Pacific Region International Summer Music Academy
Supporting our Symphony
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"From the very beginning, all the teachers were supportive and devoted to helping us grow as musicians and as people. The music that we played will always hold a special place in my heart because of the memories attached to them. Lastly, it provided me with essential orchestral playing skills and introduced me to great repertoire..."

-Calvin Chan, USA, 2012 Student
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Welcome to the fifth edition of our PRISMA newsletter. It's hard to believe we're already halfway through the program!

This issue features articles about some of the selected repertoire for PRISMA and three of our distinguished guest artists.

The students have been working hard every day this past week and I'm sure they will put on a spectacular performance. The final Masterclass is a strings performance on Thursday, June 27 at 3:30 pm.

You may have heard the buzz about violinist Soyoung Yoon, one of our guest artists. Your last opportunity to see this amazing soloist perform live is Wednesday, June 26 at 7:30 pm. She will sweep you off your feet!

This week is your last chance to enjoy a PRISMA performance -- so don't miss out! The final Symphony Orchestra Concert, featuring the Pacific Philharmonic and Conductor Arthur Arnold, is on Friday, June 28 at 7:30 pm. Read on to see the chosen repertoire for the final concert.
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Wednesday, June 26, 7:30pm Concert #4 Evergreen Theatre


Chamber Music Performances by PRISMA Distinguished Guest Artists

Mozart - Serenade Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, K. 525

Stokes - Bits of Beauty

Mozart - Symfonia Concertante, K. 297



Friday, June 28, 7:30pm Concert #5 Evergreen Theatre


Performance by Pacific Philharmonic Orchestra

Arthur Arnold - Conductor

Rossini - Overture William Tell

Performances by Concerto Competition Prize Winners

Tchaikovsky - Symphony No. 6 Path�tique 


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Interesting Facts about the Repertoire
Many of the pieces chosen for PRISMA's concert program are about more than just the music. Orchestral music aims to evoke senses beyond that of hearing -- sights, feelings, smells and even tastes.


The piece chosen to launch PRISMA was Saint-S�en's Carnivaux des animaux. As the name suggests, this work progresses through a variety of animal motifs. From the Introduction et marche du lion to donkeys and elephants, the music brings to life the human imagination. 


Composed in 1886, this particular piece also aims to evoke a sense of humour in the audience. By including satirical movements where the lightest music is given to the heaviest instruments, alluding to nursery rhymes and mimicking beginner pianists practicing their scales, Saint-S�ens does just that. The piece wraps up with a grand finale reminiscent of a closing act at the carnival.
Another piece performed this weekend was Sir Edward Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1. This piece has a rich history as, according to conductor Henry Wood, it was the first and only time that an orchestral performance at a Promenade Concert at the Queen's Hall in London was given a double encore. Through reinventing what music can do to an audience, this piece has acquired a strong reputation.
Also including aspects of comedy is Strauss' Till Eulenspiegels Lustige Streich, or Till Eulenspiegels Merry Pranks. 

In this piece, which follows the classic German tale, instruments depict the various actions of Till. The violas portray the clergymen Till mocks, the violins the girls he flirts with and the bassoons the serious academics he teases.

This accompaniment to the classic German story will delight audiences as the story plays across their imaginations.
Appealing to other styles and tastes is Strauss' Enigma Variations. This musical number includes an element of mystery. Set in fourteen variations, Elgar inserted a "hidden theme" which is "not played." The mystery and the music itself have made this piece Elgar's most famous large-scale composition.
Many scholars have made suggestions about the hidden musical theme, varying from Pop Goes the Weasel to Auld Lang Syne to Agnus Dei. The mystery remains unsolved, however, and the enigma is up to the interpretation of each audience member.
Of course, one cannot forget 
Bits of Beauty, composed by Composer in Residence Tobin Stokes, which will be performed at the June 26 concert at 7:30 pm. See the concert dates below to ensure you don't miss out on these interesting pieces and more!

Symphony Concerts: Friday June 28, 7:30pm
Chamber Music Concerts: Wednesday June 26, 7:30pm
Masterclasses: daily (with the exception of Symphony Concerts days), 3:30pm ONLY $3!
Student Recitals: (see schedule hereFREE!
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Tickets can be purchased online by clicking here, at Breakwater Books (6812 Alberni Street) or at the Evergreen Theatre one hour before concerts.

Adult: $22
Youth under 15: $11

All concerts take place at the Evergreen Theatre.


If you...

  • BOUGHT SEASON PASS(ES) ($75 each): Please collect them at Will Call at the upper foyer of the Complex an hour before each concert. Bring a print out of your Paypal receipt/notification to be served even faster.
  • BOUGHT CONCERT TICKET(S) TO ONE CONCERT AND HAVE A PRINT OUT OF YOUR PAYPAL RECEIPT/ NOTIFICATION ($22/11):You can come straight to the theatre entrance. Your Paypal print out will serve as your ticket.
Thank you for joining us at these excellent performances. As this is our first year, we appreciate your patience with our volunteers as we all learn the ropes.
Carrie Dennis  


Upon entering the Curtis Institute of Music at the age of 16 as a violinist, Dennis played the viola only occasionally. She then went on to receive a Bachelor's in Violin Performance but returned to Curtis to study the viola a year later. 

Only halfway through her second year as a viola student, Dennis was offered a position in the Philadelphia Orchestra as Associate Principal Viola. She was also invited by conductor Simon Rattle to audition for the Berlin Philharmonic, for which she has served as Solo Viola for two years. 
In 2008, Dennis joined Los Angeles Philharmonic as Principal Viola and has maintained the position ever since. 
On top of her orchestra career, Dennis is an avid chamber musician. She has toured with Musicians from Marlboro and has participated in the Verbier Festival, been a Tanglewood Fellow and appeared at the Grand Tetons Music Festival and the Barga Chamber Music Festival in Italy. 
Dennis also enjoys performing, collaborating and improvising with the ambient electronic music group Micro Nonet.
Dennis has taught at Northwestern University, the University of Southern California, the University of California Los Angeles, the Colburn School and the Juilliard School, as well as the American Viola Society. 
Having already led a Viola Masterclass on June 20 and performed on June 21, Dennis will be performing at the Faculty Chamber Music Concert on June 26. She will also lead a Masterclass with fellow strings guest artists on June 27 for all strings students.

Click on her photo to see more of Carrie's accomplishments.


Oto Carrillo
A native of Guatemala, Carrillo grew up in Chicago. He earned his Bachelor's degree in Music Performance from DePaul University and a Master's degree in both Music Performance and Musicology from Northwestern University. 
Following his studies, Carrillo was awarded positions with the Memphis and Cedar Rapids Orchestras. He also has performed with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Metropolitana Orchestra of Lisbon.
Carrillo is currently the Principal Horn of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Carrillo has collaborated with numerous chamber groups such as the Chicago Chamber Musicians, musicians from the MusicNow series and the Millar Brass Ensemble.
In addition to performing, Carrillo has instructed masterclasses at a number of institutions and is currently on faculty at DePaul University.
Carrillo has given a Horn and Trombone Masterclass with fellow guest artist Gordon Cherry but will perform in the Faculty Chamber Music Concert on June 26.


Click on his photo to see more of Oto's accomplishments.


Vern Griffiths
Born and raised in North Vancouver, percussionist Vern Griffiths holds degrees from UBC in both music and commerce. He then earned his Master's degree in Orchestral Performance from the Manhattan School of Music on scholarship. He followed in the footsteps of his percussion teacher at UBC, John Rudolph, who was the Principal Percussionist for the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.

In 1997, Griffiths joined the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra as Principal Percussionist. He also performs with CBC Radio Orchestra. He has been recorded on soundtracks for movies by Disney, Imax, ABC, PBS, EA Sports, Lion's Gate, and Dreamworks. Griffiths is a prominent player in Vancouver's music community, performing with the Music on Main All-Star Band, Victoria Symphony, Music in the Morning series, MusicFest Vancouver, UBC's Wednesday Noon Hour and Pacific Spirit series, the Canadian premiere of Nebojsa Zivkovic's Sex in the Kitchen and the CBC Radio2 broadcast of one of his own recent compositions.  
Griffiths has returned to UBC as an instructor and has been teaching since 1997 and directing the Percussion Ensemble since 2005.

During PRISMA, Griffiths will perform with the Faculty Chamber Music Concert on June 26.
Click on his photo to see more of Vern's accomplishments.
Be sure to check out our silent auction in the Complex throughout PRISMA. Final additions to the auction include gift cards from Save On Foods, Powell River Healthworks' acupuncture treatments and a ladies' diamond ring. Thanks to your generosity we will be able to continue this wonderful program!

Thanks to our sponsors:

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Here's to a great last week of PRISMA.


Sarah Barton-Bridges

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