quartet along with quartets of Norbert Palej on the Marquis label.

The Penderecki Quartet has performed with such eminent classical artists as Martin Beaver, Atar Arad, Antonio Lysy, Jeremy Menuhin, James Campbell and enjoy exploring new music collaborations having recently appeared with jazz saxophonist Jane Bunnett, Brazilian jazz pianist Egberto Gismonti, pipa virtuoso Ching Wong, Dancetheatre David Earle, Pentaedre Wind Quintet, actor Colin Fox, and New York turntable artist DJ Spooky.

The Penderecki Quartet continue to be active members of the Faculty of Music at Laurier University where they have built the string program to be one of the top programs in Canada, attracting an international body of students. Their annual Quartetfest at Laurier is an intensive study seminar and concert series that has featured such ensembles as the Tokyo, Lafayette, Miro, Ying, and Ariana String Quartets.

Jeremy Bell (Violin)

Jeremy Bell

A native of Toronto, violinist Jeremy Bell earned a B. Mus degree from the University of Toronto, and from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, he received his Masters and Doctor of Music.

Dr. Bell is a recipient of numerous grants from the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts and is a prize winner of the Eckhardt Grammatté National competition and the Conseil Québécois’ Prix Opus. He has studied with David Zafer, George Neikrug, Joyce Robbins, Metro Kozak and with members of the Orford, Juilliard, Tokyo, and Orion string quartets. Joining the Penderecki String Quartet in 1999, Dr. Bell is Artist in Residence at Wilfrid Laurier University where he teaches violin and chamber music.

Described by the Toronto Star as a violinist who “agitates in the most intelligent and persuasive manner”, Bell has performed recently with the Penderecki Quartet at Arsenale Festival in Poland, Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Is Arti Festival in Lithuania, MBZ Zagreb, State Museum of Music in St. Petersburg, REDCAT/Disney Centre in Los Angeles, Roxy/NOD in Prague, Fundacion Juan March in Madrid, Jane Mallet Theatre in Toronto, Paris University 8, Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall in New York City, Indiana University in Bloomington, Casalmaggiore Festival in Italy, Tovar Festival Venezuela, Virtuosi Festival Brazil, Adam Festival New Zealand, the Hong Kong Academy, the Shanghai Oriental Arts Centre, the Banff Centre in Alberta, and the Chan Centre in Vancouver.

With the Penderecki String Quartet, Bell has recorded over 25 discs including the premiere Canadian recording of the Béla Bartók string quartet cycle, Marjan Mozetich’s ‘Lament in the Trampled Garden’ (winner of the 2010 JUNO Award for composition), and the complete Grieg sonatas for violin and piano. From 2000-2007, Bell was the artistic director of NUMUS Concerts where he created several multi-media events at the Perimeter Institute and with Dancetheatre David Earle. He has performed a wide range of music, performing baroque with Consortium Aurora Borealis and Les Violons du Roy, Cuban jazz with Hilario Duran, as well as collaborating with pipa virtuoso Ching Wong, NYC’s DJ Spooky, and rap star Jay-Z. In addition, Bell has performed as soloist with many orchestras in Canada, USA and Mexico, including the Toronto Symphony, the Kitchener Waterloo Symphony, the CBC Vancouver Orchestra, performing concertos of Beethoven, Berg, Brahms, Hatzis, Locatelli, Lutoslawski, Mendelssohn, Mozart, Päart, Prokofiev, Saint-Saens, and Schoenberg. As guest concertmaster he has appeared with the Kitchener Waterloo Symphony, the Hamilton Philharmonic, the New Zealand National Symphony, and the Canadian Opera Company. Dr. Bell plays an A.S. Bernadel violin (1854).

To visit his website click here.

Katie Schlaikjer (Cello)

Katie Schlaikjer

Cellist Katie Schlaikjer is a recognized quartet player, performer and teacher, she became a member of the Colorado Quartet in 2009 and joined the faculty of the University of Connecticut in 2010. As a former member of the Avalon Quartet, she received top prizes from the Concert Artist Guild, the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, and the Banff International String Quartet Competition. Katie has performed at the Ravinia, Tanglewood, Aspen, and Caramoor festivals, collaborated with Claude Frank, Roger Tapping and Peter Wiley and recorded for Albany Records.

Ms. Schlaikjer’s appearances with the Colorado Quartet have included Symphony Spaces’ 2010 and 2011 Wall to Wall marathon concerts, performances in San Francisco, Ohio, Virginia, Delaware, and the British Virgin Islands and two performances of the complete Bartok quartets. In 2011, she premiered J Mark Scearce’s cello concerto “Aracana” with the University of Connecticut’s Symphony Orchestra and traveled to China to play the Haydn D major cello concerto with the Wuhan Symphony Orchestra. Katie has taught chamber music and cello at the New England Conservatory’s Extension Division, Bard Conservatory’s Preparatory Program, the Quartet Program (NY), Apple Hill (NH), and Soundfest (MA) music festivals and given master classes at the Cleveland Institute of Music and the University of Delaware.

Katie received her Doctoral and Master’s degrees from Stony Brook University and her Bachelor’s degree from the New England Conservatory. Her principal teachers have included Timothy Eddy, Laurence Lesser and Andres Diaz. Her cello was made by Paolo Castello in Genoa in 1775.

Jerzy Kapłanek (Violin)

Jerzy Kaplanek

Violinist Jerzy Kaplanek has established himself internationally as a chamber musician, member of the celebrated Penderecki String Quartet, soloist, dedicated teacher, adjudicator, artistic director of QuartetFest and lately as a jazz violinist.

Internationally renowned violinist Jerzy Kapłanek has established himself as a chamber musician, member of the celebrated Penderecki String Quartet, soloist, dedicated teacher, adjudicator, artistic director of QuartetFest and lately as a jazz violinist.

He performs throughout Europe, Asia, and North and South America over 80 concerts each season. His album of works by Karol Szymanowski with pianist Stéphan Sylvestre was highly praised by The Strad magazine as “an outstanding release”. His discography with the Penderecki Quartet comprises over two dozen CD’s (Marquis, Eclectra, CBC, CMC, EMI labels), including the highly acclaimed recording of the complete string quartets of Béla Bartók.

Mr. Kaplanek has collaborated with such notable musicians as pianists David Braid, Leopoldo Erice , Vladimir Feltsman, Janina Fialkowska Francine Kay, Lev Natochenny, Jamie Parker Stéphan Sylvestre, cellists Marc Johnson, Antonio Lysy Paul Pulford, Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, and clarinetist James Campbell amongst others. He is frequently heard on CBC Radio and NPR. He has made solo appearances with the Kitchener-Waterloo, Hamilton, Peterborough and CBC Vancouver Symphonies and was a featured soloist at the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall.

Jerzy Kapłanek was born in Poland in 1965. His music education started at the age of six on piano and at the age of ten he began his violin studies. In 1984, he received a Bachelor of Music degree from the Conservatory in Bytom. In 1990, he graduated with a Master’s Degree in Musical Arts from the prestigious Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music in Katowice. There, he studied with the distinguished teachers Janusz Skramlik, Aureli Błaszczok and Stanisław Lewandowski.

In 1987-88 he studied with Efim Boico and the Fine Arts Quartet at the Chamber Music Institute in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In 1989-90, he was a student of Sylvia Rosenberg in New York City and in 1990-91 he studied with Daniel Heifetz, the Guarneri String Quartet and its violinists, Arnold Steinhardt and John Dalley. Pursuing his interest in performance practice, Mr. Kapłanek also worked with the pioneer of baroque violin, Jaap Schroeder.

Jerzy Kapłanek is presently an Associate Professor at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, where since 1991 he has been teaching violin and chamber music. He frequently gives master classes in Canada and abroad. Mr. Kaplanek performs on a 2016 Samuel Zygmuntowicz violin made in New York City.

Christine Vlajk (Viola)

Christine Vlajk

Violist Christine Vlajk has performed extensively in North and South America, Europe, much of China, Hong Kong and New Zealand. Some of the concert halls where she has performed with the Penderecki String Quartet have included Weill Concert Hall at Carnegie Hall, 92nd Street Y, Kennedy Center, REDCAT Hall in Los Angeles, and the Hong Kong Academy to name a few.

She has held the positions of violist of the Penderecki String Quartet and Artist-in-Residence in viola and chamber music at Laurier University since 1997. She has received Prizes at the Banff, Coleman, Yellow Springs, Carmel and Evian Chamber Music Competitions. She was granted the Friedlander Fellowship from the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory and Scholarships to attend the Aspen Center for Advanced Quartet Studies, The Julliard and Cleveland Quartet Seminars, all helping to pave the road for a life as a chamber musician.

Originally from Denver, Colorado, Vlajk has Bachelor degrees in Viola Performance (B.M.) and Music Education (B.M.E.) from the University of Colorado in Boulder and a Masters degree in Viola Performance (M.M.) from the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. Her teachers have included Oswald Lehnert, Jerry Horner, Denes Koromzay and members of the Cleveland, Julliard, LaSalle, Takacs, and Fine Arts Quartets.

She has been guest soloist with the West Virginia Symphony, Hamilton Philharmonic, Peterborough Symphony and the Kitchener Waterloo Symphony Orchestra. She has performed recitals in Canada, the United States and Germany. She has premiered two viola concertos by Peter Grella-Mozejko and Karol Gostyniski. As an orchestral player she has held the position of principal violist of the West Virginia Symphony and was a member of the New Hampshire Music Festival.

Dedicated to the education of young people, she has performed an extensive series of children’s concerts across the United States and Canada. She has given master classes at Lynn Conservatory, Indiana University’s String Academy, Florida State University, University of Toronto, SUNY Fredonia, the Glenn Gould Professional School and many places in Mexico, China and New Zealand.

As a member of the Penderecki String Quartet and the Montclaire Quartet, Vlajk has recorded nearly 30 recordings for the Koch, Leonarda, Eclectra, Marquis Classics and EMI labels. When she is not performing with her quartet or teaching her wonderful students, she enjoys nature, yoga, cooking and the finer things in life.

Benjamin Smith, (Piano)

Stéphane Lemelin

Described as a “thoughtful and immensely exciting performer” with “scintillating technique”, pianist Benjamin Smith has performed as soloist and chamber musician across both Canada and the United States. He has been a laureate of numerous competitions, including the Dublin International Piano Competition, the Virginia Waring International Piano Competition, and the CMC Stepping Stone Competition. Guest appearances include the Stony Brook Symphony Orchestra, the New Juilliard Ensemble, the Ontario Philharmonic, Orchestra London, Symphony-on-the-Bay, the Windsor Symphony, and the University of Toronto’s Hart House Orchestra. As soloist, he has performed under esteemed conductors such as Rossen Milanov and Marco Parisotto, with concertos including rarities such as the Schoenberg Piano Concerto. Festival appearances include Toronto Summer Music, Banff Summer Arts, Stratford Summer Music, Colours of Music, Music Niagara, and New Park (Ithaca, NY). American performances include recitals for the Texas Chopin Society and Chicago’s Landowska Harpsichord Society, as well a world premiere for the Long Leaf Opera Festival in Raleigh, NC. Recent highlights have included Gershwin’s Rhapsody In Blue in Carnegie’s Zankel Hall, as well as multiple recitals with acclaimed violinist Martin Beaver (Tokyo String Quartet). Current releases on disc include a recording of Saint-Saëns, Schumann, and Beethoven with Canadian cellist Dongkyun An, as well as an album of newly-commissioned chamber works featuring Native flutes with Toronto’s Grammy-nominated virtuoso Ron Korb.

Devoting considerable time to chamber music, Ben has been heard nationally in Canada on CBC Radio 2 and Toronto’s Classical 96.3. He has partnered in recital with renowned artists including Colin Carr, Jacques Israelievitch, Joaquin Valdepeñas, Wolfgang Redik (formerly of the Vienna Piano Trio), Bartosz Bryla, Mark Fewer, Bonnie Hampton, and William VerMeulen, as well as with ensembles such as the Annex and Cecilia string quartets. For two seasons he performed as one-third of the Israelievitch-Smith-Ahn piano trio. Involved with music of our time as well, he is a regular member of the Esprit Orchestra in Toronto, and has worked under prominent conductors Joel Sachs, Steven Schick, and Werner Herbers, as well as with composers John Corigliano, Reinaldo Moya, and Chandler Carter.

Dr. Smith currently resides in Toronto, working as a lecturer, coach, and collaborator for the Glenn Gould School (GGS) and the Taylor Young Artist Academy at the Royal Conservatory. Previously, he held a position on the piano faculty at the University of Western Ontario, and has also served as an undergraduate piano instructor for the Department of Music at Stony Brook University. His principal teachers included Andrea Battista, James Anagnoson, Julian Martin, and Christina Dahl. Along with a DMA from Stony Brook University, he holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Toronto, an Artist Diploma from the GGS, and a Master’s from The Juilliard School.

Barrie Concerts Logo
VENUE: Hiway Pentecostal Church,
50 Anne Street North (MAP)
TIME: 7:30pm

That Choir

October 27, 2018, 7:30pm

Craig Pike Conducts the Amazing That Choir

from “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” to “Abide With Me”


Time to Remember

November 24, 2018, 7:30pm

Double Double Duo returns - A Christmas CELEBRATION

Kornel Wolak, clarinet & piano Michael Bridge, accordions & piano - Tchaikovsky’s Astounding “1812 Overture”


Pianist Sheng Cai

January 26, 2019, 7:30pm

Armenian Pianist Sofya Melikyan

performs Mendelssohn’s captivating Second Piano Concerto with Nurhan Arman and Sinfonia Toronto


Schubert’s Great Sonata Duo

February 23, 2019, 7:30pm

Beyond The Pale

Three-time Canadian Folk Music Award winners - An Instrumental Tour De Force


Sublime Dvořák

March 23, 2019, 7:30pm

Sublime Dvořák

Penderecki String Quartet & Pianist Benjamin Smith - The Slavonic String Quartet - The Two Piano Quintets - Music that leaves you Happy


Gershwin Greats

April 27, 2019, 7:30pm

Gershwin Greats

Soprano Alyssa DiMarco - Kerry Stratton Conducts the Toronto Concert Orchestra Summertime…Cheek to Cheek…The Man I Love…Embraceable You - Ukrainian Pianist Anna Shalaykevych performs Rhapsody in Blue


Barrie Concerts Logo
VENUE: Bethel Community Church,
128 St. Vincent Street (MAPS TO VENUES )
TIME: 2:30pm

Cabaret with Patricia O’Callaghan

October 14, 2018, 2:30pm

Cabaret with Patricia O’Callaghan

Soprano Patricia O’Callaghan, Bassist Andrew Downing & Pianist Robert Kortgaard… Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah!


Songs of Norway

November 4, 2018, 2:30pm

Songs of Norway

Violinist Jeremy Bell & Pianist Shoshana Telner - Grieg’s Three Violin sonatas


Duo Turgeon - “Rhapsodies and Variations”

January 13, 2019, 2:30pm,

Duo Turgeon - “Rhapsodies and Variations”

pianists Anne Louise-Turgeon and Edward Turgeon - Performing two Pianos - Lutoslawski’s Variations on a Theme of Paganini; Rachmaninoff’s Variations on a Theme of Paganini; Ravel’s La Valse; Dvorak’s Slavonic Dances - Op. 46 - Numbers 1,2,4,6,8; Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess Fantasy


Glorious Strings - Saguenay String Quartet

March 10, 2019, 2:30pm

Glorious Strings

Violinists Laura Andriani and Nathalie Camus, violist Luc Beauchemin, and cellist David Ellis & Lafayette String Quartet - violinists Ann Elliott-Goldschmid and Sharon Stanis, violist Joanna Hood, and cellist Pamela Highbaugh Aloni -- Together for Three Octets Including Mendelssohn’s Octet in E-flat major Op. 20; Niels Gade’s String octet Opus 17; A brand new commissioned piece from the Canadian composer: Airat Ichmouratov


Fifteen Years Old Felix Mendelssohn’s Piano Sextet

April 7, 2019, 2:30pm

Fifteen Years Old Felix Mendelssohn’s Piano Sextet

Angela Park, piano, Elissa Lee, violin, Douglas McNabney, viola, Sharon Wei, viola, Blair Lofgren, cello, Raphael McNabney, double bass. Mozart’s Kegelstatt Trio for violin, viola and piano; Romberg’s Trio for viola, cello and bass in E minor Opus 38 No.1;


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Contact Info

Barrie Concerts & Georgian Music
P.O. Box 452 Barrie, ON L4M 4T7
Phone: (705) 728-8453 or (705) 737-4927 Email: info@barrieconcerts.org
Official Website: www.barrieconcerts.org