2017 Festival at a Glance:

Thursday August 10, 2017

12:00pm: Alphorn Echoes on Main – Kick off the festival by locating the sound of the the iconic alphorn in downtown Smithers.
12:15pm: Classics on Main – Imagine 18 chamber groups simultaneously touring Smithers’ Main Street!
1:30pm: Kyah Wiget Educational Society Musicians’ Debut – with the Valley Youth Fiddlers.
2:00pm: Radio Show: ONSP Sound Experience on Culture Shock CICK, 93.9FM -Toby Moisey, Alexandra Pohran-Dawkins, and the improvisation class of ONSP will be live! Tune in to CICK to hear a one-of-a kind sound experience, or join the audience in the train car during the broadcast.
2:45pm: Have Harp; Will Travel – Join Shoshanna Godber on an exploration of traditional and contemporary music from around the world for harp & voice.
5:15pm: Meditative Piano with Serge Mazerand – Improvisational pianist Serge Mazerand plays by heart and shares his signature piece “Clair de Loon”.
6:00pm: ONSP Soloists Concert – Hear talented performers on a variety of instruments as they allow us a glimpse into their individual musical journeys.
7:00pm: Turning Point Ensemble in Concert – Discover new musical favourites with a concert by one of Canada’s premiere new music ensembles!
8:30pm: Jazz Lounge with the Gordon Urban Jazz Quartet – Gordon Urban brings together some of the finest jazz players in the Bulkley Valley.

Friday August 11, 2017

10:00am Early Music in the Mid-Morning
12:00pm: ONSP Chamber Music Showcase – a concert of those beginning the art of chamber music, featuring the small ensembles of ONSP
12:30pm: Orchestra North Summer Program Showcase – A string orchestra extravaganza and family fun combined in a lunch-time concert.
2:30pm: Street Piano Recital – An outdoor classical recital featuring pianists of many levels.
3:30pm: Choral Arranging Workshop
4:00pm: Piano Masterclass with Jane Hayes
6:00pm: Peter and the Wolf with the ONSP Winds – This classic story brought to life, narrated by Lori Koop!
7:00pm: ONSP Symphonic Finale – Dvorak’s epic New World Symphony, Bruch’s Romance, and more! This orchestra concert celebrates the accomplishments of ONSP 2017 and brings a full orchestral concert right here to you in Smithers.
9:00pm: Jake Jenne and the Aerlialists – Smithers-born musician Jake Jenne joins the Aerlialists for an exciting concert of folk fusion.

Saturday August 12, 2017

9:00am: Smithers Guitar Camp in Performance – Kick off your morning at the farmer’s market with the sound of guitars.
9:00am: Drop-in Art Workshop for kids
10:15am: Fiddlers in the Museum
10:30am: Spirit of the North on the Farmer’s Market Stage
11:15am: Children’s Songs with Jeremy
12:01pm: Alphorns on the Farmers’ Market Stage – Want to hear what the famous instrument of Smithers sounds like?
12:30pm-4:00pm: Recitals in Central Park

6:00pm: Northern Composers World Premiere Concert – Rodney Sharman hosts an evening of new music inspired by the north. Come be a part of history!
7:15pm: ONSP Academy Ensemble 2017 – The irresistible combination of youthful flair and musical excellence.
8:15pm: Wrap-up: Spirit of the North Finale – Festival artists collaborate to bring some of the greatest chamber music to Smithers.
Please note: unless indicated otherwise, all performances will be 45 – 60 minutes in length.
This schedule is subject to change; please refer to this page for any future updates.
ONSP = Orchestra North Summer Program

Festival Workshops at a Glance:

August 11, 3:30-5:30pm: Choral-writing workshop with Rodney Sharman
August 11, 4:00-5:30pm: Piano Masterclass with Jane Hayes
August 12, 9:00-11:30am: Drop-in Art Workshop for kids
August 12, 11:15am-12:00pm: Children’s Songs with Jeremy

2017 Festival In Detail:

Thursday August 11, 2017

Alphorn Echoes on Main

12:00pm, Smithers’ Main Street
Featuring: Keith Berg and Jane Houlden, alphorns.

The alphorn has been used for many centuries in alpine and hilly areas of Europe. Brought here by European immigrants, the alphorn has become iconic to Smithers, and our mountains, valleys and lakes offer a great variety of acoustics for this incredible instrument. These majestic instruments will perform from different locations downtown, so come find the the alphorns echoing down own Main Street.
This kick-off event is sponsored by Frontier Chrysler.

Classics on Main

12:15pm, Smithers’ Main Street
Featuring: Over 80 musicians from the Orchestra North Summer Program.

This popular event is returning to Smithers on August 11! Come spend your lunchtime with us and hear up to 18 chamber groups play a work as they tour around Main Street. Grab lunch, coffee or ice cream, or just hang out at the library between 12:30 and 1:30 to enjoy the collaborative work and enthusiasm of musicians of all ages and levels. Locations include Bugwood Bean, Mountain Eagle Books, Schimmel’s Bakery, the Moose Hut, Two Sisters, Boville Stage, Louise’s Kitchen and the Smithers Public Library.

Kyah Wiget on Boville

1:30pm, Boville Stage, Mainstreet
Featuring: Musicians from Hazelton performing their first concert. Brought to you by the Kyah Wiget Educational Society.

A family-friendly inclusive outdoor concert at Boville Stage. Come hear new musicians from Hazelton’s Kyah Wiget Educational Society perform a concert celebrating their musical accomplishments. and the sharing of songs in groups, duos and solos. This performance will feature the Witsuwet’en language, fiddles, drum, rattles and more. This collaborative concert has been directed by Diane Mattson, and is supported by the Kyah Wiget Educational Society.

Radio Show: ONSP Sound Experience on Culture Shock CICK

2:00pm, CICK train car 93.9 FM and livestream @ www.smithersradio.com
Featuring: Toby Moisey, Alexandra Pohran-Dawkins, and the improvisation class of ONSP.

Featuring: Toby Moisey, Alexandra Pohran-Dawkins, and the improvisation class of ONSP
Tune in to CICK to hear a one-of-a kind sound experience. Or join us in the train car to be an audience member during the live broadcast! This concert will feature live electronics and and acoustic instrumentalists interacting through the art of improvisation, as the culmination of a contemporary improvisation workshop at of Alexandra Pohran-Dawkins.


2:45pm, Smithers Art Gallery
Featuring: Shoshanna Godber, harp, with Dave Godber, guitar.

Relax in our spectacular Art Gallery to enjoy Prince George’s Shoshanna Godber as she shares the beauty of the lever harp with Smithers. Sharing harp music and songs from the British Isles, the Netherlands and from Canada, Shoshanna will link the musical journey through her own narrative. Shoshanna will be joined by her husband Dave on the guitar.


5:15pm, Bethel Reformed Church
Featuring: Serge Mazerand, piano.

Serge is an improvisational pianist – a composer in the moment. In his own words: “… when I sit at the piano, I have no pre-conceived program in my mind. The notes are in my heart and I let my heart play the music that needs to be expressed in the moment. It is a heart-to-heart conversation with the audience, amplified through the soundboard of the piano.”
The first part of Serge’s performance will be just that: piano music, meditative in nature, harmonizing body, mind, heart and soul. Serge will also share his “signature” piece, “Clair de Loon”: an acclaimed arrangement of the Clair de Lune by Debussy merged with Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata — slow movement.


6:00pm, Bethel Reformed Church
Featuring: Musicians from the Orchestra North Summer Program.

Expect a joyful and encouraging celebration of sharing, talent, and hard work. Each summer, the Orchestra North Summer Program invites musicians from all across the north to gather in Smithers. Players come from the north and beyond, from Dawson Creek, Whitehorse, Kelowna, and everywhere in between. What they have in common: an appreciation for collaboration, and for bringing and sharing their best.
This concert will showcase solo performances of participants on any instrument. Repertoire will include favourites from performers: this year we will enjoy a movement from Bartok’s concerto for violin, a movement from Srul Irving Glick’s flute sonata, and other repertoire. And there’s an additional reason for suspense: one selected performer of this concert will be invited to play with the ONSP Symphony in 2017. Come and watch northern musicians of many ages perform some of the most exciting solo repertoire out there!

TURNING POINT ENSEMBLE IN CONCERT: About Scales and unlikely musical companions

7:00pm, Bethel Reformed Church
Featuring: Mary Sokol-Brown, violin, Dave Brown, Bass, Vincent Vohradsky, trumpet, Jeremy Berkman, trombone, Jane Hayes, piano, joined by Roxi Dykstra, viola, Toby Moisey, flute, Rodney Sharman, composer, and Katie Rife, percussion.

Turning Point Ensemble, a fully professional award winning chamber orchestra based in Vancouver and dedicated to new”ish” music, is travelling to northern BC: their destination is our festival here in Smithers! In this concert, members of the acclaimed ensemble perform alongside faculty of Orchestra North to present a program of chamber music for small ensembles of unlikely companions, fascinating pieces from lesser known composers ranging from Khachaturian and Komorous to the very first performance of a new trio, all through the creative lens of musicians intimately familiar with it.
This concert has been made possible by the generous support of an anonymous donor.

Jazz Lounge with the Gordon Urban Jazz Quartet

8:30-10:00pm, Studio 16 Main Street
Featuring: Gordon Urban, bass, Mike Doogan-Smith, piano, Colin Maskell, tenor sax and flute, Richard Jenne, drums.

Who says classical musicians only play classical? Some of the finest jazz players in the Bulkley Valley collaborate for some sets of classic jazz for this post-classical unwind. Expect favourite standards, mature ensemble playing, amazing improvisations, and good wine. A perfect pairing of Merlot and Musicianship. Doors open at 8:30.
This concert has been sponsored by the generous donation of Edmison Mehr Chartered Accountants.

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Friday August 11, 2017

Early Music in the Mid-Morning

10:00am, Lalazar Cafe
Featuring: The Horrocks sisters Recorder ensemble with Karen Price and Judith Souman, recorders.

Early music is sometimes the best music, especially paired with the clarity of the morning. Get yourself a coffee and enjoy a selection of music written 350 years ago played with new energy by the talented Horrocks Recorder ensemble, joined by Smithers’ own Karen Price.

ONSP Chamber Music Showcase

12:00pm, New Christian Reformed Church
Featuring: Musicians of ONSP.

This is a concert of those beginning the art of chamber music. Not ready for Shostakovich and Hindemith? Then try Shoo-fly or Hickory Dickory Dock. This short concert will feature chamber ensembles of all levels as an indoor recap of Classics on Main. Especially geared towards younger children or those with a soft spot for fun tunes, cute kids, and earnest musicianship! This concert is sponsored by The Sausage Factory.

Orchestra North Summer Program Showcase

12:30pm, New Christian Reformed Church
Featuring: ONSP Wind Ensemble and String Orchestras with Eleonora Higginson, soprano. 

Family friendly and fun. This orchestral event will feature performers of all ages playing peppy string orchestra music, samples of wind, brass and percussion, plus fun arrangements of movie scores and popular music. Joining us in this concert this year is Prince Rupert-based soprano Eleonora Higginson performing a piece by the ONSP 2017 resident composer Rodney Sharman.
We gratefully acknowledge the support of Tower Communications in sponsoring this concert.

Street Piano Recital

2:30pm, Bugwood Bean Stage (Main and 2nd)
Featuring: Various pianists, and hosts Margaret Letkeman and Sharon Carrington.

Everyone has been to a piano recital. But a STREET piano recital? Come celebrate the wonderful initiative of the Bulkley Valley Classical Strings Society and come to a recital played on the piano that spent last summer at Crater Lake. Featuring pianists ranging from students to the wonderful Jane Hayes herself performing duos of the Slavonic Dances. Great music, great artwork, community spirit, and the outdoors combined- this is Smithers at its best!

Peter and the Wolf with the ONSP Winds & Lori Koop

6:00pm, New Christian Reformed Church
Featuring: ONSP wind ensemble and Lori Koop, narrator.

The classic story of Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, brought to life by the professional ONSP winds and Lori Koop as narrator. This family-friendly concert will be balanced out by chamber music that showcases some of the rich repertoire written for wind instruments in various ensembles.


7:00–9:00pm, New Christian Reformed Church
Featuring: Orchestra North Summer Program participants & faculty; Rosemary Thomson, conductor.

A concert of symphonic masterpieces… by northerners, for northerners! During the Orchestra North Summer Program, musicians gather from all across the north, forming a symphony orchestra who work with professional faculty and conductors to create an impressive symphonic concert. Conductor Rosemary Thomson will take up the baton to present this year’s symphonic features: the breathtaking imagery and drama Dvorak’s epic New World Symphony, rich beauty of Bruch’s Romance for viola and orchestra, performed by our ONSP concerto composition winner Judith Souman. These classical greats will be balanced out with symphonic film music and Marquez’ fantastic Danzon no. 2. A concert of this scope in Smithers! Not to be missed!
We gratefully acknowledge the support of the Bulkley Valley Credit Union in sponsoring this concert.

The Aerlialists

9:00pm, the Old Church (1st and King); doors open at 8:30
Featuring: Jake Jenne and the Aerlialists

Come hear Smithers-native Jake Jenne on drums with the Aerlialists. In a world where hyphenated genres are becoming the norm, all kinds of monikers are available for a contemporary folk band – post-folk, trad-core, alt-roots. File under World, or file under Celtic? Aerialists fits best with the beautifully contradictory term prog-trad, melding their ferociously creative harmonic sensibilities with a deep love for folk traditions. Featuring Elise Boeur (Jenny Ritter), Adam Iredale-Gray (Fish & Bird), and Scottish harpist Màiri Chaimbeul (Darol Anger & The Furies), Aerialists combines post-rock textures and trad energy to create captivating new music on fiddle, lever harp, guitar, bass, and drums. “Aerialists interweave Gaelic and Scandinavian folk traditions with jazz and just a hint of rock in an intoxicating blend.” – Folk Radio UK

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Saturday August 12, 2017

Guitar Camp in Performance

9:00am, CICK Train Car Stage
Featuring: performers from the Smithers Guitar Camp.

Start off your Saturday with a variety of music and styles performed as part of the culmination of the Smithers Adult Guitar Camp. Renowned instructors spend a week mentoring guitar students — come grab a coffee, stroll around the farmer’s market, and hear what these talented guitarists have been up to all week!

Fiddlers in the Museum

10:15-11:00am, Bulkley Valley Museum
Featuring: Kiri Daust and Elise Bouer. 

Taste a bit of our heritage with history through music. Kiri Daust and Elise Bouer put a new spin on history by a few sets of fiddling in our very own Smithers Museum.

Spirit of the North on the Farmer’s Market Stage

10:30am-12:00pm, CICK Farmer’s Market stage
Featuring: ONSP musicians. 

Surprise! What will ONSP bring to the Farmer’s Market Stage this year?

THE ALPHORN at the Farmer’s Market

12:01pm, CICK Train Car Stage
Featuring: Keith Berg and Jane Houlden, alphorns.

The alphorn has been used for many centuries in alpine and hilly areas of Europe. Brought here by European immigrants, the alphorn has become iconic to Smithers, and our mountains, valleys and lakes offer a great variety of acoustics for this incredible instrument. Come discover this instrument for yourself!
This event is brought to you by the Smithers District Chamber of Commerce.

Meet the Marimba

12:30pm, Dance Studio
Featuring: Katie Rife, marimba. 

What’s a marimba, you say? It’s the gloriously warm and mellow-sounding big cousin of the xylophone. Come enjoy a world tour of music written for this beautiful instrument with Okanagan Symphony Principal Percussionist Katie Rife.

Harp in the Gallery

1:20pm, Art Gallery
Featuring: Màiri Chaimbeul, harp. 

A rare opportunity to hear Boston-based Scottish harpist Màiri Chaimbeul solo in concert. Màiri will share music rooted in her Scottish Gaelic indigenous language and culture, as well as her own compositions. Expect a range of composed and improvised music with influences from jazz and contemporary music. This concert is sponsored by Heritage Technical Services.

All things Brass

2:20pm, Dance Studio
Featuring: Jeremy Berkman, trombone, and Vince Vohradsky, trumpet. 

The north does love brass: Terrace-born Vincent Vohradsky, 2nd trumpet of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, takes the recital stage with Jeremy Berkman, principal trombone of the Vancouver Opera. Brass playing at its very best.

“COSMOLOGY” for Cello and Live Electronics

3:15pm, Art Gallery
Featuring: Nicholas Denton-Protsack, cello. 

Kelowna native Nick Denton-Protsack returns to perform a brand-new work: the most novel, exciting, and challenging piece he has both ever written and performed, for solo cello and electronics. Cosmology is a work for solo live cello and prerecorded electronics, which was composed during Nicholas’ senior year at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Originally inspired by NASA field recordings of radio emissions from space, Cosmology eventually became a composition intended to conceptually mirror the structure and chronology of the universe, itself. The work is in five movements and is roughly 30 minutes long. Sure to be full of youthful energy, technical agility, and remarkable imagination, this will be a once in a lifetime concert.


6:00pm, Bethel Reformed Church
Featuring: Rodney Sharman, host; with ONSP faculty performing compositions by Rodney Sharman, Nicholas Denton-Protsack, Kiri Daust, Judith Souman, Kent Dykstra, and more.

Fresh ink from composers – and the newest composer of the North! Turning Point Ensemble with mentor composer Rodney Sharman showcase music created at Orchestra North this past week.
Participate in the excitement and historical significance of world premiers. In this incredible opportunity to hear brand-new music, northern composers express current times through their own voices. In addition to works by more established northern composers, the audience will hear works by the four northern musicians selected to work under the mentorship of pre-eminent Canadian composer Rodney Sharman.
This concert is in partnership with the Turning Point Ensemble and sponsored by the Canadian Music Centre BC Region.


7:15pm, Bethel Reformed Church
Featuring: The ONSP Academy 2017: Simon Gidora, violin; Leah Froyd, violin; Judith Souman, viola; Nicholas Denton-Protzack, cello; Andrea Pedro, piano, and Alex Chernata, clarinet.

Don’t miss this opportunity to hear young professionals from all around BC perform masterworks of chamber music! The ONSP Academy is comprised of select promising young musicians, who collaborate with and are mentored by Orchestra North faculty members throughout the academy week as they learn, perform, and teach together. Audiences should expect not only fine playing and great repertoire, but also the enthusiasm of youth and the joy of musical collaboration through chamber music. This concert marks the kick-off for the northern BC tour that the Academy Ensemble begins the next day.
We gratefully acknowledge the support of Ann and Glen Greene in sponsoring Saturday evening’s concerts.


8:15pm, Bethel Reformed Church
Featuring: Roxi Dykstra, host.

Call it a performer’s choice evening. Groups of festival artists collaborate to put together some of the biggest and best music yet. This is a chance to hear the best in ensemble playing while discovering movements of musicians’ favourite works, including Poulenc trio for oboe, bassoon and piano, Mendelssohn’s remarkable string octet, and a fabulous Rosetti double horn concerto. Over 20 professional musicians perform one single show.
We gratefully acknowledge the support of Ann and Glen Greene in sponsoring Saturday evening’s concerts.

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Workshops, Workshops, Workshops:

Choral-writing workshop with Rodney Sharman

Friday, August 11, 3:30-5:30pm, Sharon Carrington Studio
Love to sing? Love to learn something new? Singers and/or composers welcome. By special request, our composer-in-residence Rodney Sharman is offering a one-time workshop in choral arranging and part-writing. Anyone wishing to learn more about choral part-writing are encouraged to come, and anyone is welcome to join the choir. Singers welcome! Singers are needed to test out arrangements!
Signup by writing info@festivalnorth.com, subject line choral-writing workshop.

Piano Masterclass with Jane Hayes

Friday, August 11, 4:00-5:30pm, Bethel Reformed Church
Spend some time learning from a master. Jane Hayes, pianist, is taking a break from her university position and busy recording life to offer a piano masterclass to Smithers. Open to all levels. Open to all observers (no registration needed). Active participation by invitation:
To request to play in the masterclass, contact scmusic@telus.net.

Drop-in Art Workshop for Kids

Saturday, August 12, 9:00-11:30am, Smithers Art Gallery
The Smithers Art Gallery is offering a free children’s workshop, inviting people in to create art in our own gallery. Bring your artistic side- or drop off your child so theirs can be inspired. Drop-in. Recommended for ages 3 to 15. Sponsored by the Smithers Art Gallery.

Children’s Songs with Jeremy

Saturday, August 12, 11:15am-12:00pm, Smithers Public Library
This workshop engages young children in song and musical activity for songs. Jeremy Berkman, principal trombone of the Vancouver Opera, will be joined by participants from the Orchestra North Summer Program to inspire your child to sing and participate in a fun and learning musical opportunity. But this is not only for children: any music teachers or parents are welcome to come and learn new ideas as well. Recommended for children ages 3 and up, and music teachers and parents. No sign-up required.

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2017 Festival Sponsors:

Mainstage Tier Sponsors

Orchestra North Symphony Orchestra, with Judith Souman, viola: Sponsored by BV Credit Union
Turning Point Ensemble in Concert: Sponsored by Anonymous
The Aerlialists with Elise Boeur: Available for sponsorship
Festival Finale Evening: Academy Ensemble and Festival Finale: Sponsored by Ann and Glen Greene

Concert Tier Sponsors

Classics on Main: Available for sponsorship
ONSP String Orchestra Showcase, with Eleonora Higginson, soprano: Sponsored by Tower Communications Ltd
Northern Composers Concert with Rodney Sharman: Sponsored by the Canadian Music Centre BC Region
Jazz Lounge with Gordon Urban: Sponsored by Edmison Mehr

Event Tier Sponsors

Festival Kick-off: Alphorn Echoes on Main: Sponsored by Frontier Chrysler
ONSP Soloists Concert: Available for sponsorship
Street Piano Recital: Available for sponsorship
Workshop: Choral-writing workshop with Rodney Sharman: Available for sponsorship
Workshop: Piano Masterclass with Jane Hayes: Available for sponsorship
Workshop: Art Workshop for kids: Sponsored by the Smithers Art Gallery
Workshop: Songs for young children: Available for sponsorship

Recital Tier Sponsors

Shoshanna and the lever harp: Available for sponsorship
Meditative Piano with Serge Mazarand: Available for sponsorship
Baroque Morning I: Available for sponsorship
Baroque Morning II: Available for sponsorship
Alphorns on the Farmers’ Market Stage: Sponsored by the Smithers District Chamber of Commerce
Celtic Harp in the Gallery: Sponsored by Heritage Technical Services
Meet the Marimba, with Katie Rife: Available for sponsorship
All things Brass: Available for sponsorship
“Cosmology” for cello and live electronics, with Nicholas Denton-Protsack: Available for sponsorship

Junior Tier Sponsors

KWES with the Valley Youth Fiddlers: Available for sponsorship
Guitar Camp Performers at the Farmer’s Market: Available for sponsorship
ONSP Chamber Music Showcase: Sponsored by The Sausage Factory
Fiddling in the Museum: Available for sponsorship

Interested in sponsoring a concert or event? Please contact us at info@festivalnorth.com or 778.210.2101.

Sponsorship levels are: Mainstage Tier ($1000), Concert Tier ($500), Event Tier ($350), Recital Tier ($250), and Junior Tier ($150).