Violinist Etsuko Kimura and harpist Lori Gemmell are working towards a recording of music for violin and harp which will include commissions of new works by Canadian composers. We are delighted to be able to feature one of these works in our noon hour concert, along with other more well known compositions.
Saint Saens, Fantaisie, Op.124
R. Murray Schafer, Wild Bird
Piazzolla, Café 1930
Lori Gemmell has been harpist with the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony since 1999. Before joining the KWS she played with Orchestra London and with the Calgary Phillharmonic Orchestra. She received her Masters degree from the University of Toronto where she studied with eminent harpist, Judy Loman. Lori also studied with Catherine Michel in Paris, France and Alice Chalifoux in Camden, Maine.
Lori has been a regular at the Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival. She has also been featured at Les Concerts aux Iles du Bic near Rimouski, The Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival in Detroit, The Festival of the Sound in Parry Sound, Ontario, The Indian River Festival in P.E.I and the Festival International du Domaine Forget. Lori performed with Le NEM, a contemporary chamber group in Montreal with whom she toured through Europe and Japan. She has given solo concerto performances with the National Arts Centre Orchestra, the Edmonton Symphony, Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony and Orchestra London, among others.
Canadian Composers have long valued her passion and dedication to their music. Over the years she has worked closely with Srul Irving Glick, John Weinzweig, Alexina Louie, Glenn Buhr, Marjan Mozetich, Jeff Ryan, Andy Creeggan and Kevin Fox. Her long association with R. Murray Schafer resulted in her recording of The Crown of Ariadne in 2010, after which Schafer wrote Four Songs for Harp and Mezzo-Soprano for Lori and his wife, Eleanor James.
With her husband, Tom Allen, Lori enjoys creating music and storytelling shows. They have co-produced programs based on music by R. Murray Schafer, Marjan Mozetich, Alexina Louie, as well as Bohemians in Brooklyn, The Judgment of Paris, and From Weimar to Vaudeville all surprise hits at the Global Cabaret Festival at the Young Centre in Toronto. Their latest show is called The Missing Pages-The Canadian Who Met Beethoven.
Lori teaches at Wilfred Laurier University and has a private studio in Toronto.
In 2002, Lori released her first solo recording, Prelude, in 2009, a harp duo recording with Jennifer Swartz, The Garden of Peacocks, on the Atma label, in 2010, Divertissement, with trumpeter Larry Larson, and in 2011 a solo recording, Canadian Music for Harp. She also played on the Grammy-nominated recording The Reminder by Feist and in 2013 on Bohemians in Brooklyn with Patricia O'Callaghan and Bryce Kulak.
Etsuko Kimura is currently Assistant Concertmaster with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. One
of the exciting performers of her generation, she catapulted to the international stage as a
prizewinner of the 24th Joseph Szigeti International Violin Competition. Born and raised in
Japan, she studied violin performance with Tomotada Soh at the Osaka College of Music, and
later with Lorand Fenyves in Canada. Etsuko has been a featured soloist with orchestras
internationally, and has lead a number of premier ensembles in the past including the Kobe City
Chamber Orchestra in Japan, and Sinfonia Toronto. Her performances can be heard frequently
on the radio. Etsuko currently teaches at the Faculty of Music at the University of Toronto.
Ms. Kimura founded a string orchestra in Japan in 2014. This string orchestra brings together
musicians from all over the world celebrating the diversity of music worldwide. She is very
active in connecting with children with disabilities through her music. Each summer, she spends
time performing in hospitals, gives workshops and works with disabled chidlren. Her dream is to
find ways to deliver music to people who don’t have easy access to classical music.