C’mon Festival Explores Musical Roots

The theme of the 2018 C’mon (Chamber music old & new) Festival is the exploration of musical roots. It will celebrate its own beginnings as an Edmonton Fringe BYOV, and delve into non-western musical traditions. Now in its sixth year, the mission of this summer festival of “adventurous classical music” is to draw more diverse audiences to the art-form. The festival’s atmosphere is casual and the programming is eclectic. It takes place July 13 – 15 at Studio 96.

The festival has used various forms of collaboration to reach out to new audiences since it began. The concert on July 15 features a cross-cultural exchange between the musicians of the festival’s resident seven-piece C’mon Ensemble and classical Indian musicians, vocalist Shruti Nair and tabla player Prasanth Josp. On the same program is a premiere from young Edmonton composer, Geoff Li. In this new work, commissioned by the C’mon Festival, he was inspired by Korean and Chinese folk music, and his upbringing steeped in classical and jazz music.

The C’mon Festival welcomes Edmonton-born violinist/composer Alissa Cheung as guest artist. A former member of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra (ESO), Alissa has gone on to an international career with the Montreal-based Bozzini Quartet. She has written a new work for electronics that will premiere at the July 14 concert. She will also be featured as a soloist in music by Wieniawski, Ana Sokolovic and Pulitzer Prize-winner David Lang.

In the opening concert on July 13, the festival will return to its own roots with Igor Stravinsky’s Suite from _The Soldier’s Tale_. Performing this masterpiece from the early twentieth century in 2013 inspired artistic director Kathryn Macintosh to create the annual festival. A veteran trombonist with the ESO, she feels that “the smaller, more intimate scale of chamber music is the perfect vehicle for connecting with people who may not have had exposure to classical music. I like to surprise them with how provocative, fun and emotionally rewarding this kind of music can be.”

The C’mon Festival returns to Studio 96 (10909 96 Street) in the historic neighbourhood of McCauley. The concerts on July 13 and 14 are at 8 pm, and July 15 at 3 p.m. Admission is by donation.

Information submitted by the C’mon Festival.

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