Ottawa Symphony

Soloists

 
 

Soloists

The following 8 musicians will be featured soloists on 3D-printed string instruments in Singularity, by Harry Stafylakis, in our concert on November 4, 2018.

 
 

Mary-Elizabeth Brown, 3D-Printed Violin

Praised for her “ability to unfold bittersweet magic” (Rhein Main Presse) and “perfect command of her instrument” (Florsheim Zeitung), Canadian violinist Mary-Elizabeth Brown enjoys a busy schedule as a chamber musician, recitalist and concertmaster. In recent seasons, she has toured as a soloist in Europe, Asia, North and South America, and has appeared at the Festival Campos do Jordao (Brazil), Mozarteum Uruguay, The White House (USA), the Aldeburgh Festival (UK), Arts and Letters Club of Toronto, Indian River Festival, Elora Festival and Banff Summer Arts Festival (Canada).

Mary-Elizabeth is in demand as an orchestral leader and has led orchestras under the direction of noted conductors Lorin Maazel, Kryszstof Penderecki, Carlos Miguel Prieto, Helmuth Rilling, Isaac Karabtchevsky, Placido Domingo and others. She was concertmaster of the critically acclaimed chamber orchestra Sinfonia Toronto from 2007-2015. She holds concurrent posts as Concertmaster of both McGill Chamber Orchestra and the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra.

Mary-Elizabeth began studying the violin in her local Suzuki program at the age of 5 and holds degrees from the University of Toronto and l’Université de Montreal. Her principal teachers and mentors include David Zafer, Mark Skazinetsky, Ilya Kaler and Jean-François Rivest. She plays on a 1766 Giuseppe Gagliano violin on loan from an anonymous donor.

 

Natalie Deschesnes, 3D-printed violin

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A native of Trois-Rivières, Québec, Natalie Deschesnes began violin studies at the Conservatoire de musique at age 6. She went on to complete her concours (master’s level) at the Conservatoire in Montreal where she obtained a first prize in violin. She also studied at Meadowmount School of Music in New York state and at the Orford Centre, Québec and is an alumnus of the National Youth Orchestra of Canada and Orchestre des jeunes du Québec.

Natalie is a former member of the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra and has also performed with many Canadian orchestras including Montréal Symphony Orchestra, McGill Chamber Orchestra, Windsor and Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Orchestras and Esprit Orchestra in Toronto. She was previously concertmaster for Les Misérables in Toronto, and principal second violin of Royal Opera Canada and the Huronia Symphony.

During her career Natalie has also performed on commercial recordings, television and radio broadcasts, movie soundtracks, music videos and has even appeared on screen in films.

Since 2007 Natalie has been a member of the Serenade of Strings of the Canadian Armed Forces in Ottawa. She also performs with local ensembles such as the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra, Thirteen Strings and l’Orchestre symphonique de Gatineau.

 

Jessica Ramsay, 3D-printed violin

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Jessie Ramsay is a versatile freelance violinist based in Ottawa, Ontario. She was a winner at the Schumiatcher Concerto Competition (2014) as well as at the Regina Musical Club Competition (2018). In 2016, Jessie was chosen to perform a solo recital at the National Arts Centre Fourth Stage for University of Ottawa’s highlight concert series. In addition to solo performance, Jessie has a deep love of chamber music and in 2015, she was the guest violinist for a month-long tour with the Crimson String Quartet, which toured around Saskatchewan performing for both rural and urban audiences. This summer, she was privileged to perform with cellist Ani Aznavoorian and pianist Andrew Armstrong at Green Lake Chamber Players Concert at the Green Lake Festival of Music. As a founding member of the H.S. String Quartet, Jessie also had the incredible opportunity to perform for members of the Berlin Philharmonic, as well as at the National Art Centre Fourth Stage for the University of Ottawa’s chamber highlight concert three years in a row.

Jessie received a Diploma of Music Performance from Mount Royal University with William Van der Sloot (2014), a Bachelor of Music from University of Ottawa with Yehonatan Berick (2016), and recently completed a Masters in Violin Performance at the University of Ottawa (2018), studying under Yehonatan Berick and Ashley Vandiver.

 

Hanna Williamson, 3D-printed violin

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Hailing from Mission, B.C., Hanna began her post-secondary studies with Michael van der Sloot at the Victoria Conservatory of Music. She transferred to University of Ottawa in third year undergrad and completed her Masters degree in violin performance with Prof. Yehonatan Berick this past spring. While studying at the University of Ottawa, Hanna enjoyed four years as an associate member of the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra. After completing basic training this summer in Saint-Jean-sur-Richlieu, Hanna is a new member of the Canadian Armed Forces Strings Ensemble, “Serenade of Strings”. She is looking forward to working in the city for many more years and is happy to now call it home. Other musical experiences have included travelling with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, the National Academy Orchestra, and with worship artist Fraser Campbell, as well as working as a substitute with the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra.

 

Marlena Pellegrino, 3D-printed viola

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Marlena Pellegrino is a Toronto born, Ottawa based violinist and violist. She began her orchestral training with the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra, and later the National Youth Orchestra of Canada. She completed her Bachelors degree at the University of Ottawa studying with Yehonatan Berick, before continuing her studies in viola with Michael Van der Sloot. She is a recipient of multiple scholarships and awards including the Shelagh and David Williams, McCoy-Ryan Graduate Scholarship and the Bhawani Anantaraman Memorial Foundation Fund. Marlena is passionate about collaborating with a variety of artists in interdisciplinary settings, including cellist Cris Derksen, spoken word poet Brandon Wint, and folk duo Moonfruits. Recently, she attended the United World College of the Adriatic and Oberstdorfer Musik Fest, playing in Masterclasses for Paul Kantor, Barbara Westphal, Jodi Levitz, and Spencer Martin. She is currently a member of the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra.

 

Lisa Moody, 3D-printed viola

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Violist Lisa Moody is in demand as both a performer and a teacher. She is a former member of the Vancouver and Winnipeg Symphony Orchestras and is a current member of the Ottawa Symphony. Lisa has a strong background in music pedagogy with formal training as an instructor in the Suzuki Method, and over twenty years of teaching experience. Pursuant to her interest in music education, Lisa has a Master’s degree in Interdisciplinary Health Sciences from the University of Ottawa, where she researched strategies for managing music performance anxiety in adolescent musicians, employing techniques used successfully by athletes. Lisa has a strong interest in Canadian music that is evident in the projects she undertakes, including a solo CD of previously unrecorded Canadian compositions for viola and piano, Magdalene Wood, and a new collaboration with The Algonquin Ensemble, a sextet formed to musically interpret the works of Canadian artist, Tom Thomson.

 

Alisa Klebanov, 3D-printed bass-viola

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Alisa Klebanov is a fourth year music student at the University of Ottawa, studying with Yehonatan Berick and Michael van der Sloot. Having studied violin up until her third year, Alisa made her debut as a violist by completing the Institute of Orchestral Studies at the National Arts Centre in the fall 2017. Later that year, Alisa won an orchestral fellowship at the Aspen Music Festival and School, completing the fellowship in the summer of 2018. In May 2018 Alisa competed in the National Arts Centre Bursary Competition, winning the Bursary as well as the Sturdavent Prize for Orchestral Excerpts. Most recently, Alisa won the principal viola position at the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra, making her debut as principal this coming season! Alisa’s professional goal is to become part of a professional orchestra, as well as teaching up and coming musicians.

 

Geena Salway, 3D-printed bass-viola

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Violist Geena Salway recently obtained a Master of Music as a student of both Michael van der Sloot and Rennie Regehr at the University of Ottawa. Previously, Geena studied with Daniel Scholz at the University of Manitoba for her Bachelor of Music. Upon convocation, she was a recipient of the University Gold Medal. She also has an A.R.C.T. diploma in Viola Performance from the Royal Conservatory. Geena has played in masterclass for notable violists including Jutta Puchhammer-Sédillot, Richard O’Neill, Lesley Robertson, and Gerald Stanick. In her hometown of Regina, Geena played with the Regina Symphony Orchestra for the masterworks series, including a gala performance for HRH The Prince of Wales in 2012. Geena has also been invited to perform with the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra and the Winnipeg Symphony as part of the apprenticeship program. Geena has also been a member of the NYO Canada (2014, 2015, and 2017) and L’Orchestre de la Francophonie (2018). In addition to orchestral music, Geena has also attended chamber music festivals including Scotia Festival and the Tuckamore Festival.

Currently, Geena is continuing her studies at the University of Ottawa with a Performance Diploma.